Day: August 21, 2020

Random Friday MusingsRandom Friday Musings

0 Comments 7:46 pm

The guys who write for the Cleveland newspaper cover the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, since it’s in their town. That said, sometimes you wonder why they hired people who don’t actually know anything about Rock & Roll to cover the Hall of Fame.

To whit, this article about cover songs by R&RHoF inductees

A very ‘meh’ list… half of these were borderline ‘popular’ songs by the artists in question, and you never even knew they were covers. But if you’re going to bitch about something being on a list, you gotta also come up with what you put back after you take something away:

45: Nirvana, Where Did You Sleep Last Night
Got it. You list makers want to show how cool you are by digging up the “obscure” cover and you miss the much better cover of a better-known song. Nirvana’s Man Who Sold The World is a way better cover (which is why it’s also on the list, much higher), but if you’re going to insist on digging into mis-matched obscurities, their cover of Kiss’ Do You Love Me is better than this one oddball folks/blues tune.

50: Bonnie Raitt, Angel From Montgomery
There should never be any discussion of Bonnie Raitt covers that doesn’t have her cover of Burning Down The House at the top of the list

42: Metallica, Whiskey in a Jar
No. Just… no. 
Stone Cold Crazy is the right answer, now and always

58: GNR, Knocking on Heaven’s Door
Crap. How a song can be soporific and overly bombastic at the same time defies logic, but they pull it off with this one.
What to put on there instead? If you’re sticking with GNR, put on Live & Let Die, or Mama Kin

FWIW, they did get the right Blondie tune in there – The Nerves’ version of Hanging on the Telephone was definitely much more punked up and a great cover.

Meanwhile, what got left off of covers by Hall of Famers that coulda/woulda/shoulda been on here somewhere?

  • U2’s cover of All Along the Watchtower (maybe swap out the inclusion of Jimi’s for his cover of Hey Joe instead)
  • SRV’s cover of Voodoo Chile. They do get his version of Little Wing on the list, but his cover of Voodoo Chile goes up 100000% in coolness for its use in the takeoff scene in Blackhawk Down
  • VH’s cover of You Really Got Me is a defensible pick, but their covers of You’re No Good and Pretty Woman were a better songs
  • Mellencamp’s version of Wild Night couldn’t find *any* place in the top 75?
  • Aretha’s version of The Weight is so good that The Band should just stop playing it
  • Somehow, someway, somewhere, Linda Ronstadt’s version of Desperado has to be on this list, and arguably in the top 15 or so. I don’t give a crap what you take off to fit it in there.

Songs you could take off to make space for any of those 6?
45: Nirvana, Where Did You Sleep Last Night
See above
35: The Doors, Alabama Song
It’s just not very good
53: The Pretenders, Stop You Sobbing
You don’t put a song on a list b/c the original and cover artists ended up having a kid together
67: George Harrison, If Not For You
There’s a lot of Bob Dylan covers on this list (which is better than the Dylan versions of a lot of the songs, so at least there’s that) but this one seems like just trying to show off obscure musical connections
27: Grateful Dead, Morning Dew
Like every other song in their catalog, it’s an extended jam that is indistinguishable from any other song when they play it live

Let’s also take a moment and be thankful that Cheap Trick’s cover of Don’t Be Cruel did *not* make the list, as it’s complete crap.

Plus, we probably need a separate category just for Prince songs that other people have recorded (I Feel For You, Sugar Walls, Nothing Compares 2U, etc)