Cover Songs Better Than the Original

Many music fans are fascinated by cover versions.  I’m one of them.  I especially love it when an artist takes a song that shouldn’t work for their style and sound and manages to make it their own.  And sometimes, the cover ends up being better than the original.

Diffuser has a list of 10 covers that fall into this category (Thanks to Stu for the link).  Then there’s this list from Buzzfeed that looks at the same sort of thing.

If these were my lists, I’d also include this semi-obscurity from the 90s.

And speaking of The Catherine Wheel, they also do this one.  Brilliant.

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 30+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

13 thoughts on “Cover Songs Better Than the Original

  • March 19, 2013 at 1:19 pm
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    Frente, 'Bizarre Love Triangle'

    Yeah…No.

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  • March 19, 2013 at 2:55 pm
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    The Catherine Wheel cover of Wish You Were Here is pretty good. But the point of this post is cover songs that are better than the original which, no, this isn't.

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  • March 19, 2013 at 4:43 pm
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    I really like the Guns and Roses version of Paul McCartney's "Live and Let Die" which of course was the theme song for the James Bond film of the same name.

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  • March 19, 2013 at 6:04 pm
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    You're All I've Got Tonight – Smashing Pumpkins. (Originally done by The Cars)

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  • March 20, 2013 at 12:58 am
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    Back in the early 90's, there was a Jimmy Hendrix Tribute album that CFNY used to play a few tracks off of. The first track was Purple Haze re-imagined by the Cure. Very cool cover.

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  • March 20, 2013 at 1:24 am
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    War Pigs – Faith No More

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  • March 20, 2013 at 1:49 am
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    I'd put a shout in for The Futureheads version of Hounds of Love (originally by Kate Bush) and The Clash's cover of I Fought The Law – way better than the Bobby Fuller Four's original.

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  • March 20, 2013 at 1:51 am
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    Ball of Confusion by the Temptations, was done well by Love and Rockets

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  • March 20, 2013 at 2:02 am
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    I wouldn't necessarily call it better, but I do like Nirvana's cover of "Here She Comes Now"

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  • March 20, 2013 at 7:30 am
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    One song that really should be on this list is Mad World by Gary Jules which was a cover of Tears for Fears and is WAY better than the original. The lyrics are really sad and all synthesizers on the original track really pull away from the song where as the Gary Jules version is so much more stark and fits the feel of the song far better than the original did.

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  • March 20, 2013 at 8:37 pm
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    Agathe & 'Fine's cover of Tom Waits "Green Grass" blew my socks off. Talk about taking something and making it your own. YouTube Green Grass and Crazy Hair by Peyrson

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