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Top Five Unexpected Crossover Cover Songs [VIDEO]

Heinrich Klaff, Flickr

There are many artists in the music world that cover songs. The majority of the time it is within the same genre. Every so often, artists will look outside their own realm and cover something far from their style. I have put together a list of five songs where this phenomenon occurs. I have put both videos up, so lets see how far out these artists go.

 

Starting out this list of crossover songs, this cover happens the very next year after the original.

Number 5

Jimi Hendrix is known for his wild guitar antics and psychedelic music so it was kind of a shock when he covered “All Along The Watchtower” by Bob Dylan. Hendrix transformed Dylan’s folksy tune into rock song that became one of his best known songs. In 1967, Dylan recorded “All Along The Watchtower” in his signature acoustic, folk style of music. The next year in 1968, Hendrix releases his version of the song, adding the electric guitar and his deep bluesy voice, changing the sound of the song dramatically. Look at the videos and see if you agree.

All Along The Watch Tower – Jimi Hendrix

All Along The Watch Tower – Bob Dylan


Number 4

Alien Ant Farm is an alternative rock band that wanted to pay homage to the King of Pop, Michael Jackson. In 2001, Alien Ant Farm released their cover of Jackson’s 1988 hit “Smooth Criminal.” Although the video is said to be a parody of Jackson’s original video, guitarist Terry Corso had this to say, “We just wanted to pay homage to Michael Jackson, but on our level. Obviously we’re not that glitzy, so we just wanted to tastefully take the stuff that’s cool in his videos and apply it in our own dirty little backyard way.” Let’s look at the difference.

Smooth Criminal – Alien Ant Farm


Smooth Criminal – Michael Jackson


Number 3

The White Stripes, an American garage rock duo, released “Jolene” as the B-side to their single “Hello Operator” in 2000. A cover of the 1974 #1 hit by Country star Dolly Parton. After re-releasing the song as a live single in 2004, The White Striped saw the song climb to #16 on the U.K. singles chart. From country to rock is a giant step in crossing genres. Check out the differences in these two tracks.

Jolene – The White stripes


Jolene – Dolly Parton


Number 2

Metallica is a heavy metal band that has been around since I was a kid. Their covers of Motorhead and Bob Seger were awesome, but it wasn’t until I heard the original version of their cover “Whiskey In The Jar” that showed me the diversity of their music style. It is an Irish traditional song first brought to the spotlight by the Irish band The Dubliners. Metallica released the song on their 1998 album Garage Inc., an album of cover songs the band did. Metallica won a Grammy in 2000 for Best Performance with the song. This is one of the longest leaps yet.

Whiskey In The Jar – Metallica


Whiskey In The Jar – The Dubliners


Number 1

The number one cover on my list is by none other than the country outlaw himself, Johnny Cash. With songs like “A Boy Named Sue” and “Ring Of Fire”, the shock that went racing through my brain when I heard he had did a cover from Nine Inch Nails was unbelievable. “Hurt” was originally released by Nine Inch Nails in 1994 from the album The Downward Spiral. Cash covered the song, to critical acclaim, in 2002.The video, showing images of his life, was named by both the Grammy awards and the CMA awards video of the year. “Hurt” was one of his final hits before his death in 2003.

Hurt – Johnny Cash


Hurt – Nine Inch Nails

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