Monday, January 23, 2006

The Covered Sound

It's really pretty basic -- today I'm going to post some cover songs. If these songs are better than the originals or not is probably up for debate, but they are all beautfiul, and they all interest me in one way or another. I think that cover songs are probably on the way to being illegal which is why several of them exist only as live-versions by popular artists. Let's all hold hands and be friends, ok?

So these guys have the audacity to do a Beyonce cover song. This could easily fall right into being a parody of a parody. Could they be trying to sway Beyonce fans to don some cardigans and sweater vests, pick up some black horn-rims and grow some shaggy hair, or do they just recognize that it's a song with some potential and that they could re-do it beautifully? I think that it's interesting that just the fact that it's a cover of an annoying hot-100 song means that it will be met with laughter and it will be assumed that it's just a stunt to generate a laugh. The reality is however, this song would nearly stand on it's own merits. The harmony and phrasing are as strong as the lyrics are thin.

Everybody knows who Bright Eyes is these days. (Excuse my possibly incorrect verb tenses, please. thanks.) I'm pretty sure that everyone knows who Feist is. A young, talented songwriter covers a young, talented songwriters song. God is smiling.

Ryan Adams. Sigh. Oasis. Sigh. This looks like just the opposite of the Bright Eyes/Feist union. This looks like annoying, cocky songwriter, covers annoying, cocky rock-stars. Except that all is not as expected in who-ville. Something works -- something parts the dark clouds and shines through -- Ryan Adams voice and instinct suddenly pull him out of the tail-spin and for these five or six minutes he glides again. He played this song so well and with so much heart that those silly Gallaghers actually credit him with playing it correctly. Rumor has it that the lads were so impressed that when they play this song now they claim that they are covering Ryan Adams cover of their song. Oh -- and that song "Brown Sugar" -- well, it just kicks ass.

This one is easy enough. I don't think I need to explain anything except that The Shins can cover The Postal Service every bit as well as Sam Beam can.

My favorite singer/songwriter offers up two good covers from famous american songwriters. "Famous Blue Raincoat" by Leonard Cohen and "Tell Me Why" by Neil Young. Will this blog ever get sick of posting Hayden tracks? Probably not. If that's a problem than you can just go elsewhere.


Anonymous said...

Mushaboom cover, ryan adams, the shins, really solid stuff man, I found your site through the Vanilla forum and thought I'd check it out, good postin' & keep up the good work.

5:55 PM  
Blogger Robert said...

Thanks a lot -- I'm going to do a little blog round-up in the morning and I'll drop you a link. So cool that I'm getting some feedback -- even cooler that it's positive so far.

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