Some songs just shouldn’t be covered, there I’ve said it. I was in the swimming pool this morning and obviously when I’m in there I’m kind of at the mercy of the staff as to what music my poor ears get assaulted by. Being the sort of person who buys CDs that are sometimes limited to less than 1000 pieces, it’s fair to say my tastes fall outside the mainstream, and pretty much always have, bar the odd exception (Depeche Mode, The Police and some of the larger Metal bands).
So there I was, minding my own business, swimming away, when some prick (almost certainly some sort of wanky haired X-Factor reject) starts singing ‘Fast Car’ originally by Tracey Chapman. Now, I’m no fan of Tracey Chapman, but that song is very well crafted and performed and there is no point in covering it.
But why let that put off any dumb-ass fuckwit with a guitar who deludes themselves into thinking that they are bringing something fresh to the table by covering it. Seriously, whatever it is you think you’re ‘bringing’ – you really aren’t. Covering a song like that is a terrible idea, because a) while the viewer/audience starts off thinking ‘Oh yes, this is a great song’, by the end of it they will inevitably be comparing you to dear Tracey and not in a good way… and b) even if by some miracle you manage to pull off a better than mediocre version, all it will do is shine a light on the general crappiness of your own material (I’m looking at you Lacuna Coil with your career highlight cover of ‘Enjoy the Silence’).
So yeah, just leave it.