Song Covers - Which Are Authentic?

I, like about everyone else in the universe, pirates music through filesharing (don’t arrest me, I buy a crapload of CDs too!). However, which searching for covers, I often find some that don’t seem quite right. For example, I have found songs labeled as “Stairway to Heaven - Jimi Hendrix”, which seems odd, as most musicians don’t record music after their death.

Speaking of Stairway to Heaven, I have found 2 other covers that I’m wondering about. One is labeled “Pink Floyd and Led Zeppelin - Stairway to Heaven”. It has some added instruments and sounds more psychodellic. The other one is live be Metallica (“Thank you. thank you” followed by applause at the end"). Does anyone know the story behind these?

Also, in general, is there a quick and efficient way to look up whether a song was really recorded by a certain musician? Say, a database of sorts?


Should be:
“When searching for covers”
“Live by Metallica”
“Thank you, thank you”


google is the only database that matters, if you google for a cover by a band and get no hits they didnt do it.

While it’s not totally complete (sometimes missing very obscure or regional acts) by far the best musci database on the web is AMG All Music Guide. It is roughly to music what the IMDB is to movies.

(To access some of the finer features you have to sign up and be assigned a password, but it’s free).

You get: biographies of the act (solo, band, etc.) plus amazingly complete discographies (sometimes with reviews of each album) plus - in most cases - album tracks (and in some cases, reviews of individual songs! Often the composers are listed as well.

Want to look up everyone who recorded Smoke on the Water? No problem. At the main page, toggle the box next to the input box from “name” to “song” and it will look up the song you’re asking about (196 versions of Smoke on the Water), list the artist and composer (in case of songs with the same name) and provide links.

You can also look up album titles if you can’t remember the group.

AND (if you sign up) you can hear Song clips of many of the songs so you can doublecheck if you’ve got the right version.

No, it’s not totally complete (how could it be?) but I’ve had success on some moderately obscure bands (1967’s United States of America, for example) and most of the reviews are either spot on (from my point of view) or at least thought-provoking.

Tons of information available, and crosslinked like crazy.
Highly recommended.

Maybe, but the opposite is totally false: if you get google for a band and a song, that doesn’t mean they did it. Google can be pretty unhelpful that way.

So you’re saying that the quality and integrity of the product you’ve stolen doesn’t meet your expectations? I am shocked! :dubious:

Seriously, though: AMG and Google go a long way towards clearing things up. Some file-sharing services permit downloads from multiple sources, which helps you weed out the plainly wrong versions of things based solely on the number of people sharing it. I’m sure that somewhere out there, there still exists the MP3 that was floating around when I was in college of Stealer’s Wheel performing “Stuck in the Middle With You” (including the KBILLY intro where the DJ identifies the group) – even though the DJ plainly says “Joe Egan and Jerry Rafferty…” this song gets labeled as being performed by The Greatful Dead (sic).

Gift horse and all that.