Thursday, May 15, 2008

Look for the rainbow in every storm.

It is with a heavy heart that I write this post—which is out of the blue and spur of the moment and a slew of other idioms meaning spontaneous—but I'm thinking my tenure here at Copy, Right? is at an end.

I feel I've had a good run. I've been doing this more than four years now. I am stunned and flattered at the positive attention I've received and similarly shocked at how little of the attention has been negative. I feel very appreciative of every reader who has encouraged me via comments, donations and publicity in the past. You've all been wonderful.

I suppose there is a good chance that I might get antsy and wish to start blogging about music (or something else) again, and should that happen, I will definitely update this site with information.

Again, I have very much enjoyed doing what I do here and appreciate you all very much. In my absence, I highly recommend you check out the blogs, cover-focused and otherwise, listed to the right.

Thank you all so much for your attention these past few years. It's been very fulfilling for me, and I hope you feel the same.

Thanks one more time for everything.

Love, Liza

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Yeah, I'm alive.

  • Sarah Gregg Millman (of the Girl Guides) "Oooh This Love is So" (Al B. Sure cover)
    Words cannot express how excited I was to see this covered. Sigh. Al B.

  • The Chipmunks "Good Girls Don't" (The Knack cover)
    I still can't believe that such a dirty song was reworked (and barely, at that) for a kids album.

  • The Gwen Stacys "Alive" (Oasis cover)

  • Tiffany "Panic (Hang the DJ)" (The Smiths cover)
    Yes, THAT Tiffany. And, yes, THOSE Smiths.

  • Julie C "Breathe" (Pink Floyd cover)

  • The Vibrators "Liza" (NOFX cover)
    If I meet someone and he or she hears my name and makes an immediate NOFX reference, I never know whether to smile politely or run the other way. In retrospect of the times it's happened and the people who've done it, I'm wishing I'd have chosen the latter more frequently.

  • Watch the Men Fall "Venus in Furs" (The Velvet Underground cover)

  • The Dollyrots "Be My Baby" (The Ronettes cover)

  • Los Chicros "Changes" (David Bowie cover)

  • The Bam Bams "Kids in America"(Kim Wilde cover)

  • Olive "My Sharona" (The Knack cover)

  • Numbers "Cry" (The Birthday Party cover)
     
  • Tuesday, May 13, 2008

    Please don't stop the music.

    Yeah, I fell off the face of the earth for a second. New post up by Wednesday.

    Speaking of Wednesday, before then, Chicagoans who love live music, theatre, comedy and the arts in general should contact their alderman (alderperson?) and tell them to vote NO to the proposed promoter's ordinance. You can also sign the petition against it here.

    If it passes, our access to the things we love will be severely stifled.

    Update: If you're willing to go to the City Council meeting tomorrow at 10 am in protest, sign up here.


    Another update:
    Thanks to public outcry from promoters, performers and fans, the ordinance has been tabled for now for reevaluation purposes.

    Monday, April 28, 2008

    Like the sun, chasing all of the rain away.

    I've been posting lots of YouTube videos lately, but it's become my insomnia-fueled, late-night pastime to randomly browse for covers by everyday people. This one was a pleasant surprise:



    And remember adorable Anthony Hill, whose videos I posted about a year ago? Well, he's covered my favorite Syd Barrett song (I'm in a weird Pink Floyd et. al. phase lately), and he's charming as ever. Someone sign this guy already!

    Wednesday, April 23, 2008

    There will be feasting and dancing in Jerusalem (or Hinsdale) next year.

    I just learned via a MySpace bulletin that Heathers, a Dublin folk-punk-pop duo releasing an album on Plan-it-X Records sometime soon, will be touring the States with other Plan-it-Xer folk-punk-pop favorites (whose covers have been featured here in the past) Ghost Mice. Sadly, they do not have a show planned in Chicago proper (as of yet, anyhow), so I won't be able to catch them, but I still thought some of you might be interested in learning about them because they're pretty damned good and you might want to check them out if they're playing near you. Here are two videos of them performing The Mountain Goats' "This Year" and Tegan and Sara's "Nineteen," respectively. The quality of the videos might not be that great, but the talent shines through.





    Update: I have to add their live version of this Spice Girls cover too because it's my jam!

    Let's admit I made a mistake, but can we still be friends?

    Welcome to my late-night/early-morning post inspired by the purchases I made earlier today (technically yesterday) for $1 or less at the used record store:

  • Paul Young "Love Will Tear Us Apart" (Joy Division cover)
    I feel over the years I've divulged a lot of personal information about my past with music of a somewhat embarrassing nature. I believe what I'm about to admit far surpasses all previous embarrassment. You ready? Okay, here goes: This is the first version of this song that I ever heard. Oh, god. And I didn't much care for it—or didn't much pay any real attention to it, anyhow—as you might imagine. I don't judge myself too harshly because I was only 8 when the original track was released. I was 10 or 11 when this version rolled around and pretty much didn't realize that the album this was on was nearly, if not completely, all covers. By the time I was 12 or 13, I'd heard the original and made the connection and most likely played it all cool like I was always in the know. But really? No one else around me knew either version, so I think I won that round.

  • Tim Curry "I Will" (The Beatles cover)
    Let's just say the last thing I expected upon purchasing two Tim Curry records was a reggae version of anything, let alone a Beatles ballad.

  • Robert Palmer "Can We Still Be Friends?" (Todd Rundgren cover)
    I'd totally forgotten about the Robert Palmer version of this song, which (again) might have been the first version I heard. It's difficult to say. Regardless, it's not really different enough a version to warrant a cover only a year after the release of the original. Whatever.

  • Leif Garrett "Bad to Me" (The Beatles cover)
    I already have a digital copy of this mildly horrifying (yet strangely soothing) album, but how could I turn down the prospect of owning a 12x12 photograph that includes a cameltoe in the clouds? Again, I'm only human, you know?

  • Randy Crawford "I've Never Been to Me" (Charlene cover)
    Oh, the freaky things you can learn about songs on Wikipedia. For instance, the Japanese version of this song is used in weddings—despite the fact that it's a song about loneliness, despair and (some would say, depending on which version you hear) abortion—possibly as a warning to those who choose not to marry. Yikes! conversely, I plan to reclaim my spinster power via irony by singing a rousing and prideful version of this the next time I'm at a karaoke bar.
     
  • Monday, April 21, 2008

    Catching sparks.

  • Ben Sollee "A Change is Gonna Come" (Sam Cooke cover)
    Usually when a record label sends me a track to promote, I download it and forget about it for a while. Especially if the word "jazz" is anywhere in the press release. But even jaded ol' jazz-fearing Liza has a heart that will melt via R&B-influenced bluegrass and a smooth-voiced cellist with glasses, So I'm posting this nearly immediately. I'm a human being here, people!

  • Brand New "Oh, Comely" (Neutral Milk Hotel cover)
    This is a live radio recording whose post-song banter references sports or something toward the end. Just so you know.

  • Candy Planet "You Just Haven't Earned it Yet, Baby" (The Smiths cover)
    Unrelated to this song at all: I went to Rory Lake's Karaoke Dreams at the American Legion in Bucktown last weekend and saw a guy do a rendition of Kirsty MacColl's "In These Shoes." Talk about songs you never thought you'd A) see on a karaoke list and B) see anyone actually perform.

  • Guitar ft. Ayako Akashiba "Just Like Honey" (The Jesus and Mary Chain cover)
    I'm a sucker for vocals by Japanese gals, what can I say?

  • Ida "For Shame of Doing Wrong" (Richard & Linda Thompson cover)
    I forgot how much I love Ida. Then I listen to nearly every track they've ever done and I'm instantly reminded.

  • Ledaswan "Head On" (The Jesus and Mary Chain cover)
    JAMC was big with my shuffle play today.

  • MarthaV "To Sir with Love" (Lulu cover)
    I like to sing this at karaoke because it's creepy. Okay, it's sentimental. But in the creepiest of ways.

  • Mirror Ball Associates "Promise of a New Day" (Paula Abdul cover)
    There are some songs that get covered that make me think "even if I don't wind up liking this, I'm ecstatic someone covered it." The existence of a cover of this makes me happy, but mostly because I always pretended she was saying "evil's calling and it's calling your name" instead of "eagle's calling...".

  • Star 61 "Polegada Irada (Angry Inch)" (Portuguese cover, song from the soundtrack of Hedwig and the Angry Inch)
    I think I've been meaning to post this every time I blog, yet I always forgot. That trend ends today.

  • The Guts "Different Drum" (Stone Poneys cover, comp. Mike Nesmith)
    This is another song that I like to belt out at karaoke. It's right in my range and I love the "you're great and all, but let's not commit" message of it, which was pretty rare in the form of poppy hits sung by women in the '60s.
     
  • Friday, April 18, 2008

    You are young and life is long and there is time to kill today.



    Sometimes I forget I've been (too sporadically, I admit) exclusively blogging cover songs for so long. Or that I might have been the first to do it so, um, popularly. Or something. I'm weirdly modest about it, as it really is just a public extension of an insomniac hobby I conjured up for myself about 8 years ago. Still, I am pretty constantly floored at and excited by the responses I get via comments and e-mails from readers that are overwhelmingly positive. So I thank all of you reading. I'm also often shocked at the respect my cover blogging appears to garner with other music bloggers, both cover-focused and not.

    So, as usual, I was surprised to have been selected to be part of a cover blogger roundtable organized and hosted by Coverville's Brian Ibbott and featuring other great bloggers, such as: Steve of Cover Freak, Joshua of Cover Lay Down, Jamie of FongSongs, and Kurtis of Covering the Mouse. You can get the podcast here. I've yet to give it a listen, but I offer apologies in advance for any sweeping generalizations I may have made, which I tend to do after a few beers.

    And, just in case this didn't make it into the edit (or in case you don't listen to the whole thing), I remember mentioning that I don't think there are enough covers of ELO's "The Fall" from the Xanadu soundtrack, which has been running through my head on a regular basis for the past, oh, 28 years. So if you're in one of those bands that have asked my opinion on what song they should cover next, hop to it!

    (Speaking of "The Fall," it was in my head the other day on which I happened to literally fall on an uneven sidewalk just shy of fracturing my jaw or nose or skull. Apparently even fat girls can have cat-like reflexes, so my hands broke my fall and I'm fine now save for a few scrapes and minor foot and muscle pain that has kept me from the computer. But a new post should surface on or before Monday, so don't fret!)

    Wednesday, April 16, 2008

    When the rain washes you clean, you'll know.

    I'm working on a new post for later today or tomorrow. Until then, you can download Dirty Power's live tribute to Fleetwood Mac's Rumours here, should you so desire.

    Friday, April 11, 2008

    More than merely surviving.

    Posting American Idol performances is not something I'd normally do, but I fear that many of you have written it off, which I understand. But every now and then, a phenomenally talented star will be a guest and take the stage and remind you how awesome he or she truly is. Annie Lennox singing Jimmy Cliff's "Many Rivers to Cross" (from the "Idol Gives Back" spiel) simply blew me away. And to think I almost chose not to set the DVR!

    Sunday, April 06, 2008

    Finding "treasure" in the dark.

    Too much coffee too late in the day PLUS too much beer even later in the day PLUS today's thrift-score glasses and mugs PLUS free association PLUS YouTube EQUALS this:




    ------------------------------------




    ------------------------------------




    ------------------------------------




    ------------------------------------




    ------------------------------------






    ------------------------------------

    Yeah. I'd apologize, but I'm really not that sorry.
     

    Thursday, April 03, 2008

    The biology of purpose keeps my nose above the surface.

  • Trembling Blue Stars "Coming Up for Air" (The Go-Betweens cover)

  • The Dirtbombs "King's Lead Hat" (Brian Eno cover)

  • Girls Aloud "With Every Heartbeat" (Robyn cover)
    Guess who's going to the Robyn show in May? ME! Guess who's glad it isn't a Girls Aloud show instead? Me again! I'm also the one who wishes she could coax any of her singer-type guy friends to videotape themselves covering Robyn songs and add them to YouTube. Like this:


  • Girls Under Glass "Frozen" (Madonna cover)
    Ah, gothy, industrial techno! Dammit if you still don't hold a place in my (16-year-old) heart!

  • Joey Yung "Crush" (Jennifer Paige cover)

  • Kentucky Prophet "Making the Nature Scene" (Sonic Youth cover)
    Dear dorky, chubby white guys who make crazy homemade jams like this: Keep on keepin' on, my brothers.

  • Nemesis "The Shape of Things to Come" (from Wild in the Streets, comp. Barry Mann and Cynthia Weil)
    My favorite '60s cult movie, Wild in the Streets, has been on cable a lot recently and I watch it each time. This prompted me to grab the first cover of this track I had at the ready. Sadly, this is not by the gay Mormon brothers from the reality TV show and is, instead, by a Virginian prog metal outfit. Or maybe that's for the best, really.

  • New Buffalo "Don't Let Me Be Misunderstood" (Nina Simone cover, comp. Bennie Benjamin, Gloria Caldwell and Sol Marcus)
    This is the chick who wrote Fesit's hit, "1234."

  • The Sisters Euclid "Cinnamon Girl" (Neil Young cover)
    Admittedly, the prospect of listening to a bluesy, experimental, instrumental all-Neil-Young covers album from Canada didn't excite me. But I have to admit it's pretty interesting. It wouldn't be my cup of tea most days, but it suited me just fine tonight.

  • Sondre Lerche "Night and Day" (comp. Cole Porter)

  • The Vitamin String Quartet "Neighborhood #3 (Power Out)" (Arcade Fire cover)
    I have to admit that, as much as I mock them and their seemingly endless permeation into my consciousness, string quartet tributes sometimes aren't all that bad. Or maybe they are but I just get in the mood for bad stuff more frequently than most. All things are possible.

  • Subway Knife "Please Freeze Me" (Guided by Voices cover)

  • Tinyfolk "Five Years" (David Bowie cover)
    I'm kind of in a Tinyfolk phase. All of their covers delight me.

  • Yngwie Malmsteen "Magical Mystery Tour" (Beatles cover)
    This comes from an album called Butchering the Beatles, but honestly? It gets a lot worse than this.
     
  • Monday, March 31, 2008

    I'm oh so quiet.

    Heh. Remember me? I'm settling down after a week or two of debauchery and general busyness and will try to get a large random post together by Wednesday. Until then, you should go download Stereogum's tribute to Bjork's Post.

    Saturday, March 15, 2008

    She could go for miles, if you know what I mean.

    My Internet friend Lauren just posted about this video of old-school diva extraordinaire Dame Shirley Bassey singing Pink's "Get the Party Started," and I am in camp heaven. The drag queen inside me is already plotting her lip-synch routine...

    Thursday, March 13, 2008

    Tommy, can you hear me?

  • Let's all thank a giant tool, "Tommy" from WoozyFly.com, for the fact that all comments will now be screened before being added. For a few weeks now, this jerk has been periodically taking the time to add comments to several entries at a time claiming there's better stuff over at WoozyFly. Granted, that may or may not be true considering I don't claim to only post the best of anything. Still, the idea that anyone would take the time to write (or copy and paste) comments and type in that "prove you're a human" code to a blog as sporadically updated as mine is laughable. Now, I don't know if this freak is part of an online street team or if he owns or works for the company proper, but since this guy is so hell-bent on getting the Woozyfly name out I thought I'd help him out with an entry dedicated to him and WoozyFly. So, if you're interested in visiting an indie music/social networking site run by incessant spammers who badmouth the music I share here, by all means, check out WoozyFly.

  • While I'm sort of complaining, I'll offer up another request I've made in the past. (This one is less bilious by far, however.) Basically, I am a human being who makes mistakes and I don't mind having said mistakes pointed out to me. Still, if you're thinking of taking the time to comment to correct me about something, you might want to take an extra second using Google or Wiki (or your ears) to make sure you're right first. For instance, Justin Timberlake's "Cry Me a River" is not the same "Cry Me a River" Julie London sang, etc.
  • Wednesday, March 12, 2008

    I've been away for so long, so long.

    I planned on talking about every track here, but then it would take me another week or two to finally make a post. And who wants that?

  • James Combs "See Emily Play" (Pink Floyd cover)
    Once upon a time, I worked at a place called The Uptown Café in Bloomington, Indiana. James Combs worked there as well at the time, and I remember being a tad "starstruck" when I met him because I was 19 and he was in one of the best and most popular bands in town, Arson Garden. (I've posted a cover or two by AG in the past, remember?)

    I always liked Arson Garden, but my love was nothing compared with that of a slew of my likewise young and dorky music-loving guy friends who were seriously obsessed with Arson Garden. Working with James increased my indie cred a lot. Gotta love when that happens.

    Arson Garden is long defunct, of course, but James's solo career continues and, I'm happy to say, appears to be doing well. (Hell, his songs have been used in both Six Feet Under and Dexter, both of which are in my Top 5 TV shows.) Likewise, his new album to Know You is To Save You is really nice and recently hit No. 25 on KCRW's airplay charts. His stuff reminds me of Elliott Smith and Big Star and other awesomeness so if you're into that type of awesomeness, check it out. In fact, if you're in LA, you can see him tonight at 8 at Tangier. (Check his MySpace for other upcoming dates.)

    Sorry of this is all a bit press release-y, but it makes me happy to see friendly talented people I know making good music. And I'd be remiss not to use whatever influence I have to promote it. You know?

  • The Impossible Shapes "Rider" (Will Oldham cover)
    Hell, while I'm talking (yet again) about Bloomington-based bands, please enjoy and become obsessed with the Impossible Shapes, which features members of lots of other great bands like Magnolia Electric Co., Normanoak, The Horns of Happiness, and more. I'm personally not friends with any of them, but I've mentioned before that my best pal Ryan knows Jason Groth of the Alien Lanes tribute fame, remember? So I feel connected. And even if I didn't, I'd still listen to the music 'cause it rules.

  • 20/20 "Day After Day" (Badfinger cover)

  • Eliza Lumley "How to Disappear Completely" (Radiohead cover)
    This comes from Lumley's Radiohead interpretations album She Talks in Maths. I have to admit, when I got the e-mail telling me about it that included this MP3, I was feeling bitter and angry about the proliferation of awful jazz interpretations and ignored it awhile. But a week or so later the sun came out and I felt more optimistic and now I can say, though jazz is really not my thing, I do like it a lot. I wish more of the coffee shops I stumble into would play stuff like this rather than anything by Diana Krall.

  • Emerson Nogueira "Forever Young" (Alphaville cover)

  • Ethel Merman "I Got Rhythm (Disco)" (comp. Gershwin/s)
    Man, the Ethel Merman "disco" album is one of the biggest mistakes ever made. Yet I wouldn't want to live in a world without it.

  • The Vindictives "How Much More" (The Go-Go's cover)
    Mad props to the Vindictives for not switching the gender. I love cover that doesn't.

  • Fiona Lehn "On Your Radio" (Joe Jackson cover)

  • The Last Town Chorus "Modern Love" (David Bowie cover)
    This is one of my favorite Bowie covers ever. There, I said it. So pretty.

  • Lax Alex Con Trax "Smalltown Boy" (Bronski Beat cover)

  • Mom's Favorite Vase "London" (The Smiths cover)

  • Neither/Neither World "Psychocandy" (Jesus and Mary Chain cover)

  • PC Muñoz "I Go Crazy" (Flesh for Lulu cover)

  • Silver Sun "You Made Me Realise" (My Bloody Valentine cover)
    Dear MBV: I love that you're touring. Please consider coming to the States. ASAP!!!

  • Tahiti 80 "Desirée" (Left Banke cover)

  • Tindersticks "Here" (Pavement cover)

  • Twinball "Don't Pay the Ferryman" (Chris DeBurgh cover)

  • Whip "White Wedding" (Billy Idol cover)
    When I saw that a band I didn't know was covering this, I assumed it was a terrible band and that it would suck. Luckily, I never let my assumptions keep me from giving things a shot. This is a pleasant (inasmuch as dirge-like tracks can be) alt-country/chamber-folk revelation.

  • Western Electric "When You Find Out" (The Nerves cover)
    Speaking of depressing-but-pretty Americana tracks, this languid take on one of my favorite power-pop songs totally took me by surprise. Weird.

  • Yuppie Flu "Plainsong" (The Cure cover)
     
  • Tuesday, March 11, 2008

    Remember: I'm awful in love with you.

    Sorry about the post delay, but I got bogged down with business and general crappy life stuff. You know how it rolls. Until the random megapost I make later today or tomorrow, please entertain yourself with this very fun James Eric-produced free downloadable tribute to the Magnetic Fields. Seriously, grab it now. It's pretty great.

    Related: If you're a musician and you and/or your band is interested, you have until the 30th to record and submit a '90s hit for another upcoming comp. Sadly (or not), I lack music and recording skills so you'll all be spared my rendition of "2 Become 1."
     

    Monday, March 03, 2008

    Feet on ground, heart in hand.

    As many others did, I fell in love with Jay Brannan and his music after seeing Shortbus. Here he covers Jann Arden's "Good Mother," and it's pretty beautiful.



    Longer post with MP3s coming in the next day or so.
     

    Monday, February 25, 2008

    My mind is definitely made up.

    If a tad embarrassing at times, my love for covers often creates a love for new artists. Many is the time that a cover I've hunted out introduces me to talents with which I'd been theretofore unaware. Such was the case with Glen Hansard and the Frames. Had it not been for the tracks below (the second of which I posted about 3 years back and I would rank somewhere in my personal Top 20 of favorite covers), I wouldn't have been lucky enough to become familiar with his work before the Academy Award nomination. What a well-deserved accolade! His and Marketa Irglova's performances there and at the Independent Spirit Awards were two of the best, most heartfelt and passionate award-show performances I've ever seen.

    I'm keeping it old school here with the first covers I'd heard him do, but you can still hear a couple of more recent Bob Dylan and Van Morrison covers he's performed with Marketa Irglova via Hype Machine.

  • Glen Hansard "Cry Me a River" (Justin Timberlake cover)

  • Glen Hansard & Colm MacConlomaire of The Frames "Every Time" (Britney Spears cover)
     
  • Tuesday, February 19, 2008

    Better, better, better, BETTER!

    If you've seen this elsewhere, my apologies, but frankly? It's far better than a lot of "Hey, Jude" covers.

    Friday, February 15, 2008

    Nearing the 15th minute.

    Many thanks to Clinton from WFMU's Beware of the Blog for including my opinions in the latest MP3 Truffles installment. Feel free to check it out to see my recommendations, as well as those of the other featured bloggers.

    Thursday, February 14, 2008

    Love's an excuse to get hurt and to hurt.

  • The Maine "I Wanna Love You" (Akon cover)
    Ahhhh, true love! Be sure to serenade anyone windin' and grindin' up on the pole with this modern love song for the ages.

  • The Bordellos "My Love" (Wings cover)

  • Society Burning "Lovefool" (Cardigans cover)
    This makes me want to tease my hair, put on combat boots and go to Neo tonight.

  • Del Davis "A World Without Love" (Peter & Gordon cover, comp. Paul McCartney)

  • SoKo "No Love" (The Teenagers cover)
    I've seen Showgirls far too many times myself. Perhaps not for the T&A, but for the awful, awful, awful "plot" and "acting." Aaaahh, Nomi. How I miss you.

  • Jose Gonzalez "Love Will Tear Us Apart" (Joy Division cover)

  • Bettie Serveert "Lover I Don't Have to Love" (Bright Eyes cover)
    I've posted this before, but it's my favorite "love song that's not quite a love song" cover.

  • Noise Ratchet "Crush" (Mandy Moore cover)

  • Tinyfolk "Love You" (Syd Barrett cover)
    You know I loves the bands from Bloomington, Indiana. They are my Valentines.

  • The Pigeon Detectives "The Power of Love" (Huey Lewis & the News cover)

  • The Waltons "Only Love Can Break Your Heart" (Neil Young cover)

  • Yo La Tengo "I Wanna Be Your Lover" (Bob Dylan cover)

  • Minotaur Shock "The Best of My Love" (Eagles cover)
    There are many things that amuse me about my father's immense record collection (which, for the most part, now belongs to me), not the least of which is the fact that it includes no fewer than two copies of every Eagles LP. I know the '70s were heady days, especially in a college town full of hippies who might put motorcycle helmets on your kid:



    Still, it cracks me up that my dad and his friends wore out multiple Eagles albums. Hilarious.
     
  • Didn't even know I needed it.

    If all goes according to plan, in a few hours there will appear here a love-themed post, despite the fact that I'm one of those bitter spinsters with a cat who whines about Hallmark holidays. (Clarification on ambiguous sentence structure: I whine, the cat doesn't.) Until said post surfaces, please enjoy this animated video (as featured on today's episode of Yo Gabba Gabba), which is set to a cover of Free Design's "I Found Love" as performed by the Trembling Blue Stars.
     

    Tuesday, February 12, 2008

    They both went down to Berlin, joined the Ice Capades.

  • Apparently my blogging fingers have been frozen by the never-ending Chicago winter! Still, before I forget, I wanted to let you know that there is a great little downloadable cover of The Ramones' "Judy is a Punk" over at the MySpace page of The Pawners' Society, a band featuring members of The Grackles and Scotland Yard Gospel Choir (among others). And, if you're in Chicago, you can check them out this Friday the 15th at Subterranean.

  • Oh, and you can download and/or listen to the most recent Drunk Covers show by the Waiting Room here.
     
  • Wednesday, January 30, 2008

    A quick plug for something I love.

    1. You love the music of artists both old and new.
    2. You have cable.
    3. Your cable package includes Fuse.

    Hey, Americans, if you meet the above criteria and you're not already regularly watching Later... with Jools Holland—which airs M-F at 1 PM and 3 AM Eastern (that's noon and 2 AM for locals)—you're doing yourself a disservice. Ryan alerted me about a month ago that Fuse was showing old episodes (as in a year or two old) in syndication and, although the show's been around for decades in the UK and I've known about it since its inception, it was my first time actually watching an entire episode. I've been hooked since. I DVR it every day.

    For those not in the know, every episode features approximately 3 to 8 different acts sharing a stage, each playing a song or two on their own (and sometimes together). Jools engages some in brief interviews as well. What's great is that each day's selection is pretty eclectic—e.g. today's featured the Dixie Chicks, Paolo Nutini, Gogol Bordello, The Automatic, The Dresden Dolls, The Fratellis—so it's not solely an indie wankfest nor a mainstream nightmare. I often find myself intrigued by acts I'd normally pass by, if for no other reason than the performances tend to be top-rate and celebrate the diversity of music and a true appreciation for the craft of songwriting and performing. Of course, every now and then said artists perform covers. Hell, I was even entertained by the Black Eyed Peas performance, for chrissakes!

    So, um, yeah. Look into it. It's so refreshing to see a "music" channel that actually features music!
     

    Random shuffle post. Always a trove of treasures. And, sometimes, haiku.

  • Chica & the Folder "I'll Come Running"< (Brian Eno cover)
    Chilean-German?
    Stark, electronic, Eno?
    Where do I sign up?

  • Claude Denjean & Synthesizer "Alone Again (Naturally)" (Gilbert O'Sullivan cover)
    French Moog mastery...
    One-hit wonder (U.S.-wise)...
    Synthy yacht rock rules.

  • Cursive "Frankly, Mr. Shankly" (Smiths cover)
    I sort of feel bad...
    I had no idea that
    Cursive still lives on.

  • Emocapella* "Enjoy Your Day" (Alkaline Trio cover)
    Welcome, first of two
    indie a cappella acts!
    I choo-choo-choose you.

  • The Hot Stewards "Tell it to my Heart" (Taylor Dayne cover)
    Glitchy shuffle play
    chooses two songs by one act.
    See below also.

  • The Hot Stewards "Touch Me" (Samantha Fox cover)
    Circa '89,
    Jules and I often sang this
    as Ethel Merman.

  • Indie Rockappella (aka Nathan Smart) "Come On, Feel the Illinoise" (Sufjan Stevens cover)
    Remember above?
    The two a cappella tracks?
    This is the second.

  • James William Hindle "I Started a Joke" (Bee Gees cover)
    Charming Brit folkster
    covers the quintessential
    sad Bee Gees ballad.

  • Kompressor "Debra" (Beck cover)
    Crazy faux-German
    post-industrial madness.
    An Ohian ruse.

  • Leigh Nash "Father and Son" (Cat Stevens cover)
    Not a fan of bands
    like Sixpence None the Richer.
    I enjoy this though.

  • The Riff Randells "Girls Like Me" (Nikki & the Corvettes cover)
    Cult-film characters
    make good powerpop band names.
    Make a note of it.

  • Riton "Killing an Arab" (Cure cover)
    We live in a world
    that treats truth tellers like freaks.
    So don't kill strangers.

  • The Rubinoos "Heroes and Villains" (Beach Boys cover)
    D'oh! A cappella!
    There are three instead of two!
    Though 'tis not emo.

  • The Rubinoos "Thorn in My Side" (Eurythmics cover)
    Blasted shuffle play!
    I like Crimes Against Music,
    but I'm nuts that way.

  • Sandro "Podemos Solucionarlo (We Can Work It Out)" (Beatles cover in Spanish)
    The Spanish words for
    "bee" and "sheep" sound similar.
    Could cause confusion.

  • Serial Skanksters "Denise" (Randy & the Rainbows/Blondie cover)
    Blondie covered it,
    sans "e" and avec aplomb. And
    un peu de français.

  • Streetwize "Nuthin' But a 'G' Thang" (Dr. Dre./Snoop Doggy Dogg cover)
    Not to be confused
    with the boy band from Deutschland.
    Nay, this is smooth jazz.

  • The Droyds "Beat on the Brat" (Ramones cover)
    I love Droyds covers,
    even when they're really slow.
    At least I think so...

  • We Are Telephone "Division Day" (Elliott Smith cover)
    Too many young men,
    tortured and sad, leave us with
    mysteries unsolved.

  • The Yoshida Brothers "Oh, My Love" (John Lennon cover)
    Western music blends
    with Tsugaru-jamisen
    to bring us solace.


    *Emocapella:
    Consider adding a "p"
    for best portmanteau.

     
  • Thursday, January 24, 2008

    Feel the darkness of the black metal bands. (Or not.)

    I should be posting a slew of random tracks within the next few hours. Until then, Pitchfork is offering an Of Montreal cover the M.I.A./Parvati Kahn song "Jimmy" available for download here. Get to it, hipsters, et. al.

    Wednesday, January 09, 2008

    Stuff it up the hole in your culture!

    Remember a few days ago when I said I'd post this week? Well, you're soaking in it! I figured the best way to mark my return was with a giant list determined, as is often my wont, by shuffling the 12,000+ covers on my hard drive and picking the first 20 that came up.

  • Dream Girls "I Can Fly" (Rainey cover, comp. Grady/ Holding/ Pain/ Riley)
    What better way to begin than with a cover of a song originally featured in the classic film Girls Just Want to Have Fun? I miss that version of Sarah Jessica Parker.

  • Jenny Gear "Vanities" (Mary Black cover, comp. Noel Brazil)
    Apparently this gal was a Canadian Idol contestant. Sounds better than most American Idol contestants, methinks.

  • The Tiger Lillies "Send in the Clowns" (comp. Sondheim)
    I'm not afraid of clowns, in fact I quite enjoy even the most frightening clown imagery. If I were afraid of clowns, however, this version would definitely exacerbate my phobia.

  • Audrey 3000 feat. Mr. Hopkinson's Computer "Baby I Got Your Money" (ODB & Kelis cover)
    I've never had nuthin' but love for A3000 and MHC.

  • The Hardtimes "Here, There, and Everywhere" (Beatles cover)
    These guys were regulars on Dick Clark's TV show Where The Action Is! in the '60s. Apparently.

  • Trio Sourire "Satisfaction" (French Rolling Stones cover)

  • Bile "Do You Wanna Touch Me? (Oh Yeah)" (Gary Glitter cover)
    This song was always salacious, but is even more so in the wake of Glitter's more recent fates, no? This version sounds like something to which I'd have made out with a stranger in those bed-like things on the second floor of Medusa's in the early '90s (not to be confused with what passes for Medusa's today). Not that I'd have ever really done such a thing. Nope. Not me. Never.

  • The Hunt for Yoshi "Walk on the Ocean" (Toad the Wet Sprocket cover)
    God, I hate '90s radio rock. At least this version's existence amuses me.

  • The Dresden Dolls "Two-Headed Boy" (Neutral Milk Hotel cover)

  • I Corvi "Bang Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down)" (Italian Sonny & Cher cover)
    This song is really popular with the Italians, and I approve.

  • Brando "Plants & Rags" (PJ Harvey cover)
    Thanks, as always, to the awesome Indiana-based and -focused Musical Family Tree.

  • The Classic Metropolitan Orchestra "Raspberry Beret" (Prince cover)
    Normally I'd scoff and forward right past a track like this when it hits, but it came just as my pretty hipster neighbors were in the middle of their approximately 4,956th loud-ass argument, and I have to admit it cheered me up a bit.

  • The Monolators "Mr. Roboto" (Styx cover)
    The spoken intro cracks me up.

  • Anorak "That's Entertainment" (The Jam cover)
    Spanish electonric awesomeness from their downloadable Synthetic Pop Covers from the European Space Agency LP.

  • Mysteries of Life "That's How Strong My Love Is" (O.V. Wright cover, comp. Roosevelt Jamison)
    Another Indiana fave. And, no, Otis Redding wasn't the original performer. I Googled it and everything!

  • Rockabye Baby! "1979" (Smashing Pumpkins cover)

  • Soil & Eclipse "I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For" (U2 cover)
    If I didn't already sort of hate U2, I might now.

  • Teddy Thompson "The Future" (Leonard Cohen cover)
    Richard and Linda's boy sure can cover a song, I swear.

  • The Posies "O-o-h Child" (The Five Stairsteps cover)

  • The Leathercoated Minds "Along Comes Mary" (The Association cover)
    Before J.J. Cale's wrote songs for Clapton, he did stuff like this.
     
  •