OT: Original vs. Cover Song

Wednesday, March 30, 2022 3:29 AM
Okay folks. As much as I enjoy the political back and forth, let's not fight each other (or maybe we will... heh heh). This question was inspired by skibum's thread about history near where you live, as it's just something interesting and fun. It's been a little while since we did something like this, so here it is: Name two iconic songs. One where the original writer/performer was the best, and the other where a cover artist did it better. I've found the question to be more difficult than it seems at first glance. Here are my two: Desperado. Written by Glen Frey and Don Helney and recorded for the Eagles second album of the same name in 1973. It did not become a hit until Linda Ronstadt released a cover of the song later that same year. I love both versions, but if I had to pick just one, it would be the Eagles. I Shot The Sheriff. Written by Bob Marley and released by The Wailers in 1973. Clapton did his cover version a year later. I'm a big fan of Bob Marley, as well as other Reggae artists like Burning Spear (a fucking genius) and Black Uhuru. But I like Clapton's cover of I Shot The Sheriff. One last mention: Ziggy Marley has done several beautiful versions of Redemption Song, and it's a fitting tribute to his father. But I don't think he'd mind me saying that Bob's original is my favorite.

55 comments

Easy…. “Blinded by the Light” Manfred Mann > Springsteen
motorhead
2 years ago
simple man: skynyrd > shinedown walkin the dog: aerosmith < ratt if walkin the dog is considered not iconic enough then i'll go with knockin' on heaven's door: bob dylan < guns n' roses live version 1988 nyc at the ritz shown on mtv
rattdog
2 years ago
Agree with motorhead about Manfred Mann. rattdog, Walking the Dog may not be "iconic" but nobody will ever do it better than Aerosmith. Also GNR absolutely blew the roof off with Dylan's classic. In my opinion, Clapton also was better than Dylan, but GNR was the best by far.
misterorange
2 years ago
"I only have eyes for you" Harry Warren < Flamingos "Hurt" NIN > Johnny Cash
Muddy
2 years ago
"Long Tall Sally" ... Little Richard > The Beatles "Walk This Way" ... Aerosmith > Run DMC "Roll Over Beethoven" ... Chuck Berry > The Beatles > Electric Light Orchestra
anothercraig
2 years ago
^^ Muddy - good ones. Love Johnny Cash, and I think his version of "Hurt" was from his heart due to his own struggle with drugs, but I'll take NIN any day of the week.
misterorange
2 years ago
All Along the Watchtower: Jimi Hendrix cover better than Bob Dylan original
SaltyNuts
2 years ago
You Spin Me Round Dead Or Alive [view link] > Jessica Simpson [view link] kidding they both are horrible!
shailynn
2 years ago
Cover better than Original All Along the Watchtower Jimi > Dylan Original Better than Cover: Hasten Down the Wind Zevon > Ronstadt Having said that, her album cover was absolutely killer [view link] Borrowing from rattdog, if Hasten Down the Wind is not iconic enough, then I will go with for "original better than cover": Come Together Beatles > Aerosmith Aerosmith really should not have gone there, tbh.
kilgoretrout12
2 years ago
Lovesong: 311(cover performed for "50 First Dates") > Adele(cover)> the Cure(original)
SaltyNuts
2 years ago
"Hurt" Johnny Cash > NIN "Turn the Page" Metallica > Bob Seger "Smooth Criminal" AAF > MJ. Yes, I believe that. "Sound of Silence" Disturbed > Simon & Garfunkle. Disturbed is pretty much awesome on anything they sample or cover. There is a lot of Chicago bias in that statement. "Come Together" Aerosmith > Beatles. The Beatles suck. Most overrated band of all-time. They were, what? Fifty Years ago? Ge over it FFS. Their music means nothing, we do not live in a yellow submarine. "Watchtower" Hendrix > Dylan
gammanu95
2 years ago
"Black Magic Woman" Santana > Fleetwood Mac; "Heard it through the Grapevine" Marvin Gaye > Creedence Clearwater Revival. Needles and Pins Ramones > Searchers.
skibum609
2 years ago
"Surfin' Bird" The Ramones > The Trashmen
Call.Me.Ishmael
2 years ago
"Nothing Compares 2U" Cornell > Prince > O'Connor "Heathens" Halestorm > 21 Pilots
Longball300
2 years ago
Shailynn ape said “You Spin Me Round; Dead Or Alive > Jessica Simpson; kidding they both are horrible!” What is wrong with you man? Both are delightful. If you capture a zebra you should put it in a room with the Jessica Simpson version of You Spin Me Round playing at full volume for 48-72 hours straight. Then, when the zebra is begging for its life to end….IT’S WILDEBEEST TIME!!!
rickthelion
2 years ago
Jessica sings?
Longball300
2 years ago
"Proud Mary" was written by John Fogerty and recorded well by CCR, but was taken to another level by The Ike & Tina Turner Band. "Angel From Montgomery" written and performed by John Prine first, but Bonnie Raitt's version is iconic.
rockie
2 years ago
“Jessica sings?” She also has big tits. Especially during her fatty phase. I was once so drunk that I went to bang a water buffalo and whoops it was Jessica Simpson.
rickthelion
2 years ago
I'm not proficient at this but one song that I like "Hotel California" was introduced by the Eagles but my favorite rendition is by the Gipsy Kings who did it in the movie "the Big Lebowski".
shadowcat
2 years ago
Jessica Simpson These Boots are Made for Walkin'. From Dukes of Hazzerd. Nancy Sinatra never looked or sang it like this: [view link] The bikini in the last minute is legendary.
goldmongerATL
2 years ago
+1 on Sound of Silence
goldmongerATL
2 years ago
+1 on Disturbed. Some of their original songs are overrated or straight up abominations, but they've done some great covers. Sound of Silence, Shout 2000, Ishfwilf all beat the originals.
Tetradon
2 years ago
The Beatles are/were overrated? That’s so funny.
londonguy
2 years ago
How did I forget Shout 2000? Good call.
gammanu95
2 years ago
+1 on All Along the Watchtower- I like Hendrix’s version better and I Shot the Sheriff- I like Marley’s version better For something new, You Really Got Me - Van Halen did it better than The Kinks Summer Breeze - love Type O Negative but Seals and Croft’s version is iconic and so captures the 70’s
Hank Moody
2 years ago
Hooked on a feeling BJ Thomas <. Blue Swede. Oooga Chaka.
Huntsman
2 years ago
The song "Since You've Been Gone" has been recorded by multiple artists but, my favorite was by a group named Head East.
Longball300
2 years ago
What if someone does a cover of their own song? Layla by Derek and the Dominoes is better than Layla by Eric Clapton.
SaltyNuts
2 years ago
Also, it’s not a cover but given its worship of strippers, the pole and throwing money at dancers, Flo Rida’s Right Round is a PL’s take on You Spin Me Round and an appropriate addition to this thread. [view link]
Hank Moody
2 years ago
House of the rising sun frigid pink > animals, Jambalaya John Fogarty > Hank Williams
skibum609
2 years ago
With a Little Help from My Friends - Joe Cocker > Beatles
datinman
2 years ago
Man who sold the world - Bowie > Nirvana
datinman
2 years ago
Heartbeats - Jose Gonzalez > The Knife
datinman
2 years ago
Do You Want to Touch Me : Joan Jett > Gary Glitter I Love Rock and Roll : Joan Jett > The Arrows
BaggerRider
2 years ago
Laura Nyro < Blood, Sweat, & Tears - And When I Die Carl Perkins = Elvis Presley - Blue Suede Shoes
rockie
2 years ago
Love Reign O'er Me Pearl Jam > The Who [view link] All Along the Watchtower Jimi > Dylan Knockin' on Heaven's Door GNR > Dylan Smooth Criminal Michael Jackson > Alien Ant Farm Boys of Summer The Eagles > The Ataris Nothing Compares 2 U Cornell > O'Connor > Prince Whiskey in the Jar Metallica > Seger
ElDuderino_AZ
2 years ago
Funeral For a Friend/Love Lies Bleeding - Dream Theater > Elton John. And I like the Elton John version.
crosscheck
2 years ago
Honey Don’t. Carl Perkins > Beatles Walk Don’t Run. Ventures > Johnny Smith.
FishHawk
2 years ago
don't let me be misunderstood: gary moore > the animals simply for the guitar playing. animals > nina simone. just found out she was the first to sing this song. anyway all versions are great.
rattdog
2 years ago
that's what's great about these threads - leads you to dig some info and you learn something new.
rattdog
2 years ago
The absolute worst: Miley Cyrus cover of Nirvana's Smells Like Teen Spirit.
DeclineToState
2 years ago
@rattdog Joe Crocker has a good version, always amazed how his unique voice and appearance is entertaining
SaltyNuts
2 years ago
@DeclineToState ANY song covered by Miley Cyrus is going to suck ass. She's awful.
misterorange
2 years ago
I will always love you Whitney Houston > Dolly Parton. Cum on Feel the Noize - Quiet Riot > Slade. Without You Harry Nilsson > Badfinger. WE can work it out Stevie Wonder > Beatles. MacArthur Park Donna Summer > Richard Harris. Tainted Love Soft Cell > T-Rex/Gloria Jones. Respect. Aretha Franklin > Otis Redding.
skibum609
2 years ago
Last Kiss Pearl Jam >>> Wayne Cochran The original takes a song about a dying girl and makes it a dance tune.
goldmongerATL
2 years ago
Blue Bayou>>Roy Orbison>>>Linda Ronstadt
twentyfive
2 years ago
@Orange “ANY song covered by Miley Cyrus is going to suck ass. She's awful.“ Counterpoint- not exactly a cover, but Miley sang Nothing Else Matters with Metallica on Stern. As you’d expect, her voice sounds a little weird on the lows and she tried some vibrato there. But… she fucking nailed the highs on the chorus. I don’t want to say she’s better than Hetfield on the song, but her voice is more suited to the chorus than his. Her voice has enough power to hang with Metallica. That’s no slouch. Skip to the last 3 mins if you can’t make it through the whole song but it’s worth a listen. [view link]
Hank Moody
2 years ago
@Jimmy That wasn't bad, but like you said, not really a "cover" since Metallica was backing her up. Not saying she has a bad voice, but she's done too many covers she wasn't well suited for, and just left me SMH. Like this piece a shit: [view link] Or this: [view link] Really hard to listen to.
misterorange
2 years ago
A few years ago Weezer redid the song Africa (originally done by Toto). I don’t understand why they redid the song, as they didn’t add any new arrangement to it. I agree with many of the songs referenced above, as some remakes are best left unremade.
Cashman1234
2 years ago
i just checked her covers as linked above. i read some of the youtube comments left for each. some reacted with how miley would have been huge in the 80's and she really rocked on those covers. let's just say that she's very, very fortunate to being around the last decade instead of the 80's.
rattdog
2 years ago
Dazed and Confused: Led Zeppelin cover > Jake Holmes original Train In Vain: The Clash original > Annie Lennox cover
BGSD3100
2 years ago
"Unchained Melody" Bobby Hatfield's (The Righteous Brothers) version is orders of magnitude better than anyone else's, before <em>or</em> after.
georgmicrodong
2 years ago
little wing srv > hendrix only reason: srv's version is longer. hendrix's version is just too too short, and always made me wish that he extended it further.
rattdog
2 years ago
"Venus" was originally released by Dutch rock band Shocking Blue in 1969. It was covered many times, most famously by Bananarama in 1986. The original version by Shocking Blue rocks: [view link] "Shapes Of Things To Come" was originally released by the Yardbirds in 1966, and was covered by David Bowie for his 1973 album Pin Ups. I like Bowie's version better: [view link]
wld4tatas
2 years ago
"Live and Let Die" This is difficult one for me since Axl's vocals are great but Wings > Guns n Roses
CandymanOfProvidence
2 years ago
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