Let Cover Songs Inspire You

01/26/2012 22:23

Adam Sandler from the Wedding Singer


Do you ever hear a cover song and think, “hey, this is way better than the original.” That happened to me the other day when I heard the song 99 Problems by Hugo. No disrespect to the Jay Z version, but I’m feeling this one much more.


So, I got to thinking about other cover songs that outshone the original. After some thought and poking around on the net, I came up with a few more examples:


1. Man Who Sold the World by Nirvana

I bet a lot of people don’t even realize Nirvana borrowed this song from David Bowie.


2. Twist and Shout by the Beatles

The Top Notes who? Yeah, that’s what I thought when I found out Twist and Shout wasn’t the brainchild of the Beatles. Apparently, some band named The Top Notes wrote the first version and are seemingly only famous for writing a song  the Beatles covered.


3. Faith by Limp Bizkit

True, it’s kind of hard to compare Fred Durst and George Michaels when they are in two totally different genres. But, Durst’s rendition has the sing-a-long factor at the beginning and the rockin’ elements at the end – it’s just better.


4. Sweet Dreams by Marilyn Manson

The Eurythmics sang the first, more mentally stable sounding, version of this song. The original is good, but again, if you want less pop and a little more rock then you’ve got to go with the Manson adaptation.


5. Respect  by Aretha Franklin

The first singer of Respect was Otis Redding, and while Aretha didn’t alter the lyrics very much, the two were asking for two entirely different types of respect. Aretha, of course, wanted her man to show her some respect (in the traditional sense of the word), and Otis used the word as a euphemism for something else … if you know what I mean.


Really, this list could go on and on. Once you start digging, you find there are a lot of famous songs that first belonged to somebody else. It’s actually pretty interesting.


But, what’s all of this have to do with surviving college? Well, I’ll tell you…

Choosing a major and deciding what you want to do with your life can be hard and sometimes stifling (I’ve discussed this issue about choosing majors before), and this fear can compound if you have dreams of entrepreneurship. You may wonder, what can I do that hasn’t already been done?  Or, like the guy from a Beautiful Mind you might be on the hopeless search for a “truly original idea.”


But, as these cover songs can attest, you don’t have to come up with something totally unique (I’m not sure if there is anything). You just have to find something you like and do it better than everyone else around you.


Bottom line: Do what they did, but do it better.





Topic: Let Cover Songs Inspire You

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