Monday, December 2, 2013

Cool cover song of the week...

While Sinéad O'Connor first hit the U.S. music scene in the late 1980s with her album, The Lion and the Cobra (which earned her a Best Female Rock Vocal Performance Grammy nomination), it wasn't until she recorded a version of Prince's Nothing Compares 2 U that she achieved stardom.

O'Connor's version of the song, released in 1990, became a worldwide hit, topping charts in 13 countries, including her native Ireland and the United States, where it spent four weeks at the top of the Billboard Hot 100. It became the third best-selling single of 1990 and the 82nd best-selling single of the 1990s. Rolling Stone ranked it at number 162 on their list of the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time, which contains only two songs of the 1990s ranked higher, and Billboard ranked the song at number 77 on its list of the Greatest Songs of All Time.

Amazingly enough, the song was originally recorded by Prince's funk band The Family in 1985 but it was not released as a single. Following O'Connor's success with the song, Prince performed the song as a live duet with Rosie Gaines, and subsequently released it on his 1993 compilations The Hits/The B-Sides and The Hits 1. Prince also recorded a solo version of the song for his concert film, Rave Un2 the Year 2000, as well as for his 2002 live album, One Nite Alone...Live! (All of that, and I can't find a YouTube video of it.)

The pop duo Capital Cities, which recently topped the Billboard charts with their hit Safe and Sound, recorded a version of Nothing Compares 2 U for their YouTube channel, and its more upbeat twist has received raves.

Here's Capital Cities' version:

And here's Sinéad O'Connor's version:

Check out my previous Cool Cover Songs of the Week:

Borderline by The Counting Crows

How Deep Is Your Love by The Bird and The Bee

Life in a Northern Town by Sugarland, Little Big Town, and Jake Owen

I Don't Want to Talk About It by The Indigo Girls

Only You by Joshua Radin

Pure Imagination by Maroon 5

I'm Gonna Be (500 Miles) by Blake Stratton

What a Fool Believes by Neri Per Caso

Poker Face by Daughtry

Back to Black by Ronnie Spector

I Will Survive by Cake

The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face by The Stereophonics

Rolling in the Deep by John Legend

Go Your Own Way by Lissie

Winner Takes it All by McFly

What a Wonderful World by Joey Ramone

Careless Whisper by Seether

I Walk the Line by Live

Dear Prudence by Siouxsie and The Banshees

Smooth Criminal by Alien Ant Farm

Who Wants to Live Forever by Breaking Benjamin

Redemption Song by Chris Cornell and Audioslave

Love Me Tender by Chris Isaak and Brandi Carlile

All You Need is Love by The Flaming Lips

Lovesong by Adele

I Love It by Robin Thicke

Billie Jean by The Civil Wars

Across the Universe by The Scorpions

Can't Hold Us by Pentatonix

Wicked Game by James Vincent McMorrow

Against All Odds (Take a Look at Me Now) by The Postal Service

Jolene by The White Stripes

Shake Your Body (Down to the Ground) by Justin Timberlake

More Than This by Norah Jones

Royals by Mayer Hawthorne

I Can't Go for That (No Can Do) by The Bird and The Bee

Ain't No Sunshine by Silent Rider

Crazy by Ray Lamontagne

Stairway to Heaven by Heart

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