If you think you’re staring at a cover for the new Residents album, you may be a bit disappointed.
When I was around 4 my parents owned a charming pet piranha inexplicably named Prudence. As I would wander around the outside of the aquarium, Prudence would follow alongside, eyes fixed on me the same way Sylvester the Cat’s would when he saw Tweety; imagining him as a succulent roasted hen with all the fixings still swinging on his perch. And despite being underwater, so help me I could see the fish salivating. Whenever I would get too close to the tank, to which I came just about chin high, he would go ballistic. BAM! BAM! BAM!, he would furiously start smacking his nose(?) into the glass in a vain attempt get to a bite of the would be appetizer wrapped in Casper pajamas. Ironically however, when my parents ever came close to his watery domain, he would hightail it, cowering behind his little coral castle. Odd, my parents thought, why our son and not us? It took my dad, quick as Columbo, two minutes to figure it out. Getting on their knees,to about my height, they re-approached tank. Sure enough Prudence rushed right back out and proceeded to bang his head against the glassy border, seeing an opportunity not just for a 4 year old h’ordeuvre but a two course meal.
Prudence’s tenure in our house was unfortunately cut short and reluctantly had to be given back to the pet shop from whence he came. We were moving to Florida, where they had laws against any kind of aquatic carnivorous pet that you couldn’t make fall asleep by flipping over and rubbing it’s belly. Needless to say I was bummed beyond belief that my watery little pal, who in my mind was smacking his face against the glass in is eagerness to greet me, was gone. It was only a few months later when my mom and I were at the grocery store when I spotted my recently missing friend. There, in the fish section, lounging on a bed of ice between his buddies Mr. Salmon and Mr. Halibut was what I thought was Prudence (actually a recently expired Flounder). ‘HEY MOM HEY MOM! LOOK IT”S PRUDENCE, HE’S SLEEPING!!!! HEY PRUDENCE WAKE UP!!’.
So as you can imagine it’s pretty much impossible for me, when hearing
The Beatles‘ Dear Prudence, not to recall my toothy, sub-aquatic, long lost childhood friend, rather than Mia Farrow’s sister, to whom the song is actually dedicated to.
While I will always have a soft spot for Siouxsie & The Banshees‘ cover and it’s arguably the best version of Prudence, I’d have to say Songs of The Green Pheasant are quick on her spiked heels with their delightful, rather spaced out, rendition. If you’re looking for something to replace that tired Mario Bros. background music, 8 Bit rockers The Hunt For Yoshi do a great chiptune cover. DJ Kazimir manages to squeak out a not half-bad drum & bass version featuring Carol C of Si*Sé fame on vocals. We also have some good jazzy funk cuts from Ramsey Lewis, The Five Stairsteps, Gabor Szabo, Atlantic Bridge, Brad Mehldau and Hysear Don Walker (which sounds like a dead ringer for Air). Lastly we have a few straight ahead, somewhat psychedelic versions from Fury In The Slaughterhouse, Feet Of Clay, Radio Stars, Sound Foundation and John A. Roberts.
Siouxsie & Banshees – Dear Prudence
Siouxsie & Banshees – Dear Prudence (Live – Nocturne)
Siouxsie & Banshees – Dear Prudence (Live in Lausanne 91′)
Siouxsie & Banshees – Dear Prudence (Live Paris 91′)
Siouxsie & Banshees – Dear Prudence (Live in Europe 95)
Songs Of Green Pheasant – Dear Prudence
The Hunt For Yoshi – Dear Prudence
DJ Kazimir (with Carol C) – Dear Prudence
Ramsey Lewis – Dear Prudence
The Five Stairsteps – Dear Prudence
Gabor Szabo – Dear Prudence
Atlantic Bridge – Dear Prudence
Brad Mehldau – Dear Prudence
Hysear Don Walker – Dear Prudence
Fury In The Slaughterhouse – Dear Prudence
Feet Of Clay – Dear Prudence
Radio Stars – Dear Prudence
Sound Foundation – Dear Prudence
John A. Roberts – Dear Prudence