Did David Bowie ever cover a song well?

I can name one–he took the Velvet Underground’s “White Light/White Heat” and really spiced it up, albeit with a lot of help from Reed, and it was practically a Bowie song to begin with. But really, there aren’t any songs Bowie covered that he didn’t absolutely butcher.

Little Drummer Boy, Across the Universe, Alabama Song–all terrible, terrible stuff. I’m a diehard fan, and Bowie will always have a special place in my heart, but really, David, stick to your own stuff. You’re so weird, it just doesn’t work unless it’s your own stuff.

Wild is the Wind.

Crackerjack cover in my book.

And maybe the entire Pinups album.


Does China Girl count as a cover?

Yes, but did he do it well? I say no.

I’d say he did an okay job on Amsterdam. You can compare:
Bowie: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ejQS9kQDXmk
Scott Walker, author of the English translation: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pk7YxDzjTxA
And Jacques Brel in the original: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QTOAo15kMgA

For my money, Brel wins hands down, however.

Actually, I was mistaken, Mort Shuman wrote the translation.

I don’t know, I liked his and Mick Jagger’s cover of Dancing in the Street.

Bowie’s version of “God Only Knows” is interesting, and not bad, though it won’t replace Carl Wilson’s original recording.

His version of ‘See Emily Play’ is…um…interesting.

Arrgggh…I came here to ridicule this song. :mad: :stuck_out_tongue:

Thanks, OneCentStamp. I didn’t want to be the one to do it.

BACI: Who did Wild Is The Wind First? I thought it was a Bowie original. If it’s a cover, then you’ve won the thread.

The video of him and Mick prancing about is homoeroticism at its best though. :slight_smile:

Anyone heard his cover of Bruce’s ‘it’s hard to be a saint in the city’? I recall reading a biography of the Boss saying that he wasnae impressed - but I’ve not heard it myself.

I like his Friday On My Mind

I liked his cover of “It Ain’t Easy” from Ziggy Stardust. It’s a Ron Davies tune I first heard done by Three Dog Night a few years earlier. Their version was good, too - good enough to name the album after.

It Ain’t Easy is the only song I ever skip on that album. So bah to you.

When he did the live duet of “Let’s Dance” with Tina Turner, they mixed in the 1962 Chris Montez song “Let’s Dance” (“we’ll do The Twist, The Stomp, and the Mashed Potato too, any old dance that you wanna do”). I thought it was pretty cool.

Also, he occassionally covers songs by this defunct 70’s band, Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars. Spot on, too. :wink:

It’s OK, but not really very good. Sort of hollow.

I thought the song was a Bowie original too but (according to Wiki):

I’m surprised.

The cover of Queen’s “Under Pressure” that he did with Annie Lennox was great.