Rhino’s Got You Covered: Tori Amos, They Might Be Giants, Hot Chocolate, and Green on Red
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?
· Tori Amos, “Smells Like Teen Spirit” (1991): Although it’s been recorded by everyone from Paul Anka to Willie Nelson at this point, there’s little argument that the first person of any note to deliver a credible cover of this iconic Nirvana tune was Ms. Amos, who first included it as a B-side to her “Silent All These Years” single. If you can’t hunt up a copy of that, however, it’s since been added to the deluxe edition of her LITTLE EARTHQUAKES album.
· They Might Be Giants, “Jessica” (1994): To this day, we have no idea what inspired the two Johns to record a cover of this Allman Brothers instrumental as one of the B-sides to their single-only release “Why Does the Sun Shine?” That said, we’re glad they did, because it's delightfully jaunty.
· Hot Chocolate, “Walking on the Moon” (1980): Though you likely know this British band best for their beloved single “You Sexy Thing,” they’ve had countless hits in the UK that never successfully translated to the American charts. This Police cover wasn’t released as a single, and it was recorded long before Sting, Stewart Copeland, and Andy Summers found platinum-selling success with their final album, SYNCHRONICITY, so it’s fair to say that Errol Brown and his bandmates were well ahead of the curve.
· Green on Red, “We Shall Overcome” (1985): This started as a gospel song, ended up as a protest song with considerable help from Pete Seeger, and now it’s nearly impossible to think of it as anything else. You know the tune, certainly, but you’ve probably never heard Green on Red’s version, so enjoy it and remember that it’s still all too relevant even in 2020.