I don’t know what’s gotten into me lately, but I have been all about cover songs. The weirder the cover, the better. The more it deviates from the original version of the song, the more I seem to be drawn to it. I downloaded the great WhoSampled app from the App Store – it’s also on the web at www.whosampled.com. It contains an amazing treasure trove of data about who has covered what songs and when and also which songs have been sampled where. I’m a bit dubious about some of the sampling data as I have a very hard time hearing the samples in question a lot of the time. But whatever, it’s helped me fill up my Spotify covers playlist which is appropriately called “ERMAGERD – CURVERS.”
Perhaps one of the more out of left field covers I’ve stumbled across lately is one of Taylor Dayne’s 80s dance hit “Tell It To My Heart.” I should probably say that it is impossible for me to think of this song and not think of my friend Jeff changing it to “Tell It To My Fart” but that’s kind of beside the point. I was all over this song in the spring of 1988 and I still am particularly fond of Dayne’s debut album. If you ask me, Taylor Dayne’s career was one of many that was derailed by the rise of grunge in the early 90s. But we still have the obviously-inspired-by-Lucky-Star video for “Tell It To My Heart.”
I was surprised to find that anyone had covered this song – Taylor Dayne pretty much owns it – but I suppose that as time goes by and it becomes more “Taylor-who?” the song becomes ripe for the picking.
According to WhoSampled, a guy named Thomas Anders – one-half of Modern Talking (“You’re My Heart, You’re My Soul) – covered Taylor Dayne. So to Spotify I went and there was Anders’ cover of “Tell It To My Heart.” Wow, he really took it in a completely different direction. Witness.
I’m not sure how to categorize this arrangement. It’s not quite lounge, not quite jazz. It’s definitely become a ballad – all the synths have been stripped away from the song. He doesn’t belt it like Taylor Dayne did, but rather, he almost undersings the song. For some reason though, it works for me.
In 2008, Taylor Dayne did a little coverage herself, covering Red Hot Chili Peppers’ “Under The Bridge.” The results can only be described as disastrous. Actually, the whole album was awful and despite my efforts to force myself to like it, it just didn’t happen and was eventually deleted from my iTunes library.