Friday, May 23, 2008

They Did It Their Way - D and E

If you're seeing this for the first time and wondering what this "They did it their way" thing is about, read here for the background and full listing of this personal game of mine.


Lea DeLaria - Donna
Depeche Mode - Route 66
Devo - Satisfaction (I Can't Get Me No)
Devo - Secret Agent Man
Devo - Working In a Coalmine
Donnas - Drive My Car
Doors - Alabama Song
Dr. John - Blue Monk


Jonathan & Darlene Edwards - I Am Woman
Jonathan & Darlene Edwards - Stayin' Alive
English Beat (aka The Beat) - Can't Get Used To Losing You
English Beat - Tears Of a Clown
Erasure - Can't Help Falling In Love
Erasure - Make Me Smile (Come Up And See Me)
Erasure - River Deep Mountain High
Erasure - S.O.S.
Erasure - Solsbury Hill
Erasure - Take a Chance On Me
Erasure - Video Killed the Radio Star
Melissa Etheridge - I Will Always Love You
Everclear - Brown-Eyed Girl

Lea DeLaria's version of "Donna" comes from the Actors' Fund of America benefit concert and recording of "Hair". Again, in theory, you could either take every track from this album and include, or you could exclude the album because it's a complete recording of all the songs from the show. I took the middle path - include a few numbers, but not all.

Depeche Mode's "Route 66" is more a completist inclusion, as I'm not terribly fond of this track personally.

The Devo covers of Satisfaction, Secret Agent Man and Workin' In a Coalmine are there, well, just because.

The Donnas version of Drive My Car comes from "This Bird Has Flown," a tribute to "Rubber Soul" on the 40th anniversary of its release. Again, I only included three or four of the tracks off this album in the collection. The one track that drives me up the wall is what Fiery Furnaces did to "Norwegian Wood."

The Doors didn't do many covers, so you have to take 'em where you can get 'em, and "Alabama Song" is about all there is. You could almost fill up a CD with various versions of "Alabamasong," especially if you don't mind half of them being sung by Lotte Lenya.

Dr. John's version of "Blue Monk" is from a Thelonius Monk tribute album from the mid-1980's called "That's the Way I Feel Now." This track, Joe Jackson's version of "'Round Midnight" and
Barry Harris's version of "Pannonica" are staples of my iPod at all times. I don't think I ever delete these three tracks.

Jonathan and Darlene Edwards are one of the all-time greatest acts. They are, in fact, Jo Stafford
and Paul Weston. To be able to play so technically nearly correctly, and to sing so perfectly out of tune requires an unbelievable amount of actual talent. Chip sums them up as "perfectly awful". Here's a video of a rather buff drag queen lip-syncing to Darlene's version of "Staying Alive."

The Beat's ska takes on
Tears of a Clown and Can't Get Used to Losing You - again, 1980's staples.

Erasure do covers often enough that they finally just recorded an album of covers and called it "Other People's Songs". Some of these tracks are from that album, some aren't. The strangest thing they've done to any song is to make "Solsbury Hill" into a duple beat (if you don't know the original, it's almost entirely in 7/4, except for the occasional bar of 4/4).

Melissa Etheridge's version of "I Will Always Love You" is from a Dolly Parton tribute called "Just Because I'm a Woman".

Everclear's cover of Brown-Eyed Girl is from "Songs from an American Movie, Part 1".

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