genre bending music

I recently tweeted about hearing bluegrass covers of Ozzy Osbourne’s songs in a coffee shop. They sounded great. Here is a short list of a few genre bending cover songs.

  • Iron Horse performed the bluegrass versions of Ozzy Osbourne and Black Sabbath songs. They also have bluegrass tributes to Metallica (and a second to Metallica) and to the Goo Goo Dolls.
  • There are a ton of bluegrass covers of rock songs out there. It seems to be a pretty foolproof formula. Dolly Parton’s cover of “Shine” by Collective Soul is great.
  • A cello tribute to Metallica is rather interesting. It’s weird that there are so many Metallica tributes. What gives?
  • Although not an album of covers, Metallica recorded an album with the San Francisco Symphony Orchestra. I like the version of “One” on this album.
  • U2 is my favorite band. While, in general, their songs on the Joshua Tree are perfect and should not be remade, I love this electronica cover of “Where the Streets have no Name” by the Pet Shop Boys.
  • Muzak versions of rock songs should be its own category. I started to feel old when my music started to become muzak. I once heard a muzak version of U2’s “One” that was the worst cover ever.
  • Tori Amos’ alternative cover of Eminem’s “Bonnie & Clyde” is the creepiest cover I have ever heard. Tori Amos has done a lot of alt covers of songs that have been written and performed by men (she has a whole album of them!). Gender and genre bending covers are quite thought provoking, since they make me view the original song in a different light.  That, too, should be its own category.
  • Some genre bending covers are without a doubt better than the original songs. I like CCR’s cover of “I put a spell on you” and No Doubt’s “It’s My Life.”

I could go on and on forever. I apologize for the complete diversion from operations research, but tweets from OR nerds on this subject required a response longer than 140 characters.

What are your favorite genre bending cover songs? Do you like or loathe your favorite music being remade in other genres?  How do you feel about muzak versions of your favorite songs?


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