The phrase “cover music video” is something of a misnomer. The fact that these songs were originally performed by other artists has, in all cases but one, nothing to do with the video. We might more accurately call this list “Best Music Videos for Songs That Just So Happen to Be Covers.” Still, the cover angle gives us a chance to look at some brilliant music videos that mostly flew somewhat under the radar.
In 1976, Buffy Sainte-Marie released Sweet America, a concept album devoted to the American Indian. It included “Qu’appelle Valley, Saskatchewan,” an Innuit-honoring song about the region where she was born. Now, Portland’s Holcombe Waller honors his American Indian grandmother with a beautiful, evocative cover video.