Rhino’s Got You Covered: Blur, Billy Vera & Judy Clay, Frankie Valli, and Joan Jett & Paul Westerberg
It’s Wednesday, so it must be time to take another dip into the Rhino catalog and trot out a new quartet of cover songs that you may or may not have heard before. Let’s get started, shall we?
• Blur, “Maggie May” (1993): Originally recorded as the band’s contribution to NME’s anniversary compilation, RUBY TRAX, this Rod Stewart cover later made its way onto the B-side of a 7” release of “Chemical World.” These days it can also be found on the expanded version of the band’s MODERN LIFE IS RUBBISH album.
• Billy Vera and Judy Clay, “Soul Man” (1968): Before you ask, yes, it’s that Billy Vera, i.e. the same one who briefly became one of the biggest music stars of the ‘80s with his song “At This Moment.” This was his debut album, one he recorded with Clay, a former member of the gospel group The Drinkard Singers. The title track of this album was a top-20 R&B single, but this track, of course, was a Sam & Dave classic.
• Frankie Valli, “By the Time I Get to Phoenix” (1968): It’s hard to say that this is the definitive version of the Jimmy Webb song, since everyone knows that Glen Campbell owns that honor now and forever, but it was a slight step outside of Valli’s usual wheelhouse, and it’s a nice version.
• Joan Jett and Paul Westerberg, “Let’s Do It” (1995): Found on the Tank Girl soundtrack, this Cole Porter classic made its debut in his 1928 musical Paris, so it’s nice to see that it’s still popular in the post-apocalyptic future.