I know quite a few people that think of cover bands as groups who can’t produce their own material, and are forced to take the already successful material of others. But in most cases, this is very far from the truth. Even further away from the truth is the belief that hip hop songs can’t be properly re-conceived by anyone other than a hip hop artist. I’ve got 5 videos that prove otherwise.
5. Anya Marina – Whatever You Like
Thanks to exposure from Gossip Girl (yeah son) this song flew into all of our hearts with Anya Marina’s exotic voice singing to pre-jail T.I. Sung from a female perspective, Marina seem completely in charge. it’s more pop than rock, but it’s still an amazing rendition.
4. The Fray – Heartless
Say what you will about Isaac Slade’s sing-song voice, but it does wonders to Kanye’s heavily auto-tuned break-up jam. The band’s cover is haunting and you can really feel the pain behind the lyrics the way they perform it.
3. Jenny Owen Youngs – Hot In Herre
Hearing a soft-spoken Jenny Owen Youngs sing “I was like, good gracious ass is bodacious / flirtaticious, tryin’ to show faces / lookin’ for the right time to shoot my steam” is the best way to open the most awesome rap cover ever. Throughout the song she sings with such seriousness about “poppin’ the bottles” that I had to listen to it twice to hear through my own laughter.
2. Framing Hanley – Lollipop
I know many readers may not know that a mashup of Lil Wayne’s track Lollipop that basically took me from an amateur with a buzz, to a up-and-coming professional. That being said, I have a special appreciate for this song, and personal distaste for anyone who messes it up. But when my good friend Adam Patton shot the Framing Hanley version my way, I was far more than impressed. When you watch the video however, keep in mind that this version is like a little mini movie, with a plot and the whole nine yards, but the actual songs starts at about 2:20 into the video.
1. Ben Folds – B*tches Aint Shit
This song was the inspiration for this list. It’s everything a rap cover needs to be: make it original without changing lyrics. By far one the best and funniest covers I’ve ever heard… Hands down.