Author Topic: Cover vs. Original  (Read 1303 times)

Offline scuzzy

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Cover vs. Original
« on: Apr 08, 2016, 07:46 PM »
I can think of some cover songs that are IMHO better than the original, and vice versa. For example, I always thought Elton John's "Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds" was better than The Beatles original. Others come to mind, but I'll start with this and ask for opinions on others:

Original: City Of New Orleans by Steve Goodman
Cover by Arlo Guthrie (best known/most popular)
Cover by Willie Nelson (my favorite - great video with this one)

Willie link blocked by youtube.  This one works;
www.youtube.com/watch?v=6XyRdJr4LSc

Offline scuzzy

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Re: Cover vs. Original
« Reply #1 on: Apr 09, 2016, 06:55 AM »
I don't think that Arlo Guthrie doing a different version of the same song counts as a cover, but I enjoyed it just the same.

In the early 80's I enjoyed Joan Jett & The Blackhearts' I Love Rock And Roll, but then I discovered the original by The Arrows.

Scuzzy; put another dime in the jukebox, Baby.

Offline Bill

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Re: Cover vs. Original
« Reply #2 on: Apr 09, 2016, 09:42 AM »
I've listened to all three version of the song this morning.  First time I've heard the Goodman original.  If we could put Willie's voice with Arlo's guitar work it would be perfect.  Willie's voice has a maturity that  Arlo just doesn't have, by comparison he sounds like a kid, IMO.  Kind of like a 20yr old, trying to sing Delta Blues, it just doesn't work.

The LP version of Alice's makes my point.  But what you call the end all version has the distraction of the female narrator that I find annoying.  There is a much more recent video of Arlo and Alice's that I think is much better.  I will look for it, later.

Edit: I can't find the version I remember but here is the 2005 Farm Aid version.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-yLg_bzwvxg
« Last Edit: Apr 09, 2016, 10:52 AM by Bill »
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Offline scuzzy

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Re: Cover vs. Original
« Reply #3 on: Apr 09, 2016, 11:49 AM »
I think you nailed it with your observation, Bill. A version as you described would be perfect.

My favorite Woody Guthrie song: So Long It's Been Good To Know You

Offline Bill

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Re: Cover vs. Original
« Reply #4 on: Apr 09, 2016, 12:09 PM »
Geez, the poverty shown in that video is startling.  The great depression.

Edit: I should have said the Dust Bowl, but about the same time in history.
« Last Edit: Apr 09, 2016, 12:23 PM by Bill »
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Offline scuzzy

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Re: Cover vs. Original
« Reply #5 on: Apr 09, 2016, 01:02 PM »
It's been said that the Greatest Generation is in fact the parents who raised them. The parents were products of the Great Depression and appropriately disciplined their children to become the Greatest Generation. They learned to work hard, not be wasteful, and to genuinely appreciate what little they had.

Here's another:

Original: Gentle On My Mind by John Hartford (incredible talent)
Beautiful extended version by John Hartford (CAROL - you will love this version)
Cover: Gentle On My Mind by Glen Campbell (best known/most popular - awesome live version)

Offline Bill

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Re: Cover vs. Original
« Reply #6 on: Apr 09, 2016, 01:53 PM »
I like the extended version by Hartford as well.  Campbell is no slouch but when someone mentions him all I can think of is the Rhinestone Cowboy. He impresses me as kind of a phony like the song title.

Where do you come up with these gems?
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Offline Bill

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Re: Cover vs. Original
« Reply #7 on: Apr 09, 2016, 02:32 PM »
You know if you had said Flat and Scruggs I might take you seriously!
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Offline Bill

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Offline scuzzy

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Re: Cover vs. Original
« Reply #9 on: Apr 09, 2016, 02:56 PM »
Campbell was a very talented artist who knew how to capitalize on his skills (mostly a mean guitar). Too bad his mind has been ravished by Alzheimer's. I absolutely love his cover of Wichita Lineman, written and performed by Jimmy Webb.

Rhinestone Cowboy was written and performed by Larry Weiss, but made popular by Campbell. Come to think of it, I don't know that Campbell wrote any of his own stuff.

I research songs and their origins. I often find some of the best stuff that way, albeit less popular. Some of it is a lot of digging and hard work, and some of it is simply dumb luck. Other times I hear a song I really like in a movie and I wait for the credits, such as this Clint Eastwood gem:

Big Fran's Baby (performed by Lennie Niehaus for the movie A Perfect World)

Offline scuzzy

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Re: Cover vs. Original
« Reply #10 on: Apr 09, 2016, 03:02 PM »
Thanks for the Foggy Mountain Breakdown songs. Awesome stuff.

Andy Griffith was always a joy to watch, and remains so to date. :)

Offline Bill

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Re: Cover vs. Original
« Reply #11 on: Apr 09, 2016, 03:09 PM »
And then there is this version of Lineman:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AbZYLu8bNBU&nohtml5=False

Also meaningful.
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Offline scuzzy

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Re: Cover vs. Original
« Reply #12 on: Apr 09, 2016, 03:17 PM »
Awesome cover by James Taylor! Thanks for posting that.

Offline scuzzy

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Re: Cover vs. Original
« Reply #13 on: Apr 09, 2016, 03:31 PM »
On the other end of the spectrum are covers I consider horrible. This one (for some ungodly reason popular in Europe) is painful for me to listen to. I poast it here only for its shocking entertainment value. I certainly do not expect you to listen to the whole thing. Be warned, it is terrible beyond words:

American Pie - Madonna

Offline Bill

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Re: Cover vs. Original
« Reply #14 on: Apr 10, 2016, 08:24 AM »
You were right it stinks.
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Offline scuzzy

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Re: Cover vs. Original
« Reply #15 on: Apr 10, 2016, 06:30 PM »
Sleepwalk (1968 version) by Santo and Johnny is easily one of my all-time favorites. There have been multiple covers of this beautiful song, but my favorite far and large is this stunning rendition by The Ventures feat. Jeff "Skunk" Baxter. But you won't want to miss this magnificent Les Paul cover in his later years.

Offline scuzzy

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Re: Cover vs. Original
« Reply #16 on: Apr 12, 2016, 08:33 PM »
Here's a cover that will blow your socks right off their hinges:

Jim Nabors - Impossible Dream

Offline Bill

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Re: Cover vs. Original
« Reply #17 on: Apr 29, 2016, 02:39 PM »
That Woody Guthrie song "So long..." has been riding around my head since you poasted it.
And I don't remember where but I found the sign on his guitar "This  machine kills..., looks like it was originally on a printing press.
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Offline Bill

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Re: Cover vs. Original
« Reply #18 on: Apr 29, 2016, 03:22 PM »
Who poasted what John?  You talking about the song "So long...:? It's in the poast office under Cover vs. Original

by scuzzy.
« Last Edit: Apr 29, 2016, 03:53 PM by Bill »
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Offline scuzzy

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Re: Cover vs. Original
« Reply #19 on: Apr 29, 2016, 04:04 PM »
Bill, I had the same problem for awhile. It is a catchy tune. Definitely one of my favorites.