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Best Rock Cover Songs of All-Time

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Since its the “Summer of Lists” on the web, I had the Earvolution writers sit down and make a list of their favorite cover songs by popular artists.

David Schultz summed up the task this way:

The secret to a good cover song is to not imitate or replicate the original. Whenever an artist attempts that, the result is usually a tepid copy of an already established tune. A good cover song comes from using the original as a framework and investing it with that singer’s set of unique strengths. The goal should be to interpret and re-invent, not slavishly reproduce.

Here are a few of mine (Jeff Davidson):

U2: Springsteen’s, My Hometown. Recorded live in Dublin at Croke Park in June of 1985. The song appears on a bootleg of covers by U2 I was lucky enough to find some years ago at a record store on South Street in Philadelphia. There’s a very nice version of “Help” on there and if you listen very carefully to the version of “Stand by Me” recorded in 1987 at Philly’s JFK stadium you can here me in the crowd. Ok, so you can’t here me, but I was one of the 100,000+ there that night when Bruce came out on stage and Bono uttered the now infamous “is he a local boy or something?” as the crowd went nuts when the Boss walked out.

Bonnie Raitt: Talking Heads, Burnin’ Down the House. Bonnie gets it done on a great two-disc live set called “Road Tested” and has a killer version of this song. As a bonus, there’s a nice cover of Angel From Montgomery as well with Jackson Browne, Bruce Hornsby (vocals & accordion), Bryan Adams and Kim Wilson joining in.

Johnny Cash “Hurt” (Trent Reznor) Cash’s rendition is haunting and the video of Cash’s stoic rendition really brings home the song’s emotion. Its one of the best videos of all time.

Jim McCoy:

Say Hello, Wave Goodbye
Original Artist: Soft Cell Non-Stop Erotic Cabaret (1981)
Cover Artist: David Gray White Ladder (2001)

The music of synth-pop 80’s band Soft Cell and popular Welsh singer-songwriter David Gray has absolutely nothing in common- save for this song, which appears as the last track on Gray’s White Ladder. Gray masterfully subs acoustic guitars for the grating synth and musical soulmate Clune adds tasteful brush-stroked drumming and background vocals in place of the hollow, sterile drums and sixteenth note bass drone of the Soft Cell original. Gray understands the point of recording a cover track: he truly makes the song his own. The airy, mellow arrangement seamlessly fits into the rest of the album rather than serving as a space-filling afterthought. The only indication that this song is not another of Gray’s own soulful acoustic offerings is the fact that the lyrics were not included in the CD booklet. Ironically, the song that enabled Soft Cell’s international rise to fame – Tainted Love – is also a cover. It was first recorded in 1964 by Gloria Jones, who later became a back-up singer for T-Rex.

Waiting for a Miracle
Original Artist: Bruce Cockburn Waiting for a Miracle (1987)
Cover Artist: Jerry Garcia Band Live (1991)

Canadian Music Hall of Fame member Bruce Cockburn (pronounced ‘Coburn’) was reportedly pleased when Garcia decided to cover this gem from one of the singer-songwriter’s 20-plus studio releases. The Garcia Band’s arrangement- including the bass line- remains faithful to the original, but is augmented by Garcia’s soulful, scratchy voice and brilliant guitar soloing. The song remains a favorite among Garcia’s numerous devotees. Cockburn himself has also been covered by Jimmy Buffet and the Barenaked Ladies, among numerous others.

Crazy Love
Original Artist: Van Morrison Moondance (1970)
Cover Artist: Aaron Neville Phenomenon: Music from the Motion Picture (1996)

This 1996 track from the movie staring John Travolta proves that the enigmatic Van Morrison was a man filled with soul. Neville’s voice floats effortlessly over this arrangement, which uses different instrumentation but retains the same feel as the classic song from a classic album. Robbie Robertson of The Band fame adds a nice guitar solo as the tune begins to fade. The rest of the soundtrack contains a few other notable works: Eric Clapton’s Change the World, Taj Mahal’s Corrina and an offering by J.J. Cale, to whom Clapton is indebted for some of his early solo hits (Cocaine, After Midnight).

The Maker
Original Artist: Daniel Lanois Acadie (1989)
Cover Artist: Dave Matthews Band Live in Chicago 12.19.98 (2001)

Despite the heavy criticism launched by his detractors, Dave Matthews and his band demonstrate that they not only enjoy good music in their off-stage time, but that also know how to play it well and make it their own (All Along the Watchtower notwithstanding). Matthews’ vocal delivery is spot on and the tune moves and grooves while somehow managing to maintain the laid-back vibe of the original, which is built around the bass line. Victor Wooten guests on bass. The Maker was also covered by the Jerry Garcia Band on several occasions.

Last Caress
Original Artist: Misfits Beware (1980)
Cover Artist: Metallica Garage Days Re-Revisited: The $5.98 EP (1987)

Metallica’s cover, which appeared on an EP released following the hiring of new bassist Jason Newsted, contains a faithful rendition of the original tune in which Glen Danzig spouts out such timeless lyrics as, “I’ve got something to say/ I raped your mother today.” Metallica gives a double-shot on their EP, as Last Caress segues into a rendition of the Misfits’ Green Hell.

Heather Huff:

Jimi Hendrix, “All Along the Watchtower” (Dylan) Dylan’s original is a minimalist, three-chord acoustic folk song with apocalyptic lyrics. Hendrix gave new life to the song by matching the lyrics with urgent, fire and brimstone guitar solos. Rumor is Hendrix heard “All Along the Watchtower” on the radio and went into the studio the same day to record his own version. He took this song to another level, yet he stayed true it’s essence.

Tom Waits, “Sea of Love” (Phil Phillips)

Simply Sublime. Tom Waits, with one of the most expressive voices of our time, took a popular love song and gave it an authenticity no one else (The Honeydrippers, Robert Plant, Cat Power) could quite muster.

Flying Burrito Brothers, “Wild Horses” (Rolling Stones)

The cover that came a year before the original. Keith Richards once said that he and Gram Parsons played so much together that they “osmosed.” Whatever you call it, Parson’s influence on Stones classics such as this one and “Honky Tonk Women,” are obvious. The FBB version doesn’t stray too much from the original, but it is a tad more country and Parson’s voice is, I dare say, more engaging.

Ryan Adams, “Wonderwall” (Oasis)

Drawing from his endless pit of emotion, Ryan Adams took a sad song and made it sadder. It took some nerve to cover an Oasis song, but he made this one his own. Even Noel “every-other-musician-is-a-wanker” Gallagher agrees, so much so that he now covers the Ryan Adams version.

Pet Shop Boys, “You Were Always On My Mind” (Elvis)

The Pet Shop Boys completely transform the feeling of this song and it’s not just with the addition of a disco beat. The refrain, “you were always on my mind” switches to, “you were always in my house,” replacing the theme of love to one of resentment.

Pixies, “Head On” (Jesus and Mary Chain)

This sped up version of the Jesus and Mary Chain classic is a fairly straightforward cover of a great song. Frank Black’s spunk and the band’s energy give it more of a punk rock feel.

Blue Cheer, “Summertime Blues” (Eddie Cochran)

Blue Cheer is one of the hardest and sadly most over-looked bands of the late 60’s. Their version of “Summertime Blues,” leaves little of the original, save the lyrics. They scrap the shuffle beat in favor of screeching guitar lines that would pave the way for heavy metal.

Israel Kamakawiwo’ole, “Somewhere over the rainbow” (Judy Garland)

You can’t possibly listen to this song without smiling. A gently strummed ukulele accompanies Kamakawiwo’ole’s sweet voice.

Rob Dunne:

Don’t Let Me Down – Stereophonics covering Beatles – Kelly Jones’ voice is pitch perfect – great version.

Hit Me Baby – Travis covering Britney Spears – starts out funny and then gets scary when you realize it’s a great tune.

Mission Impossible Theme – Larry Mullen, Jr. & Adam Clayton covering Lalo Schifrin – kick ass rendition from the bass/drum powerhouse duo.

Everlasting Love – U2 covering Robert Knight – I just love this version , the acoustic guitar is perfect.

I am the Walrus – Oasis covering Beatles – Liam Gallagher’s voice on this is brilliant.

Bittersweet Symphony – Coldplay & Richard Ashcroft covering The Verve – live at the Live 8 show, this was fantastic.

Exit Music (For a Film) – Christopher O’Riley covering Radiohead – beautiful on the piano.

Hallelujah – Jeff Buckley covering Leonard Cohen – powerful version.

Paul Dobry:

Cat Power “(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction” (The Rolling Stones)

Chan Marshall strips down this raucous Stone’s hit on her aptly titled “Covers Record”. The album is rife with beautiful reworkings from Nina Simone, The
Velvet Underground, David Bowie and others. On this one she omits the chorus entirely and adds a slowed melancholy that lends all new meaning to lyrics like
“Can’t you see, I’m on a losing streak?”

Jeff Buckley “Hallelujah” (Leonard Cohen)

No one has made a cover this much their own since Hendrix made people think Dylan was covering him. Buckley’s voice is more haunting than on any of his own tunes. His voice soars to hit notes that Cohen couldn’t quite reach, giving the song life that Cohen surely intended but couldn’t achieve.

Nirvana “Where Did You Sleep Last Night?” (Leadbelly)

Sometimes there is a reason that certain “too young to die” rock stars get props they do. As overrated as Kurt Cobain may be, I don’t think anyone else could come this close the the burning desperation evident in this Leadbelly song. No one can top Mr. Leadbetter’s working class, done against, bad luck moan, but Cobain pulls out all the stops to get damn close.

Radiohead “Nobody Does it Better” (Carly Simon)

Thom Yorke introduces this live cover as “the sexiest song that was ever written.” The perfect execution of this tune makes one think that Carly Simon wrote the
it as a preemptive response to the cover.

Stevie Wonder “We Can Work it Out” (The Beatles)

Stevie takes this flawless little love song and sings it to the whole world. The approach take the message of Marvin Gaye’s “What’s Goin’ On?” and makes it

Flying Burrito Brothers “Do Right Woman” (Chips Moman/Dan Penn)

Leave it to Gram Parsons to make a soul song sound as if it were intended for slide guitars and cowboy harmonies. It reminds us the shared goals of R&B and Country that spawned Rock & Roll.

Joe Cocker “With A Little Help From My Friends”

It’s damn near impossible to cover a Beatles song and may it arguable preferable to the original. Cocker provides the perfect soundtrack to the Super 8 footage
of Kevin Arnold at the beginning of The Wonder Years 8. Jeff Mangum (of Neutral Milk Hotel) “I Love How You Love Me” (Phil Spector) Jeff Mangum sings this one like he means it, and probably does. The tone is more befitting of Phil Spector’s genius vs. nut job passion than Frankie Valli’s easy listening, inoffensive

Deodato “Also Sprach Zarathustra” (Richard Strauss)

Never has classical sounded so funky. Deodato’s addition of spacey sound effects and a mean bass line would make even HAL start bobbing his head.

Uncle Tupelo “Effigy” (Creedence Clearwater Revival)

These guys paved the way for what would eventually become Alt-Country. By adding a little punk rock to The Carter Family, The Flying Burrito Brothers etc. they reminded us that Country was Punk all along. The pounding guitars and drums on this one are perfectly juxtaposed with minimalist breakdowns and twangy harmonies.

Morgan Clendaniel:

Uncle Tupelo covering the Carter Family’s “No Depression”
It’s pretty indicative of lots of things about America at the end of the 20th century that it made sense for Uncle Tupelo to take the Carter Family’s song about the Great Depression and make it about being depressed. It also gave a name to an entire musical movement. It’s also really good.

Los Lobos covering the Eagle’s “Hotel California”
The original version is long, plodding and filled with lyrics that don’t make any sense. So why not listen to a better version that is long, fast, and still filled with words that don’t make sense?

The Clash covering Lee “Scratch” Perry and Junior Murvin’s “Police and Thieves”

Brimming with tension about to boil over, the Clash add anger and volume to an already good song. From the falsetto backing vocals to the ire in the vocals, this version is brilliant in every way. It’s a brilliant distillation of the mood during punk’s beginnings on the street on London.

William Shatner covering Pulp’s “Common People.”

Many (especially Pulp fans) despise this cover, and with good reason. But if you can’t take joy in the sneer in Shatner’s voice as he spits “you’ll never fail like common people,” then you are certainly not cynical enough.

David Schultz:

Respect – Aretha Franklin covering Otis Redding

After hearing Aretha’s revamped version of Respect, Otis Redding knew exactly what had happened, declaring “that girl done stole my song.” Improving on the original in every way, Aretha created a feminist statement while cementing her reputation as the Queen of Soul. No cover song has been as intimately associated with its singer as Respect and Aretha. Without question, the best cover song ever.

Hey Joe – Willy Deville ostensibly covering Jimi Hendrix

The Hendrix version of Hey Joe is a cover itself but it is the seminal version of the song and any version that followed must out of necessity be compared to it. While most artists covering Hey Joe try to put their spin on the signature guitar riffs, Deville goes in another direction – he employs a Mariachi band. Replete with horns and a Tijuana beat, Deville’s version works on a different level from all of the other versions.

Gloria – Patti Smith covering Them

On her debut album, Horses, Patti Smith turned the Van Morrison sing-along into a growling punk anthem. Smith’s super-cool poetry backed by Lenny Kaye’s thundering guitar robbed the song of all its innocence. This is definitely not the stereotypical sing-along version.

With A Little Help From My Friends – Joe Cocker covering The Beatles

The only chance you may have of one upping the Beatles is to cover a Ringo tune. Cocker transformed the Beatles family friendly song into an anthem of the Woodstock generation and ultimately the coolest TV theme ever. The Cocker rendition is one of the better examples of adapting another artist’s song to your strengths.

Proud Mary – Ike & Tina Turner covering Creedence Clearwater Revival

Tina Turner brought an abundance of energy to this laidback CCR tune and turned it into her signature song. Replacing the “choogle” with rhythm and blues, Ike & Tina assured that this song will be a classic in multiple genres of music. John Fogerty’s impetus to once again play his Creedence songs came from Bob Dylan telling him that if he didn’t, the world would remember Proud Mary as a Tina Turner song.

Hotel California – The Gipsy Kings covering The Eagles

This is the Spanish version of Hotel California that the world was clamoring for. The Gipsy Kings retain the iconic intro to the song but on Flamenco guitar it is only slightly familiar. It is only when the “dark desert highway” is in an unfamiliar language that you realize what you are listening to.

. . . Baby One More Time – Travis covering Britney Spears

Britney Spears is a wonder of the music industry’s marketing “genius.” One of the main reasons for her success though is that she has been given well crafted songs to work with. Travis proves that point here with an acoustic rendition of her debut tune that leaves you marveling at what lies underneath the lavish studio overproduction of Britney’s throwaway pop.

Sweet Leaf – Galactic covering Black Sabbath

Who knew that Black Sabbath tunes were just jazzy classics waiting to bust forth. Utilizing their superb horn section, Galactic brings the funk out of this heavy metal standard. Danceable Sabbath? What’s next, an adult contemporary version of Crazy Train – oh wait, never mind.

Try A Little Tenderness – Andrew Strong/The Commitments covering Otis Redding

As proven by the numerous horrendous renditions of the song, Try A Little Tenderness is a difficult one to sing well. The song’s structure exponentially magnifies the weakness of any singer and the artist who tries it risks being exposed. For decades Otis Redding was the only one who could sing it – until Alan Parker made The Commitments. Andrew Strong, who was only 16 at the time, nails the song. In fact, that’s the secret to the movie: the tragedy of the band’s failure was that they were SO GOOD they could play Try A Little Tenderness.

Gin and Juice — The Gourds covering Snoop Dogg

Rap has always borrowed heavily from rock, country and soul but this time the roles are reversed. The Gourds, a group of bluegrass musicians, tear into this Snoop classic with abandon. With its banjos, steel guitars and country twang, this is the definitive hillbilly rap song.

Alex Padalka:

Flaming Lips doing Kylie Minogue’s Can’t Get you Out of My Head

Talk about overdramatizing something, jeez. What started out as a sweet song about lustful obsession turns into an all-lost this-is-farewell anthem. An acoustic guitar replacing the cymbal and violins taking it one step further into serious heartbreak – who knew a dance track can belong on a breakup mix?

Sex Pistols doing Frank Sinatra’s I Did It My Way

This is a funeral song at heart, and these guys would desecrate each other’s graves for kicks, so it becomes impossible to listen to one without remembering the other with a pleasant smile, no?

Scissor Sisters doing Pink Floyd’s Comfortably Numb

Scissor Sisters did what Pink Floyd would have done if they were part of a generation of white people who learned rhythm thanks to house music and then heard some disco, possibly switched up the drugs a bit, but not too much. Those that take offense, beware – search your sense of humor.

Nirvana doing Lead Belly’s Where Did You Sleep Last Night

If only this was a hip hop sample – we would have all known to go search the record bin for the original. Alas, it never sounded weird for Cobain to sing something like “in the pines, in the pines, where the sun don’t ever shine” – the words, archaic on someone else, fit him perfectly, so it took some of us less attentive ones years to finally experience Lead Belly. Both made music instead of merely playing it.

Johnny Cash doing Depeche Mode’s Personal Jesus

With his covers album, Johnny Cash reminded us that he was still paying attention. Making over Personal Jesus, however, meant taking apart the biggest euro-pop hit of all time and revealing the dark brooding drunk American troubadour behind everything that is rock n’ roll.

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About JD

  • Where I can find to watch this cover songs? Thanks!

  • Finally I find an hard rock cover of a Massive Attack song! Teardrop covered by Deceit!
    I don’t know the band… but what a good choice!

  • Jason Vincent
  • chrisreg

    this is the best metal covers i can think of at the moment

    1. The joker – twiztid covering steve miller band
    2. Cry little sister – seasons after covering gerard mcmann
    3. you spin me round (like a record) – dope covering dead or alive
    4. Snowblind – system of a down covering black sabbath
    5. Hallowed be thy name – machine head covering iron maiden
    6. people are strange – twiztid covering the doors
    7. crazy – mushroomhead covering seal
    8. old man – redlight king covering neal young
    9. Die, die my darling – metallica covering the misfits
    10. Electric funeral – pantera covering black sabbath

  • dennisblue

    matal xmas m/

  • Shaunny

    You Me At Six – Poker Face
    The Blackout – Fight For Your Right (To Party)

    Great covers 🙂

  • Eric Twing

    How about Fall Out Boys cover of Roxanne by The Police, i thought that was amazing. Or the one time live cover done by My Chemical Romance and The Used of Freddy Mercury and David Bowie’s Under Pressure

  • NATO

    BAd Company did Mott The Hoople tune, Ready For Love, and everybody thought it was a Bad Company song. Both versions are excellent.

  • Christopher Pa

    Breaking Benjamin Covering Queen’s “Who wants to live forever” – undescribable..
    Mudvayne’s cover of The Police’s “king of pain”

  • Richard

    Best cover for me is motorhead with Ted Nugent’s “Cat scratch fever”

  • Nonpoint’s cover of Phil Collins’ “In the Air Tonight” and Seether’s version of George Michael’s “Careless Whisper” are also mentionable.

  • sarjit soni

    Emmy Lou version. That is a outstanding track. glorious, curious, and obsessionally listenable. Stark old school rap converted to harmonious folk-pop.

  • Brad
  • Mark Wilcox

    Cake’s cover of Gloria Gaynor’s “I will Survive” is tasty. Dolly Parton’s cover of REO Speedwagon’s “Time for me to Fly is about the worst cover EVER>

  • Drew

    Korn’s cover of “Another Brick In The wall”

  • Drew

    Five Finger Death Punch’s cover of “Bad Company”.

  • stric9

    My all time fav over is cakes version of gloria gaynors I will survive

  • Brandon

    Foo fighters cover of Led Zep’s Stairway to heaven

  • Rachael Kate

    Katie Noonan – Crazy (live)… f***ing brilliant. Go you good thing! :))

  • Arugala

    Scissor Sisters’ cover… worst piece of trash on this planet.

  • I love Rock music very much. Pink Floyed is my favorite rock music artist. I hope everybody likes him who love rock music. Thanks for sharing….

  • Chris Blackman

    Free’s “The Hunter” (Cover of the Booker T original)

  • Levi

    What about Creedence Clearwater Revival?
    They did a lot of good cover songs.

  • vin

    great songs. The best cover Ive heard lately..
    Seether ‘Careless whisper”

    have no idea who did the original

  • Ola Nordmann

    Where is “Dark end of the street” performed by The Commitments??

  • TJ Harris

    Cartel’s cover of “Wonderwall” is very good as well

  • lewis kenny

    also to metion Thin LIzzy do the best cover to a irish song whiskey in the jar, it was a traditional song but now more famous as a rock and roll, way better then metallica

  • Arthur-Malo Robet

    obediah parke – hey ya

  • foolsgold

    Quiet Riots cover of Cum On Feel The Noiz originally written by SLADE

  • Alex

    one of the best covers I’ve ever heard is Paul McCartney’s “band on the run” played by Foo Fighters.

  • weg

    Bizarre Love Triangle, Frente
    Real Love, Regina Spektor
    Hallelujah, Jeff Buckley
    Where Did You Sleep Last Night, Nirvana

  • Michael

    Evergreen Terrace – Maniac (Michael Sembello cover)
    Evergreen Terrace – Zero (Smashing Pumpkins cover)
    Disturbed – Land of Confusion (Genesis cover) In Flames tried and cover this one to, but failed miserably

  • Guy Nicklin

    -Walking In my Shoes- Depeche Mode redone by Finger 11
    -Easy- The Commodores redone by Faith No More
    -Nutshell- Alice In Chains redone by Staind
    -Would? -Alice in Chains redone by Opeth
    -In Your Eyes- Peter Gabriel redone by Ben Harper (live)
    -Billie Jean- Micheal Jackson redone by Chris Cornell

    These are all better than the originals in my opinion!

  • Ian

    Great list all, some great suggestions

    Here’s a few which I haven’t seen so far…

    Cry Little Sister (Gerard McMann Cover)- Aiden
    Your Possible Pasts (Pink Floyd Cover) – Anathema
    Sweet Emotion (Aerosmith Cover)- The Answer
    It’s Tricky (Run D.M.C. Cover) – The Bloodhound Gang
    The Trooper (Iron Maiden Cover)- Coheed & Cambria
    Steady, As She Goes (The Raconteurs Cover)- Corinne Bailey Rae
    Temptation (Heaven 17 Cover)- Cradle Of Filth
    Midlife Crisis (Faith No More Cover)- Disturbed
    Sunday Bloody Sunday (U2 Cover)- Evergreen Terrace
    This Guy’s In Love With You (Burt Bacharach Cover)- Faith No More
    Band On The Run (Wings Cover)- Foo Fighters
    Men In Black (Will Smith Cover)- Forever The Sickest Kids
    Losing My Religion (REM Cover)- Graveworm
    Hotel California (Eagles Cover)- Gypsy Kings
    Space Oddity (David Bowie Cover)- Helloween
    I Was Only 19 (Redgum Cover)- The Herd
    Zombie Eaters (Faith No More Cover)- Ill Nino
    Land Of Confusion (Genesis Cover)- In Flames
    Everything Counts (Depeche Mode Cover)- In Flames
    Nightmares By The Sea (Jeff Buckley Cover)- Katatonia
    Stars (Dubstar Cover)- Lacuna Coil
    Message In A Bottle (The Police Cover)- Machine Head
    Hotel California (The Eagles Cover)- Majek Fashek
    Bridge of Sighs (Robin Trowers Cover)- Opeth
    Paint It Black (Rolling Stones Cover)- The Tea Party

    These are just a few from an itunes playlist of covers I’ve put together currently around 500 songs..

  • Brian aka Guppusmaximus

    Opeth did a fucking killer job on Would by AIC.

  • Jonser

    Seether-Careless Whisper orig. George Michals both great seether gave it the touch it needed.

  • Luc

    Hey guys anyone of you ever tried Boys of Summer by The Ataris? A great cover from Don Henley’s original..

  • Shannon

    Anyone mention Patti Smith’s version of “Hey Joe”? That song is amazing. But then everything she does is amazing.

  • nadav

    i’m 2nd to mention 801 live. for 10 years now i’m convinced that no cover comes near ‘tomorrow never knows’; eno stretches and smoothes this beatles song, as good as it gets.

  • isaacdubaron

    re: throw away culture, my 50 year old dad actually prefers wicked game by him better than chris isaaks version, dunno, its not necessarily about being better, its just a current band paying a homage to a band that they love…

  • aerojam

    guns n roses, one of the best rock band in the history of the music industry…there lyrics is very appreciatable, simple lyrics and you will find out that the lyrics is mean…the lyrics really happen in real life and that what I like in this band a non fictional band and song…the genre of the band is mix and its great…the instrument men! genious…no dought they are classic…the best so far…

  • Philip

    Most of your covers aren’t necessarily any better than the original. They merely represent the throw-away culture in which we live. We’re conditioned to believe that anything new and fresh is better than what came before. We’re guilty of this bias in our appreciation of most of the arts: music, television, film, books, theater, etc.

    If anything, the covers mentioned are probably suggested by younger music listeners. I’m sure that older listeners would probably prefer the original versions which hit the airwaves when they were younger.

    To help you relate, just imagine some song which you enjoy, covered in some bizarre way… some twenty years into the future. Your reaction will probably be “I think the original is much better.”

    Welcome to our throw-away culture.

  • PL

    The Maker- Dave Matthews Band
    If you havent heard it, you need to.

  • This Thread has been around forever, awesome tho, I have 3 pages im adding to my collection cause of it haha.
    Covers are great, here is my fave list

    1. H.I.M. – Wicked game (version 666) =Chris Issak
    2. ^^^^^ – Solitary Man = Neil Diamond
    3. ^^^^^ – Don’t fear the Reaper = Blue Oyster Cult
    4. Deftones- No Ordinary Love = Sade
    5. Inkubbus Succubus- Paint It Black = Rolling Stones
    6. Scarling. – Creep = Radiohead
    5. Jack Off Jill- Love Song = The Cure
    7. ^^^^^ – Touch Myself = ???
    8. ^^^^ – Wave Of Mutilation = The Pixies
    9. Perfect Circle- Imagine = John Lennon
    10. Evanescence- Thoughtless = Korn
    11. Incubus- No Scrubs haha = TLC
    12. Love Spit Love- How Soon Is Now = The Smiths
    13. Stone Sour- Wicked Game = Chris Isaak
    14. Giant Drag- Wicked Game = Chris Isaak
    15. David Cook- Always Be My Baby = Mariah Carey
    16. Pearl Jam- Last Kiss= ???
    17. New found Glory- My Heart Will Go On haha = Celine Dion
    18. Marilyn Manson- Personal Jesus = Depeche Mode
    19. ^^^^^ – Tainted Love = Depeche Mode
    20. Flyleaf- Something I can never have = NIN
    21. Lacuna Coil- Enjoy The Silence = Depeche Mode
    22. Kidney Thieves- Crazy = Willie Nelson
    23. H.I.M.- Hand Of Doom = Black Sabbath
    24. Garbage- Drop Dead Gorgeous = ???
    25. Allison Krause- When You Say Nothing At All = Keith Whitley
    26. Bullet For My Vallentine- Welcome Home = Metallica
    27. Scott Simmons – Umbrella – Rihanna
    28. The Tiffany Dollz (my band ha) Unfaithful- Rihanna

    Yup Im eclectic and I love Covers woot woot

    Worst Cover hands down: Flyleaf- Smells Like Teen Spirit haha

  • Darling Nikki by the Foo Fighters.

  • Lauren

    Bitches Ain’t Shit by Ben Folds.
    Wild Horses by The Sundays.
    All Along the Watchtower.
    I’m Real by the Starting Line.
    Always Be My Baby by David Cook.

    Worst cover: Stand by You by Carrie Underwood.
    You just can’t redo Chrissie Hynde.

  • Chris

    Killswitch Engage- Holy Diver
    Rob Zombie- Children of the Grave
    RATM- Ghost of Tom Joad
    Dropkick Murphy’s- Fotunate Son
    Murphy’s again- Green Fields of France
    Metallica- Tuesday’s Gone
    Metallica- Turn the Page (Aaron Lewis does an acoustic version too! Mind blowing.)

  • Chris

    Shinedown doing Simple Man live at WAAF may be the greatest acoustic cover of all time. You really feel the passion for the song in his voice.

  • Jose

    the one in my mind that sticks out is

    Jimi Hendrix-Along the watchtower

  • Mike

    Does anybody remember a band with a name either “I Don’t Care” or “I Don’t Know” ? I remember the album cover being blue and only the name on it. They a kind of a jazzy version of some Hendrix with some awesome guitar playing.

  • kenny

    whoo does a cover of me and julio by paul simon

  • Alex

    the best cover i know is
    Riders on the storm by creed

  • the flaming lips cover:

    “lucifer sam” pink floyd

    “after the gold rush” neil young

    “war pigs” black sabbath

    “knives out” radiohead

    postal service cover:

    “everything has changed” flaming lips

  • Gothic Beauty

    Marilyn Manson-I Put A Spell On You (Nina Simone)
    Marilyn Manson-This Is Halloween (The Nightmare Before Christmas)
    A Perfect Circle-Imagine(The Beatles)
    Avenged Sevenfold-Walk(Pantera)
    Bif Naked-Nothing Else Matters (Metallica)
    Bullet For My Valentine-Creeping Death (Metallica)
    H.I.M.-Wicked Game (Chris Isaak)
    ICP-Let’s Go All The Way (Sly Fox)
    Killswitch Engage-Holy Diver (Dio)
    Korn-Another Brick In The Wall (Pink Floyd)
    Lacuna Coil-Enjoy The Silence (Depeche Mode)
    Mushroomhead-Crazy (Seal)
    Sevendust-Going Back To Cali (LL Cool J)
    Deftones-No Ordinary Love (Sade)
    Disturbed-Shout (Tears For Fears)
    Nonpoint-In The Air Tonight (Phil Collins)

  • great cover here of MJ’s Thriller

  • Brian

    Pearl Jam Doing Love Reign O’er Me Originaly by the who

  • Surf ASG 3

    Otep – Breed (Nirvana)

  • dank3

    Check out my favorite cover!!! Take The Pop-O-Pies “Truckin’The Slow Version”[the dead] what is on 45RPM vinyl,then listen to that at 33RPM in headphones.Let the good times roll

  • Mike

    Oh yea, and the new Metallica cover of Iron Maiden’s Remember Tomorrow

  • Mike

    Tesla – Signs
    Aaron Lewis (Staind) – Black

  • Jessica

    i really liked Iron Maiden’s cover of “The Zoo” (the Scorpians) and “Smoke on the Water” (Deep Purple)

  • Jason

    A so called cover version that never ever happened and I get tired of hearing about it over the net is The Beatles doing Terry Jacks ‘Seasons in the Sun’, a great song but please please please, The Beatles never covered this 1974 song!
    They were no longer a band during 1969 unofficially and definately officially were not a band in 1970, although you could say they were really by law finished in 1975 but that was paperwork sorting out the money!

  • lotuseater

    Chris Cornell’s version of Billie Jean



  • miiiikee

    House of the Rising Sun by frijid pink

  • ok, so I’m biased but Amy LaVere’s cover of Michelle Shocked’s “If Love Was a Train” and Amber Rubarth’s “Ol’ 55” (Tom Waits) are pretty darn good.

  • Eli

    NOFX- build me up buttercup
    Nofx- there she goes
    children of bodom- the trooper
    children of bodom- oops i did it again
    atreyu- epic

  • Surf ASG 3

    There are so many missing from this list –

    Deadsy – Tom Sawyer (RUSH)

    Aaron Lewis of Staind – just type his name on Youtube and you will some amazing stuff. i.e.- Piano Man(Billy Joel) Nutshell- Alice in Chains
    Black – Pearl Jam

    Sublime – We’re only gonna die (Bad Religion)

    Disturbed – Land of Confusion (Phil Collins)

    Disturbed – Fade to Black (metallica)

    Ill Nino – 5 Minutes Alone (Pantera)

    STP – Rpad House Blues ( The Doors )

    Foo Fighters – Baker Street (Gerry Rafferty)

    Elwood – Sundown (Gordon Lightfoot)

    Kenny Wayne Shepard – midnight Rider (Gregg Allman)

    Foo Fighters and Marylin Manson both cover Down in the Park by Gary Numan

    Gary Allan – Runaway (Del Shannon)

    Him – Wicked Game(Chris Isaak) and Rebel Yell ( Billy Idol)

    Ryan Adams – Champagne Supernova (Oasis)

    Slightly Stoopid – Used to love her (G n R)

    Social Distortion – Ring of Fire (Johhny Cash)

    Sublime – Scarlet Begonias ( Grateful Dead )

    Godsmack – Good times, Bad times ( Led Zep )

    Alice in Chains – Another Brick in the Wall (Floyd) & Suffragette City ( David Bowie )

    Killswitch Engage – Holy Diver (Dio)

    Rosebud – Have a Cigar (Pink Floyd )

    Type O Negative – Cinnamon Girl(Neil Young) and Summer Breeze (Seals and Crofts)

    I think I’m done. I have a lot more. Will add more later. Peace

  • Blake

    Here’s a few that I didn’t see, sorry if I missed them. These are all great especially the billy bragg!!!

    Crimson and Clover- Joan Jett

    Tracks of My Tears- Billy Bragg

    My Way- The Sex Pistols

    Temptation- Diana Krall

    Girl you’ll be a woman soon- Urge Overkill

    Sin City- Uncle Tupelo

    I wanna be Your Dog- Uncle Tupelo

    Dwight Yoakam- Carmelita

    Stone Cold Crazy- Metallica

    Only the Lonely- Chris Isaak

    California Sun- The Ramones

    The return of Jackie and Judy- Tom Waits

  • juan

    ooh one of my favourites covers is..

    The saints are coming (Skids)- by U2

  • juan

    Everybody have music knowledge her, i have a question:

    Anybody know the last cover of a frank sinatra´s song name..Fly me to the moon, I´d like to know the artist who sing it, is a pop/rock cover.

    This cover im talking about is amazing!!!
    Please help me

  • failed hello


  • failed hello

    lydia lunch – some velvet mornng

  • According to the owner of Sun Studio in Memphis we’ll soon have to add the Pawnshop Roses doing “That’s All Right” to the list. Of course, Elvis’ version was a cover too and we’ll keep his above the Roses. 🙂

  • Gary

    Collecting punk covers songs is kind of a hobby of mine so this is my contribution to the thread. You can find a lot of stuff like this on the albums Punk Goes 80s, Punk Goes 90s, Punk Goes Metal, Oldies But Goodies, and Punk Goes Pop. New Found Glory did two albums of From The Screen To Your Stereo of punk-ish covers of songs from movies. Anything by Me First and the Gimmie Gimmies will be a punk cover. But hereʼs a list of some of my favorites. I apologize for not also listing the original performer, but Iʼm too lazy to do that. And I apologize if anything has already been listed.

    Tainted Love by 1000 Mona Lisas

    What I Like About You by Lillix

    Baby One More Time by Nicotine

    Kiss Me Deadly by Nerf Hearder

    Iʼm a Believer by Cadet

    Come On Eileen by Save Ferris

    Brown Eyed Girl by Cadet

    Like a Prayer by Rufio

    Down On the Corner by The Goo Goo Dolls (with the Incredible Lance Diamond on vocals)

    Hotel California by Less Than Jake

    99 Red Balloons by Goldfinger

    Turning Japanese by No Use For a Name

    You Really Got Me by Eve 6

    I Want It That Way by Limbeck

    You Oughta Know by 1000 Mona Lisas (this rocks)

    Boys Donʼt Cry by Oleander

    Happy Together by Simple Plan

    Down Under by Pennywise

    Knock One Out by Lagwagon (cover of LL Cool Jʼs Mama Said Knock You Out)

    Gimmie Shelter by The Goo Goo Dolls

    Wannabe by Zebrahead

    My Generation by Green Day

    Holiday Road by Dirt Bike Annie

    Debaser by Dirt Bike Annie

    Build Me Up Buttercup by The Goops

    Handle With Care by Jenny Lewis and the Watson Twins

    Gone Daddy Gone by Gnarls Barkley

    That Thing You Do by New Found Glory

    Worry Rock by Weezer

    Kids in America by The Muffs

    Eastbound & Down by The Supersuckers

    Safety Dance by The Donnas

    All My Friends by Franz Ferdinand

    Touch Me Iʼm Sick by Sonic Youth

    Working Class Hero by Green Day

    Imagine by U2

  • Matty G

    Ice Cube’s Wicked by Jonathon Davies(Korn) and Chino (Deftones) so awesome! “Listen to the flow from a soulful…caucasian” LOL!

  • Michael

    Not exactly Rock Covers, but i didnt see these in the list:

    My favorite Cover is Sexyback (timberlake) covered by Rock Plaza Central. Chris Eaton has a unique voice (not to everyones taste), but he has turned the song into a great piece of music, and you can just see him stifling laughter while singing the absurd lyrics of the original.

    Also Final Fantasy (Owen Pallett) does a few great covers including This Modern Love by Bloc Party.

  • chris

    311’s cover of Love song by The Cure

  • And, speaking of rock covers of classical: Captain Jack does nice work with Hall of the Mountain King in Dream a Dream.

  • Larry, glad you brought this list up again. I had to review to make sure I am not repeating myself since comment #51.

    OK, let me add a few well done covers. ‘Man Who Sold the World’ Nirvana; ‘Take Me to the River’ Talking Heads; ‘Kentucky Woman’ Deep Purple (a Niel Diamond song!); of course, ‘All Along the Watchtower’ Hendrix.

    Rock on!

  • Oh – and, We Will Rock You, by Linda Ronstadt

  • Don’t know if it’s mentioned (I’ve read 1 – 83 only) but Collide do great techno covers of Son of a Preacher Man, and White Rabbit.

  • keith

    somebody already picked out “sweet jane” by cowboy junkies – my favorite. and “higher ground” by red hot chili peppers.

    but, there’s also “ring of fire” by wall of voodoo. and of course johnny cash did a fairly decent cover of it too. 🙂

  • GolfGuru

    While the original version of “Africa” by Toto is untouchable, the acoustic cover by Howie Day is pretty fantastic!

  • ade

    my list would have to have,
    1 Korn-Brick in the wall
    2 White Stripes- Jolene
    3 Smashing Pumpkins- Dancing in the moonlight
    4 Foo Fighters-Baker Street
    5 The Eels – Damn I wish I was your lover
    6 Van Halen/Oingo Bingo -You really got me
    7 Placebo – 20th Century Boy
    8 Muse – I`m Feeling good
    9 White Sripes – I just don`t know what to do with myself
    10 Radiohead – Knowbody does it better

  • Jaap

    After Hendrix’s version of All Along the Watchtower, which even Dylan is said to think better than his own, I think the two best covers are by Judas Priest: One has been named a few times already, and that’s Diamonds & Rust, but people seem to have forgotten their great version of The Green Manalishi on the Unleashed in the East album. It’s good when Fleetwood Mac do it, but when Priest do it… absolutely awesome.

  • val yum


  • JoshGrot

    First of all, and echoing many before me, this is a great list. Secondly, I wonder whether this might not be better presented as a wiki, so that it would avoid the duplicates problem?

    Here are some random names which I believe haven’t been added as yet:

    * Natalie Merchant & Michael Stipe–“To Sir With Love”
    * Elvis Costello–“Ring of Fire”
    * Rolling Stones–“Carol”, “Little Queenie”, etc.
    * Annie Lenox–entire “Medusa” album, notably: “Train in Vain” and “Take Me to the River”
    * Patti Smith–entire “Twelve” album, notably: “Smells Like Teen Spirit”, “Gimme Shelter”, and “Helpless”
    * Marianne Faithful–“As Tears Go By”
    * Peter Frampton–“Jumpin’ Jack Flash”
    * David Bowie–“America” (Simon & Garfunkel), performed live to start off the Concert for New York City
    * Tony Sheridan and the Beat Brothers (later to become the “Beatles”)–“What’d I Say?” (Ray Charles)
    * Barbary Guitar Duo–“Achilles Last Stand” (check this one out!)
    * …and while we’re talking about Led Zeppelin, how about Led Zeppelin’s “cover” of Jake Holmes’ “Dazed and Confused”

    Finally, a challenge…to anyone who can find a digital copy of…

    * Mark-Almond’s cover of Billy Joel’s “New York State of Mind” (not the live version, but the studio version from the “To the Heart” album)

  • Jeffrey Mullins

    I have not seen this one listed & am shocked……

    Etta James in 1961 sang “At Last”…..It is a 1941 song written by Mack Gordon and Harry Warren and first performed by Glenn Miller.

    The Etta James version has since gone on the be one of the most popular wedding songs ever. And of course others have done the song too…but NOBODY does it like Etta James.


    first off…. i love cover songs..

    here are a few good ones

    the pusher by blind melon original by stepenwolf
    aqualung by magellan original by jethro tull
    diamonds and rust by judas priest orig; joan beaz
    stairway to heaven by dread zeppelin orig; by
    led zeppelin
    i put a spell on you by marilyn manson orig; by
    screaming jay hawkins

    all of these have a real different spin on the original,,,,,, not just note for note covers..

    check em’ out

  • HJ

    3 more-Foo Fighters Have a Cigar(Pink Floyd) and you gotta love Godsmack’s Good times Bad Times(Led Zeppelin) Alos Kid Rock’s obscure Seger redo- Hard Night for Sarah.

  • HJ

    Sevendust’s cover of LL Cool J, Goin back to Cali…..

  • Todd

    Okay, a couple more:

    Little Willy – Poison
    Helter Skelter – Motley Crue
    Detroit Rock City – Dee Snider (on Kiss Tribute)
    American Band – Poison
    Over the Mountain – Fozzy (first two albums are all covers)
    Legs – Kid Rock
    And I can’t belive no one mentioned Pantera’s version of Cat Scratch Fever!!!

  • martin

    Pop to Rock!

    lacuna coil – enjoy the silence (depeche mode)
    emil bulls – take on me (A-ha)
    disturbed – Shout (tears for fears)
    Guano apes – big in japan (alphaville)

  • Come to my site and vote for the best covers of the 2000s! Win prizes!

  • Clancey

    Wow – great list!

    Some others:

    Leo Kottke –
    Pamela Brown – Tom T. Hall
    Eight Miles High – Byrds
    Jesu, Joy of Man’s Desiring

    Heather Nova –
    Like A Hurricane – Neil Young

    Michael Hedges –
    Captain Kennedy – Neil Young
    She Drives Me Crazy – Fine Young Cannibles
    Rock & Roll pt2 – Gary Glitter
    100s more By Michael…

    BTW – great podcast of Coversongs called Coverville. Subscribe via iTunes or through his website, where he also maintains an archive where you can download all (at this writing) 385 episodes:


    Many of the covers already mentioned here have been played by the host, Brian Ibbott.

  • Nevets

    Wow this has become a huge list, sorry if these were mentioned i just didn’t see them.

    Some Really Great ones…
    Johnny Cash – One by U2
    No Problem – En La Atalaya (all along the watchtower)
    DMB – All along the Watchtower by Dylan, Hendrix
    – Me and Julio(down by the schoolyard) by Paul Simon
    – In My life by The Beatles
    Korn – Another Brick in the Wall by Floyd
    Ugly Kid Joe – Cat’s in the Cradle by Harry Chapin
    Save Ferris – Come on Eileen by Dexy’s Midnight Runners
    Cake – I Will Survive by Gloria Gaynor
    – Never Gonna Give You Up by Barry White
    DHT – Listen To Your Heart (not sure who it’s by originally)
    Guns N’ Roses – Live and Let Die by the Beatles
    Sheryl Crow – Sweet Child O’Mine by Guns N’ Roses
    Israel “IZ” Kamakawiwo’ole – Take Me Home Country Road (not sure of the original artist I think John Denver)
    Reel Big Fish – Take on Me by A-Ha

    Not sure if these count as great but they are worth a listen…
    Sugar Ray – Abracabra by the steve miller band
    – Is She Really Going Out With Him by Joe Jackson
    UB40 – Can’t Help Falling in love by Elvis
    Counting Crows – Big yellow Taxi (can’t remeber who it’s originally by)
    Ace of Base – Cruel Summer by Bananarama
    Smash Mouth – I’m a Believer by The Monkees
    Rascal Flatts – Life Is a Highway by Tom Cochrane


    Colin Hay – Overkill and Land down Under (does it count if a member of the original band ,in this case men at work, does his own version of hit songs?)

    Me First and the Gimmie Gimmies, Penywise, and New Found Glory (among other Punk/Ska bands) do GREAT covers of other peoples stuff, Just keep your ears open for it

    and Acapela groups (especially college ones) do covers that can sometimes be quite enjoyable to listen to (If you find the right version of it Africa, originally by Toto, is a kickass acapela song)

    And finally Richard cheese did an awesome cover of Disturbed’s Down With the Sickness. You can hear it in the 2004 remake of Day of the Dead

  • Leo

    machiene head – message in a bottle ?
    or Killswitch Engage with land of confusion
    or sugarcult – memory

    all Great covewrs

  • RJM

    A Perfect Circle’s version of Failure’s “The Nurse Who Loved Me” Is real good too. Also:

    “And I Ran” (Flock of Seagulls) by Hidden in Plain View

    “Holding Out for a Hero” (Bonnie Tyler) by Emery

    “Dead Man’s Party” (Oingo Boingo) by A Thorn For Every Heart

    “I Melt With You” (Modern English) by Sugarcult

    “Losing My Religion” (REM) by Scary Kids Scaring Kids

    And one of my favorites:

    “You Outta Know” (Alanis Morissette) by The Killing Moon

  • Edgardo González

    I just can’t believe that no one says anything about one of the greatest heavy metal bands ever!! I mean c’mon people what in God’s name have you been listening to?(LOL) I’m talking about SKID ROW for crying out loud!! Sebastian Bach’s voice it’s just…I don’t know, something out of this world.. So if u haven’t, check out B-SIDE OURSELVES here are the tracks:

    -PSYCHO THERAPY (Ramones)
    -C’MON AND LOVE ME (Kiss)
    -DELIVERING THE GOODS (Judas Priest)
    -LITTLE WING (Jimmy Hendrix)

  • Roo

    Ra’s cover of “Every Little Thing She Does is Magic” by The Police

  • Harry

    Ben Folds Five – Bitches Ain’t Shit (Dr. Dre Cover)

    This is so good that you want to sleep with the band

  • Rob C

    How about Garth Brooks version of Hard Luck Woman.
    The Ataris Boys of Summmer

  • texmez

    Original & Covers…

    The Guess Who/Lenny Kravitz – American Woman

    Brownsville Station/Motley Crue – Smokin in the boys room

    Loggins & Messina/Motley Crue – Your momma don’t dance and your daddy don’t rock and roll

    Creedence Clearwater Revival/Bob Seeger – Fortunate Son

    Bo Diddley/Bob Seeger & Bruce Springsteen – compilation of “Bo Diddley/Who do you love?”

    Beatles/Joe Cocker – She came in through the bathroom window

    Beatles/Alice Cooper – Because

    Beatles/Bee Gees – Carry That Weight

    Martha and the Vandellas/Mick Jagger & David Bowie – Dancing in the streets

    Bob Seeger/Status Quo & Wanda Jackson – Old time rock and roll

    ???? / Travelling Wilburys – Tweeder and the monkey man

    Louis Armstrong/Momas and the Popas – Dream a little dream of me

    Dale Hawkins/Creedence Clearwater Revival – Oh Suzy Q

    Another mentioned, but the original left out:
    Marvin Gaye/Creedence Clearwater Revival – I heard it through the grapevine. Also covered by Gladys Knight and the Pips.

    The Sweet/The Damned, The Rexilos, Krokus, Testify, Nuclear Assault – Ballroom Blitz

    Jonathan Edwards/Paul Westerberg – Sunshine (go away today)

    Elvis Presley/ZZ Top, Dead Kennedys – Viva Las Vegas

    Not sure who’s the original and cover but…
    Kiss & The Ramones – Rock and Roll High School

    Beatles/Beatles – for their original rendention of “Revoltion”, later remixed twice on the White Album.

    Meatloaf/Meatloaf – Read ’em and weep. The remake was done in 1993.

    Five Man Electrical Band/Tesla – Signs

    The Doors/Billy Idol – L.A. Woman

    Rod Stewart/Sheryl Crowe – The First Cut is the Deepest.

    Three disasterous remakes for the “don’t try this at home” crowd:

    Beatles/William Shatner – Lucy in the sky with diamonds
    Deep Purple/Pat Boone – Smoke on the water
    Prince/Pat Boone – Kiss

  • nate

    snow patrol-Crazy in Love

  • for me my hero is KURT COBAIN,i don’t have coment for him he is a god.

  • roger

    I didn’t see Lynyrd Skynyrd’s remake of Eric Clapton’s Crossroads, they re-riffed the song, and made it much better. One more: Atlanta Rhythm Section’ Spooky (Classics Four song)

  • Esai

    I didnt see these by HIM Don’t Fear the Reaper, Rebell Yell, Solitary Man, and Poison Heart.Him Did more that ive seen on here and some i cant think of.

    Also The Atreyu Cover of Shot Through the heart and the Deftones cover Simple Man are great

  • JANK

    “Only Love Can Break Your Heart” — Saint Etienne (Neil Young)

    awesome and better

  • asdf

    Failure – Enjoy the Science

  • Belle 2

    The River covered by The Clarks is fantastic even though I tried to not like it because I LOVE the original by Springsteen!!

  • MrBadDuck

    I am blown away by this thread. Covers are incredible and holy crap you guys know a lot of them. Most of my favourites are on here, but a couple that have been overlooked…

    Reel Big Fish – Kiss Me Deadly
    – was originally a really shitty 80’s dance song, they own it now, as far as i’m concerned.

    Ted Leo – Since You’ve Been Gone / Maps
    – mind expanding, truly…

    Weezer – Velouria
    – Definitely one of the finest covers i’ve ever heard. Weezer and the pixies have so much in common and i think this cover really shows that

    Speaking of Weezer, there’s a whole album of people covering weezer songs. most of the covers are not so good, but a couple that stand out…

    The Stereo – El Scorcho
    Mock Orange – Only In Dreams
    Dashboard Confessional – Jamie

    If you can get your hands on that compilation, it’s pretty schnazz.

  • AlpineStar

    I also forgot!

    Marting Sexton – Purple Rain (Prince)


  • AlpineStar

    Ben Kweller – Today (Smashing Pumpkins)
    Obediah Parker/Mat Weddle – Hey Yea (Outkast)
    Six Pence None the Richer – Don’t Dream It’s Over (Crowded House)
    Jack Johnson – Imagine (Lennon)
    Paul Oakenfold – Aeternal (Clint Mansell Quartet – Requiem for a Dream)

  • Jake Musiker

    Does anyone realize that “Respect” by Aretha Franklin was originally an Otis Redding song? Now THAT can make a case for the best cover song of all time.

  • Ryan

    How about John Mayer’s Cover of Message In A Bottle. That Is Good

  • Chris Forte

    If anyone says that the Limp Bizkit and Goo Goo Dolls cover of Wish You Were Here was good I will never trust anyone’s opinion anymore.

  • k

    Also, Never The Brides Cover of Led Zeppelins Going to California is one of my favorite Zepplin covers, as is Trains version of Ramble On.

  • K

    I Found a live cover of Riders on the storm claiming to be performed by Sepultura which sounds pretty awesome. Theres something about Metal voices singing classics and i think they did a great job.

    Light my fire performed by Type O Negative was good and rather funny to listen to as well.

  • chris

    I didn’t see it, but “Jolene” by the White Stripes is by far the best cover of all time.

    “Easy” by Faith No More is really good, Patton can really wail

    I will be shot for this, but TATU’s version of “How Soon is Now” is really, really good.

    A sleeper is Dropkick Murphys/The Business doing “The Kids are Alright” on the Mob Mentality split album.

    Basically every song off of “Undisputed Attitude” by Slayer is great, especially “Filler/I don’t wanna hear it”.

    And of course, Tori Amos doing Slayer’s “Raining Blood” is freaking awesome.

    Also, anything by Manic Hispanic on “the Menudo Incident” album is freaking amazing and funny.

  • Geoff

    i wish i could find a version of the Supertramp song Breakfast in America, redone by James Blunt, its wicked

  • CRD

    Has anyone heard Ray Lamontagne’s version of Crazy by Gnarls Barkley (AMAZING!) or Obadiah Parker’s version of Hey Ya! (Outkast). They’re both amazing covers because they are very unique from the original.

  • “Ewan McGregor – Your Song (Elton John) That one is from the Moulin Rouge soundtrack so don’t laugh, but his voice is just so good. I mean Elton is awesome, but I think that this version is way more powerful if you like love songs haha.”

    You are so right, I’m in love with this song. Its better than the original in my opinion

    All the covers i like have been mentioned, Like damien rice – creep and radiohead – nobody does it better. Tose are beautiful.

  • Spartan13

    Silvertide cover of Maggies Farm and Aint Coming Home deleted from the movie but as i understand and the soundtrack for lady in the water

  • rip

    E L P pictures at a exhibition………good stuff

  • Karen

    Dixie Chicks – “Landslide” – Fleetwood Mac
    Neville Brothers – “Fortunate Son” – Creedence Clearwater

    Saving the Best for last: Dolly Parton “After the Goldrush” – Neil Young and “Stairway to Heaven” Led Zeplin.

  • blaque

    not listed so far…

    Shock the Monkey – Coal Chamber with Ozzy (Peter Gabriel)

    Rock On – Def Leppard (David Essex)

    Feel Like Making Love – Kid Rock (Bad Company)

  • Niall

    Phantom Planet’s version of Jackson Browne’s Somebody’s Baby is awesome

    Heartbeats by Jose Gonzales originally by the Knife

    Build me up buttercup by the Goops originally by The Foundations

    I Want You To Want Me by Letters to Cleo originally by Cheap Trick

    Brown Eyed Girl by Creedence Clearwater Revival originally by Van Morrison

    Hounds of Love by The Futureheads originally by Kate Bush

    I Don’t Like Mondays/Smells Like Teen Spirit by Tori Amos originally by The Boomtown Rats/Nirvana

    Leaving on a Jet Plane by Janis Joplin originally by Cat Stevens

    Torn by Off By One originally by Natalie Imbruglia

    though not an exact cover Gangsters Paradise by Coolio is almost exactly the same as Pasttime Paradise by Stevie Wonder

    Rob Thomas did an amazing live cover of Time After Time by Cindy Lauper

    Songbird/Fields of Gold by Eva Cassidy originally by Fleetwood Mac/Sting

    No Rain by The Dave Matthews Band originally by Blind Melon

    and finally an oldie!!! Got My Mojo Workin by BB King originally by Muddy Waters

  • Mark Saleski

    currently, there’s a cool version of “Eight Miles High” being done by a folkish group called The Kennedys.

  • The Haze

    I can’t believe no one mentioned this: Nazareth – Love Hurts! Now,hears a hard one (if it can be found): Neil Merryweather’s version of Eight Miles High, great cover.This guy was ahead of the curve.Hey wait…great name for a band!! Ahead of the Curve.

  • fierylady

    What the hell, let’s take this into 2007. Here are some of my favorites (some of been mentioned, some haven’t):

    911 is a Joke – Duran Duran
    A Minha – The Bees
    All Along the Watchtower – Jimi Hendrix
    Also Sprach Zarathrusta – Deodato
    Amazin’ Grace – Bela Fleck & The Flecktones
    Benny And The Jets – The Beastie Boys
    Black Coffee – K.D. Lang
    Bohemian Rhapsody – The Dudley Corporation
    Brazil – Cornelius
    Come As You Are – Caetano Veloso
    Comfortably Numb – Scissor Sisters
    Dancing With Myself – Nouvelle Vague
    Easy – Faith No More
    Enter Sandman – Pat Boone
    Everybody’s Talking – Harry Nillson
    Free Bird – Phish
    Froggy Went a’ Courtin’ – Can Kickers
    Get the Party Started – Cobra Verde
    Get Your Hands Off of My Woman – Ben Folds
    Gin & Juice – The Gourds
    The Guitar Man – Cake
    Hard To Handle – The Black Crowes
    Heart of Glass – Nouvelle Vague
    Higher Ground – The Red Hot Chili Peppers
    Hurdy Gurdy Man – The Butthole Surfers
    I Want You – Fiona Apple
    I Will Survive – Cake
    Just – Mark Ronson
    Landslide – The Smashing Pumpkins
    Mad World – Gary Jules
    Mr. Grieves – TV on the Radio
    Nega Maluca/Billie Jean/Eleanor Rigby – Caetano Veloso
    New Year’s Day – Bedouin Soundclash
    Nobody Does it Better – Radiohead
    Nookie – Richard Cheese
    The Prince – Metallica
    Renegades of Funk – Rage Against the Machine
    Respect – Aretha Franklin
    Scarlet Begonias – Sublime
    Smells Like Teen Spirit – The Bad Plus
    Somewhere Over the Rainbow/What a Wonderful World – Israel Kamakawiwo’ole
    Street Fightin’ Man – Lake Trout
    Such Great Heights – Iron & Wine
    Superstition – Stevie Ray Vaughn & Double Trouble
    Suspicious Minds – Dwight Yoakam
    Sweet Jane – The Sundays
    Too Drunk to Fuck – Nouvelle Vague
    With a Little Help From My Friends – Joe Cocker
    You Can’t Do That – Harry Nilsson

  • Andy

    Fuckin Up-Neil Young covered by Pearl Jam

    25 minutes to go-Johnny Cash covered by Pearl Jam

    Everyday-Buddy Holly covered by Pearl Jam

    Baba O’riley-The who covered by Pearl Jam

    Fortunate son-CCR covered by The dropkick murphys

    Tweeder and the monkey man-covered by the headstones

    Twist and Shout- Isley brothers good covers by The Beatles and Sonic Youth

  • Robert Smith

    I have really enjoyed looking over the many suggestions. I have two covers that come to mind.
    1– Fight The Power by Public Enemy redone by The Bare Naked Ladies. This was released on their first independant effort

    2– How Soon Is Now by the Smiths redone by Tatu


  • Tired Old Guy

    A couple I didn’t see – apologies if they were in there!

    Neville Brothers – Fly like an Eagle (Steve Miller Band)

    Jesus is just alright Robert Randolph with Eric Clapton (Doobie Brothers most famous version)

    Brown-eyed handsome man – Mollie O’Brien (Chuck Berry)

  • nil

    Some of my favourites:

    Nouvelle Vague – loads, in particular Bauhaus “Bela lugosi’s dead” Joy Division “love with tears us apart” and Visage “Fade to grey”

    Residents – Hitler was a vegetarian (potpurri of classic hits ranging from The Doors “light my fire” to Beatles “hey jude”)

    On the more silly side: Richard Cheese or Mrs Miller.

  • Kered

    Revolting Cocks – Do You Think I’m Sexy?
    KMFDM – Material Girl
    NIN – Get Down Make Love

  • Nick

    Wow…With some of the modern rock responses I’m legit surprised no one’s said a couple of my favorites.

    Thrice- Eleanor Rigby (Beatles) Absolutely amazing
    Gym Class Heroes- Under The Bridge (RHCP)

    both amazing covers in which the band made it their own. the emotion in thrice’s version of one of favorite beatles’ songs is insanely good and I even like thrice’s version better.

  • my favorite covers

    HIM – Wicked Game
    Children Of Bodom – oops I did it again (from britney spears)

    HIM – Larger than life (original from backstreet boys hahaha this is very funny)

    Snake River Conspiracy – how soon is now


  • Zach

    Trivium “Master of Puppets” (Metallica)

    Dynamite Hack “Boys N Tha Hood” (NWA)

    Staind “Sober” (Tool)

    Dope “Fuck Tha Police” (NWA)

    Korn “One” (Metallica)

    Dope “Spin Me Right Round”

  • Chris

    Nonpoint – In The Air Tonight (Phil Collins)
    Lacuna Coil – Enjoy The Silence

  • Bob

    rubbish rubbish rubbish


  • Bob

    This web site is rubish!!!!!!!!!
    (‘.’) lol!!!!

  • teapot

    the most annoying thing about covers is that if you hear them first you are destined to like them better than the origional. take NIRVANA for instance: then did heaps of covers and each one of them sounds better than the origional…in my oppinion

  • don hofreiter

    Have to mention that “after Midnight” was originally written and performed by JJ Cale, covered by Clapton. Julie has this backwards, probably a typo? on her part

  • Quite Unequal

    I’m just a little surprised that no one has mentioned the Guns ‘n Roses cover of Knockin on Heavens Door. It’s not the greatest song ever, but I love it, and Slash’ guitar solo’s are amazing.

    I also loves Nirvana’s cover of Jesus Doesn’t Want me for a Sunbeam (Vaselines). Nirvana did quite a few covers on unplugged, and I loved them all.

  • ScottDog

    Some of my favorites: (original artist)

    Substitute – Great White (The Who)
    Saturday Night’s Alright – The Who (Elton John)
    Lonely Teardrops – Michael McDonald (Jackie Wilson)
    Unchain My Heart – Joe Cocker (Ray Charles)
    Don’t Fear The Reaper – Beautiful South (Blue Oyster Cult)
    All Along The Watchtower – Dave Mason (Jimi Hendrix)
    Under The Boardwalk – John Mellencamp (The Drifters)
    Love Rollercoaster – Red Hot Chili Peppers (Ohio Players)
    Not Fade Away – Rolling Stones (Buddy Holly)
    The Times Are A Changin – Phil Collins (Bob Dylan)
    I Drove All Night – Cyndi Lauper (Roy Orbison)

    You’ve probably heard most of these but I just recently discovered “Don’t Fear The Reaper” by Beautiful South and it’s done with a funky salsa beat that holds up against the original – check it out. UB40 and Van Halen have also done great covers, but that goes without saying.

  • nds

    King Curtis – A Whiter Shade of Pale (Procol Harum)
    Janis Joplin/Big Brother & the Holding Company – Summertime (Gershwin)
    Sarah McLachlan – Ol’ 55 (Tom Waits)
    John Wesley Harding and the Good Liars – If You Have Ghosts (13th Floor Elevators)
    Israel Kamakawiwo’ole – Somewhere Over the Rainbow (Judy Garland)
    Beautiful South – You’re the One that I Want (John Travolta & Olivia Newton John)
    Seu Jorge – Ziggy Stardust (David Bowie) – from The Life Aquatic
    Sense Field – Caribou (Pixies)
    My Morning Jacket – Take My Breath Away (Berlin)

    and celebrity picks:
    Scarlett Johansson – Summertime (Gershwin)
    Jim Carrey – I am the Walrus (Beatles)

    FYI, two muse covers, mentioned earlier:

    Feeling Good is originally by Nina Simone
    House of the Rising Sun is difficult to attribute, but the Animals were definitely not the first – some say it was a pair of Kentuckians circa 1940s

    great thread!

  • Zach

    Marilyn Manson’s version of “Personal Jesus”

    Local H has a version of Brittney Spears’ “Toxix” and it’s great.

    Nonpoint covering “In The Air Tonight”

    Nirvana “Lake Of Fire”

    Alien Ant Farm “Smooth Criminal”

    CKY “Santa’s Coming” hilarious

    Local H “Sweet Child of Mine”

    Marilyn Manson “I Put A Spell On You”

    Marilyn Manson “Tainted Love”

    Marilyn Manson “Sweet Dreams”

    The Melvins “Smells Like Teen Spirit”

    The Reverend Horton Heat “Folsom Prison Blues”

    Sevendust “Hurt”

    System Of a Down “Shame On a Nigga”

  • Paul

    Modern Love by last town chorus, originaly Bowie.
    Sweet Child of mine by Luna, originally GNR
    Dancing Queen by Texas Lightning, originaly abba
    Step On, Happy Mondays, originally John Kongos
    Some Velvet morning, Primal Scream, originally Nancy Sinatra

    That’s all folks…..

  • mm

    You have to listen to Frank Bennett – Aussie crooner that covers modern songs in the style of Frank and Tony. songs include creep, the way you make me feel, under the bridge. Very talented and entertaining. Check out the website for mp3 downloads if you can’t get the CDs

  • rick k

    I didn’t see it earlier, but “Sympathy for the Devil” by Janes Addiction (originally Rolling STones) is one of my favorites.

  • MM

    Just came across this by accident – great list so far – Here are a few good ones that I don’t think anyone’s mentioned yet – in no particular order.

    1. Please Come Home For Christmas – Bon Jovi (Eagles) .. good live version
    2. More Than This – Norah Jones or 10000 Maniacs (Roxy Music)
    3. Summertime – Anjelique Kidjo (Gershwin) .. beautiful and original
    4. Your Song – Billy Paul (Elton John) .. try this if you havent heard it. was very popular in ski resorts for a while in 90s
    5. Light my Fire and California Dreaming – Jose Feliciano .. try these as well !
    6. As Tears Go By – Nancy Sinatra (Rolling Stones)
    7. Somebody to Love – George Michael (Queen) .. live tribute
    8. Moon River – Morrissey (Audrey Hepburn etc.) .. original better I gues but he does an ok job
    9. Something Stupid – Robbie Williams/Nicole Kidman (Frank and daughter) .. same as original but slicker
    10. Dream a little Dream of Me and Everybody’s Talkin – Beautiful South (Mamas and Papas/Harry Nillsson)
    11. Inside and Out – Feist (Bee Gees ) .. fantastic this one. must hear.
    12. Across the Universe – Fiona Apple (Beatles) .. beautiful. also a must play
    13. Rock el Casbah – Rachid Taha (Clash) .. cool
    14. Dear Prudence – Siouxsie and the Banshees (Beatles) .. oldie
    15. Girlfriend in a Coma – Joshua Radin (Smiths) .. lovely take on smiths song
    16. Desafinado – Bebel Gilberto and George Michael (Tom Jobim)
    17. Alone Again Naturally – Vonda Shepherd (Gilbert O’Sullivan) .. for ally mcbeal fans
    18. I’ll Never Fall In Love Again – Elvis Costello (Burt Bacharach) .. from austin powers
    19. All By Myself – Jamie O’Neal (Eric Carmen) … for bridget jones fans
    20. How Deep is Your Love – Take That (Bee Gees) .. get the original with acapella harmonies. Love them or hate them but they could sing.
    21. You’ve got a Friend – Housemartins (James Taylor)
    22. Love Song – Tori Amos (Cure)
    23. Make Me Smile – The Wedding Present (Steve Harley and Cockney Rebel) .. good although original had better guitar
    24. Billie Jean – Shinehead (Michael Jackson) .. a bit of fun
    25. Here Comes The Sun – Richie Havens (Beatles)
    26. Money – Velvet Revolver (Pink Floyd)
    27. Love will Tear us Apart – Cure (Joy Division)
    28. Little Wing – the Corrs (Hendrix)
    29. Windmills of Your Mind – Sting (dont know but famous)
    30. Brown Eyed Girl – Shaggy (Van Morrison) .. to go with Israel whatsisname’s somewhere over the rainbow on beach bar playlist.
    31. Baby its Cold Outside – Steve Tyrell (standard) .. his album a bit pottery barn but very good
    32. Faith – Limp Bizkit (George Michael)
    33. I’m in the Mood For Love – Jamiroquai (standard)… on later with Jools Holland, reggae beat .. very good
    34. Signed Sealed Delivered – Jamiroquai (Stevie Wonder)
    35. High Tide or Low Tide – Ben Harper and Jack Johnson (Bob Marley) .. great live duet

    … enjoy

  • Anthony

    No one has suggested this yet – Everything – “Father Christmas”

    It’s rare and I doubt you can find it, but it’s awesome.

  • joe

    One of the best covers i’ve ever heard…Deadsy – Tom Sawyer.

  • cara

    M.Ward’s cover of ‘Let’s Dance’ by David Bowie breaks my heart

  • joe

    Speaking of Nada Surf…..their cover of Where is My Min? (The Pixies) is awesome

  • jake

    mindy smiths cover of jolene by dolly parton is really good. the white stripes cover it too but smiths version is better, a little more understated but with all of the emotion

  • A little correction to comment # 196 Kritz

    Nada Surf – If u leave is a cover from OMD


  • rightfrog

    I Am The Walrus by Oingo Boingo…that’s some good stuff right there…

    Also, was there a cover version of the song Jet by Paul McCartney done recently? I seem to remember hearing it, but can’t remember who did it…

  • Squeeze

    No one mentioned: The Locomotion.
    Original: Little Eva
    Remake: Grand Funk RR
    I think there was another remake after that.

  • hathu

    u guys heard Limp Bizkit’s cover of Sanitarium(Metallica)? Man! Do they sound great!!

  • CS

    Reciently I have just bought a CD with, as I think, the best soft cover song I have ever heard. It is done by a band called Shinedown and they covered Lynard Skynard’s “Simple Man.” The lead singers voice is absolutly amazing and the song is done acousticly. I have to say it is quite a bit better then the original, please go download that song!

  • nemesis

    just listen to The Cardigans playing “sabbath bloody sabbath” once… great!

  • Joe

    Jack Off Jill – Touch Myself
    The Misfits – Monster Mash

  • Silentbob

    Nirvana’s “Lake of Fire”

    Dope’s cover of “Fuck tha Police” is wicked

    Dandy Warhols do a cool cover of “Hell’s Bells”

    Nouelle Vague cover some cool stuff like the Descendants “Too Drunk to Fuck”

    And any cover by Johnny Cash rules, he makes those songs his own

  • Pretty much anything the Me First and the Gimme Gimme’s has done. Something about Broadway and 60’s protest music done punk just fits.
    Johnny Cash’s cover collection is amazing as well. “Personal Jesus”(Depeche Mode), “Thirteen” (Danzig), “Rusty Cage” (Soundgarden), “Hurt” (NIN). Just amazing stuff.

  • genmi

    pearl jam – sunday bloody sunday (U2 cover)
    korn – another brick in the wall (pink floyd cover)
    Metallica – Smoke On The Water (Deep Purple Cover)

  • Roxanne

    Jeff Scott Soto – Frozen (Madonna)

    Jeff Scott Soto – Shot In The Dark (Ozzy)

    Wig Wam – I Turn To You (Melanie C.)

    Mariah Carey – Bringin’ On The Heartbreak (Def Leppard)

  • Kritz

    you guys have definitely given me a lot to DL. Good picks! Here are some of my favorites that people haven’t already mentioned:

    Ben Folds – Golden Slumbers (The Beatles)This is my favorite from the I Am Sam soundtrack, but there are other good Beatles covers on there that are worth checkin out

    Muse – House of the Rising Sun (The Animals)

    Muse – Feeling Good (Michael Buble)I’m kind of obsessed with this song lol

    Ewan McGregor – Your Song (Elton John) That one is from the Moulin Rouge soundtrack so don’t laugh, but his voice is just so good. I mean Elton is awesome, but I think that this version is way more powerful if you like love songs haha.

    Gary Jules – Mad World (Tears for Fears) This is from the Donnie Darko Soundtrack. So much better than the original!

    The Fugees – Killing Me Softly (i don’t remember who sings the original) I am surprised no one has mentioned this one yet

    Jem – Maybe I’m Amazed (Paul McCartney)

    Matchbox 20 – Time After Time (Cyndi Lauper)

    Nada Surf – If You Leave (The Cure)

    Ben Harper – In Your Eyes (Peter Gabriel)

    Rockapella – Under The Bridge (Red Hot Chilli Peppers) I am not saying this is better, because seriously the RHCP version is awesome. I just think this one is interesting, and the guy’s voice is kinda like Eagle Eye Cherry

    Smashing Pumpkins – Landslide (Fleetwood Mac)

    I just have to say that my fav cover is a tie between Johnny Cash’s version of Hurt and Jeff Buckley’s Hallelujah. I know that everyone has mentioned these but I had to put it out there myself lol.

  • kaite

    dreams by whiskeytown (original fleetwood mac)
    how soon is now by snake river conspiracy (original the smiths)
    people are strange by echo and the bunnymen (original the doors)
    secret heart by feist (original ron sexsmith)

    all surprisingly good.

  • Cosman

    Without question the ultimate cover of all time is Hallelujah by Jeff Buckley!!!!

  • Vern Halen

    Excellent choices, all. Aerosmith hasn’t been mentioned yet, I don’t think – Milkcow Blues, I’m Down, Train Kept a Rollin’, and most of Honkin’ on Bobo.

  • Willie

    Local H – Toxic (Britney Spears)

    As mentioned earlier, Britney Spears is given well written songs to perform but it’s her style that makes them unbearable. This version by the best remaining grunge band proves that the song surprisingly rocks.

  • Angel


  • BARrett

    red hot chili peppers cover of Higher Ground from stevie W


    Love this thread……took me a year to find it.

    Although very mellow, The Trinity Sessions from the Cowboy Junkies is one of my favorite CDs when I’m in a mellow mood or need help falling asleep.
    Cowboy Junkie covers:
    Sweet Jane (Lou Reed)
    Blue Moon “Revisited” (Richard Rogers, Lorenz Hart)
    I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry (Hank Williams)

  • ShadowAngel

    Trivium – Master Of Puppets (Metallica)

    Bowling For Soup – I Ran (Flock Of Seagulls)

    HIM – Wicked Game, ~Don’t Fear~ The Reaper (Chris Issak, Blue Oyster Cult)

    Dream Theater – Master Of Puppets, Hey You (Metallica, Pink Floyd)

    Trivium does a decent job on Master of Puppets…The only real problem with it is that Matt tries to hard to imitate James, which is impossible.

    Bowling for Soup brought a good song to the ears of modern kids. For the record…I hate this song done by the Seagulls… The lyrics are good, so I can tolerate it.

    HIM….What can I say….They’re my favorite band and if you listen to Wicked Game you’ll understand why. They gave life to a song that, while good, was dead in every way. Chris Issak is a horrible performer and singer, but writes damn good songs. HIM gave Wicked Game wings and let it fly. Their version of The Reaper could have been done better, but it’s still a good cover. At least worthy of mentioning….Ville’s voice is amazing.

    Dream Theater. Like HIM there’s nothing that I can really say about them…They took a song from two of the greatest bands to ever grace Rock music and made something beautiful out of them. Don’t get me wrong, I’d still much rather listen to Metallica or Floyd when it comes to these songs, but Dream Theater did a great job.

  • happy liver

    few I didn’t see mentioned:

    VADER – Personal Jesus (Depeche Mode)
    SEPULTURA – Orgasmatron (Motorhead) KICK ASS HEAVY SONG!!!!!! Great to drive on a highway.
    SOUR – AM I Evil (Metallica)
    MOBY – New Dawn Fades (Joy Division) Brilliant interpretation!!!! Powerful! Get it if you dare!
    THE PALE – Walking on the Moon (The Police)
    ALALBAMA 3 – Hotel California
    RONDELLUS – whole CD of Black Sabbath tunes sung in Latin and done with medieval instruments – great stuff if you’re a sabbath head

    and for smooth times – CHRIS BOTTI – No Ordinary Love (Sade). J’adorable.

  • Tony

    More recent songs ;
    David Gray – Smile like you mean it (Killers)
    The Kooks – Crazy (Gnarles Barkley)
    Jason Mraz – One Love (Marley)
    Maroon 5 – Dont look back in anger (Oasis)
    The ordinary boys – All the things she said (tatu)
    The lost prophets – Cry me a river (Justin Timberlake)
    Embrace – How Come (d12)
    Maximo park – Shiver (natalie imbrulia)
    Fall out boy – Love will tear us apart (Joy Division)
    Guillemots – Never went to church (The streets)

    Also there are some good covers on the NME warchild album inc.

    Starsailor – All or nothing (small faces)
    Feeder – Power of love (Frankie goes to Hollywood)
    Muse – House of the rising sun (the animals)
    Manic street preachers – out of time (farlowe/rolling stone)

  • I collect punk covers (very seriously actually), here’s few recent favorites:

    Suicide Machines – It’s the End of the World as We Know it (REM)
    F-Ups – All the Young Dudes (Mott the Hoople)
    Dumpweed – Son of a Preacher Man (Dusty Springfield)
    Manges – Surrender (Cheap Trick)
    Earth Crisis – Wanton Song (Led Zeppelin)
    Blood for Blood – Runaway (Del Shannon)
    Stretch Arm Strong – Express Yourself (NWA)
    No Use for a Name – Turning Japanese (Vapors)

  • Jinx

    The lists have been great
    here is a few to add,

    The Mad Caddies – S.O.S. (Abba) Amazing!
    Rockapella – Save Tonight (Eagle Eye Cherry)
    Alien Ant Farm – Smooth Criminal
    Cake – I will Survive (Gloria Gaynor)
    Scissor Sisters – Take Me Out (Franz Ferdinand)
    Powerman 5000 – Relax (Frankie Goes to Hollywood)

  • TJD

    Slayer: Disedent Aggressor last song on South of Heaven is a Priest cover

  • Jack Marshall

    Erm….NOt all rock covers, but here are some of my fav’s:-

    Green day – I fought the law
    The Corrs – Everybody Hurts
    Stereophonics – NOthing Compares to you
    feeder – everybody hurts
    Jack Johnson – PLastic Jesus
    Artic Monkeys – Love machine (live Loungue)
    Jamelia – Numb (Live Loungue)
    Green DAy – Knowledge
    Foo Fighters – Baker Street
    Feeder – So Lonely
    Fallout Boy – Love Will Tear us Apart
    JOhnny Cash – Cats in the Cradle
    Coldplay – merry christmas
    Less Than Jake – Surrender
    Bowling for Soup – Summer of 69
    Johnny Cash – One
    thrusday – ever fallen in love?
    Placebo – Johnny and MAry
    Presients of the USA – Video killed the radiostar
    Yellowcard – everywhere
    Pinhead Gunpowder (or green day) – Big Yellow taxi
    Lost Prophets – Cry me a River
    Lost Prophets – Sweet dreams my LA-ex (RARE)
    Rise Against – Anyway you want it

    Hope u like.

  • Malachai

    There is a German band called Emil Bulls that do a brilliant cover of Take On Me.

  • kev

    Not sure if it’s been mentioned already or not:

    “I Hung My Head” – Johnny Cash (covering Sting)

    i heard the Cash version first, loved it and thought it was the kind of song he’d have written himself. Heard Sting’s original and, not being much of a Sting fan, hated it. Cash’s seemed more real and emotional….great song!

  • Steve

    Here’s my three picks:

    Ra – Everything She Does is Magic (Police)
    Disturbed – Land of Confusion (Genesis)

    Also, not sure who does it, but I have a reggae cover of Land Down Under (Men at Work). That is the all time best cover I’ve heard..

  • cdh

    a few more I don’t recall seeing on this list:
    Black Label Society – Heart of Gold
    Deftones – Simple Man
    Limp Bizkit – Behind Blue Eyes
    Kid Rock – Country Boy can Survive
    Creed – Riders on the Storm
    Godsmack – Sweet Leaf
    Ramones – Ever see the Rain
    Motorhead – Enter Sandman & Louie Louie
    Iggy Pop – Louie Louie
    311 – Love Song
    Staind – Nothing Else Matters
    Metallica’s album Garage, Inc has one CD full of covertunes: Tuesday’s Gone, Lover Man, Turn the Page, and Die, Die My Darling to list a few

  • The Residents cover of “Satisfaction” by The Rolling Stones is one of the most intense and extraordinary covers ever. Scary stuff!

  • coodz

    all apologies – herbie hancock
    she blinded me with science – john monopoly
    love without anger (devo) – aquabats
    darling nikki – foo fighters
    whole lotta love – moog cookbook
    day tripper – bad brains
    in between days (cure) – ben folds
    jealous guy – elliot smith, also Donny Hathaway
    shame on a nigga (wutang)- system of a down
    fat bottomed girls – hayseed dixie
    happiness is a warm gun – the breeders

  • Elvis Costello doing Bob Dylan’s “I Threw It All Away.”

    Replacement’s cover of “Yummy, Yummy, Yummy I Got Love In My Tummy.” Okay, probably doesn’t count because it wasn’t recorded–I saw them do it in concert. Okay, “saw” might not be appropriate since I think by that time Paul Westerburg was drunk and flat on his back. Okay, “best” is a bit strong–a bad cover of a bad song might be more on target. Never mind.

  • cdh

    check HIM doing Blue Oyster Cult’s “Don’t Fear the Reaper.”

  • Reel Big Fish – There is nothing like a dame.
    —Part ska, part disco, all parts party.

    Me First and the Gimme Gimmes – What I did for love
    —Punk rockers doing broadway. “Cant forget, wont regret what I did for love.”

  • Elvis Nigol

    Leo Sayer’s ‘I’m the Walrus’ id definetelt one of the best Beatlesä covers of all time.

  • Klay

    Here are a few not mentioned:

    “Stone Cold Crazy” by Metallica (Queen)
    “Nothing Else Matters” by Bif Naked (Metallica)
    “Radar Love” by White Lion (Golden Earring)

  • a cowboy from hell

    im a big fan of PanterA and black sabbath and planet caravan is the best cover in the world

  • Erin

    A few (slower) great covers:
    Everything But The Girl – Downtown Train (Tom Waits) – much better than the Rod Stewart version!

    Darren Hayes (from Savage Garden) – In Your Eyes (Peter Gabriel)

  • Last Kiss by J.Frank Wilson &the Cavaliers, covered by Pearl Jam
    Come Together, Beatles covered by Aerosmith
    Paul Anka’s Rock Swings album is all covers and they are pretty solid, sometimes funny.
    if anyone has heard john mayer do patience, by GNR, they will know it should be up there.
    same for Adam sandler doing werewolves of london (orig. Warren Zevon).

    and just for arguments sake, i think we need to remember that although NIN performed Hurt before Johnny Cash, Johnny Cash did write it. So is it really a cover song, if he wrote it himself?

  • mike

    THE best cover ever is Helloween’s “Guardians” performed by rhapsody 🙂

  • KK

    This is a great thread – lots of cool ideas I need to go off and listen to.

    Let me second the vote for Scatterbrain’s version of Mozart’s Sonata #3, and let me add Sonata #11 from their next album.

    The Toy Dolls have a great version of Bach’s Fuge in Dminor.

    Anyone have any other good examples of punk covers of great classical music? (Not Yngwie or the Great Kat, for some reason their classical covers just don’t seem to do it for me.)

    And while we’re at it, here are some more I didn’t see above:

    We Got the Beat – Poison Idea. Poison Idea in and of themselves are (/were?) a great band, but their covers are really out of this world.

    Motorhead – Poison Idea. The original verson by Lemmy’s pre-Motorhead band Hawkwind was great in its time, but the big boys in P.I really kick this one up a notch.

    The Harder They Come – Poison Idea once again. See a pattern? Ok, admittedly not every one of their covers are great, but most of them are good, and some are truly sublime. Check out the “Pajama Party” CD, which has a bunch of these all on one.

    Ok, moving on from P.I…

    Leaving on a Jet Plane / Phantom of the Opera – Me First and the Gimme Gimme’s . Much of what this all-cover band does is not really my style, but these ones are definitely worth listening to.

    Ring of Fire – Social Distortion. They remain true to the original, but make it their own. I like this one a lot.

    Fortunate Son – Circle Jerks. No commentary, I just like it.

  • Daveee

    My Top 20 favourite covers of all time:

    1.Gimmie Gimmie Gimmie – Yngwie Malsteen
    2.Pictures of Home – Yngwie Malmsteen
    3.Gates of Babylon – Yngwie Malmsteen
    4.Am I Evil – Metallica
    5.Blitzkrieg – Metallica
    6.Wasted years – Helloween
    7.Detroit Rock City – Racer X
    8.Detroit Rock City – Helloween
    9.Take A Chance on Me – Rugh Silk
    10.Children of the Grave – Racer X
    11.The final countdown – Children of Bodom
    12.Aces High – Children of Bodom
    13.Rebel Yell – Children of Bodom
    14.Burn – TM Stevens
    15.Money – Velvet Revolver
    16.Hammerfall – Breaking the Law
    17.I want out – Sonata Artica
    18.99 Red balloons – Goldfinger
    19.Godzilla – Racer X
    20.Back in Black – Def Leppard (?)

    These 20 covers will blow you away!!! You must hear them if you are big fans of the original artist, or fans of the cover artists! Serious man, these cover FUCKING RULE!!!

  • senor cudjalot

    How about senor coconut’s covers of all those kraftwerk tunes, + smoke on the water, and smoothe operator. That guy has some seriously merengue talent…nina gordon’s version of straight outta compton, and just for good measure how about snake river conspiracy’s version of lovesong. I am done.

  • Bob Clark

    My all-time favorite cover is Kentucky Woman, by Deep Purple. Neil Diamond called it ‘pretty radical’
    Also, how about the Animals trilogy by David Johanson (We Got to Get Out of this Place, Don’t Bring Me Down, and Its My Life). I’m just an old 60’s fan at heart

  • Sol Sandoval

    there are lots of covers of The Beatles’ “All my loving” and anybody say anyone but heres my favorite:

    “All my loving” played by Helloween its great

    anothe great cover is Helloween’s “I want Out” played by Sonata Artica

  • i would like to ask for your help, if anyone still checking this article out – there is a cover of “Word Up” by Cameo performed by a woman with the help of an acoustic guitar only, i’ve been seeking for it since i heard it once about half a year ago, and i failed at every search attempt…any ideas?


    Dope covers – Spin Me Round and Fuck Tha Police
    Smashing Pumpkings – Landslide
    Korn – Another Brick in the Wall
    Twiztid – Joker, People Are Strange and A Very Twiztid Xmas
    Evanescence – Heart Shaped Box
    Jumpsteady – Battlefield
    Zug Izland – Cry
    ICP – Posse On Vernor

  • godoggo

    What do the words “and it’s got both” mean in my post above? Mean I forgot to delete them.

  • who as done an alt version of the Deads Truckin?

    TESLA! hahahahaha

  • who as done an alt version of the Deads Truckin?

    Dwight Yoakam.

  • david

    who as done an alt version of the Deads Truckin? Meat puppets?

  • oops.I forgot to mention, Tribute of the original The Wall by Pink Floyd.

  • OK – gee this is fun!

    Some great stuff on The Chieftains, The World Over :
    Chieftains with Diana Krall and Art Garfunkle covering “Morning has Broken”
    Also – Chieftains with Ziggy Marley covering Bob Marley’s “Redemption Song”

    Next –
    The soundtrack to I Am Sam. It’s all Beatles being covered by the likes of Aimee Mann and Michael Penn covering “The Two of Us”, or Sheryl Crow doing “Mother Nature’s Son”. Good stuff!

    Finally – Recently released is the Tribute CD – Back Against the Wall. I’m preparing the BC review currently. It’d go smoother if disk One wasn’t currently stuck inside my car stereo. I’m SO mad about that!!! Anyway..(calming down) It’s a good take, this one. Greats like Ian Anderson, Tommy Shaw, Ronnie Montrose, Billy Sherwood, Rick Wakeman, Steve Howe and on and on. Hopefully I’ll get the review done soon, but so far…I like it.

  • Ross Noble

    Elbow covering Destiny’s Child’s “Independent Women”

  • J9

    Almost everything by Rage Against The Machine from the Rengades album is good, especially Maggie’s Farm (Bob Dylan) and The Ghost Of Tom Joad (Bruce Springsteen).

    Also, wasn’t Deep Purple’s Hush a cover? I forget who originally performed it. Same with Hendrix’s Hey Joe.

    Back Door Man and Whiskey Bar are both excellent covers by The Doors.

    Anthrax’s version of Parasite (Kiss) is really good, too.

  • Once only, please Jacob…

  • Ever hear a cover of “The Bed’s Too Big Without You.” (The Police) by Gretchen Lieberum on her album 3. a.m. ? Amazing to hear a woman sing it. check http://www.gretchenmusic.com for the lead to it…

  • K-X

    ever heard of Stereophonic’s live performance of “nothing compares to you”

    try to hunt it down. refreshing

  • godoggo

    I just discovered Muddy Water’s psychedelic album Electric Mud, with Pete Cosey AND Phil Upchurch on guitar! I cannot freaking beLIEVE how cool this album is!. And it’s got both.

    Oh, yeah, it’s got a cover of Let’s Spend the Night Together, which is actually the weakest cut on the album, but still pretty damn cool, cool enough for this list.

    OK, 1 more, Soul Kitchen by X, eXpecially the demo version on Anthology album.

  • gc

    hayseed dixie
    feel like making love

  • GC

    Frank Zappa:
    whipping post

  • gerard

    some of my favorite covers are wilson phillips – hotel california paul young – dont dream its over Gloria Estafan – everlasting love Richard Marx – cant help falling in love frente – bizzare love triangle madonna – dont cry for me argentina Human Nature – eternal flame The corrs – old town Inoj – time after time Cliff richard – true love ways AAron neville – crazy love Britney spears – my perogative

  • RUL

    EVERYONE!!! Do yourselves a favor and listen to a group called The Gourds covering Snoop Dogg’s Gin n Juice. When listening to this bluegrass group, banjo and all, what first seems like a total joke soon becomes a remake/cover song unlike any you’ve ever heard before. It’s a blast to listen to whether you like bluegrass or not, and trust me, I don’t, but this is one of my faves!

  • dbw

    HOLY CRAP. I almost forgot:

    Elton John “Pinball Wizard” (The Who)

  • dbw

    Nirvana “Man Who Sold the World” (Bowie)

    The Byrds “Mr Tambourine Man” (Dylan)

    Marty Casey “Baby One More Time” (Britney!) —a FANTASTIC performance, part of the reality show Rockstar: INXS. Simply stunning—I was completely floored. I can never hear that song again without seeing him screaming into the mic “my lonliness… is KILLING ME”…

  • Rob

    How about a “worst cover”? Ever hear the Dead do “Hey Jude”?

  • One of my favorite songs of theirs is when they have the distorted, mocking refrain from “Get Together” by the Youngbloods to open the wonderfully ferocious “Territorial Pissings.”

    In a nutshell, that is the punk critique of the insincerity and naivete of the 60s and all hippie/classic rock.

    That is all.

  • they DID cover “Seasons In The Sun”. sort of.

  • Nirvana never really covered “My Sharona,” did they?

    And why am I not surprised to see RJ is a metalhead? 🙂

    That is all.

  • olle

    I would definetly call Smashing Pumkins cover of Dancing In the moonlight (thin lizzy) one of the best covers I´ve heard

  • RJ, who could follow that? Bo Bice doing “Vehicle”. Had to do it. I am one of those sad, sad Bo Bice fans… Check out my site of Bo Bice worship!

    Seriously; you’ve done your homework.

  • RJ

    Slayer – In a Gadda-Da-Vida
    Nuclear Assault – Good Times Bad Times
    At Vance – S.O.S.
    Metal Church – Highway Star
    Ugly Kid joe – Cats in the Cradle
    WASP – Easy Living
    Iron Savior – This Flight Tonight
    Realm – Elanor Rigby
    Coroner – I Want You
    Anthrax – Sabbath Bloody Sabbath
    Anthrax – Pipeline
    Nevermore – Sounds of Silence
    Dark Angel – Immigrant Song
    Iced Earth – Highway to Hell
    Anthrax – I’m Eighteen
    Overkill – Frankenstein
    Flotsam and Jetsam – Saturday nights all right for Fighting
    Fear Factory – Cars
    Sanctuary – The White Rabbit
    Type O Negative- Cinnamon Girl
    Wrathchild Am – Time
    Krokus – Schools Out
    Sam Kinison – Under my Thumb
    Nirvana – My Sharona
    1000 Homo DJ’s – Supernaut
    Coroner – Purple Haze
    Set Me Free – Heathen
    Iced Earth – Creatures of the Night
    Judas Priest – Johnny Be Good
    Scatterbrain – Sonata #3
    Laaz Rockit – Holiday in Cambodia
    Testament – Nobody’s Fault

  • mr beer n hockey

    sorry folks! but Hendrix’s live monterey version of like a rolling stone beats all motherfucking hands down.

  • jaimie

    my list

    damien rice – i still haven’t found what i’m looking for (U2)

    damien rice – creep (radiohead) extremely hard to do a cover of radiohead, damien rice is unbelievable on this cover

    Ben Harper – Sexual Healing (marvin gaye) this version i feel is better then the original

    Jack Johnson – garden grove (bob marley)

    Sublime – no woman no cry (bob marley)

    Joe Cocker – with a little helps from my freinds (Beatltes) the woodstock version is fantastic

  • brendan

    my list would be:
    goldfinger – 99 red balloons (nena)
    rage against the machine – renegades of funk (afrika bambaataa
    richard cheese – nookie/break stuff (limp bizkit)
    me first and the gimme gimmes – i believe i can fly (r kelly)
    the living end – tainted love (soft cell)
    reel big fish (live) – so lonely (the police)
    reel big fish – take on me (aha)
    jack johnson – badfish/boss dj (sublime)
    frenzal rhomb – we built this city (jefferson starship)
    pennywise – land down under (men at work)

  • Matt

    A couple absolute gems I haven’t seen mentioned…

    Peter Rowan – No Woman No Cry (a must!)

    A Perfect Circle – Imagine

    Fuel – Daniel

    Apocalyptica – Fade to Black

    System of a Down – Metro

    The White Stripes – Jolene

    Radiohead – Wish You Were Here

  • steve

    oasis- help! (beatles)
    oasis- youve got to hide your love away (beatles)
    oasis- my generation (the who)
    stereophonics- angie (rolling stones)
    stereophonics- heart of gold (neil young)
    stereophonics and oasis- im only sleeping (beatles)
    aerosmith,oasis, u2- helter skelter..all great covers

  • chris

    postal service – against all odds (phil collins)

    smashing pumpkins – landslide (nicks)

    tv on the radio – mr. grieves (pixies)
    great spin on an amazing song

    chili peppers – brandy (looking glass)

  • ruth novak

    Nouvelle Vague has a great cover of “Making Plans for Nigel”… they also have “Melt with you”. It’s an entire album of covers. Fantastic.


  • Manolo

    -Orgy’s cover of New Order’s “Blue Monday”
    -Dope’s cover of Dead or Alive’s “You Spin me ’round”
    -Disturbed’s cover of Tears for Fears’s “Shout” (really amazing)

  • darren

    I looked and looked through all this list, and didnt see a mention of A Perfect Circle’s version of Imagine by John Lennon, that song is amazing.. Maynard took lennons lyrics and ran with them. he turned the song from almost a cheerful melody, to an anti-war, almost darker version… Everyone should check this tune out

  • Conner

    the who did a cover of saturday night’s alright for fighting (elton john) that’s pretty awesome.

  • Nick, yeah that was a great Husker cover…..Another favorite – Cassandra Wilson absolutely stealing “Love is Blindness” from U2…and don’t steal it back Bono!

  • Nick Jones

    QuickTime movie (6.63 MB) of Coil’s “Tainted Love” here.

  • Nick Jones

    Husker Du’s cover of the “theme from the Mary Tyler Moore Show”(!)

    Coil’s cover of “Tainted Love”. (mp3 here) Peter Christopherson, a veteran of Throbbing Gristle and Psychic TV, along with his ‘partner’ and several other musicians turned the song into a dirge, as a commentary on the AIDS crisis of the mid-80s. As if the song wasn’t creepy enough, Coil produced a video (with a cameo by Marc Almond)that drives home the point. Christopherson has reported that he once had it played at a gay disco in London, and all the patrons stopped what they were doing, went dead silent, and stared at the screen. If you can track it down, it’s worth seeing.

    Off Topic: Dullest Cover: Brian Eno doing “The Lion Sleeps Tonight”.
    Eno in one-man-band mode. A by-the-numbers remake, he brings nothing of his idiosyncratic style to it.

  • El Bicho

    Marilyn Manson’s version of “I Put A Spell On You” from Lost Highway is fraking fantastic

    Ever hear of Apocalyptica? Four cellos covering Metallica. Absolutely Brilliaat!

  • U2 did “Maggie’s Farm” by Dylan
    Husker Du “Eight Miles High” by the Byrds

  • whilliam shatner cover of pulp’s common people

  • Taloran

    Several people have mentioned Bonnie Raitt’s various covers of John Prine’s “Angel from Montgomery.” Susan Tedeschi does a version on Just Won’t Burn that is absolutely fabulous.

    Spooky Tooth’s cover of “I Am the Walrus” was far darker and more belligerent than the original.

    Johnny Winter has done great covers of many Stones tunes.

  • mgrif67

    Quiet riot do a great version of Slades ‘Cum on feel the noise’

  • SaraS

    I found this classical guy while looking for the Live 8 Sgt. Pepper version in USA iTunes Store.

    The whole Sgt. Pepper on a classical guitar? You have to hear it to believe it! I suggest you to start with “A day in the life” :). My iPod was never so happy :):)

  • Sweetie

    Clem Snide-Beautiful by Christina Aguilera

    Cake- Perhaps, Perhaps, Perhaps by Doris Day

    Weezer – Hit me baby one more time by Britany Spears

    Elbow-Independent Women by Destiny’s Child

    …as a few

  • salmoncatchingbear

    Johnny Cash, Hurt and Personal Jesus are amazing, I am also a huge fan of his version of U2’s One… brings tears to my eyes just thinking about it. that man was amazing, he owned hsi songs because he meant them.

    I am a huge Prince fan, but Nothing Compares 2 U became Sinead O’Connor’s song the second she started singing it.

    I think that Him covered Wicked Game? i love the Chris Isaac version (went to see him for my 12th birthday.. found the ticket the other day, it’s lasted 15 years!), but the new version is pretty good too!

  • Adam

    the cure just like heaven covered by afi and taking back sunday is a bad ass cover to a bad ass song

  • Mario Riggs

    Jonas – Edge of seventeen (Stevie Nicks) Best cover in years by a new comer named Jonas. This guy is the next Morrison, simply amazing on a stage. Unfortunately it’s hard to capture that energy in the studio but this is without a doubt a kick ass rendition of a classic song. True to the original with lots more energy and feeling.

    Tina & Ike Turner – Proud Mary (CCR) Just gotta love the arrangements and the soul of this version I agree

    Joe Cocker – With a little help from my friends (Beatles)… Amazing, is the word!!!

  • Branco

    Great post!
    Just don´t forget
    Bauhaus’ cover of Bowie’s “Ziggy Stardust”
    Galaxy 500’s cover of Joy Divison’s “Ceremony”.

  • Any and EVERY ska band has covered “Take on Me,” including Reel Big Fish, with mostly predictable results.

    Screeching Weasel does a great pop-punk cover of “Johnny R U Queer?” from the Valley Girl soundtrack as well.

    But I’ve yet to hear a good cover of “Melt With You.”

    That is all.

  • The Ramones also did a great cover of “Do You Wanna Dance.” As long as we’re talking pop-punk, the Queers do a great cover of “Mirage” by Tommy James.

    That is all.

  • Tori Amos’ “Strange Little Girls” record which has the wonderful Joe Jackson remake of “Real Men” and Neil Young’s “Heart of Gold”. I also love her version of the Cure’s “Love Song”, REM’s “Losing my Religion”, and “You Belong to Me” (unsure of original).

    Emm Gryner’s two cover albums, “Girl Verions” (lovely version of Stone Temple Pilots’ “Big Bang Baby”) and “Songs of Love and Death” (she covers Horslips “Dearg Doom”).

    I love Nirvana’s cover of “Oh Me” I think originally done by the Meat Puppets but I’m actually not certain.

    Pearl Jam is great with their covers. “Dock of the Bay”, “Keep on Rockin in the Free World”, “Leavin’ Here”, and so many others.

    Also Jennifer Nash covers Pearl Jam’s “Black” and it’s heart breaking.

    Marilyn Manson’s “Sweet Dreams” is scarily good.

    Aerosmith’s “Come Together” I enjoy highly (originally done by the Beatles)

    I like A Perfect Circle’s cover of John Lennon’s “Imagine” … it’s a new twist.

    Chantal Kreviazuk’s version of “Leaving on a Jet Plane”.

    Alana Davis’ version of Ani DiFranco’s “32 Flavours” is enjoyable as long as you’re not bias against her because you love Ani too much.

    Guy Pearce does a great cover of Ron Sexsmith’s “Dirty Windows”.

  • Wait a minute. Ignore what I said about “Angel of Harlem” being an Elvis song. I got up in the middle of the night and I was cracked out when I wrote that.

    Look away from the curtain! The rest of my comments are still credible.

    That is all.

  • But Vincent, what about the KMFDM cover? You forgot to mention the KMFDM cover and how much it costs! Can we possibly, possibly buy it anywhere and is it great? Inquiring minds want to know!

    That is all.

  • Vincent

    Everybody here might hate Jessica Simpson’s cover of “These Boots Are Made For Walking” but if you want to HEAR a great version of that song you must hear KMFDM’s version. It’s only available as a single. The CD single is titled “BOOTS”. The CD only costs about $5 so you should buy it, it’s really great.

  • I hate to admit this, but the only Jessica Simpson song I’ve ever, ever liked was her first hit single years ago where she borrowed that riff from John Mellencamp’s “Jack and Diane.” I guess I’m a sucker for that ruff, but it was a very pleasant song. It’s technically not a cover since she has her own lyrics and vocals, but that song wasn’t unpleasant when I saw her cute lil teenaged self on MTV.

    Her cover of “Boots” is horrible, but it’s not about the music, it’s about the skanky video. I agree with Berlin that OPIV did the best cover, but 95% of you reading this have never even heard of that band, which is a shame.

    20 cents and a biscuit for anyone who can guess what the only Britney Spears song I’ve ever liked is.

    I agree with most of Olsen’s choices, except U2’s “Everlasting Love.” They drained the soul right out of Motown. Hell, they even drained the soul out of Elvis with “Angel of Harlem” amidst Bono’s preachifying moral opportunism.

    Husker Du covered everything well, including “Sheena is a Punk Rocker.” Good call on “Dead Souls” — for those of you who remember industrial, 1,000 Homo DJs (which was Trent Reznor + various members of Ministry) did a smashing cover of “Supernaut.”

    Natalie Merchant did a couple of good covers, including “Because The Night” with 10,000 Maniacs.

    I agree on “Man Who Sold the World” and especially on “I Fought the Law” by the Clash, which is probably the greatest cover of all time. They completely re-interpreted the song and made it speak to the politics of their time. Goldfinger does the BEST punk covers, including “99 Red Balloons” and “Just Like Heaven.”

    Some other good ones:

    “Mrs. Robinson” by the Lemonheads
    “California Sun” by the Ramones

    I’ve never heard the Ramones’ version of “Somebody to Love,” but I’d like to. That’s one of the few guilty pleasure songs I have for classic rock.

    I love the Pixies’ version of “Head On,” already a great song to begin with, but it’s way, way better live than on record.

    That is all.

  • Vincent

    Everybody here might hate Jessica Simpson’s cover of “These Boots Are Made For Walking” but if you want to here a great version of that song you must hear KMFDM’s version. It’s only available as a single. The CD single is titled “BOOTS”. The CD only costs about $5 so you should buy it, it’s really great.

  • Aron

    Anyone that happens to turn on MTV and sees Viva La Bam knows that Bam is a big fan of HIM. Thier cover of Chris Isaac’s “Wicked Game” is amazing.

  • -E

    Oh I forgot. Fiona Apple and Rufus Wainwright both have quite good remakes of “Across the Universe”.

    And Rufus Wainwright also had a good version of “Hallelujah” (it’s the one on the Shrek Soundtrack).

  • -E

    Goldfinger’s version of 99 Red Balloons is pretty good.

    I like the Dynamite Hack song mentioned early on as well.

    And I haven’t really heard a bad version of Easy Like Sunday Morning yet. But I am sure there are some out there.

  • korns versions of “word up” is awesome and “brick in the wall” isnt half bad either…i didnt think that song could get anymore chilling but it did

    and also ben harper does a version of “lets get it on” on his Live from Mars cd…..qualityand nirvanas “the man who sold the world” is sick but i think its already on here

  • Eric Olsen

    great list! I was on vacation when it was published. A few of my faves are “Wendy” by the Descendents, “Knights in White Satin” by the Dickies, “Everlasting Love” by U2, “Just Like Heaven” Dinosaur Jr, “Sheer Heart Attack” Metallica, “Purple Haze” The Cure

  • JD

    According to these links, Crow co-wrote Picture with Kid Rock:



  • mercury

    Picture – by Kid Rock/Sheryl Crow – I know it is a cover – but who was the original artist/songwriter

  • Oh, how could I forget. Deep Purple did a cover of Neil Diamond’s “Kentucky Woman”. Quite an interpretation. Gosh, it shredded…

    Also, way back in the 50’s Eugene Ormandy (my fave, very ‘in your face’)and the Philadelphia Orchestra did a cover of Grieg’s “Peer Gynt Suite No. 1 w/ Sibelius’s “Finlandia” and “Valse Triste” also Alfven’s “Swedish Rhapsody”. Great interpretations!!!! Eugene was the most rockin’ conducter out there.

    Hey, orchestras do alot of covers, right?

  • ghemboy

    also include:

    the clash’ cover of “i fought the law”
    john mraz cover of “lovesong” by the cure
    shonnen knife cover of “top of the world” by the carpenters
    U2’s coverd of “dancing queen” by abba

  • gemmo guillermo

    add the following to the list:
    CARPENTER’S SUPERSTAR covered by SONIC YOUTH – need to say more, the best covered song of all time

  • doesnt matter

    i’m mostly a rock/metal maniac so here are my additions
    Powerman 5000 – Relax
    Orgy – You spin me
    Deftones – If only tonight we could sleep
    Deftones – No ordinary love
    Placebo has a whole bonus cd with covers in addition to “Sleeping with ghosts”
    Mushroomhead – thirteen is a cover of Seal’s “Crazy”
    Gun and Korn have both covered “Word up”
    and of course my favourite – POD’s cover of U2 “Bullet the blue sky”

  • Beast of Burden (Bette Midler – Rolling Stones)

    I have just created a site for the topic cover songs. There you can vote, if you like the cover or the original better. Here is the link:
    Cover Song vs. Original
    Not so many songs yet, but you can make new proposals.

  • Blixa Bargeld

    Nick Cave “Disco 2000” (Pulp)!!!

  • Marc

    Alien Ant Farm – MJ’s “Smooth Criminal”. An overall improvement.

    Ugly Kid Joe – Harry Chapin’s “Cats in the Cradle”.

    Metallica’s Garage, Inc. is all covers.

  • Julie

    Original Artist: Eric Clapton
    Cover Artist: JJ Cale

  • I posted my list over here

  • Leonie

    Oh I just retrieved part of my brain, Wonder Woman done by Tricky+Flea+John Frusciante rocked.

  • Leonie

    Howsabout Ray Stevens doing “Misty”? – an oldie but a goodie. Also there was a cover of the theme from Wonder Woman out a few years ago (on a compliation maybe) not sure who did it (does anyone know who it was?) but it rocked.

  • godoggo

    I’m very interested in the idea of jazz vocal versions of rock songs, but I haven’t heard it pulled off that much. Rene Marie has done nice versions of Suzanne, Ode to Billie Joe, and Hard Day’s Night, but I can’t think of too much else that worked for me. Anything else that people liked? I’ll add that I’m not nuts about Cassandra Wilson’s pop covers, and that I’m more interested in artsy fartsy type lyrics.

    Of course, Bad Plus’s versions of Smells Like Team Spirit etc. are fun, and unusual in that they actually rock, but, again, I’m more interested in vocal stuff. Anything?

  • crooked spine

    Nick (comment #80), I think you’re talking about the version of “Iron Man” that the Cardigans did on First Band on the Moon. I personally wouldn’t say it’s better than the original, but they put a unique spin on it that works. For me anyway.

  • Husker Du did a blistering version of the Byrd’s “Eight Miles High”, turning all the psychedelic guitar work into deconstructed post-modern breakdown fuzz. It’s amazing.

  • Wow, I’d love to hear that version of Iron Man.

    There’s a ton of great lounge covers of rock songs out there. I was obsessed with the Ultra Lounge series for years — they have a lot of comp albums. The retro-lounge act Lounge Brigade is also outstanding (one album holds really great, cheese-groove covers of Nirvana, The Dead, Beck… “Where is it at? There it is!” and so on).

  • Nick Jones

    Ultravox doing Brian Eno’s “King’s Lead Hat”.

    “Iron Man” done by (The Cranberries?)(Sort of lounge jazz version)

    “Harlem Nocturne” by the Lounge Lizards.

    “Heatwave” by James White and the Blacks.

    801 doing “You Really Got Me” on 801 Live

  • Big Daddy “A Day in the Life”

    You’ve never really heard this song until you’ve heard it Buddy Holly style. Honest.

  • eric schultz

    Judas Priest – Diamonds and Rust (Joan Baez)

    PJ Harvey and Bjork – Satisfaction (The Stones)

    Placebo – 20th Century Boy (T-Rex)

    Powerstation – Bang a Gong (T-Rex)

    David Bowie – Cactus (The Pixies)

    Nirvana – The Man Who Sold The World (Bowie)

    NIN – Get Down Make Love (Queen)


  • Here’s some great ones that come to mind:

    Dinosaur Jr. “Just Like Heaven” (The Cure)
    Crooked Fingers “Under Pressure” (Queen w/ David Bowie)
    Tom Jones with Art of Noise “Kiss” (Prince)
    Johnny Cash “Rusty Cage” (Soundgarden)
    Cheap Trick “California Man” (The Move)
    Earth Wind & Fire “Got to Get You Into My Life” (The Beatles)

  • And really, really trippy/groovy versions of Wild Thing and Gloria.

  • Hendrix also covered “Sgt. Pepper’s…”

  • Hendrix does a bunch of fantastic covers: Hound Dog, Day Tripper, and of course, All Along the Watchtower, which has some of the best guitar work in the history of the planet.

  • Jimi Hendrix’s cover of “Hey Joe” is the best.

  • The Residents also had a cover of “Heartbreak Hotel” that is actually pretty good. They capture the essence of the sick heart.

  • Deep Purple’s version of “Hey Joe” is also pretty great… and trippy!

  • Oh gosh, how could I forget, anything by the Residents!!!! Oh man, their album, “Third Riech and Roll” sure mutilated any pop hit that existed.

  • Oh yes – a couple more:

    The Clash’s “I Fought the Law” (Bobby Fuller Four)

    Devo’s “(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction” (Rolling Stones)

    Patti Smith’s “Hey Joe”

  • What about the Sex Pistols’ version of “No Fun,” originally by the Stooges? The Pistols took that song and made it their own. Also, the Pistols did a fine job transforming the Monkees’ “I’m Not Your Stepping Stone.”

  • R.E.M. covered Aerosmith’s “Toys In The Attic”.

    …though it was not particularly, uhm…REM-ish.

  • Vern Halen

    Here’s an obscure one – Guadalcanal Diary doing the campfire classic “Kumbahyah.” Sanctified or sacreligious, depending on your point of view.

  • “Hurdy Gurdy Man” by the Butthole Surfers I thought was quite well done.

  • “Nights in White Satin” by the Dickies.

    enuf said…

  • My all-time favorite cover: “American Woman” by the Butthole Surfers.

    Freakwater do a great acoustic version of “War Pigs.”

    What? No mention of Hendrix covering “All Along the Watchtower”?

    BTW Eric, I think 7 Seconds’ version of “These Boots Were Made for Walking” is better and punker than OpIvy. It’s almost as punk as the Jessica Simpson version.

    Honorable mention: A band called the Warlock Pinchers do a 7+ minute version of “I Think We’re Alone Now.” Slow and painful.

    The Supersuckers did a fine cover of “Dead Homies” by Ice Cube, too.

    FINALLY, how come no one has mentioned Jet covering their entire early-70s record collection?

  • crooked spine

    Both Jimi Hendrix’s “Hey Joe” and Otis Redding’s “Try a Little Tenderness” have been mentioned here as sources for cover songs (even though they’re actually covers of earlier songs). This makes me think that they deserve to be on the list of best cover songs themselves.

    Other songs that I think have been claimed from the original artists:

    “Summertime Blues” – The Who

    “Back Door Man” – The Doors

    “Piece of My Heart” – Big Brother & the Holding Company

    “Woodstock” – Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young

    “The Letter” – Joe Cocker

    “Cotton Fields” – Creedence Clearwater Revival

    “(I Know) I’m Losing You” – Rod Stewart

    “Stormy Monday” – The Allman Brothers Band

    “Call Me the Breeze” – Lynyrd Skynyrd

    “Act Nice and Gentle” – The Black Keys

    “It’s All Over Now” – The Rolling Stones

    “Money” – The Beatles

  • peter m

    what about…
    Jose Feliciano – shes a woman
    Spanky Wilson – sunshine of your love
    Watts 103rd st band – can’t get no satisfaction
    Cedric Im Brooks – Shaft (reggae version)
    Mongo Santamaria – Louie louie

  • Trevor Reekie

    Erma Franklin (Arethas sister) doing Light My Fire
    Nick Cave and Shane McGowen doing What A Wonderful World
    Troubled Mind (60’s NZ band) doing Under My Thumb (stones)
    Ramones doing Somebody to Love (J Airplane)
    Johnny Cash doing Personal Jesus (Depeche Mode)
    The Muppets covering Pierro Umilliani Mah Na Mah Na
    Devo covering Satisfaction
    Harry Nillson covering Fred Neil’s Everybodys Talking

    to add just a few

  • i must fling a nod in the direction of Bobby, being a fantastic cover of Bobby Brown’s My Prerogative by Selfish Cunt. beats Britney’s version into the dusty ground.

  • Oh I forgot the Willie Nelson/Waylon Jennings version of Townes Van Zandts Pancho and Lefty.

    I heard a live punk/trash version of John Prine’s Sam Stone from Truckadelic once that was pretty stellar as well.

    See how all these connect?

  • More for the list:

    KD Langs version of Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah” I find it much sweeter than the Jeff Buckley version as mentioned in the post.

    Grateful Dead doing Morning Dew, turning an obscure folky song about nuclear holocaust into an apocolyptic monstrostity that makes you feel the bombs a blowin.

    Alison Krauss doing the Beatles I Will. Beautiful, stretched out version that I played at my wedding.

    Keith Richards is on record stating that Otis Reddings version of Satisfaction is done the way he wanted it done. It smokes.

    Townes Van Zandt doing the Stones classic Dead Flowers. The original is a close to perfect a song as you’ll get in pop music, but Townes makes it sadder.

    Bonnie Raitt doing John Prine’s Angel From Montgomery the version on the Prine box set with Prine himself is one of my all time favorite versions of any songs anywhere. If you don’t cry when she sings “how the hell is a person go to work in the morning/come home in the evening/and still have nothing to say” you just don’t have a heart.

    And more…and more.

  • Clem Snides cover of Christina Agulera’s “Beautiful” is a great one too..

  • Rob

    JR, good call on Luther Wright & The Wrongs. I forgot about their take on The Wall.

  • nice list JR!

  • I’ve heard of Little Women friends of mine in an even more obscure band from York, PA played with them!

  • JR

    Maurice Ravel’s version of Mussorgsky’s “Pictures at an Exhibition” has certainly stood the test of time.

    Odd, no mention yet of my favorite Sabbath cover: Type O Negative’s version of “Black Sabbath”

    Tori Amos does a great version of Slayer’s “Raining Blood”

    Van Halen’s version of John Brim’s “Ice Cream Man” worked pretty well. I also have a soft spot for their cover of Linda Rondstadt’s version of Clint Ballard, Jr.’s “You’re No Good”.

    Also, UFO’s cover of Love’s “Alone Again Or” (awesome guitar work!).

    Jeff Beck doing Stevie Wonder’s “Cause We’ve Ended As Lovers”.

    Rammstein’s version of Depeche Mode’s “Stripped”.

    Led Zeppelin’s version of “Babe I’m Gonna Leave You”.

    Miles Davis/Gil Evans doing the adagio movement from Joaquin Rodrigo’s “Concerto de Aranjuez”.

    Iron Maiden’s version of Jethro Tull’s “Cross-eyed Mary”.

    The Doobie Brothers’ cover of the Art Reynolds Singers’ “Jesus Is Just Alright”.

    Brian Setzer Orchestra doing Duke Ellington’s “Caravan”.

    Charlie Hunter Quartet covering Bob Marley’s “Revolution”.

    Jefferson Airplane’s version of David Crosby’s “Triad” (having a woman sing it puts a whole new perspective on the original).

    Jethro Tull’s cover of Roland Kirk’s “Serenade for a Cuckoo”.

    Jethro Tull’s remake of J.S. Bach’s “Bouree”.

    Norah Jones doing Hoagy Carmichael’s “The Nearness of You”.

    The Bad Plus covering Black Sabbath’s “Iron Man”.

    Ronnie Montrose’s version of Gene Pitney’s “Town Without Pity”.

    Stevie Ray Vaughan playing Jimi Hendrix’s “Little Wing”.

    Luther Wright & The Wrongs remake of Pink Floyd’s “The Wall”.

    ZZ Top’s cover of Isaac Hayes’ “I Thank You”.

    And of course all the best Michael Jackson covers are by Al Yankovich.

  • Speaking of Stevie Wonder, I saw a video of him and Bobby Darrin doing a cover of “If I were a Carpenter”. It was awesome.

    On the obscure side, a band out of Boulder, CO in the 80s (the Little Women) did a version of the Stone’s “Bitch” that just rocked so well it blew trees. A band from Seattle during the proto grunge era did a cover of Joy Division’s “Means to an End” that was the biggest rock I have ever heard.


  • eric schultz

    Forgot to mention Tori Amos’ Strange Little Girls disc – chock full of amazing covers, from Eminem to Slayer; she also does a sweet version of Nirvana’s Teen Spirit.

    Tool – Zepp’s No Quarter on Salival

    Faith No More did a funny version of NKOTB The Right Stuff live (complete with Patton doing the Roger Rabbit). This was when everyone wanted them to do War Pigs and they went to this song onstead.

    Speaking of War Pigs – The Dresdin Dolls do a fabulous version live.

    Pearl Jam’s Crazy Mary is an amazing cover as well…

  • Incandenza

    Cibo Matto did a funky, pseudo-bossa-nova version of ‘About A Girl’ that’s definitely worth checking out…

    And Sleater-Kinney does a bitchin version of ‘Fortunate Son’ live.

  • Good call on the Foo Fighters covering Baker Street, in addition to the B-Side it is also on a very hard to find EMI tribute record. EMI artists cover songs by older EMI artists including a haunting version of Pink Floyd’s “Wish You Were Here” by Sparklehorse featuring Thom Yorke.
    In addition to Bonnie Rait’s “Burning Down the House” if you are looking for a version with a little more kitch, there is a solid reworking by the Cardigans featuring Tom Jones.
    There are tons of amazing covers out there, it was hard to whittle it down to ten.

  • Rob

    How about:
    “Hard To Handle”, the Black Crows version. They did a great take on Otis Redding.
    “I’m a Man”, Chicago’s version. They really were a great band until the 70s and 80s watered them down to the Easy Listening crap you hear today.
    “Lovers in a Dangerous Time”, Barenaked Ladies’ version. They did a great job of making Bruce Cockburn’s song their own.

  • Winger: Purple Haze

  • jeff

    I aggree with the Bonnie Raitt cover choice of the Talking Heads song
    “Burning down the house”…saw Bonnie
    perform that one live at Mansfields
    Tweeter Center in Mass, wow! blistering
    slide guitar action, and ROAD TESTED
    version is hot!, why this song wasn’t on the radio?????????? Jeff Buckley-Tom Waits also do great cover songs mentioned in the article.

  • Karl Rutherford

    i listen to music at work alot and if i found a peice of paper and it had all kinds of stuff about gay people on it but was laying on the floor i would go to the file cabinet and put the peice of paper in the folder that says “documents to be reviewed” and i would tell a manager or my freind ron

  • While RATM’s “Maggie’s Farm” is my favorite Dylan cover, two of the best live perfromances were by The Grateful Dead due mainly to the audience participation.

    “Rainy Day Women #12 & 35” with its refrain of “Everybody must get stoned.” brought out more lighters than any sappy ballad.

    “Quinn the Eskimo”

    “But when Quinn the Eskimo gets here,
    Ev’rybody’s gonna doze.” Changed to “dose” by tens of thousands of mad, grinning faces.

    For sheer oddness I have to give honorable mention to Devo’s “Satisfaction”

    SRV performing Voodoo Child (slight return) To hear the next great guitar slinger, check out Robert Randolph

  • Megadeth’s Anarchy in the UK. Mustaine sings “possibly” instead of “passerby.”

  • I second Chris’ comment about Megadeth’s censored “Boots” cover. It absolutely MUST be heard with the bleeping. It’s hilarious.

  • Best (ever) cover of Boots Were Made for Walking / One of These Days:

    Operation Ivy

  • Would the Metallica/Megadeth pair of The Four Horsemen/Mechanix count?

    Or maybe Megadeth’s censored version “These Boots Were Made for Walking”?

  • Some great ones, El B. A jazz expert friend of mine and I were just rapping about “My Favorite Things” last week (I’m not a huge jazz guy but that one just knocks me on my ass).

    Another Nirvana… which I’m pretty sure didn’t make the box set but definitely should have: “Seasons in the Sun,” a haunting and beautiful version.

  • ‘Ride On’ AC/DC as covered by Norah Jones.

  • ‘Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door’ Warren Zevon cause he was honestly was knockin as he was dying of cancer when he recorded the song.

    ‘You Really got Me’ as covered by VH on a more upbeat bent.

  • thanks!!

  • Wow, kudos to great choices within the post and the comments.

  • Anthrax: Ball of Confusion
    Anthrax: Sabbath Bloody Sabbath
    Pantera: Planet Caravan
    Powerman 5000: Let the Good Times Roll

  • The Pretty Woman video was a classic. It wasn’t shown on MTV back then, but is so tame.

  • VH’s You Really Got Me is a good one, as is their version of Pretty Woman.

    Have you heard the Zep tribute cd with STP, Hootie, and others?

  • Type O Negative do an awesome version of “Summer Breeze”

    Love and Rockets’ “Ball of Confusion”

    Two good covers: Van Halen and Oingo Boingo on The Kinks “You Really Got Me”

    Almost the entire Zeppelin catalogue is a blues cover

    NIN on Dead Souls

    Coltrane’s “My Favorite Things”

    Cream’s “Crossroads”

  • Red House Painters doing Kiss’s “Shock Me.”

    Yo La Tengo doing “Be Thankful for What You Got.”

    White Stripes doing Burt Bacharach’s “I Just Don’t Know What to Do With Myself.”

    Nirvana doing the Velvet Underground’s “Here She Comes Now.”

    Ironically: Low doing “Open Arms.”

    There are a ton of wonderful obscure and not obscure covers out there. This list scratches the surface.

  • Soft Call’s “Taited Love” wasn’t a bad cover version itself.

  • Roy Buchanan’s cover of “Sweet Dreams” – unbelievably evocative guitar work.

  • eric schultz

    Here’s a few –
    Natalie Merhcant doing the Stones Sympathy for the Devil (Jane’s Addiction, David Byrne, and GNR do sweet versions as well)

    Marilyn Manson – Soft Cell’s Tainted Love

    The Eels – Sophie B. Hawkins Damn I Wish I Was Your Lover

    GNR – Wings live and Let Die

    Alice Cooper – Jimi’s Purple Haze

    Johnny Cash – NINs Hurt, Soungarden’s Rusty Cage

    There are more – I just can’t think of them right now….

  • And for the record, I think that Scissor Sisters’ cover of Floyd is off-the-charts great. It’s rare when a great song is reinvented into an equally great (or greater?) tune while not being at all derivative of the original.

    For the record: what is NOT off-the-charts great… I flipped on MTV this morning and caught Jessica Simpson’s cover of “These Boots Are Made For Walking.”

    My fingers walked right over to the remote and flipped over to Headline News.

  • A recent cover that is pretty damn great it Caesar’s cover of Blue Oyster Cult’s “(Don’t Fear) The Reaper.” It was released on Six Feet Under: Everything Ends, Music from the HBO Original Series – Vol. 2. Read more and listen to the song at http://musiccapitol.blogspot.com/2005/07/six-feet-under-everything-ends-music.html

  • JR

    Mission Impossible Theme – Larry Mullen, Jr. & Adam Clayton covering Lalo Schifrin


    They took a really cool 5/4 riff and dumbed it down to 4/4 for the brainless dance crowd.

  • I’d pick several RATM covers over Tom Joad. How about Dylan’s “Maggie’s Farm” or “Renegades of Funk” by… African Bambaata, I believe?

  • Oh, how could I forget— Rage Against The Machine’s cover of Springsteen’s “Ghost of Tom Joad”. Those lyrics were meant to be screamed. Heh.

  • Mark — That is a great cover, absolutely. It played on the radio for a bit around five years ago.

  • It’s not too widely known, but the Foo Fighters did a phenomenal cover of the 70’s classic “Baker Street” by Gerry Rafferty. The original had sax solos and disco synth, but the Foos reworked it all to guitar and bass. It’s the B-Side to the UK “My Hero” single.

  • Oh, speaking of Type O Negative:

    They do a simply fabulous, kind of hardcore goth version of The Doors’ “Light My Fire.”

  • Sepultura’s Black sabbath cover of Children of the Grave.

    Type O Negative’s cover of Neil Young’s Cinnamon Girl

  • That is true, Eric!

    How about Anthrax (w/PE) Bring the Noize?

  • Marilyn Manson’s cover of “Sweet Dreams” is pretty creepy/great.

  • You guys are coming up with some cool stuff! And, some stuff I haven’t heard.

  • Oh, for the best genre crosser I’ve ever heard . . .

    Eels cover of “Get Your Freak On” by Missy Elliot

  • I submit that the greatest Dylan cover of all time is The Byrds’ version of “My Back Pages.” It was radiant with the joy of rebirth, in a way that even the acoustic original couldn’t quite muster.

    The Beatles covers were great, too, and what about Elvis? “That’s All Right Mama,” “Blue Moon of Kentucky,” and “Hound Dog,” among others, were covers and who can imagine anyone else doing them now?

  • Rob Zombie’s versions of Brickhouse, I’m Your Boogeyman, and Blitzkrieg Bop are fantastic!

  • thumbs up to all of those too. SRV rocked. Pretty much anything the Beatles did was great in my book.

    I also like the Red Hot Chilli Peppers version of “Higher Ground” and forgot to add that in.

  • OK, perhaps I’m showing my age here, but I’d certainly say the Beatles covers of “Twist And Shout” and “Long Tall Sally” are worthy of consideration as great covers.

  • how about SRV doing Stevie Wonder?

  • Some cross-genre covers….

    -Zebrahead’s cover the Spice Girls’ “Wannabe” (from pop to punk)
    -Toad the Wet Sprocket’s cover of KISS’s “Rock And Roll All Nite” (rock to folk)
    -Limp Bizkit’s cover of George Michael’s “Faith” (pop to heavy metal/rap)
    -Anything by Me First and the Gimme Gimmes (ex. Mandy, Rocket Man, Sweet Caroline, etc) (70’s Adult Contemporary to Punk)

  • JD

    I haven’t heard the Emmy Lou version.

  • i haven’t heard that Dave Mathews version of The Maker but it had better be ultra-fatastic to unseat the reference standard: Emmylou Harris on the record “Spyboy”.

  • JD

    yes its very cool when folks from competely different genres cover songs.

  • I’ll throw in Dynamite Hack’s cover of Easy-E’s “Boyz in the Hood.” Brilliant, funny, and compulsively listenable. Stark old school rap converted to harmonious folk-pop.

  • JD

    those are good ones too!

  • You can’t forget:

    1) David Bowie’s cover of “Waiting for the Man” by The Velvet Underground

    2) Nirvana’s cover of “The Man Who Sold the World” by David Bowie