Covers Tournament: Round of 64, Day 6

Welcome to the “I Won’t Back Down-I Will Survive” division.  This division is about persevering, even when you’ve shot the sheriff (but not the deputy, we get it), even when traveling all over the world could interfere with dancing with yourself.  Listen to all eight tracks here, and vote by 11pm EST on Thursday.   Below we continue this round’s tradition of having the nominators pimp their songs  (because few got them in on time, the rest of the entries are brought to you by Wikipedia):

I Won’t Back Down (Johnny Cash) vs.  Wake Me When It’s Over (Supersuckers)

We’ve never given Rick Rubin a lot of attention here, but the founder of Def Jam records produced the Beastie Boys, Run-DMC, Chili Peppers, Nine Inch Nails and Jay-Z, in addition to his famed American series, from which this Cash cover hails from.  Look at this list, it’s just staggering.

The current lineup of the Supersuckers features Eddie Spaghetti on bass and lead vocals; “Metal” Marty Chandler and Dan “Thunder” Bolton on guitars; and Scott Churilla on drums.   Here’s a sample Wikipedia block quote:

[Heathman] was replaced by Rick Sims, formerly of the band the Didjits (and later the Gaza Strippers), for the recording of their third album, The Sacrilicious Sounds of the Supersuckers, and the subsequent tour. Heathman returned for the recording of their fourth album, Must’ve Been High, which, as their first alternative country album, was a major turning point for the band. Their fifth and final album with Sub-Pop was their greatest hits release, 1999’s How the Supersuckers Became the Greatest Rock and Roll Band in the World. That same year they released their fifth studio album, The Evil Powers of Rock ‘N’ Roll. In 2001, the band formed their own record label, Mid-Fi Recordings. In addition to numerous singles and several live recordings, the band released their sixth studio album, Motherfuckers Be Trippin’ on this label. Dancing Eagle then left the group and was replaced by Mike “Murderburger” Musburger, who was in turn later replaced by Scott “Scottzilla” Churilla.

I Shot the Sheriff (Eric Clapton) vs. Magnificent Sanctuary Band (Jerry Garcia Band)

We all know “I Shot the Sheriff”, but I’ll take this time to remind people that you cannot shoot an officer of the law in self defense, unless he was acting outside the scope of his duties as an officer, which does not seem to be the case in this song.  It’s definitely a capital offense.  And once you’ve gone and shot the sheriff, it doesn’t really matter if you shoot the deputy, does it?

“This song is an outtake off the extended version of the Jerry Garcia Band album Cats Under the Stars. Garcia often pointed to this album as the best he ever made. One of the comments in the first round raised an oft cited and frankly true point about Garcia’s voice—that it’s just not that good. Despite this fair quip, what has always captivated me about Jerry’s voice is the way he can bring real emotional resonance to any character he assumes as the singer–whether it’s a down-and-out wino who lives by the docks, a murderous out-law who knifes his best friend or a gospel preacher bringing in the sheep to hear the Magnificent Sanctuary Band– although, perhaps the latter role didn’t require such a great stretch.” –  ASF


Mad World (Gary Jules) vs. Dancing With Myself (Nouvelle Vague)

“I nominated “Mad World” because I believe, quite simply, that it’s the best cover of all time.  It combines two of my personal favorite genres: moody yet synth-poppy 80s rock and acoustic indie-rock covers of dance songs.  However, it doesn’t just execute a song in the latter genre– it defines and dominates it.  Jules takes a song that’s kind of spooky and makes it downright haunting, keeping some of the spirit of the original while totally redefining the song on his own terms.  This is one of those songs that gets inside you and *makes* you feel something, which the best music does.  As a cover and a stand-alone song, this is as near perfection as it gets.” – Aiko

“I first heard Nouvelle Vague’s rendition of “Dancing with Myself” while riding in the back seat of a friend’s car. I bobbed my head to the music without realizing it was a Billy Idol cover. It’s the type of charming reimagining that French export Nouvelle Vague create — fun, light, and always entertaining. I dare you not to tap your toes.” – Colin

I Wanna Hold Your Hand (Al Green) vs. I Will Survive (Cake)

When I googled “Al Green I Wanna Hold Your Hand”, Livingthedream.org was the third hit.  I’m sure that algorithm is affected by me hitting up this site every day, but it was still a cool moment, if not a disconcerting one, since I have nothing interesting to say about this cover.

“Cake. Although, the band may be best known for popularizing the use of the Vibraslap (seriously, that’s its name: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vibraslap) and for their platinum-selling single, “Going the Distance”, they can also rock a mean cover. And despite going-Vibraslap-less on their terrific update on this Gloria Gaynor tune, they somehow manage to captivate the listener.” – MattB

Pastables

I Won’t Back Down (Johnny Cash) vs.  Wake Me When It’s Over (Supersuckers)

I Shot the Sheriff (Eric Clapton) vs. Magnificent Sanctuary Band (Jerry Garcia Band)

Mad World (Gary Jules) vs. Dancing With Myself (Nouvelle Vague)

I Wanna Hold Your Hand (Al Green) vs. I Will Survive (Cake)

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About janos marton

A born and bred New Yorker, Janos Marton lives the dream as a writer, lawyer, historian, and activist.
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19 Responses to Covers Tournament: Round of 64, Day 6

  1. aiko says:

    I Won’t Back Down (Johnny Cash) vs. Wake Me When It’s Over (Supersuckers) 7/9
    I think Grant said last time the singer from the Supersuckers reminded him of the Violent Femmes… agreed, and it’s feeling more awesome tonight than Johnny (who could bang out an amazing cover in his sleep so he’s gotta do something REALLY special to really wow me).

    I Shot the Sheriff (Eric Clapton) vs. Magnificent Sanctuary Band (Jerry Garcia Band) 4/3.5
    MSB sounds like karaoke.

    Mad World (Gary Jules) vs. Dancing With Myself (Nouvelle Vague) 10/8
    Nouvelle Vague is also an example of the “acoustic indie rock covers of dance songs” (*80s* dance songs, even) genre, but she is unfortunately up against the king of the genre. Tough draw, I like what she’s doing here.

    I Wanna Hold Your Hand (Al Green) vs. I Will Survive (Cake) 7.5/6.5

  2. Adam S says:

    I Won’t Back Down (Johnny Cash) vs. Wake Me When It’s Over (Supersuckers) 7 / 4

    I Shot the Sheriff (Eric Clapton) vs. Magnificent Sanctuary Band (Jerry Garcia Band) 6 / 7

    Mad World (Gary Jules) vs. Dancing With Myself (Nouvelle Vague) 6.5 / 7

    I Wanna Hold Your Hand (Al Green) vs. I Will Survive (Cake) 5.5 / 8.5

  3. jacobpress says:

    I Won’t Back Down (Johnny Cash) 6
    vs. Wake Me When It’s Over (Supersuckers) 9 This may be my favorite new listen of the tournament. If someone had claimed this was an outtake from Exile On Mainstreet, I’d have believed it.

    I Shot the Sheriff (Eric Clapton) 6
    vs. Magnificent Sanctuary Band (Jerry Garcia Band) 6

    Mad World (Gary Jules) 7 I love this song because of its association with the shadowy montage at the end of Donnie Darko, but it loses a bit of its power when it’s not accompanied by an image of Cherita Chen.
    vs. Dancing With Myself (Nouvelle Vague) 6

    I Wanna Hold Your Hand (Al Green) 8
    vs. I Will Survive (Cake) 6

  4. MattB says:

    I Won’t Back Down (Johnny Cash) 9
    vs. Wake Me When It’s Over (Supersuckers) 5

    I Shot the Sheriff (Eric Clapton) 8
    vs. Magnificent Sanctuary Band (Jerry Garcia Band) 7

    Mad World (Gary Jules) 7.5
    vs. Dancing With Myself (Nouvelle Vague) 8.1

    I Wanna Hold Your Hand (Al Green) 5
    vs. I Will Survive (Cake) 9

    Cake’s version of “I Will Survive” improves on the original.

  5. I Won’t Back Down (Johnny Cash) 7.5
    vs. Wake Me When It’s Over (Supersuckers) 5.5

    I Shot the Sheriff (Eric Clapton) 8
    vs. Magnificent Sanctuary Band (Jerry Garcia Band) 5

    Mad World (Gary Jules) 9
    vs. Dancing With Myself (Nouvelle Vague) 8.5

    I Wanna Hold Your Hand (Al Green) 6.5
    vs. I Will Survive (Cake) 5

  6. Mark O says:

    I Won’t Back Down (Johnny Cash) [7.5]
    Wake Me When It’s Over (Supersuckers) [5]

    I Shot the Sheriff (Eric Clapton) [7]
    Magnificent Sanctuary Band (Jerry Garcia Band) [4]

    Mad World (Gary Jules) [8.5]
    Dancing With Myself (Nouvelle Vague) [7.25]

    I Wanna Hold Your Hand (Al Green) [5]
    I Will Survive (Cake) [6.75]

  7. natalie says:

    I Won’t Back Down (Johnny Cash) – 6
    Wake Me When It’s Over (Supersuckers) – 7.5

    I Shot the Sheriff (Eric Clapton) – 5.5
    Magnificent Sanctuary Band (Jerry Garcia Band) – 7

    Mad World (Gary Jules) – 8.5
    Dancing With Myself (Nouvelle Vague) – 6.5

    I Wanna Hold Your Hand (Al Green) – 8.5
    I Will Survive (Cake) – 9

  8. The Progenitor says:

    I Won’t Back Down (Johnny Cash) vs. Wake Me When It’s Over (Supersuckers) 5.0 to 5.0

    I Shot the Sheriff (Eric Clapton) vs. Magnificent Sanctuary Band (Jerry Garcia Band) 8.0 to 5.5

    Mad World (Gary Jules) vs. Dancing With Myself (Nouvelle Vague) 4.5 to 6.0

    I Wanna Hold Your Hand (Al Green) vs. I Will Survive (Cake) 7.0 to 3.5

  9. Eileen says:

    I Won’t Back Down (Johnny Cash) vs. Wake Me When It’s Over (Supersuckers) 5.0 to 6.5

    I Shot the Sheriff (Eric Clapton) vs. Magnificent Sanctuary Band (Jerry Garcia Band) 7.5 to 6.0

    Mad World (Gary Jules) vs. Dancing With Myself (Nouvelle Vague) 6.0 to 6.5

    I Wanna Hold Your Hand (Al Green) vs. I Will Survive (Cake) 7.0 to 4.0

  10. janos marton says:

    I Won’t Back Down (Johnny Cash) vs. Wake Me When It’s Over (Supersuckers)
    Me: 7.4: 5
    C: 6.9 : 7.4

    I Shot the Sheriff (Eric Clapton) vs. Magnificent Sanctuary Band (Jerry Garcia Band)
    Me: 7.3 : 7.1
    C: 6.5 : 6.2

    Mad World (Gary Jules) vs. Dancing With Myself (Nouvelle Vague)
    Me: 6.5 : 7.6
    C: 5 : 7.2

    I Wanna Hold Your Hand (Al Green) vs. I Will Survive (Cake)
    Me: 8.2 : 6.3
    C: 8.1 : 8

  11. I Won’t Back Down (Johnny Cash) 9
    Wake Me When It’s Over (Supersuckers) 6.4

    IWBD is me, I never wrote a blurb. But if I was standing at the gates of hell, I’d try to be brave like this song. The chorus admittedly drags a little. But Johnny Cash makes anything so much more believable, you gotta admit.

    I Shot the Sheriff (Eric Clapton) 5.5
    Magnificent Sanctuary Band (Jerry Garcia Band) 8

    Mad World (Gary Jules) 6
    Dancing With Myself (Nouvelle Vague) 8.1

    hit the spot.

    I Wanna Hold Your Hand (Al Green) 7
    I Will Survive (Cake) 6.5

  12. Anne S. says:

    I Won’t Back Down (Johnny Cash) – 7.5
    Wake Me When It’s Over (Supersuckers) – 5

    I Shot the Sheriff (Eric Clapton) – 4.5
    Magnificent Sanctuary Band (Jerry Garcia Band) – 6.5

    Mad World (Gary Jules) – 8
    Dancing With Myself (Nouvelle Vague) – 5

    I Wanna Hold Your Hand (Al Green) – 6.5
    I Will Survive (Cake) – 8.5

  13. asf says:

    I Won’t Back Down (Johnny Cash) 7.2

    Wake Me When It’s Over (Supersuckers) 6.2

    I Shot the Sheriff (Eric Clapton) 3.5

    Magnificent Sanctuary Band (Jerry Garcia Band) 10

    Mad World (Gary Jules) 8

    Dancing With Myself (Nouvelle Vague) 8.5

    I Wanna Hold Your Hand (Al Green) 7

    I Will Survive (Cake) 7.8

  14. danelevitt says:

    I Won’t Back Down (Johnny Cash) 7.5

    Wake Me When It’s Over (Supersuckers) 6

    I Shot the Sheriff (Eric Clapton) 3.5

    Magnificent Sanctuary Band (Jerry Garcia Band) 10

    Mad World (Gary Jules) 6

    Dancing With Myself (Nouvelle Vague) 8.5

    I Wanna Hold Your Hand (Al Green) 6

    I Will Survive (Cake) 7

  15. Shovevani says:

    I Won’t Back Down (Johnny Cash) 7.8
    vs. Wake Me When It’s Over (Supersuckers) 4

    I Shot the Sheriff (Eric Clapton) 6.4
    vs. Magnificent Sanctuary Band (Jerry Garcia Band) 10

    Mad World (Gary Jules) 6.5
    vs. Dancing With Myself (Nouvelle Vague) 7.4

    I Wanna Hold Your Hand (Al Green) 7
    vs. I Will Survive (Cake) 8.5

  16. Isabel says:

    I Won’t Back Down (Johnny Cash) – 6.5
    Wake Me When It’s Over (Supersuckers) – 5.5
    I Shot the Sheriff (Eric Clapton) – 7
    Magnificent Sanctuary Band (Jerry Garcia Band) – 7
    Mad World (Gary Jules) – 5
    Dancing With Myself (Nouvelle Vague) – 8.5
    I Wanna Hold Your Hand (Al Green) – 9.5 – Just funky as heeeell.
    I Will Survive (Cake) – 2 – Once I get over any amusement at the singers’ behind-the-beat, quasi-clave approach to the vocal line, I’m left cold. Rhythm section is valiant, but doesn’t save the day.

  17. Meghan says:

    I Won’t Back Down (Johnny Cash) 8.5
    Wake Me When It’s Over (Supersuckers) 5

    I Shot the Sheriff (Eric Clapton) 8
    Magnificent Sanctuary Band (Jerry Garcia Band) 6.5

    Mad World (Gary Jules) 6.5
    Dancing With Myself (Nouvelle Vague) 7

    I Wanna Hold Your Hand (Al Green) 5.5
    I Will Survive (Cake) 6

  18. Adrock says:

    I Won’t Back Down (Johnny Cash) 6.5
    Wake Me When It’s Over (Supersuckers) 5.1

    I Shot the Sheriff (Eric Clapton) 8.5
    Magnificent Sanctuary Band (Jerry Garcia Band) 4.5

    Mad World (Gary Jules) 8
    Dancing With Myself (Nouvelle Vague) 5.1

    I Wanna Hold Your Hand (Al Green) 6.8
    I Will Survive (Cake) 5.3

  19. Votes for me, ChrisB, and Carolyn:

    I Won’t Back Down (Johnny Cash): 9 / 7 / 8
    Wake Me When It’s Over (Supersuckers): 6 / 4 / 5

    I Shot the Sheriff (Eric Clapton): 5.5 / 8 / 7
    Magnificent Sanctuary Band (Jerry Garcia Band): 4.8 / 3 / 4

    Mad World (Gary Jules): 9.5 / 8.7 / 7
    Dancing With Myself (Nouvelle Vague): 7.5 / 4 / 6

    I Wanna Hold Your Hand (Al Green): 7.9 / 8 / 8
    I Will Survive (Cake): 4.7 / 7 / 4

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