Commercial radio? Sure thing. Country pop? Absolutely. Different genres? Goes without saying. Etc., etc., etc.? Ad nauseam.
One thing that really rubs me the wrong way is cover music. Not cover bands, for which they are a very important component to the enjoyment of music, but songs that are covered by other artists. For me, cover songs fall into three distinct categories:
1} songs covered per genre;
2} songs covered that put the original to shame;
3} songs covered for no other reason than to keep a bands name out there.
1} Songs covered per genre.
With some genres, cover songs are part and parcel of the repertoire. These genres include: Americana, Bluegrass, Alt-Country, Blues, Cajun/Zydeco and Jazz. For example, Bluegrass is notorious for doing cover songs of certain songs that actually make the song more enjoyable for the listener. Songs by The Grateful Dead come to mind. Can't stand the band but listening to a bluegrass version of Friend Of The Devil makes it palatable.
2} Songs covered that put the original to shame.
With some bands/artists, they can do a cover that not only puts the original to shame, but creates a top 40 hit in the process. Bob Dylan is notorious for having his stuff covered by bands/artists that create a top 20 hit in the process, like Jimi Hendrix with All Along The Watchtower and Manfred Mann with The Mighty Quinn. Or they may not crack the hot 100, but still create a version that kills, like The Hooters did with Don Henley's The Boys Of Summer. And of course, you can't forget Leadbelly's Black Betty, that was done by Ram Jam. And Johnny Cash w/Fiona Apple doing Bridge Over Troubled Water.
3} Songs covered for no other reason than to keep/get a bands name out there.
I'm sure you can come up with a few head scratchers in regards to certain songs being covered. The way I see it, if a band is long in the tooth or up and coming, one way to keep/get their name in the news (and corporations licking their shoes) is to do a mediocre cover song. Examples include U2 doing a crappy cover of Carl Carlton's Everlasting Love, Pearl Jam doing a weenie cover of J. Frank Wilson's The Last Kiss, Mr. Big's cover of Harry Chapin's Cat's In The Cradle, and The Atari Boy's atrocious cover of Boys Of Summer.
Feh. Double Feh. Triple Feh.
I actually wanted to go elsewhere with this post about cover songs, but ya know, the minute you decide to stop for the night, whatever Mr. Momentum you got going for yourself usually bites the big one. I mean, I mean, I mean, I'm just sitting here on the group W bench, minding my own business, when BAM!
I was struck down with case of Retroactivus Childhoodiness (as opposed to Famishus Famishus).
For yet another installment of G.B. Miller, semi-professional writer, check out my latest @ I Are Writer!
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