Covers songs recorded by unexpected artists
Cover songs have been a staple of the music industry for its entire existence. If a song is popular enough, you already know a cover will soon be on the way from any and all artists who think they can sell a few copies. With covers as popular as Elvis Presley’s entire library to Led Zeppelin’s Dazed and Confused, many of your favorite tunes are in fact covers even if you didn’t realize it! However, on the flip side of that, with so many artists synonymous with a particular sound you’d never expect them to venture out into covering something totally out of their genre wheelhouse. That’s where you’d be wrong. We’ve complied a collection of artists who covered some unexpected songs that may take you by surprise!
Purple Haze- Dion
Yes that’s right, the American Doo-op singer responsible for such hits as Runaround Sue and The Wanderer ventured into Hendrix! In an odd twist, Dion adopted Purple Haze into his library in 1968, just one year after Hendrix released it! The psychedelic rock anthem was slowed down and turned into more of a balled under Dion but somehow remains to be, if not becomes even more, trippy. Certainly and unexpected track from the heartbroken oldies singer, but not an unwelcome one by any means!
Faith- Limp Bizkit
Believe it or not there are people who enjoy Limp Bizkit! Alright, jokes aside the controversial rap rock group found their success in the early 2000s with tracks like “Rollin’” and “Break Stuff” and were even used as The Undertaker’s entrance theme during his stint as The American Badass. Unfortunately for us, nobody told front man Fred Durst that rap rock and George Michael don’t mix. For reasons unbeknownced to us Limp Bizkit decided to include Michael’s 1987 Faith on their 1997 album “Three Dollar Bill, Y’all”. The kicker? While bordering on the creepy side, Durst’s opening to the song isn’t the worst thing in the world. Fret not however, just wait for the chorus and sit back as Fred and the boys ruin this classic.
Jolene- The White Stripes
The White Stripes can do no wrong! The iconic 2000s Faux Brother/Sister, Husband/Wife duo left their mark on the music industry with memorable rock tracks such as Fell In Love With A Girl, We’re Going To Be Friends, and Icky Thump. However the song that will ensure The Stripes live on forever has to be Seven Nation Army, a staple of any high-school football game or workout playlist. Always the artist, front man Jack White is no stranger to experimenting with covers, as is the case with The White Stripes rendition of the 1965 #2 hit Love Potion No.9. However it’s their iconic cover of Jolene we’re focusing on for this list. The echoing live guitar and raw emotion in the voice of Jack White coveys the emotion behind the classic Dolly lyrics. The rock rendition may be one of the finest live covers of the era and is definitely deserving of a listen if you have yet to hear it!
Kurt, Dave, and Krist were certainly no strangers to borrowing from some of their favorite artists. With a library containing the likes of Bowie, The Meat Puppets, Lead Belly, and many others it’s no shock the band fiddled around with other cover ideas. Dating all the way back to 1987, The legendary trio broke into Zeppelin’s Heartbreaker during one of their very first live performances. Unfortunately this rendition never made it to the studio but did become available to the public courtesy of With The Lights Out and Sliver: The Best Of The Box which features early recordings, demos, live tracks and unreleased music! But the best part about this cover, “I don’t know how to play it!”
Smells Like Teen Spirit/ Wonderwall/ Etc.- Paul Anka
Oh yes, that is correct. The mind behind “Puppy Love” and “Put Your Head On My Shoulder” proved he could still hang when he released his album 2005 album “Rock Swings”. The album included lounge and swing covers of the likes of Bon Jovi, Nirvana, Oasis, Survivor, Van Halen, Chris Cornell, and more! Anka undoubtedly knocked it out of the park earning himself a long deserved star on Canada’s Walk of Fame! Having the ability to take Smells Like Teen Spirit and make it easy listening even your Grandparents would call quality music is a true sign of a multitalented artist! Step aside Richard Cheese!
With a vast and ever growing world library of cover songs, these are just a handful of renditions that may have taken you by surprise! Let us know what you think down below and who’s cover caught you off guard! Be sure to check out more music related articles here and keep on rockin’ on!