When it comes to covers, some artists just pair up like peanut butter and jelly (see: Johnny Cash’s devastating version of Nine Inch Nails’ masochist masterpiece “Hurt,” or the White Stripes transforming Dolly Parton’s heart-plucking plea “Jolene” into a bluesy, gender-baiting dirge). Some, sadly, come off more like peanut butter and pickles (Pat Boone + Judas Priest ÷ leather chaps = oh noes!).
This past week alone, we’ve seen a glut of covers of varying quality, including Lady GaGa’s Liza-with-a-Z piss-take on Coldplay’s “Viva La Vida,” Sara Bareilles’ half-caf, no-foam version of Bruce Springsteen’s oft–covered burner “I’m on Fire,” and Canadian folkie Serena Ryder’s spare, Cat Power-y riff on Band of Horses’ “The Funeral.”
We could, of course, spend all afternoon trolling through YouTube for more new ones, and tripping down the shady lanes of cover memories — UB40’s “Red Red Wine” (shine on, you crazy reggae Neil Diamond!), the Fugees’ “Killing Me Softly with His Song” (Roberta Flack was not mad at it), Jessica Simpson’s “These Boots Are Made for Walking” (Nancy Sinatra, you should sue) — but instead, we turn to you, readers, to give us your own personal list of the best, worst and weirdest.
To get the ball rolling, we leave you with Celine Dion, doing irreparable French-Canadian damage to AC/DC’s “You Shook Me All Night Long”:
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