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TwoGunslingers

Covers of Tom Petty songs

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Expanding on the idea of the "Songs Tom Should cover"-thread we can discuss the reverse here, so to speak: Covers of Petty songs. What are your favorites? Do you like covers of songs by our favorite artist at all? Do you find certain cover versions distinctively disgusting? Is there a point in covering Tom Petty to begin with? And what is it that makes a cover version good?

 

Many years ago, I bought the You Got Lucky-sampler you all may know on which indie-bands cover different Tom Petty songs. I remember not liking the album very much and I hence haven't heard it in years... to my ears, back then, the songs just lacked the certain Petty-ness I so much enjoy in the originals.

 

Then again, I like Stevie Nicks' cover of Free Fallin' from the Party-of-Five soundtrack. I don't know why exactly, but compared to John Mayer's version - that I just can't come to grips with - she did a decent job covering what is in my opninion an otherwise uncoverable song.

 

But enough of my thus far only poorly elaborated thoughts on the subject! Over to you.

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Yes, ideed a good topic to expand on. For now let me just say what I said in the TP doing covers thread. I think there's plenty point in artists covering TP. Such an awesome vault to pick stuff from. However sadly, to me most attempts so far have fallen way short of success. A general lack of adding anything interesting or understanding the material in a for me fruitful way. That You Got Lucky compilation you mention is a perfect case of disaster. One of many.

For some parts I agree Stevie did a good job on a few occasions. Also Lucinda. And like I said in the other thread - Johnny Cash. That said, I might have to get back on this subject..

Have to collect my thoughts further, but generally speaking, people seem to like and respect TP a lot, but they seem to struggle in channeling his dimension in the songs or finding their own personal dimension in it in a way that speaks to me.

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Thanks for sharing the videos, MJs2ndLD! Boy, would I have loved to be at that Foo Fighters gig... and I'm not even a Foo Fighters fan... but such a good band in such a small club... amazing.

 

I also dig Vedder singing I Won't Back Down. He's really... earned it, in a way... after all these years he's been making music and still going on. And he can make any song his own, I guess, with that voice.

 

Regarding the Insider cover: It's a shame the guy doesn't sing. I did a cover of it many years ago with my girlfriend at the time. It's so much fun to sing harmonies on that one, the song is just MADE for harmony singing. But somehow it works with just one person singing as well.

 

It all goes to show, I guess, two things: First, how great these songs are! They are such a solid foundation to build on as a performer. And second, that it's really hard to add something to them that's truly your own. Because anywhere you go, Tom's been there before. By which I mean his interpretations of his own songs have so many facets (which is probably why we're still listening to his records after years and years), they are not black and white, they have so many colors you don't necessarily see at first glance. Or hear at first listen. Still, I think the three groups here (or the two groups and Eddie) really do a great job covering the songs. Because they do it with intensity and a lot of energy. And maybe their facets show themselves also after revisiting them a few times.

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Here's a bunch, some good, some not so good.  Overall I think the girls do a better job with Tom's songs.  Some of these are on iTunes or Amazon.

 

American Girl - Roger McGuinn from the album Thunderbyrd (1977)

Save Me - Phil Seymour previously unreleased circa 1978, appears on the album Precious To Me (1996)

Breakdown - Suzi Quatro from the album If You Knew Suzi (1979)

Louisiana Rain - Bonnie Tyler from the album Diamond Cut (1979)

I Can't Fight It - The Textones UK single (1980)

Lost In Your Eyes - The Searchers from the album The Searchers (1980)

Breakdown - Grace Jones from the album Warm Leatherette (1980)

Refugee - The Chipmunks from the album Chipmunk Punk (1980)

Hometown Blues - Roseanne Cash from the album Seven Year Ache (1981)

Wild One Forever - Bebe Buell from the EP Covers Girl (1981)

Stop Draggin' My Heart Around - Stevie Nicks from the album Bella Donna (1981)

Surrender - Phil Seymour from the album Phil Seymour 2 (1982)

I Will Run To You - Stevie Nicks from the album The Wild Heart (1983)

Never Be You - Maria McKee from the Streets Of Fire original soundtrack album (1984)

Never Be You - Roseanne Cash from the album Rhythm & Romance (1985)

Thing About You - Southern Pacific with Emmylou Harris from the album Southern Pacific (1985)

Ways To Be Wicked - Lone Justice from the album Lone Justice (1985)

Lost In Your Eyes - Don Johnson from the album Heartbeat (1986)

We Stand A Chance - Paul Butterfield from the album The Legendary Paul Butterfield Rides Again (1986)

Got My Mind Made Up - Bob Dylan from the album Knocked Out Loaded (1986)

Keepin' Me Alive - Williams Bros. from the album Two Stories (1987)

We Stand A Chance - Darlene Love from the album Paint Another Picture (1988)

Lost In Your Eyes - The Jeff Healey Band from the album Feel This (1992)

The Waiting - Linda Ronstadt from the album Feels Like Home (1995)

Leave Virginia Alone - Rod Stewart from the album Spanner In The Works (1995)

Southern Accents - Johnny Cash from the album Unchained (1996)

Free Fallin' - Stevie Nicks from the Party Of Five soundtrack album (1996)

Keepin' Me Alive - Juice Newton from the album American Girl (1999)

I Won't Back Down - Johnny Cash from the album American III: Solitary Man (2000)

Free Girl Now - The Mary Janes from the album Flame (2001)

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I agree that listening to TP covers by other artists is not that grand, and sometimes even painful, but why wouldn't anyone want to cover a TP song? There is so much great music and lyrics to pull from. The trick to listening to a TP cover is to not compare it to the original. Nobody does TP like TP!

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the album isn't even out yet and these things show up..

We live in the digital age: music travels at the speed of light (that's not a good metaphor, I know, but you know what I mean). Trailer has been available as a download for quite some time now. So people not only cover it but post their videos.

I haven't heard these covers yet (I can't right now), but the setting looks very appropriate...

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Oh, it's not that I'm surprised. Merely a rhetorical remark, just fascinated. With the right spin on it and some fluke, these days you are able to be a viral plague with something someone else plan on releasing next week. That's just how this "digital age" confronts us with some strange chronology at times. To the extent of blurring the sense of what's original and what's a copy. At least this time there was, as duly noted, if just barely so, a single out. But perhaps someone will soon be a tube hit with a song they picked up through a rehearse room wall. It's just interesting times, all I'm saying. A mad pace that's not for everyone and I'm not sure it's for me.

That said, these are well made and honorable covers. Just wish she'd pick up something more fresh, something more current.. ;)

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I'm sorry, guys, I didn't want to sound like some smarta**. I know that you're very well aware of the high speed times we're living in. Just wanted to bring it out in the open.

What's closer to the point, maybe, is that established artists should not announce the releases of their albums that early. I don't know if research is being done on things like that but nowadays, to announce an album three months before release date is like eons in the digital age. So much can happen in the meantime! Other artists cover your songs (see above) which makes your own recordings seem dated before they're officially released... or people even forget about your album because everything else is moving so fast. Or the album - like we painfully discovered in another thread - does not live long enough to see its own release date (yes, I'm getting slightly sarcastic now, because the whole All The Rest story still makes me angry).

Neil Young may be an extreme example, but his albums almost always arrive at very short notice which gives them both the advantage of a pleasant surprise and the aura of something truly fresh and new.

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I'm sorry, guys, I didn't want to sound like some smarta**. I know that you're very well aware of the high speed times we're living in. Just wanted to bring it out in the open.

What's closer to the point, maybe, is that established artists should not announce the releases of their albums that early. I don't know if research is being done on things like that but nowadays, to announce an album three months before release date is like eons in the digital age. So much can happen in the meantime! Other artists cover your songs (see above) which makes your own recordings seem dated before they're officially released... or people even forget about your album because everything else is moving so fast.

I didn't take it as a smarta** comment.

A shorter period of time between announcement and release would be good. Regarding All the Rest, it would be nice if someone would make a simple announcement regarding when it'll be released or to not expect it for a while. Sure, at this point, I don't think anyone's expecting it but it would still be a good and simple thing to do.

Losing interest doesn't apply to someone in Tom's situation or with Mudcrutch. My impression is TPATH new albums (or Mudcrutch) are for the hardcore fans and they won't forget about a record. But it is strange to see covers already out there. What the internet and smartphones  have weakened peoples' patience. There's good and bad with the technology overall; being aware of how many things leak nowadays still didn't prepare me for covers of new Mudcrutch!

cheers

 

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I didn't take it as a smarta** comment.

Thanks. Glad to hear that!:)

Regarding All the Rest, it would be nice if someone would make a simple announcement regarding when it'll be released or to not expect it for a while. Sure, at this point, I don't think anyone's expecting it but it would still be a good and simple thing to do.

I'm right there with you.

 being aware of how many things leak nowadays still didn't prepare me for covers of new Mudcrutch!

Me neither... but I also think that's an extreme case. Tom Petty is still an immensely popular and revered artist and a lot of musicians (many of whom are  influenced by him) pay a lot of attention to what he's doing. Even though he's not that much in the public eye any more.

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Some fun additions here lately!

 

How about "I Need To Know" in swedish? 

Yeah, how about that. Gyllene Tider singer Gessle - of Roxette fame - is supposedly a huge TP fan and old rock records collector. Also known to sport a Ric any chance he gets. This early gem, to me, perhaps not surprisingly, ranks among his more memorable moments, if not quite awesome. It´s taken from a nice enough rare EP of songs that came a bonus with one of their first albums I think. Not what you´d call a famous rendition before the days of the tube, and still not, by all means..  Oh, yeah.. and me being swedish and all, I hunted this vinyl down many many years ago. Still have it. Somewhere. 

Edited by Shelter

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You Got Lucky!

Here's another very good one from Margot Cotten, who seems to be a singer song writer from France..complete with a Petty-esque  finger wagging style homage, well they do say imitation is the most sincere form of flattery! :) Good job in a nice setting done on this one!

 

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REO Speedwagon cover of Listen To Her Heart starts at 3:33 in this clip, complete with glow sticks! There is a stand alone cover of Listen To Her Heart on youtube from their Jacksonville show in 2015, but the sound quality is not great on that one....

 

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