Urban Fathers' Liberation Front

Confused dads working out the city

75 Great Cover Versions

on May 11, 2014

Part three of the blog indulgence is a list of cover versions.  I love a good cover version for what it can bring to a well known song, for introducing you to new artists or a breadth of artists you already know, and to re-engage you in a song you thought you didn’t like.  A good cover version brings something new; some good cover versions will trick you into thinking the song is an original – indeed, some cover versions are the definitive version – think Tainted Love, Always on My Mind or Hallelujah.

Tori Amos is a bit of a champion of the cover; her version of Smells Like Teen Spirit was probably when I first realised the potential in re-interpreting songs.  She’s done some other corkers as well, from Slayer to Chas ‘n’ Dave.  Some will note a cover of Bohemian Rhapsody by Fuzzbox – the original by Queen was in my most hated songs, but the Fuzzbox version – a loopy acapella romp is genuinely hilarious.  There are a couple of oddities in there – Eddi Reader is best known for Patience of Angels, which was written by Boo Hewerdine who then recorded it in 2006; his might be the cover.  Likewise, the Gwen Stefani and Annie Lennox tracks are both obscure Keane tracks, the originals of which won’t be known to many.  Check out the Arctic Monkeys ‘Love Machine’ – a band really having fun with a song.

There are a couple of covered songs here that appear twice – Love Will Tear Us Apart, Hallelujah and Always on My Mind (though the Elvis version isn’t one of them), a couple of artists whose songs are covered a couple of times and hopefully one or two surprises… Original artists are in brackets.

  1. 29 Palms – American Girl (Tom Petty)
  2. A-ha – Crying in the Rain (Everly Brothers)
  3. Alison Krauss – Baby, Now That I Found You (The Foundations)
  4. Amy Winehouse – Valerie (The Zutons)
  5. Annie Lennox – Pattern of My Life (Keane; originally Closer Now)
  6. Arctic Monkeys – Love Machine (Girls Aloud)
  7. Avril Lavigne – The Scientist (Coldplay)
  8. Barry Manilow – If Tomorrow Never Comes (Garth Brooks)
  9. Beautiful South – You’re the One That I Want (Olivia Newton John/John Travolta)
  10. Bloc Party – Say it Right (Nelly Furtado)
  11. Brooke Fraser – Distant Sun (Crowded House)
  12. Communards – Don’t Leave Me This Way (Harold Melvin and the Bluenotes)
  13. Corrine Bailey Rae – Munich (Editors)
  14. David Gray – Say Hello Wave Goodbye (Soft Cell)
  15. Deacon Blue – It’s Not Funny Anymore (Husker Du)
  16. Deacon Blue – Trampolene (Julian Cope)
  17. Devendra Banhart – Don’t Look Back in Anger (Oasis)
  18. Eddi Reader – Patience of Angels (Boo Hewerdine)
  19. Erasure – Take a Chance on Me (ABBA)
  20. Fat Lady Sings – Me and Julio Down by the Schoolyard (Paul Simon)
  21. Flaming Lips – Can’t Get You Out of My Head (Kylie Minogue)
  22. Fuzzbox – Bohemian Rhapsody (Queen)
  23. Girls Aloud – Teenage Dirtbag (Wheatus)
  24. Glenn Campbell – Good Riddance (Green Day)
  25. Gossip – Careless Whisper (George Michael)
  26. Guns N Roses – Live and Let Die (Wings)
  27. Gwen Stefani – Early Winter (Keane)
  28. Happy Mondays – Step On (John Kongos)
  29. Hootie and the Blowfish – Driver 8 (REM)
  30. Horse – Wichita Lineman (Glenn Campbell)
  31. Jeff Buckley – Hallelujah (Leonard Cohen)
  32. John Mayer – Free Falling (Tom Petty)
  33. Johnny Cash – One (U2)
  34. Jose Gonzalez – Love Will Tear Us Apart (Joy Division)
  35. kd lang – Hallelujah (Leonard Cohen)
  36. Keane – Under Pressure (Queen and David Bowie)
  37. Keaton Henson – You Were Always on Mind (Gwen McCrae)
  38. Kim Wilde – You Keep Me Hanging On (The Supremes)
  39. King Creosote & Jon Hopkins – I’ve Been Losing You (a-ha)
  40. Kirsty MacColl – A New England (Billy Bragg)
  41. KT Tunstall – Tangled Up in Blue (Bob Dylan)
  42. KT Tunstall – The Prayer (Bloc Party)
  43. KT Tunstall – Boys of Summer (Don Henley)
  44. Kylie Minogue – Can’t Get Blue Monday Out of my Head (New Order)
  45. Lemar – I Believe in a Thing Called Love (The Darkness)
  46. Lily Allen – Mr Blue Sky (ELO)
  47. Manic Street Preachers – Raindrops Keep Falling on my Head (BJ Thomas)
  48. Mindy Smith – Jolene (Dolly Parton; Parton features on this version)
  49. Nerina Pallot – Love Will Tear Us Apart (Joy Division)
  50. Nouvelle Vague – Guns of Brixton (The Clash)
  51. Pet Shop Boys – Always on my Mind (Gwen McCrae)
  52. Phil Collins – Can’t Stop Loving You (Leo Sayer)
  53. REM – The Lion Sleeps Tonight (Solomon Linda; originally Mbube)
  54. Renee Geyer – Into Temptation (Crowded House)
  55. River City People – California Dreaming (The Mamas and the Papas)
  56. Robbie Williams – Louise (Human League)
  57. Elvis Costello – She (Charles Aznavour)
  58. Sixpence None the Richer – There She Goes (The La’s)
  59. Smith and Burrows – Wonderful Life (Black)
  60. Soft Cell – Tainted Love (Gloria Jones)
  61. Stephen Lindsay – Monkey Gone to Heaven (Pixies)
  62. Stereophonics – Handbags and Gladrags (Chris Farlowe)
  63. Take That – Relight My Fire (Dan Hartman)
  64. The Big Dish – Refugee (Tom Petty)
  65. The Civil Wars – Billie Jean (Michael Jackson)
  66. The Futureheads – Hounds of Love (Kate Bush)
  67. The Streets – Your Song (Elton John)
  68. Thea Gilmore – Bad Moon Rising (Creedence Clearwater Revival)
  69. Tom McRae – Wonderful Christmastime (Paul McCartney)
  70. Tori Amos – Smells Like Teen Spirit (Nirvana)
  71. Travis – Hit Me Baby One More Time (Britney Spears)
  72. U2 – Everlasting Love (Love Affair)
  73. Vonda Shepherd – This Ole Heart of Mine (The Isley Brothers)
  74. Will Young – Running Up That Hill (Kate Bush)
  75. Wonder Stuff and Vic Reeves – Dizzy (Tommy Roe)
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