Jun 062022
ondara this must be the place cover

“This Must Be the Place (Naive Melody)” is one of Talking Heads‘ most covered songs, in part because it is so simple compared to most of their music, especially their music from the late ’70s and early ’80s. Because it’s so simple, it lends itself to solo interpretations in a way in which little of their music normally does. (Imagine listening to, say, “Born Under Punches” by someone on just a guitar.)

Kenyan-American singer-songwriter Ondara has already found his way onto Cover Me through covers of Neil Young and his musical hero, Bob Dylan (he went by J.S. Ondara then). So Talking Heads are a little out of left field for him, even if this is one of their most direct songs. Continue reading »

May 312019

Check out the best covers of past months here.

best cover songs may
AURORA – Across the Universe (The Beatles cover)

The first of a couple Beatles covers this month, AURORA’s “Across the Universe” doesn’t reinvent the wheel, it just removes a few spokes. The Norwegian singer-songwriter strips everything away but keys and a bunch of voices (there’s a guitarist too, though barely audible). It’s all the song needs. Continue reading »

May 202019
js ondara bob dylan

There is a strong early Bob Dylan vibe blowin’ in the wind of J.S. Ondara’s debut album Tales of America released earlier this year. The record, a sublime set of stark sometimes melancholy tunes that perfectly frames the boyish vocals and nuanced delivery inherent in Ondara’s voice has earned him a nomination for emerging artist of the year to be presented by the Americana Music Association later in the year.

Growing up in Nairobi, Kenya listening mostly to rock music, Ondara apparently always thought that “Knockin’ On Heaven’s Door” was a Gun’s ‘N’ Roses song. After he lost a bet to a friend who told him that the song’s true origins, folk music became his passion. And so began his travels down the Dylan rabbit hole that eventually lead him to Minneapolis, in Dylan’s home state, to pursue his career. Continue reading »