- Better cover by Shivaree
- Roberta Flack's version of "The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face".
- "Dedicated to the One I Love"
cover: Mamas and the Papas
- Forever Young (Bob Dylan), by the Pretenders -- so, so gorgeous.
- Tommy James & The Shondells -- "Hanky Panky"
Video below is by the original artists, The Raindrops.
- I feel like I've been hyping this all over the place, but I can't help it. It's gorgeous. Julia Holter's version of "Gold Dust Woman"
- PS Absolutely love Roberta Flack. Such a beautiful song R2.
- Take me to the river - Two different versions by the Talking heads. A cover of an Al Green Song.
I like the live "Gospel" version better.
- And just for shits and giggles, Al Greens version with Soul Train Dance Crew gettin dowwwwn in 1975!
- Private Dancer
- Suzzy and Maggie Roche, "Clothes Line Saga" by Bob Dylan
- I think Bananarama's version of "Venus" is massively better than the original by Shocking Blue.
- I've always liked the Pet Shop Boys' dance version of "Always On My Mind" over Willie Nelson's classic
- The Coolies' version of "Bridge Over Troubled Water" just stomps all over the original.
- Kind of obvious, but Whitney's "I Will Always Love You" trumps the Dolly original.
- Many superior cover versions of Radioheads' Creep.
- Tina Turner's version of "Let's Stay Together."
I love Al Green's version, but Tina just killed it on this.
- [quote]Kind of obvious, but Whitney's "I Will Always Love You" trumps the Dolly original.
Whitney's version is fine if you like yodeling.
- Stars on 54's cover of If You Could Read My Mind is great. Gordon Lightfoot's version is like a funeral march.
- Tina Turner's Take Me to The River
- Tina Turner's Take Me to The River
- [quote]Many superior cover versions of Radioheads' Creep.
Like this one, for starters:
- A classic in this category is the Jimmy Hendrix version of "All Along the Watchtower" over Dylan's original.
- Bea at the Rusty Anchor.
- I don't know who covered it but I heard a remake of Kate Bush's "Running Up That Hill" that was slow and growly, for lack of a better term, and it was great.
- Ain't No Moutain High Enough - Diana Ross.
Gloria - Patti Smith
Nothing Compares To You - Sinead O'Connor
All Along the Watchtower - Jimi Hendrix
If This World Were Mine - Luther Vandross/Cheryl Lynn
That was Placebo.
- Agreer, R17! Tina put her all in that one...
- I prefer the Beat Goes Bang version of "Draggin' The Line" over the Tommy James and the Shondells version.
- Crispin Glover owns this thread. These Boots Are Made for Walking, original version by Nancy Sinatra.
- Oh you can color my world with sunshine yellow each day
Oh you can color my world with happiness all the way
- Groovin', Kenny Rankin.
- R22, Thank you for pointing out a song I've heard before listening to "oldies" but didn't know the name or artist. Still what is the connection to Radiohead and Creep?
- How come the beautiful songs by The Alan Parsons Project were never updated/re-released? I love "To The Sea" which IMHO would be appropriate to bring up this sad week.
- Aretha Franklin's cover of Otis Redding's RESPECT. Not necessarily better but certainly distinctive enough to put a new spin on it and make it her signature song.
Aretha's cover of BRIDGE OVER TROUBLED WATER has its fans but this is one that I don't like very much. A bit too "church" for my tastes.
Oleta Adams' cover of Brenda Russell's GET HERE.
- R34, there's no need for a cover. They're perfect as is.
- Pointer Sisters "Fire"
- Amy Winehouse - Valerie (Zutons), To Know Him Is To Love Him (the Teddy Bears), You're Wondering Now (The Skalites)
RIP. I still love her voice
- Annie Lennox No More 'I Love You's'
Siouxsie & The Banshees The Passenger
Kirsty MacColl A New England
- Sinead O'Conner's cover of Elton John's "Sacrifice"
- Although I love Laura Nyro's original version of "Eli's Coming," I think Three Dog Night did it better.
- [quote]Kind of obvious, but Whitney's "I Will Always Love You" trumps the Dolly original.
C'mon they are so different they could be two different songs. Both are great, one a country classic and the other a pop classic.
- Pat Benatar's "Wuthering Heights" is better than Kate Bush's Minnie Mouse on Helium original.
- The Killers' "Bette Davis Eyes."
- White Lies' 'Love Lockdown' is far better than the original version of Kayne West.
A beautiful song.
- Bette Midler's Hello in There. Her version of Superstar is amazing as well.
- I Think We're Alone Now and I Saw Her Standing There
- Ike and Tina Turner - Proud Mary.
- Donna Summer's "MacArthur Park" is far better than the original (Richard Harris?)
- R44, with all respect, Kim Carnes' original version is THE BEST by far! It's soooo obvious!
- No, the best version of Hounds of Love (after Kate) is the Futureheads.
- Cat Power, (I Can't Get No) Satisfaction.
- The Walkabouts -Polly
- [quote]I feel like I've been hyping this all over the place, but I can't help it. It's gorgeous. Julia Holter's version of "Gold Dust Woman"
Kudos to her for not doing a straight-up copy of the song. But better than the original? No.
- 'Blue Suede Shoes' by Elvis Presley was a far better cover of the original Carl Perkins song.
- Tori Amos - '97 Bonnie and Clyde
- Seriously you like the Placebo's version of "Running Up That Hill" better? You're insane. I made it through 40 seconds. Dreadful.
But better? Not.
- Canadian Dataloungers may remember legendary Cape Breton songstress Rita MacNeil's live cover of the Divinyls classic, "I Touch Myself," on her CBC variety show in the mid-1990s, sadly unavailable on YouTube. Let's just say she brought the song much, much more than those little Australian girls ever could.
- It's true that Kate sounds like she's on helium R43, but she sings that song--I pine a lot, I find the lot, falls through without you-- with more honest emotion than Pat could ever muster.
- Depeche Mode's version of Route 66
- 'Girl, You'll Be a Woman Soon' by Urge Overkill
The original Neil Diamond version is beautiful too, but i like this one more.
- Neko Case's cover of Christmas Card From A Hooker In Minneapolis.
- Chris Farlowe's version of Out Of Time.
This is a seriously great pop single that never made it in the USA but was a number one in England
- Johnny Cash's version of "Numb" has a level of melancholy that the original by Nine Inch Nails cannot touch. Here is a man looking back at lost friends, lost family and youth.
- [quote][R22], Thank you for pointing out a song I've heard before listening to "oldies" but didn't know the name or artist. Still what is the connection to Radiohead and Creep?
Radiohead was sued for plagiarizing that song in "Creep." The writers of "The Air That I Breathe" now share a songwriting credit for "Creep" as a result of the successful lawsuit.
Johnny Cash's cover of Nine Inch Nails "Hurt"
- Sunny, Georgie Fame. The original by Bobby Hebb was very good, this is better.
- Madonna's cover of "American Pie."
- Smashing Pumpkin's version of Fleetwood Mac's "Landslide".
Az Yet's version of "Hard to Say I'm Sorry" by Chicago/Peter Cetera.
As for cover versions that are equally as good (if not better than) the original:
The Fugees cover of "Killing Me Softly" (original by Lori Lieberman and then Roberta Flack)
Maxwell's "This Woman's Work" (original by Kate Bush)
- 'Wild is The Wind' by David Bowie. POWERFUL COVER, much more emotional and sensitive than the Nina Simone original.
"Touch Me (All Night Long)" was improved a thousand times by Cathy Dennis reworking this earlier version from Fonda Rae.
This isn't considered a straight cover version since she reworked the lyrics in the verse, but I want to include it because I never knew the 'original' version of this song existed until I recently saw Nightmare on Elm Street Part 2.
- "Spanish Harlem" by Aretha Franklin.
- "Handy Man" by James Taylor. So brilliant, you wouldn't even know there was an original that sounded completely different. Taylor's arrangement suits the song more than Sparks of Rhythm/Jimmy Jones.
- Any version of "Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree" has got to be better than Brenda Lee's hit.
- I didn't know. I love that song.
- Sorry, I was talking about the James Taylor song.
- R40, you are so right. Sinead's "Sacrifice" is stunning.
I heard a cover of "Wild World" the other day that was very good, but I don't know who it was (helpful, no?)
The slow folky cover of Hey Ya is pretty amusing.
- One of my top 5 favorite records is Al Green's "How Can You Mend A Broken Heart."
The Bee Gee's version was fine too, but Al added an aching that their voices couldn't do.
- Another cover of Love Lock Down I really like.
- I think Valerie Carter's version of "Ooh Child" is better than Five Stairsteps.
- Chaka Kahn's cover of The Beatles "We Can Work it Out."
Aretha Franklin's cover of the Stones' "You Can't Always Get What You Want."
- Jingle Bells
- Jumpin Jack Flash
the way it's meant to be sung IMHO
- Okay, I just heard the Aretha Frankling cover of the Stone's song for the first time in about 25 years.
I take it back. It sucks.
- A lot of stuff by Linda Ronstadt in the 70s was better than the originals (from the 50s).
- Elvis Presley made miracles with most of the original versions he sang. He made them supreme with his voice.
- R4, I prefer Audra Mae's version. So haunting. I recently found out that she's the grandniece of Judy Garland, to boot! Talent really runs in that family.
- "The Tide is High" by Blondie.
- "The Tide is High" original by The Paragons.
- I love Eva Cassidy's cover of Imagine.
- Teena Marie's (RIP) cover of "I'm Wishing On A Star" was better than Rose Royce's original.
- Neko Case - Runnin' Out of Fools
- Trouble - Kristin Hersh
- Ladies and gentlemen: Tori Amos, Ring My Bell.
- Phish's "Lovin' Cup" is better than the Stones.
- "More Love" by Kim Carnes better than Smokey's
"Ooh Baby Baby" by Linda Ronstadt also better than his
a lot of it is because production and studio techniques have improved and the arrangements are also better
- I love that fat Hawaiian guy's version of "Over the Rainbow." It can;t be better than Judy's original, but it's still a masterpiece.
Speaking of Judy: I love all her Jolson covers ("Swanee," "Rockabye your Baby with a Dixie Melody") much better than the Jolson originals
- Madge's cover of "American Pie" is fluffy shit she had no bidness coverin'. She has no depth at all!
- No More I Love You's is a cover? Always thought she wrote that awful dreck. I don't do solo Annie. . at. . all!
- 'Sympathy For The Devil' by Guns'N'Roses is a fantastic cover of the original Rolling Stones song.
- r94, that was so cool.
- R79, i didn't expect to agree on that because i really love the White Lies cover of 'Love Lockdown', but i also liked the Janina Gavankar cover you sent. It gives another tone in this song, good. It surprised me positively.
- Aretha Franklin's version of "Somewhere".
- Sea of Love - Tom Waits
- You're No Good and Tracks of My Tears: Linda Ronstadt.
- [quote]I never knew the 'original' version of this song existed until I recently saw Nightmare on Elm Street Part 2.
GAWD you're SOOOO late!!
- Janet's cover of Rod Stewart's "Tonight's The Night (Gonna Be Alright)" is slinkier and sexier than his...and she didn't change the gender in the lyrics to boot.
- [quote]"More Love" by Kim Carnes better than Smokey's; "Ooh Baby Baby" by Linda Ronstadt also better than his
- "Creep" is better by Street Corner Symphony than the original by Coldplay. (sorry, don't have a link. Easy to find on youtube.)
- R63 , I agree and also love Chris Farlowe's version of "Think."
I prefer Sheryl Crow's version of "Mississippi" to Bod Dylan's.
- Ooops! Original of "Creep" was Radiohead. Street Corner Symphony finds chord changes the little twinks have never heard of.
- I know this is sacrilege, but I love RHCP's cover of Stevie Wonder's original.
- Manic Street Preachers - Umbrella
- And another one from Manic Street Preachers. Their version of MASH theme - Suicide is Painless
- R43 Benetar's cover is ok, but it's so flat emotionally. Kate Bush's version is better by far imo.
- R104 wins.
- Linda Ronstadt - "The Moon's A Harsh Mistress"
(Originally recorded by Joe Cocker)
- I always thought this Buddy Holly cover was much, much better than the original
- [quote]"More Love" by Kim Carnes better than Smokey's
Teena Marie's cover of "More Love" was better than both Kim's and Smokey's.
- Gillian Welch - "Black Star" (Radiohead)
- Nancy (Heart) Wilson's cover of "In Your Eyes"
- Jeff Buckley - "Hallelujah"
- Joni Mitchell's cover of her own "Both Sides Now"
- Soft Cell's version of "Tainted Love"
And I agree r122 I love Jeff Buckley's version. It's as though it was written for him.
- Joni is the original Both Sides Now
- Ace Of Base's cover of Tina Turner's "Don't Turn Around
UB40's "Can't Help Falling In Love"
- Corey Hart's I Can't Help Falling in Love. He really has an underrated voice. The video seals the deal. And he was just so damn hot.
- Ronstadt's Desperado
- Jeff Buckley's "Calling You"
- Johnny Cash-Hurt
'Hurt' is aHurt" is a song written by Trent Reznor, first released on Nine Inch Nails' 1994 album The Downward Spiral.
Cash's cover to this song is a masterpiece.
- * 'Hurt' is a song written by...
Blah, blah, sorry for the typo
- r125, the version posted of Joni singing was much later (2000).
- "Ball & Chain," from the Big Mama Thornton album "The Great Tomato Blues Package (disc 1)", was covered on the Janis Joplin album "In Concert."
It melts your brains out!
- Try (Just a Little Bit Harder)," from the Lorraine Ellison album "Stay With Me", was covered on the Janis Joplin album "In Concert."
- 'All Is Loneliness',from the Moondog album "Moondog", was covered on the Janis Joplin album "In Concert."
I love Janis' version!
- And here she is doing it in 1970. She's the original. She wrote the fucking song. Singing it later in life doesn't mean she's doing a cover of her own song.
- Guys, as much as i love Joni Mitchell i think that Anne Murray's cover is the best
Both Sides Now-Anne Murray
Anuna'a cover of Elvis Costello's "Deep Dead Blue". Incredible Celtic a capella vocals with a slight undertone of despair. I can't find it on Youtube, or on a file share but it's on their "Fisher King" and "Essential Anuna" discs.
- Guys forgive me if you mentioned that and it slipped my attention but a great, great cover was also
'Crossroads' by Eric Clapton. The original was named '"Cross Road Blues" and was sung by Robert Johnson.
- 'It's All Over Now Baby Blue' by Van Morrison. I bet Bob Dylan really liked Van Morrison's cover of his song.
- `Go West` ,Pet Shop Boys(140 posts and nobody remembered this one).
- R15 smokes crack like Whitney! Heresy!
- R109, Love you choice but for sheer emotional connection to a song, check out Martin Casey's version of "Creep."
- That is adorable. Seriously.
- R109, Try this YouTube Vid link instead.
- I wouldn't say it's better than Gloria Gaynor's version, but I loved Cake's take on "I Will Survive."
- The Bangles - "Hazy Shade of Winter"
- For improvement over the original, I submit this:
"Because The Night" by 10,000 Maniacs (featuring Natalie Merchant)
- Another favorite of mine:
"Cruel Summer" by Ace of Base (US Version)
- Disturbed's "Land of Confusion" has more energy than the original, though I'd rate it about equal.
- Very interesting remake, though again more equal than superior:
"White Lines" by Duran Duran
- Sympathy for the Devil - GNR
- 50% of the songs on Glee.
Pretty much of anything on Through the Looking Glass (Siouxsie & the Banshees)
Everybody Knows - Concrete Blonde (the original is great too - I think both songs are great, differently)
- The Cowboy Junkies cover of The Grateful Dead's To Lay Me Down. It is hard to find a more beautiful song.
- Doris Day "Thank You For the Music"
- Cover Girls' 'Wishing on a Star' is better than Rose Royce or Teena Marie's.
- Sinead's "Nothing Compares 2 U" is one of the clear ones.
Dusty Springfield's "In The Winter" puts the original Janis Ian version to shame, and even Janis herself admits as much.
Kirsty MacColl did three great versions of songs I loved more than the originals: Billy Bragg's "A New England," The Kinks' "Days," and the Smiths "You Just Haven't Earned It Yet Baby."
Bettye LaVette has done a few phenomenal covers, including the Who's "Reign Down O'er Me" and Elton's "Talking Old Soldiers." Her version of Chaka Khan's "Love Me Still" just WRECKED Chaka at the tribute concert for Chaka that Bettye sang it at.
- R103 OMG, I love that version too. I also love Aretha's version of Leonard Cohen's Suzanne.
- "What About Now" from Westlife (version of the Daughtry song)
- [quote]Bettye LaVette has done a few phenomenal covers, including the Who's "Reign Down O'er Me"
Love, Reign O'er Me
- Everyone redoes Christmas music, but this is my favorite of the remaakes:
Carrie Underwood's "Do You Hear What I Hear?"
The woman has absolutely perfect pitch, and passion when she sings.
I thought LaVette was chewing the mic too much, though she obviously has pipes.
The Who's version of "Reign" struck me as the better of the two by far.
- R160 Yep, you got me. Wrong title.
R162 She does have a unique style of singing and a limited range. I loved her version of "Reign".
I just love her (and I could see why people may not share that joy) because even with her imperfect voice, she just works the FUCK out of every song she sings.
- R66, sorry. Now i discovered that you sent first for Johnny Cash's cover of Nine Inch Nails "Hurt". I didn't noticed that the other time and i sent for the same song too.
- For the win:
"Once In A Lifetime" (original by Talking Heads)
- This is Jewel knocking "Sweet Home Alabama" out of the park.
- Gary Jules' and Michael Andrews' cover of Tears for Fears' "Mad World"
- Mastodon's cover of Thin Lizzy's "Emerald"
I'm not big on rock music usually but this is incredible.
- Liza Minnelli's cover of "Edge of Seventeen"
"Jusht like a white winged dove shingsh a shong shoundsh like she'sh shitting..."
- R127, I really like Corey's voice and music too. I think he's written off as one of the people who made it big in the early days of music videos because he was (and is) so good looking, but his music holds up.
- LOL R169
[quote]I really like Corey's voice and music too...his music holds up.
So true. His "Never Surrender" is my mantra.
- Sylvester & The Hot Band's version of 'A Whiter Shade Of Pale'. He turned it into a gospel song.
It was his debut album. More evidence of his musical genius.
I couldn't find it anywhere online but here's the album cover:
- Jonathan Wilson's version of La Isla Bonita is just awesome. It is so far ahead of the original, the original pales beside it.
- Jack White's version of Love is Blindness. He manages to cut through U2's fatuous bombast, make Bono's pompous lyrics palatable, and has the added appeal of not sounding like a sick goat.
- Sure it is, R174 (AKA studio publicist working overtime to build upon the non-existent buzz for Luhrmann's 'Gatsby').
- Damn, I would love to hear Sylvester's 'Whiter Shade of Pale.' Hopefully it will be online soon.
- I Put A Spell On You - Tim Curry
- Gary Jules - Mad World (Tears for Fears original)
- 'When You Sleep' by Memoryhouse (My Bloody Valentine original)
I adore this cover and you can see why. It sounds perfect. It haunts you.
- Decided not to read every entry, and I'm sure it's been stated before, so just consider this another vote.
"Proud Mary" OWNS this thread
Clearence Clearwater Revival, with our tails between our legs.
- Um === Areth Franklin made a career out of this, precisely:
Son Of A Preacher Man (even Dusty - whose original version, given to her only after Aretha turned it down cause it hit too close to home, I like best - acknowledged that once she heard Aretha's she would have done it her way)
I Say A Little Prayer For You
This Girl's In Love With You
People Get Ready
and, of course
- Crackhead Bonnie
Crackhead Ruth and Crackhead June from HEAVEN
- Sorry Judy, but mine is better than your daughter's
- Someone (not my sorry stingy nonmember ass) should start a converse thread about lesser known original versions that are better than the popular one:
Shake A Tail Feather
Ain't No Mountain High Enough
- There are some who may agree
- Killer/Papa Was a Rolling Stone by George Michael
- Ryan Adams - Wonderwall.
- I don't think that I can take it.
- This isn't better than the original, but not shabby at all for someone so young.
- Bow Wow Wow's I want Candy
Grand Funk Railroad's version of The Locomotion
- [quote]Grand Funk Railroad's version of The Locomotion
Oh, no way - Little Eva and The Cookies, with their rough r&b interpretation were a million times better
- Who in DL would DARE to defy me?
- Juice Newton's "Angel of the Morning" (1981) was so much more grandiose and almost majestic compared to the dull 1968 Merilee Rush original both in production and vocals.
- Did someone already school OP that this was not originally done by ODB but by Rick James? Shit. Motherfuckers need to recognize up in here, for real.
- I'm really torn between The Left Banke And The Four Tops with "Walk Away Renee." The former had the feeling and the latter had the phrasing. beat, and musicality.
- Any of Joan Jett's covers.
- The Avett Brothers, "In the Aeroplane Over the Sea"
- When I saw the Grateful Dead in the early '90s, their "Last Time" was better, musically richer and about 3-4 times longer than the Stones' Last Time.
- Bananarama's version of "Nathan Jones" over the Supremes original.
- Datalounge doesn't seem to like me posting links, at least from my iPad, but look for the cover of "Hot in Herre" by the adorable German band Boss Hoss on YouTube.
- Too antiseptic, r200.
Like all Bananarama songs
- [quote]and about 3-4 times longer than the Stones
You didn't need to add that detail, R199.
- "Star Witness" by Neko Case
And the cover, by two high school girls sung in a stairwell. Hauntingly lovely.
- Only because this will likely make someone posting in the 90s Music thread flip out if they see this...
"How Soon Is Now," t.A.T.u. (the Russian fake lesbians)
- One Direction "What Makes You Beautiful" by an adorable Chinese acapella group named "VOX."
- Margin Gaye's version of I Heard it Through the Grapevine over Gladys Knight and the Pips version
Cyndi Lauper's All Through the Night vs the original. Here's the original. It hurts my ears.