March 28, 2009


What do Adam Lambert, Fallout Boy, Slim Thug, and Seal all have in common? They all recently have successfully covered someone else’s hit song. “Smokey” Robinson’s “Tracks Of My Tears”, Michael Jackson’s “Beat It”, Flock Of Seagulls “I Ran”, and Sam Cooke’s “Change Is Gonna” Come” are all getting a new lease on life.





I also think that the next “American Idol”, Adam Lambert’s live version of “Tracks Of My Tears”, which is available on I-Tunes, is going to sell so much that it’ll make it into the Guinness Book of World Records!

At one time the public wanted to hear familiar songs sung by a variety of artists, which is why there are hundreds of versions of “Moon River” (Mancini/Mercer) but now there seems to be only room for the original recording.

I say BULLSHIT! Most artists today whether they write their own material or not, need a little variety on their CD’s to keep their fans interested and their own producers from falling asleep. As a former publisher (Warner Brothers Music, Irving/Almo Music) who’s updated many hits from catalogs (“You’re 16”, “I Only Have Eyes For You”, “Little Bitty Pretty One”, “Our Day Will Come”) I see 2009 as a year that more covers will make it back to the top of the charts!


My three personal picks of songs that should be hits again are…


“Happy Together” by Gary Bonner and Alan Gordon 


“Rock and Roll Heaven” by Alan O’Day and Johnny Stevenson  


“Don’t Look Any Further” by Dennis Lambert, Duane Hitchings, and Franne Golde



Copyright 2009 by Artie Wayne https://artiewayne.wordpress.com/about-artie-wayne/



When an artist covers another artists song today it’s treated like an event, when it should be considered as a viable marketing tool to sell more CDs. My on-line pal, Brian Ibbott, has one of the best websites to hear covers in every genre, with thousands of covers in his archives simply called Coverville http://coverville.com


2 Responses to “HANDS UP…YOU’RE COVERED!”

  1. Joe Nelson Says:

    For what it’s worth, the Slim Thug track isn’t any different than the bulk of the genre: most rap songs (and a sizeable chunk of pop and R&B) are based on an already existing song. It’s something of a boon for the original writers (who are legally co-writers of derivative works, entitled to credit and compensation), but hardly counts as a true cover.

    As a fan of sixties pop, the exciting thing to me about hearing songs like Imani Coppola’s “Legend of a Cowgirl” or Akon’s “Lonely” was the fact that their creators looked beyond the current, pulling up sources that existed before the artists were even born and showing an appreciation for the history. If one of these rap producers wants to impress me, let ’em figure out a way to sample Merle Haggard’s “Branded Man” within the context of current genre and make it work as a true collaboration. If the reason most of today’s urban music is so negative is that it speaks to the unpleasant realities of inner city life, it doesn’t get any more real than that.

  2. Mike Millius Says:

    Your Artieness,

    Good observation. It might be because they (established songs) get better as the new ones get worse. Also because these are real “songs,” what they’re producing today are just records.

    Mike Millius

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