Dusted || The 10 Best Cover Songs Of March 2024

Not all new music is really new, as many artists cover songs. Sometimes these are songs by their favorite artists, eg as a tribute to such a musical hero for a special reason, or they simply feel that a song deserves to be dusted and polished to reacquaint fans with great songs from the past. Other times, bands cover songs as a parody. Regardless of intent, some of those cover versions are so good or so much fun, we’d like to put a spotlight on them. Chosen from a wide range, here are – in random order – ten of our favorite covers from last month – links to the pages where you can add them to your wantlist included.

I’m Telling Tim || Cover: Alex Kasznel & The Board Of Directors || Original: NOFX
Knoxville, Tennessee punk & hardcore label Coffin Curse has put out the tribute compilation album I Heard They Broke Up!!, compiled by Mike Billups, featuring 62(!) bands covering songs from the rich NOFX catalog (proceeds go to charity). Our friends from Alex Kasznel & The Board Of Directors are also present, creditable as always.

Beverly Hills || Cover: Descendents || Original: Circle Jerks
Legendary American punk rock bands Circle Jerks and Descendents are touring together, a great opportunity to cover each other’s songs. No sooner said than done, and so we get Circle Jerks’ Red Tape, I Want Some Skank and Beverly Hills (my favorite) by Descendents, and Descendents’ Kabuki Girl and Hope by Circle Jerks. The You Got Your Descendents In My Circle Jerks EP is out on limited colored 7″ vinyl through Trust Records, listen in its entirety below. Be sure to check out the entertaining promo video as well.

Anything Could Happen || Cover: Eyelids || Original: The Clean
Portland, Oregon supergroup Eyelids celebrate their tenth anniversary by releasing a new album titled No Jigsaw, featuring tracks from out-of-print 7″s, unreleased songs, recent recordings, and covers of The Cars, Stereo Total, Big Dipper, The Fall, Depeche Mode, John-Paul Sartre Experience, Camper van Beethoven, The Moles, Echo and the Bunnymen, Straightjacket Fits, Peter Buck, and this indestructible hit by The Clean. Out digitally and on vinyl 2-LP through Jealous Butcher Records.

Undercover Of The Night || Cover: Bloodest Saxophone feat. Crystal Thomas || Original: The Rolling Stones
Young Corn Shintaro’s Tokyo jump blues & swing band Bloodest Saxophone are over 25 years into their career. With their new album Extreme Heat (out via Continental Record Services), they continue their mission to rule the world with the saxophone, through jazzy rhythm & blues that blends well with the amazing vocals of Crystal Thomas. Among their tasteful covers, this one of the 1983 Stones single stands out.

You Don​’​t Know Me || Cover: Night Owls feat. Eli “Paperboy” Reed & Eamon Doyle || Original: Ray Charles
Los Angeles rhythm section & production team Night Owls return to the wantlist offering two more re-imagined soul classics. On the A-side you’ll hear a roots reggae infused rendition of Ray Charles’ 1962 single You Don’t Know Me, taken to greater heights by Eli “Paperboy” Reed (vocals) and Eamon Doyle (backing vocals). On the flipside, Jr. Thomas & The Volcanos contribute harmonies to Eddie Kendricks’ If You Let Me. Out digitally and on vinyl 7″ through F-Spot Records.

Whiskey In The Jar || Cover: Stop Calling Me Frank || Original: Traditional
“Whack for my daddy-o // There’s whiskey in the jar-o.” Who doesn’t know this Irish traditional song? Made famous by The Dubliners and Thin Lizzy, but also covered by Metallica, Down by Law, Belle & Sebastian, Pulp and many others. Boston’s gritty pub-rock band Stop Calling Me Frank is responsible for the most recent but certainly not the least version, thanks to heartfelt vocals and a howling saxophone. It’s the opening song of the Whiskey In The Jar & Other Tales From The Bar​ EP by various artists, out digitally via Rum Bar Records.

Eight Miles High || Cover: Johnny Casino || Original: The Byrds
Australian singer/guitarist John A. Spittles aka Johnny Casino was already in the studio, but his drummer wouldn’t arrive until later, and to make up for that lost time he recorded an almost ten-minute version of the 1966 Byrds classic (with audio engineer Ciaran Wall on drums, bass and backing vocals, and Mike Kiker on organ and piano). This captivating cover will be a bonus track to the new album High Stone, out May 24 through Cheersquad Records & Tapes.

Something About What Happens When We Talk || Cover: Careful || Original: Lucinda Williams
You may know Dave Williams from his work in The Steve Adamyk Band, Black Tower, Crusades, Surrender, Year Zero, etc., but he’s also active solo under the moniker of Careful. He has just released the full-length album Both Things Can Be True, consisting of ten cover songs in which he successfully merges alt-country with indie rock in songs by Steve Earle, Evan Dando, George Jones, The Devil Makes Three, Townes Van Zandt et al. All equally appealing, but this one by Lucinda Williams touches me the most.

Box #10 || Cover: Michael Kane || Original: Jim Croce
Worcester, Massachusetts-based folk-punk collective Michael Kane & the Morning Afters made it to the top of my year-end list with their 2022 Broke But Not Broken LP. Their frontman now put out a self-titled solo EP featuring five subdued songs, including covers of his favorite Jim Croce song and Justin Townes Earle’s Kids In the Street. The tunes feel like demos, which only adds to the intensity – those vocals, oh those vocals. Reportedly some of these tracks will get the full band treatment for the next Morning Afters record, which I’m really looking forward to.

Always On My Mind || Cover: Tami Neilson || Original: Gwen McCrae
There will be people who think Always on My Mind is an Elvis Presley or Pet Shop Boys original, but in fact the song – written by Wayne Carson, Johnny Christopher and Mark James – was first released by Gwen McCrae in 1972, three months before Brenda Lee who had recorded it first. It has since been covered hundreds of times, most notably in 1982 by Willie Nelson, who received a Grammy Award for it. New Zealand powerhouse vocalist Tami Neilson now has shared her beautiful take on the classic, the second release in her Neilson Sings Nelson series as a gift for the legendary country artist’s 90th birthday. The video below is filmed inside the vault at Willie Nelson’s Pedernales Studio.

La Vie En Rose || Cover: Nick Cave || Original: Édith Piaf
Both the song and the singer need no introduction, but they form a golden combination. Taken from the soundtrack of The New Look, season 1 (Apple TV+).

Also worth mentioning:
4 AM (Richard Buckner) by Jon Duncan
All The Things She Said (t.A.T.u.) by Dream Wife
Boss Bitch
(Doja Cat) by Cherym
I’m Waiting For The Man (Lou Reed) by Keith Richards
Into Your Arms (The Lemonheads) by Dogbreth
I Wanna Be Your Dog (Stooges) by Tightwire
I Saw Her Standing There (The Beatles) by The Jerrys
Love Don’t Live Here Anymore (Rose Royce ) by Billy Idol
Now I Wanna Sniff Some Glue (Ramones) by Yiayia
Ocean Eyes (Billie Eilish) by The Gaslight Anthem
Substitute (The Who) by The Midnight Callers
White Dress (Lana Del Rey) by Drop Nineteens

Check out our Dusted playlist on Spotify for more cool cover songs.

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