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Archive for May, 2010

Born To Be Weird

Sunday, May 30th, 2010

America. For all it’s bland, banal and conservative trappings it turns out some great, surprisingly lovable, oddballs. For every CSI Miami there’s a Twin Peaks, for every Tom Clancy a Hunter S Thompson, for every bad still life hocked on QVC there was the obtuse Andy Warhol, for every tepid contestant on American Idol there is a surly Tom Waits and lastly for every ‘Nilla Wafer of an actor like Kevin Costner, Jennifer Anniston or the entire cast of High School Musical there is Jack Nicholson, Crispen Glover, Christopher Walken and sadly as of yesterday, the now late great Dennis Hopper.
So in memoriam of consummate great American weirdo, I’ve gathered some truly bizarre Moog covers of Steppenwolf‘s Born To Be Wild from Mike Melvoin, The Moog Cookbook, as well as the self explanatory Space Lady and Chickenwolf (Bkawk!).
RIP Dennis. Let your freak flag fly.

Mike Melvoin – Born To Be Wild
The Moog Cookbook – Born To Be Wild
The Space Lady – Born To Be Wild
Chickenwolf – Born To Be Wild 

Happy Memorial Day!

PS Bonus track for those in Thee Versions Galore Facebook Fanclub. You know where to look.

Hong Kong Modern

Saturday, May 29th, 2010

Yeah yeah, before you start, I know we just did a Siouxsie & The Banshees post like 2-3 days ago, but since this one is hottie off the presses I couldn’t resist getting it out there. The long awaited cover of Hong Kong Garden by Franco-fatale Uffie.

Uffie – Hong Kong Garden


PS Versions Galore Facebook Fanclub, bonus Hong Kongs… hanging on the wall for ya…

Shack The Funk Up!

Friday, May 28th, 2010

This 1975 breaks classic by Banbarra, Shack Up, probably would still be gathering dust in a record crate somewhere if it weren’t for Factory Record’s flagship A Certain Ratio digging it out of rare groove obscurity and giving it a good cover (ironically enough could be later applied to ACR themselves!)
So, besides the ubiquitous ACR cover we have a few other Banbarra fans; obscure 80s synth-funk Thirteen At Midnight and even more obscure funk/soul acts Blackbuster and  Rokotto who at 1978 probably makes them the first ones to lay claim on covering it. Also gettin’ down are the fabulous Baker Brothers with funky hammond instrumental.
Here are a few more that I call covers within a cover; as the sadly defunct Bis and Franco cover superstars Nouvelle Vague are obviously paying more tribute to the tepid post-punkers than to the original.And lastly I’ve thrown in a fun, very rare live version from the infamous Factory All Stars. The name says it all as the ‘All Stars’ include members of ACR, Quando Quango (aka a young Mike Pickering), Bernie and Stephen from New Order and the God approved Vini Reilly of Durutti Column.


PS Versions Galore Facebook Fanclub, there’s some more Shack Up goodies hanging on the wall for ya…

All Aboard!

Thursday, May 27th, 2010

First the good news, it took 20 odd years but someone finally put out a
Love & Rockets tribute album. Yay!
The bad news, it’s 100% awful.  Like most tribute albums it’s riddled with 90s alt-rock has beens and never-weres (like, echhh, Better Than Ezra) and also typical of tributes, no one could be arsed to do anything different. Mediocrity FTW!
That said I managed to get my hands on an outtake track that didn’t make it’s way onto the album, and puzzlingly enough, it’s best L&R cover out there; a sublime lo-fi electronic sounding version of  Kundalini Express by the always reliably effectual Flaming Lips. Hopefully in the future someone will fair better with a Tones on Tail tribute, or better yet the criminally underrecognized David J. Let’s see how long I can hold my breath…


Wine n’ Grine

Wednesday, May 26th, 2010

Red Red Wine.
Neil Diamond wrote it.
Tony Tribe covered it.
UB40 covered that and then proceeded to run it into the ground.
Along comes Fenin (wif a likkle vocal help from Gorbi) to dubstep it into the void of the unrecognizable.
Trust me you want this.


PS Versions Galore Facebook Fanclub, got bonus versions galore skylarkin’ on the wall.

So Sioux Me

Tuesday, May 25th, 2010

I gleefully confess todays’ pick is for the shallowest of reasons; Bertie Blackman is some kinda cute, but it doesn’t hurt that she chose OG raven haired goddess, Siouxsie & The Banshees,  to cover either . So here’s black-haired Bertie from Bondi belting out beloved Banshee ballad Peek-A-Boo.

Bertie Blackman – Peek-A-Boo


You Dirty Bastard!

Monday, May 24th, 2010

The man who had a rap sheet as long as a roll of toilet paper and a mouth filthy enough to wipe it up with, Ol’ Dirty Bastard, and his infamous Shimmy Shimmy Ya get the dancehall treatment courtesy of the UK’s Prince Fatty (aka phuture jazz go-to engineer Mike Pelanconi)
Big thanks to eagle-eyed Versions Galore fan ‘Ste’ for tipping me to this piece of goodness.

Prince Fatty – Shimmy Shimmy Ya



Friday, May 21st, 2010

At the risk of excavating the not so murky past, here’s is the post that was originally slated, ironically enough, for the 13th AKA Black Thursday AKA the day Blogger pulled a Jason Bourne on my ass.

That said it’s a very cute elevator/lounge jazz reworking of Blur‘s britpop anthem Parklife by the Lance Gambit Trio. The only thing possibly cuter would be a mashup of the original cover art, replaced with a band of overenthusiastic dachshunds…


PS Did I mention how cute the cover was today???
PPS Apologies in advance to the Versions Galore Facebook Fanclub who’ve already seen this post…

Versions Galore, Round 2

Thursday, May 20th, 2010

Hello and welcome to my new home here at! (where I probably should have been all along, doh!)
As you can see it’s hard to keep a good blog down. For those that don’t know, much to my fucking chagrin Blogger KO’d my original site last week. It would have been 2 years, countless posts and a lot of love down the crapper, but thankfully smart guy here backed up a few weeks before they pulled the plug. As for the rest of the entries, all I can say is  thank fuck for Google cache. However a few comments may have gotten lost in the move, so ego collateral is at a minimum. 😉
So pardon me if I’m still a bit fuzzy headed from my bout with Blogger, I’ll need a bit to fix the details i.e. links, spacing/size issues etc.
In the meantime how about an appropriate soundtrack; Bill Conti‘s champion sound Gonna Fly Now (Theme From ‘Rocky’), rematched by the rather funky Northgate A Band.

Enjoy! (and looking forward again to sharing more cover version madness)

PS Big thanks to all those who supported me in the interim, double so to the smart folks over at Risotto, Inc. for sorting out the necessary geek help!

Taking Some Flack

Wednesday, May 12th, 2010

Soul diva #1, at least around this house anyway, Roberta Flack gets a Jamaican/Reggae retrofit of her quiet storm classic Feel Like Makin’ Love. Lovemakers today include the always welcome Dynamics, a great Soul Jazz records-worthy Lovers Rock cut from Elizabeth Archer & The Equators whose version side has to be the most insane dub cut I’ve heard in a long time and lastly a mellow Jamaican jazz cut from reggae/ska/rocksteady godfather Ernest Ranglin (which, trust me, will be much needed therapy after that aforementioned dub attack).

The Dynamics – Feel Like Making Love
Elizabeth Archer and The Equators – Feel Like Making Love
Elizabeth Archer and The Equators – Feel Like Making Love (Version)
Ernest Ranglin – Feel Like Making Love


Going Out With A Bang

Monday, May 10th, 2010

Got something fun to fill your summer mixtapes with today; 51 hand picked versions of Bang Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down) somewhat recently made famous by Nancy Sinatra (though originally by Cher) viaKill Bill.
Playing faves I’m starting with a great 60s Chinese beat/funk version byBetty Chung, an over the top brass and kettle drum version by Petula Clark, a lounge cut from Xavier Cugat as well as a sweet little lullaby by ex-Belle & Sebastian, Isobel Campbell.
Girls aren’t the only one’s getting bumped off, dudes whose days are numbered include Terry Reid, the Beau BrummelsStevie Wonder,Frank SinatraThe Frampton Brothers, Paul WellerCliff Richard,Murder By DeathGabor SzaboCoil and Vanilla Fudge, who transform their cut into some sort of epic prog-rock journey.
Instrumentally speaking we have a surf guitar version from Shadowy Men on a Shadowy Planet and music fit for an elevator by Paul Mauriat.
Hope you like the latest Jack White incarnation The Raconteurs, because we got em in spades.
Besides the nods above to China and the UK we also have a virtual food court’s worth of international cuts; Italy (Equipe 84DalidaMina, I Corvi,Ornella Vanoni, Milena Cantu and a little Italo-Disco from Ivan Cattaneo), Russia (Lili Ivanova), France (SheilaMareva Galanter avec Jacno, Sylvie Vartan), Poland (Ania Dabrowska), Cambodia (Pan Ron),Germany (Rainald Grebe), Brazil (Maritza Fabiani)Vietnam (Diem Lien & Nguyen Khang) and lastly er..Hawaii?UK? Well, a nice way to go out on a bang (doh!) from the Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain.

Betty Chung – Bang Bang
Petula Clark – Bang Bang
Xavier Cugat – Bang Bang
Isobel Campbell – Bang Bang

Terry Reid – Bang Bang
Beau Brummels – Bang Bang
Stevie Wonder – Bang Bang
Frank Sinatra – Bang Bang
Frank Sinatra – Bang Bang (Alt version)
The Frampton Brothers – Bang Bang
Paul Weller – Bang Bang
Paul Weller – Bang Bang (Live)
Cliff Richard – Bang Bang
Murder By Death – Bang Bang
Murder By Death – Bang Bang (The Switchboard Sessions)
Gabor Szabo – Bang Bang
Coil – Bang Bang
Coil – Bang Bang (Live)
Vanilla Fudge – Bang Bang

Shadowy Men on a Shadowy Planet – Bang Bang (Live)
Paul Mauriat – Bang Bang

The Raconteurs – Bang Bang (Live)
The Raconteurs – Bang Bang (Pukkelpop 2006)
The Raconteurs – Bang Bang (Lollapalooza 2006)
The Raconteurs – Bang Bang (Munich 2006)
The Raconteurs – Bang Bang (The House Of Blues 2006)
The Raconteurs – Bang Bang (Soma 2006)
The Raconteurs – Bang Bang (Lowlands 2006)
The Raconteurs – Bang Bang (Ann Arbor 2006)
The Raconteurs – Bang Bang (Leeds 2006)
The Raconteurs – Bang Bang (Atlanta 2006)
The Raconteurs – Bang Bang (Electric Ballroom 2006)
The Raconteurs – Bang Bang (Nottingham 2006)

Equipe 84 – Bang Bang
Dalida – Bang Bang
Mina – Bang Bang
I Corvi – Bang Bang
Ornella Vanoni – Bang Bang
Milena Cantu – Bang Bang
Ivan Cattaneo – Bang Bang
Lili Ivanova – Benk Benk
Sheila – Bang Bang
Mareva Galanter (avec Jacno) – Bang Bang
Sylvie Vartan – Bang Bang
Ania Dabrowska – Bang Bang
Pan Ron – Snaeha
Rainald Grebe – Bengt Bangt
Rainald Grebe bei Nightwash – Bengt Bangt (Live)
Maritza Fabiani – Bang Bang
Diem Lien And Nguyen Khang – Khi Xua Ta Be
Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain – Bang Bang


PS Bonus track for Versions Galore Facebook Fanclub members, be sure to check the wall.

She Sells Sanctuary By The Seashore

Friday, May 7th, 2010

Y’know I remember feeling a little betrayed when post-punk outfit Southern Death Cult swapped spiky hair for leather fringe and re-christened themselves as neo-60s metal act The Cult. But after 3 or 4 repeated listens of She Sells Sanctuary, I was able to secretly let down my elitist little punk guard and make peace with leather trousers (on them mind you, not me).
Oh and btw, double-kudos to them for their somewhat recent collaboration with
my fave Japanese outfitter, Neighborhood.
Today, man in the pale blue suit, M. Craft, pairs his Sanctuary down to an indie collection of acoustic guitar, handclaps, a bit of tambourine and what sounds like my old Fisher-Price xylophone. If this fails to bring smiles to your face all weekend, you need therapy.

M. Craft – She Sells Sanctuary


Rogue Shake

Thursday, May 6th, 2010

What I wouldn’t give to get my ‘Platte in Mehrfarbigem Vinyl’ back. Sigh.
So, got a brand new Depeche Mode cover, hot off the digital presses so-to-speak. Oakland’s Rogue Wave armed only with acoustic guitar and piano doing Shake The Disease via KCRW in-session.

Rogue Wave – Shake The Disease (Live KCRW)


Gil Sans

Wednesday, May 5th, 2010

Soul-jazz-funk prophet Gil Scott-Heron takes a day off from televising the revolution to flex his vocal cords and name drop some real ghetto superstars, Lady Day and John Coltrane.

Ever fell that somehow, somewhere you lost your way?
And if you don’t get help you won’t make it through the day
You could call on Lady Day!
You could call on John Coltrane!
They’ll wash your troubles, your troubles away

Amen to that.

G S-H disciples for today are neo-soul outfit The Baker Brothers, jazzy drum & bass stalwart Courtney Pine, and criminally forgotten funk diva Penny Goodwin. We also have the Japanese acid jazz meets Erykhah Badu-esque vocal stylings of Indigo Jam Unit who get an ‘A’ for effort for trying their best to traverse so many ‘L’s and lastly, speaking of Acid Jazz and stalwarts, is a handful of live cuts from The Greyboy Allstars.

The Baker Brothers – Lady Day and John Coltrane
Courtney Pine – Lady Day and John Coltrane
Penny Goodwin – Lady Day and John Coltrane
Indigo Jam Unit – Lady Day and John Coltrane
The Greyboy Allstars – Lady Day And John Coltrane (Tahoe City, CA 1995)
The Greyboy Allstars – Lady Day And John Coltrane (Washington DC 2003)
The Greyboy Allstars – Lady Day and John Coltrane (New Orleans, LA 2004)
The Greyboy Allstars – Lady Day and John Coltrane (Snowmass Village CO 2003)



PS Versions Galore Facebook Fanclub, original hanging on the wall just in case.

Yes Way José

Tuesday, May 4th, 2010

It’s a Scandinavian love fest today with a cover of Swedish experimento-synth-pop outfit The Knife by fellow natural-born Swede José González, who unplugs Heartbeats for a nice acoustic session.

José González – Heartbeats
José González – Heartbeats (BBC Radio 1 Live Lounge)


A Day Without A Knob

Sunday, May 2nd, 2010

Versions Galore has been sluttin’ around the blog-o-sphere yet again, as I’ve been invited to contribute a mix to my buddy over at Acid House Dreams new blog, TiED AKA Together in Eclectic Dreams. Seeing as he’s the BMOC (Balearic Man on Campus) I thought I’d serve up an all unplugged electronica cover versions session.

Check it out here…



Mexico City

Saturday, May 1st, 2010
In light of recent events, and it being May 1st and all, I thought I’d show a little solidarity with mi amigos del sur.
So for better or worse here’s b-boy breaks/sample classic The Mexican by Babe Ruth.
El primero del hoy is VG cover faves EL Michels Affair with a funky instrumental cut. Baker Brothers feat Katie HolmesBombers and Marc Hype & Jim Dunloop pull off what could have been some fairly standardversions with more than aplomb. Electro pioneer (and early Madonna producer) Jellybean Benitez gets extra credit for tracking down Babe Ruth’s Jenny Haan for his cut. Also making an early electro appearance with two cuts is house legend Todd Terry under his Orange Lemon guise. And lastly, depending on your footwear of choice either break out the platforms for Disco Circus‘ self explanatory cut or get your fat laces in a knot over old school hip hoppers Funky Four Plus One.

El Michels Affair – The Mexican
Baker Brothers feat. Katie Holmes – The Mexican
Bombers – The Mexican
Marc Hype & Jim Dunloop – The Mexican
Jellybean Benitez – The Mexican
Orange Lemon – The Texican
Orange Lemon – Dreams of Santa Anna
Disco Circus – The Mexican
Funky Four Plus One – Feel It (The Mexican)

Sí Se Puede!