I read a poll recently from Total Guitar magazine listing the readers top 5 best and worst cover versions. Perhaps unsurprisingly, Celine Dion won the worst cover version hands down for her rendition of AC/DC's You Shook Me All Night Long. Perhaps Celine's agent had the insight not to actually release the single after the damage was done when Celine warbled away the tune at a Las Vegas concert in 2002. So here's the list of the full top 5 in both categories...
Worst Cover Versions
1. Celine Dion - You Shook Me All Night Long (AC/DC)
2. Girls Aloud/Sugerbabes - Walk This Way (Run DMC and Aerosmith)
3. Westlife - More Than Words (Extreme)
4. Will Young - Light My Fire (The Doors)
5. The Mike Flowers Pops - Wonderwall (Oasis)
Best Cover Versions
1. Jimi Hendrix - All Along The Watchtower (Bob Dylan)
2. The Beatles - Twist and Shout (The Top Notes)
3. Guns n Roses - Live and Let Die (Wings)
4. Nirvana - The Man Who Sold The World (David Bowie)
5. Muse - Feeling Good (Anthony Newley and Leslie Bricusse)
All worthy inclusions although I actually didn't mind Will Young's version of Light My Fire. Here's my take on a cover version that might be worth an inclusion on a more expanded best list. A few years back, Tom Jones resurrected his career with the release of the Reload album which contained 15 cover versions in collaboration with some pretty cool and credible musicians/bands. Although the release of 'Sexbomb' sold in millions and is the stand out track from the album, I always thought that his collaboration with Stereophonics on 'Mama Told Me Not To Come' was sensational. And as for Kelly Jones.. enough said, he can't do any wrong in my eyes. Sorry Three Dog Night, your original version was good, but the Welsh boyos whipped your arses on this one.
See if you agree, and feel free to pass on other cover versions that are worth a mention....