The Nitty Gritty

But more than all of those I am an entertainer. I carry around a ukulele with me for the same reason a gangster carries a gun; better to have it and not need it than need it and not have it. Stage or sidewalk, Your Pal Pete shows are just where they happen.
Currently, I'm working on a musical, RagnaPOP(or she's got the bomb), set to premiere at this year's Capital Fringe Festival. I'm also working on music, comedy, and musical comedy; for kids and/or adults.
The fruit of these projects will be available on this site, so check back regularly!

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Cover Songs that are Better than the originals

My beloved Onion happened to run a feature about this same subject recently, but I swear I thought of doing it before! Really!

Surprisingly (or not) none of my choices made it to the Onion list.

"Hurt" -Johnny Cash (Nine Inch Nails)
The song itself is brutal, the video is easily the most moving one I've ever seen. I tried to describe it to my Mom and I started crying like a mental patient. I thought a lot for the covers he did of modern songs were a bit gimmicky but he owns this one. I was going to describe it, but watch the video and let the man show you.

"Hounds of Love"-Futureheads (Kate Bush)
Stripped of the bombast and histrionics of the original but keeping the fear and longing and adding their trademark urgency, the Futureheads created a fantastic brokenhearted anthem. I'm talking about a live version from Reading(this one isn't as good, but I couldn't find that one).
"I don't know what's good for me/But here I go"

"Killing Floor" Jimi Hendrix (Howlin' Wolf)
To be fair, I've never heard the original, but the way he rocks this is undeniable. This is the best example of what he did best, strapping the blues to a paisley rocket and riding it to the ionosphere. There have been many imitators, but in my opinion, no one has even come close.

"I Just Don't Know What To Do With Myself" White Stripes (Dusty Springfield and others)
This is a great example of Jack White's underrated arranging skills. Keeping Meg's cavewoman drumming and his own atomic guitar at bay until it the last possible second, it's almost like a musical version of the stages of grief until the last strum of acceptance.

This is an incomplete list, I have a couple that are too obscure for youtube.
But I will say Kelly Hogan does a version of "Rubber Duckie" from Sesame Street that is on a compilation called "the Bottle Let Me Down" of kid's songs that Bloodshot Records released a little while ago. It is coyly sexy and must be heard to be believed.


Aerial said...

First Cut is the Deepest- Sheryl Crow. It may not be better than Cat Stevens, but it stands alone as a great record.

Anonymous said...


"Nothing Compares to You" was written and done first by Prince, but Sinead O'Connor owns it. That is my all time greatest cover.

And, Johnny Cash smokes the LP version of Hurt,but there are live versions that NIN has done that are every bit as good as Cash.

Your Pal Pete said...

You know, I almost put that one up, I regret that I didn't.