Aug 312022
 
Eddie Vedder – Long Shadow (Joe Strummer cover)

This month, Joe Strummer would have turned 70. In a few weeks, Dark Horse Records will release the compilation Joe Strummer 002: The Mescaleros Years. To promote it, director Lance Bangs filmed a video of Eddie Vedder covering the posthumously-released Mescaleros track “Long Shadow.” It’s a simple fireside performance, similar to Vedder buddy Neil Young’s lockdown videos, and hopefully will bring more attention to a lesser known non-Clash track from the Strummer catalog. Continue reading »

Aug 122022
 
kasey chambers lose yourself cover

“Lose Yourself,” Eminem’s single from his movie 8 Mile, was his first ever US #1 hit (and Diamond single) and, along with the movie, catapulted him to super-stardom. It was absolutely everywhere when it came out, but there are only a few dozen covers of the track. That’s likely because the song is both so tied up with Eminem’s own personal story and because some of the lyrics are literally about the plot of the movie. Continue reading »

Nov 022020
 
best cover songs october 2020
Andrew Bird – Andalucia (John Cale cover)

Props to any musician who chooses some non-obvious tunes for their Christmas album. Even Joni Mitchell’s “River” has so often been served as the “surprise” holiday song by now that it feels pretty played out. Andrew Bird covers a few standards on his upcoming Hark! – “Oh Holy Night,” “White Christmas” (though weirdly not the hymn that gave the album its name) – but makes room for some seasonally-appropriate fare John Prine, Handsome Family, and, on the first single, John Cale. Continue reading »

Oct 142020
 
lingua ignota kim cover

Is there a “Most Controversial Eminem Track” award? If there is, the winner might be “Kim”, the rapper’s second song about killing his then-wife. He has claimed it’s a prequel to “’97 Bonnie and Clyde,” his first song about killing his then-wife.

Lingua Ignota is the project of musician Kristin Hayter, which fuses classical, metal, industrial, noise and prog influences, among other things, into something fairly hard to pin down. Domestic violence is a major theme of Hayter’s music as she is a survivor of abusive relationships. Her new cover of “Kim” was originally intended to be part of an all-covers album highlighting misogyny in the music industry, but that project appears to be on hold, so she released it herself. Continue reading »

Feb 212020
 

Cover Classics takes a closer look at all-cover albums of the past, their genesis, and their legacy.

Strange Little Girls

Wham, Steely Dan, Bette Midler, Bill Withers, Rihanna, Led Zeppelin, Madonna, Eagles, the Stones – Tori Amos has covered ’em all, and anyone and everyone left in between. (OK, maybe except maybe boybands – it wouldn’t surprise me if she tackled, say, “Back For Good” at least somewhere live, but I couldn’t find it in the pages and pages and pages of YouTube Tori Covers links.) Not necessarily successfully every time, it’s true, but always challengingly and usually well worth the ride.

Despite this evident love for the songs of others, Amos has officially issued only the one covers project, such is her own prolific muse, with well over a dozen discs of her own. (There’s also Midwinter Graces, a festive album with several traditional songs, and Night of Hunters, reimagining several classical pieces of inspiration to her over her years, but they don’t really count as cover albums.) Strange Little Girls, which came out in 2001, had a specific intent. Rather than a outpouring of personal favorites, this was a procession of songs delineating a masculine view of the world. By men and about men. With Amos’s acknowledged feminist opinions and activism, this was a deliberate stance, with the aim of subverting them and offering a female perspective thereto.
Continue reading »

May 212012
 

Hip hop vet Dr. Dre has been in the music scene since the early ’80s but come the year 2000, it seemed the world needed a little reminding that the famous rapper is certainly a forced to be reckoned with — that’s where the song “Forgot About Dre” came in. Released as the second single off of Dr. Dre’s sophomore album, 2001, “Forgot About Dre” featured rapper Eminem in his early years and won the pair a Grammy award for Best Rap Performance By A Duo Or Group in 2000. Continue reading »