What's the best musical cover ever?

Three immediately come to mind for me:

Jeff Buckley - Hallelujah

Sinead O'Connor - Nothing Compares 2 U

Gary Jules - Mad World


Beatles: Twist & Shout


Rod Stewart/Faces: (I Know) I’m Losing You


Hendrix:  All Along The Watchtower


The Byrds:  Mr. Tambourine Man, Turn!, Turn!, Turn!, My Back Pages, All I Really Want To Do


mrincredible said:

Ok boomers. 
surprised

you don't get to disparage.  You named a cover that's a note-for-note remake for jeebus' sake grin


Best overall cover artist (tie):

Aretha Franklin

Vanilla Fudge


ml1 said:

you don't get to disparage.  You named a cover that's a note-for-note remake for jeebus' sake
grin

 At least it came out after the Ford administration!


Chris Cornell's version of Nothing Compares 2 U is quite good. 

Ruthie Foster did a cover of What Are You Listening To by Chris Stapleton at Maplewoodstock that I thought was brilliant. 


Chris Stapleton's cover of Tennessee Whiskey is pretty great 


There’s about 5 of them on Johnny Cash Unearthed album, pick one . 

Or maybe Willie Nelson’s cover of Pearl Jam’s Just Breathe.   


"Walk This Way" - Run DMC


Red_Barchetta said:

There’s about 5 of them on Johnny Cash Unearthed album, pick one . 

Or maybe Willie Nelson’s cover of Pearl Jam’s Just Breathe.   

 Is that where Cash's Hurt comes from? Because that's another great one.


Charles Bradley's cover of Black Sabbath's "Changes"

The Dickies "Nights In White Satin"

Placebo "Running Up That Hill" 

The (English) Beat "Can't Get Used To Losing You"

Grace Jones "La Vie En Rose"

Scissor Sisters "Comfortably Numb"


Tainted Love by SoftCell.


Hendrix All Along the Watchtower (sorry Mr Incredible) 

I Fought the Law by The Clash

English Beat Can't Get Used to Losing You; Red Red Wine


GLORIA by Patti Smith

Higher Ground by Red Hot Chili Peppers


Ty Segall, "Every 1's a Winner"

Ryan Adams, "Wonderwall" or "Bad Blood" (tie)


The Golden Age of Rock & Roll - Def Leppard

Singing in the Rain - Just Water

Twenty Flight Rock - Montrose 

No Matter What - Jellyfish


to me the "best" covers are the ones that have become the definitive versions (which doesn't necessarily mean musically best).  Using that as the criterion, it's hard to argue with:

The aforementioned Beatles version of "Twist & Shout"

Elvis:  "Hound Dog"

Aretha: "Respect"

Marvin Gaye: "I Heard it Through The Grapevine"

Amy Winehouse:  "Valerie"

Elvis Costello:  "(What's So Funny 'Bout) Peace, Love & Understanding"

Harry Nilsson:  "Everybody's Talkin'" and "Without You"

Stevie Nicks:  "Stop Draggin' My Heart Around" (technically a cover because Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers recorded it first, although it wasn't released)


Pick any five by Joe Cocker

A Song For You  -Donnie Hathaway


ml1 said:
Marvin Gaye: "I Heard it Through The Grapevine"

Fun fact: Gaye’s version was recorded first, four months before Gladys Knight and the Pips recorded theirs, but Gordy wasn’t sold on the song and shelved it. Proven wrong by the Pips hit, he gave the Gaye original the green light.

(Gordy and Smoky go back and forth on this in amusing fashion in the new Motown doc on Showtime.)


Someday My Prince Will Come -- Miles Davis


DaveSchmidt said:

Fun fact: Gaye’s version was recorded first, four months before Gladys Knight and the Pips recorded theirs, but Gordy wasn’t sold on the song and shelved it. Proven wrong by the Pips hit, he gave the Gaye original the green light.

(Gordy and Smoky go back and forth on this in amusing fashion in the new Motown doc on Showtime.)

 even Gaye's version was not the first recording.  The first was by The Miracles, but it wasn't released until 1968, after both Gladys Knight and Marvin Gaye.


ridski said:

Charles Bradley's cover of Black Sabbath's "Changes"

The Dickies "Nights In White Satin"

Placebo "Running Up That Hill" 

The (English) Beat "Can't Get Used To Losing You"

Grace Jones "La Vie En Rose"

Scissor Sisters "Comfortably Numb"


check out The Bad Plus for another great cover of Comfortably Numb

Also Creep by Postmodern Jukebox/Haley Reinhart

I'm also partial to Yes's cover of America.


ml1 said:

to me the "best" covers are the ones that have become the definitive versions (which doesn't necessarily mean musically best).  Using that as the criterion, it's hard to argue with:

The aforementioned Beatles version of "Twist & Shout"

Elvis:  "Hound Dog"

Aretha: "Respect"

Marvin Gaye: "I Heard it Through The Grapevine"

Amy Winehouse:  "Valerie"

Elvis Costello:  "(What's So Funny 'Bout) Peace, Love & Understanding"

Harry Nilsson:  "Everybody's Talkin'" and "Without You"

Stevie Nicks:  "Stop Draggin' My Heart Around" (technically a cover because Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers recorded it first, although it wasn't released)

 thought it might be fun to post the original versions of these:


does this count as a cover?  Petty wrote it for Stevie Nicks, but she rejected it, and The Heartbreakers recorded it themselves.



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