Saturday, July 02, 2005

Knock, Knock, Knocking on the Dept. of Musical Ethics Door

New Rule: Before any band or recording artist should ever attempt to record their own cover version of any previously written and recorded song from any other classic rock band in history, then they should first make an appeal to a newly established ‘Department of Musical Ethics’ for which, of course, I will be Chairman of the Board.

I promise to wield my powers of good taste justly with brutal honesty and ironclad integrity. Such examples of my previous cover song seals of approval include:

Hurt – Johnny Cash (Nine Inch Nails)
Telegram Sam – Bauhaus (T. Rex)
Hey Joe – Jimi Hendrix (the jury is still out, but the smart money is on Billy Roberts)
Traveling Riverside Blues – Led Zeppelin (Robert Johnson)
Pancho & Lefty – Willie Nelson (Townz Van Zant)
Pocahontas - Crash Vegas (Neil Young)
Sweet Jane – Cowboy Junkies (Velvet Underground)
Samson & Delilah – Grateful Dead (Rev. Gary Davis)
Landslide – Smashing Pumpkins (Stevie Nicks)
Sweet Child o’ Mine – Luna (Guns & Roses)
Get Ready – Rare Earth (Temptations)
Backdoor Man – Doors (Howlin’ Wolf)

There are a few more (not many, but a few) that I may relent to acknowledging after a few stiff drinks and bucket bongs, but these are the core dozen that I strongly support as worthy of being covered.

All others are about as palatable as three-month-old expired cream cheese - without the lumps.

Likewise, I’m all about maintaining the integrity of rock and fucking roll. I couldn’t give a shit about the lesser musical genre’s such as rap, techno, death metal, modern pop, boy bands, new country, or anything to ever become freakishly popular in Germany*. Furthermore, everything I know about classical music I learned in Loony Tunes.

Nothing is worse than having an associated memory that has been affixed to a particular fond melody, and then having that same memory trounced to itty bitty little pieces by some screeching doofus who sounds like a wounded orangutan, and who is also completely void of the common sense to respect the compassionate decency regarding recording cover songs in music. The same song that I remember rounding second base with Eva Roditis to back in high school under the bleachers has now been rerecorded in order to sell Rigatoni by the can (Prodigy – Firestarter) in television commercials. The Smiths ‘How Soon Is now’ was rerecorded and hacked to bits in order to hock light ice beer – LIGHT fucking ice beer? Wait…given Morrissey’s penchant for hairdressers on fire and frosty wit, perhaps this remade cover was well suited.

Here are some examples of songs for which I would have the collective band members rounded up and impaled on spikes for making a mockery out of songs that I hold dear:

Landslide – the Dixie Chicks (Stevie Nicks)
Time After Time – Phil Collins (Cynder Lauper)**
Lucy In the Sky With Diamonds – William Shatner (Beatles)
American Pie – Madonna (Don MacClean)**
Just a Gigolo – David Lee Roth (Louis Armstrong)
Live and Let Die – Guns & Rose (Paul McCartney & Wings)
Personal Jesus - Marilyn Manson (Depeche Mode)

Brown-Eyed Girl – ANYBODY! (Van-fucking-Morrison)

Any of these cover songs could cause instant brain damage and leave your mind as blank as Teri Schiavo’s hospital menu card. These particular songs were travesties not only to the good name of rock and roll, but to the very essence of cultured taste in general. It’s like comparing a raspberry torte to dried dog shit.

Of course, I could rhyme off endlessly zillions of cover song offenders, but I would inevitably become so enraged that I may give way to going all Al Capone “teamwork” and bash in my stereo with a Louisville Slugger.

The general rule I would recommend bands follow in order to gain a better chance of yielding favor from the ‘Department of Musical Ethics’ would be to make the original song you’ve chosen your own, don’t try to replicate the same style in which it was already recorded because inevitably your version will suck donkey balls in comparison. And don’t choose those untouchable songs that everybody hails as being “classic”; you could play a haunting rendition of Pink Floyd’s ‘Interstellar Overdrive’ on a penny whistle through your asshole and you would still get lynched the moment you tried to leave the building.

But beware superstar-wannabe's, violations will not be tolerated and will be dealt with swiftly and without mercy. Found violator's and pepetrators of bad taste will be subject to a ritual beating at the hands of your peers whom you outright disrespected. This punishment should have been in effect al along!

Imagine seeing Harry Chapin stomping the living bejesus out of the collective band members of Ugly Kid Joe for similarly taking a huge dump on his classic ballad 'Cats In the Cradle'. It would have been poetry in motion...

* Being the contemporary breeding ground of evil in the first place, this logic is simply playing the law of averages.

** Neither of these songs I really liked in their original form either, but the fact that they were still covered again makes them twice as shitty, therefore elevating their total suck-value to shitty².


Blogger Sandi said...

Pardon me while I lurk around a bit. Great stuff here! Very well and thoughly written.

I was reading through some things and I somewhat agree with you about Africa, but I think there is one thing that the rest of the world can contribute to all the nations. CONDOMS!!! With instruction in how to use them. Then of course we will have to teach them math so they will understand the x amount of food will feed x amount of people, ONLY.
Then maybe they will be willing to use the condoms.

12:06 AM  

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