As you may know, I've made a Halloween tradition out of doing a playlist consisting exclusively of cover tunes. Cover songs may not seem obviously connected to Halloween, and yet there is a connection. The cover song allows the musician to do a sonic dress up of sorts, putting on their favorite song by another artist. So for those who love a good cover as much as I do, then this playlist will be right up your alley.
Standard playlist disclaimer: any artists, record labels, etc. who do not wish to be on the playlist for any reason whatsoever, email me at email@example.com and I will gladly remove the track. And if you'd actually like to be on the playlist, you can use the same email address to email me your mp3's. If I like the song, then odds are it'll wind up on a playlist.
- "Hello Susie", THe BAcksliders
When I first received this single from THe BAcksliders, I just assumed it was a new tune of theirs. When I looked at the songwriting credits, I came to realize the track was not theirs originally. Instead, a British bands from the 1960's called The Move were the original performers. So, now you know. And no, I wasn't going for a BAcksliders reference with that, but I'll keep it anyways.
- "Shut It Down", Sarah Jaffe
Much like how people often dress up as Halloween characters that are unlike his or her normal personality, covers can often showcase aspects of an artist's taste that would seem unlikely. This cover of Ms. Jaffe's of the Drake song would definitely qualify as unlikely. The amazing thing is how her haunting voice so brilliantly transforms the song into sultry, moody, and gorgeous. I shouldn't be surprised though. This is, after all, Sarah Jaffe.
- "To Love Somebody", Slobberbone
Slobberbone does a fine job of capturing the heartache of this Bee Gees classic.
- "Dangerous", Nicholas Altobelli
Mr. Altobelli is full of surprises. Those who know him would likely expect a cover of a Ryan Adams song, or maybe something of Sam Cooke (he has a real weakness for classic soul music). But Nicholas singing Roxette? Roxette??? Still, it's a quite interesting listen.
- "All The Pretty Girls", Lovie
I think this song has made it on each covers edition of my playlist that I've done. Just thought I'd share that.
- "Driver 8", Old 97's
Out of all the covers in the list, this one seems to sound the closest to the original. The biggest difference? Rhett Miller's voice is much less nasal than that of Michael Stipe.
- "Folsom Prison Blues", Frankie 45 & Ben Martin
Frankie, you're still missed.
- "Don't Worry Baby", Little Black Dress
LBD's cover of The Beach Boys is a perfect blend of staying true to the original while adding enough new sonic elements to keep this cover sounding fresh. The band's shoegaze style is a perfect fit for the song.
- "Beauty School Dropout", Toadies
Sometime back in the 1990's, someone got the idea to release Sandy Does Dallas. The concept was to have local artists cover the soundtrack to Grease. It's sad that while in many ways it has become easier for bands to record, nobody is pushing the idea of cool compilations and tribute CDs like this anymore. Heck, I'm still waiting for that Toadies tribute CD that Kirtland talked about years ago.
- "Revolution", Jonathan Tyler & the Northern Lights
This is a live recording from New Year's Eve 2009 at Granada Theater. Technically, this song was really recorded on New Year's Day. I was there for the show, and all I can say is it was the perfect choice for ringing in the new year.
- "Never Let Me Down Again", Kristy Kruger
Before I met or listened to Kristy Kruger, my strongest memory of her was that she won a Depeche Mode box set from the Dallas Observer. Having been such a big fan of the band back in my high school days, I envied her for winning it. So it's only fitting that I put her Depeche Mode cover on the playlist.
- "You May Be Right", Holy Moly
The band's new CD, Grasshopper Cowpunk, is easily the best effort ever put out by the band. But for today, I go back to Drinkin' Druggin' and Lovin' (the CD, that is) for this fun Billy Joel cover.
- "Lithium", The Polyphonic Spree
When Kurt Cobain sang the song, he sounded like a man in desperate need of Lithium. In the Polyphonic Spree cover, the band sounds as if they have overdosed on it.