Tuesday, May 5, 2009
Cover Song Cage Match #1
Introducing a new feature to the GS: Equal parts comparison study and contest, the idea here is to locate original versions of a few songs and pit them against imitators in a Cover Song Cage Match. Hey, it might not be as fun as a chicken fight, but at least it’s cleaner, and you're less likely to break yr pecker. Anyway, if you want to vote on a winner on any of these matchups, just user Blogger’s comment tool below.
First up⎯Can’t rightly start a Cover Song Cage Match without this one, eh?⎯The Novas vs. the Cramps doin’ “The Crusher.” My copy of the original comes from Back from the Grave, vol. 2. Liner notes on that comp say this about it: “THE NOVAS⎯The Crusher. The height of intellectual psychedelia. These Minnesota Gentlemen must be the ‘precocious,’ ‘ephemeral,’ and ‘interpretive,’ teenagers referred to on the liner notes to the RCA/COLUMBIA collection MINDBLOWERS.” The Cramps’ version ain’t nothin’ to sneeze at neither. You be the judge.
Next, another one from Back from the Grave, vol. 2, the Unrelated Segments’ original version of “Cry, Cry, Cry” (originally released on the Liberty label) vs. the Cynics’ cover, from their 1990 Get Hip LP Rock ‘n’ Roll.
Finally, the main event on this week’s card, Roy Orbison & the Teen Kings’ original 1956 version of “Go Go Go” (Sun 242) vs. an entire tag team of challengers. You got Jerry Lee Lewis doing his version, which he called “Down the Line,” from the Live at the Star Club LP, from 1963. Then there’s the Killers’s cuz Mickey Gilley’s version, from 1965, likewise dubbed “Down the Line,” on the Astro Label (and yes, that one does play better than it looks). And the Del-Tinos' 1963 version puts the Atomic Knee Drop on it to wrap things up.
All right turkey necks, until the rematch…