Cover songs – better than the original?

Jen Kehl - My Skewed View www.jenkehl.com

Twisted Mixtape Tuesday, and it’s all about covers this week. I kind of had a hard time remembering the cover songs I like, because for some reason all the cover songs I HATE kept popping up in my head (I’m looking at you, Britney, with your horrifying rendition of “I Love Rock & Roll”). But I want this to be a positive mixtape, so I’m ignoring my cranky tendencies and celebrating those songs that are still pretty awesome the second time around.

1. Me First & the Gimme Gimmes – Tomorrow

Me First & the Gimme Gimmes is a band that pretty much does all covers, so it’s hard to pick just one of their songs. I think I have to go with “Tomorrow,” though “Somewhere Over the Rainbow” is a superclose second.

2. Alien Ant Farm – Smooth Criminal

So I won’t say it’s better than the MJ original, but it just has such a different sound. Alien Ant Farm kind of made it into their own song, so it’s hard to compare it to the original. That’s about as technical as I’m going to get – I just love the song.

3. The White Stripes – Jolene

I’ve never really heard Dolly Parton do this song. I’ve never been a big Dolly fan so I’m ok with that. Jack White could sing a song about a turd and make it sound breathtaking. I’m not saying this song is a turd – he’s just that damn talented.

4. Nirvana – The Man Who Sold The World

Will I be lambasted if I admit that the first time I ever heard this song was when Nirvana played it? In this very video? I didn’t even know it was a cover for the longest time (no offense, David Bowie, I just wasn’t that into you back when I was going to marry Kurt Cobain). I worshiped Nirvana back in the day. I hated Courtney Love just because she married my Kurt. And when he killed himself, my (12-year-old) world shattered. This is my favorite Nirvana album, and while this isn’t my favorite song off there, I still dig it.

5. Red Hot Chili Peppers – Higher Ground

Soooo…there’s this movie called Center Stage that for some reason, I absolutely adore. Love it. It’s mostly about ballet, but at one point they do an awesome some-other-kind-of-dance to this song. Ever since then, it’s been rotating in and out of my workout playlist. Plus I like to pretend I can do the moves from the movie (I can’t). Sorry, Stevie, your original doesn’t get me moving the way this one does!

Don’t forget to check out the rest of the mixtapes at http://jenkehl.com/music/twisted-mix-tape-cover-songs-playlist/. You may find a few you like (or hate, depending on your mood). Mad props, as always, to Jen for hosting!!

6 comments

  1. Some similarities in our lists this week. I also used that Nirvana song. I also used a White Stripes, but not Jolene, though I did do another artist covering a Dolly song. Fantastic mix you put together.

  2. Listening to “Tomorrow” reminds me of that version of “Hard Knock Life” in the Austin Powers movie. Man, covers is such a great theme because there are so many options.

  3. I’d forgotten about the Alien Ant Farm Smooth Criminal Cover! I loved it when it came out :) As for Jolene – I think I’ve decided it’s one of those songs I generally adore regardless of who sings it. And Higher Ground makes my running track :)

  4. Have you ever heard Jordis Unga do The Man Who Sold the World? Man… she did it on the show Rockstar INXS, you must listen since you love the Nirvana cover.
    Also wow on the Smooth Criminal.
    Awesome mix! Thank you!

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