During their early days, many bands played cover songs before eventually growing their repertoire to include original material. Yet some of those bands never forgot how they began, and to “pay homage” to the original authors, they would eventually play the song that was once a part of their gigs. Although people usually believe that the original is “the real thing,” sometimes it happens that the cover actually sounds better. In this article, we are going to talk about the top 5 cover songs that sound better than the original track.
#1 All Along The Watchtower
It’s never easy to say that Bob Dylan’s song is “not good enough,” but in this case, it just happened that a legendary author like Jimmy Hendrix did a stellar job of covering Dylan’s song that was released in 1967 on his album ‘John Wesley Harding.’ Jimmy’s version is much tougher and melodic, and it didn’t take long for it to become a legendary tune. Hendrix stole ‘All Along the Watchtower’ from Dylan less than a year after it came out, and made it his own. Decades late, Bob Dylan said that he is glad that Jimmy Hendrix took that song to a whole new level.
#2 The Man Who Sold The World
When David Bowie wrote that song (and released it in 1970), he wasn’t yet that popular as he would become just a few years later. Fans knew of it and held it in high regard, but when Nirvana took that song and played it, “The Man Who Sold The World” became something completely different. The band from Seattle brought a sharp and focused reading of the song. They revealed the song’s depth that nobody knew it was there in the first place.
#3 Me and Bobby McGee
Kris Kristofferson was a very talented songwriter in the 60s and 70s, but unfortunately, he didn’t sing very well. Many of his songs were popularized by other artists and one of his tunes that became known worldwide is “Me and Bobby Mcgee” played by Janis Joplin. It was released on her posthumous album ‘Pearl.’
#4 I Love Rock’ N Roll
Most people don’t even know that this is a cover song, especially in the US. The original was composed and played by the London-based band the Arrows in 1975, but the world didn’t know of its existence until Joan Jett resurrected it for her second album in 1982. “I love Rock’ N Roll” became her signature song and number one hit.
Now, this may be debatable, because both artists have a large host of fans behind them. Yet, it is undeniable to say that when Johnny Cash released his version of “Hurt,” the song was transformed into something else. Even the original author, Trent Reznor of the Nine Inch Nails said that this song wasn’t his anymore. Reznor created this song to describe a young individual on the downward spiral to self-destruction, while Cash interpreted the lyrics as a man at the end of his life. Both versions are pure gold, but after Cash played it, the song has become even more popular than it ever was.