Cover songs – better than the original?

Jen Kehl - My Skewed View

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 You may find a few you like (or hate, depending on your mood). Mad props, as always, to Jen for hosting!!

Soundtrack to my school life

It’s Twisted MixTape Tuesday Time, Y’all!

www.jenkehl.comThe theme for this week was “If My Life Had a Soundtrack.” You know, if someone decided my life was sweet enough to turn into a movie, theoretically these are the songs someone would pick. The thing about me is music has been huge in my life. And specific eras in my life demanded specific types of music and artists. So what I’m saying is this would be a very random soundtrack with little cohesiveness. Which I guess is a good way to describe my life, really.

I didn’t pick any bands that have really gone the distance. Nirvana, No Doubt, The Killers, Garth Brooks, The White Stripes and Tim McGraw would all be on the soundtrack as well because they are my homies for life. The songs listed here are the ones that come to mind first when I think about the different phases of my life and aren’t necessarily still on my go-to playlist.

To keep this from getting super long and unwieldy, I’ve limited myself to the first 18 years of my life. So if someone made a movie on my life from birth to the year 2000, this is what would have to be there:


Jermaine Stewart – We Don’t Have to Take Our Clothes Off

According to my mom, this was my favorite song when I was like 4 years old. She said I’d sing it loud and proud. This and Papa Don’t Preach were my jams. Guess I was a cool little kid? Really wish I’d kept this philosophy once I was old enough for sexy times…

Elementary school

Celine Dion – Water from the Moon

I loved Celine Dion. There, I said it. Her music perfectly sums up the ridiculous, hopeless romantic I was in elementary school. ELEMENTARY SCHOOL, PEOPLE. I was reading Danielle Steele novels and assuming I’d marry every guy I “dated.” And listening to copious amounts of Celine Dion. I practically wore this song out on the first CD I ever owned.

Junior high

Blackstreet – No Diggity

Of course I went through a stage when I thought I was a badass. Ok, so Blackstreet doesn’t exactly make me “hard” but this album was sweet.

High school

NOFX – Please Play This Song on the Radio

In high school, I was into No Doubt and Blink-182. Later, I was taken a little deeper into punk/ska music, thanks to a dude who moved to our tiny coastal town from southern California. I dated him, but I really don’t like to think about that anymore. At least I was able to discover some sweet new bands like Goldfinger, Me First & the Gimmie Gimmies, Less Than Jake and NOFX.
***Note: song has profanity. You see what they did there? With the title? Nice.

Alanis Morrissette – Thank U

Had to include two from high school because this song got me through my suicide attempt, my dad’s suicide attempt and my parents’ divorce (all happened within the span of 6 months). To say it was a rough time in my life would be a gross effing understatement.

What songs would be on your soundtrack? Make sure you head over to the lovely Jen Kehl’s place to check out other mixtapes. Who knows – you may find a new entry for your soundtrack!