Sunday, February 07, 2016

SECOND TIME AROUND: Smashes Covered by JoJo, Travis Garland, Andra Day, & Elle King

Because sometimes it's just as good (or better) the second time. Four of my favorite artists at the moment -- all fab in their own right, all with track records of being excellent at elevating material even when it's not their own -- have dropped some awesome cover versions that have either: 1) made me rethink how I felt about the original tune, 2) done exactly what a good cover should do: re-invented the original.

Read on for more and to hear the covers...

JOJO - "White Iverson" (POST MALONE)
Man, I'm so glad JoJo is back in business to melt faces with her raw talent. Her album needs to get here right now, alright? "White Iverson" is one of those songs that is pretty "of the moment" right now -- vibey, spacey, repetative, all about the swag. JoJo makes it all her own in a live performance with super-stripped down accompaniment that's able to convert even those who don't care for (or haven't even heard) the original.

ELLE KING - "Jealous" (NICK JONAS) / "Can't Feel My Face" (THE WEEKND)
Elle is a master at covers. When I saw her perform at CMJ a few years back, she offered up an unexpected blue-grassy version of R.Kelly's "Ignition". Considering I'm not really even a fan of that song (or R.Kelly for that matter), the fact that I was obsessed with her cover spoke volumes. I already adore Nick J's tune though, and Elle proves she can really sing anything by mashing it up with The Weeknd smash in the UK's iconic Live Lounge, complete with 80's synth backing.

ANDRA DAY - "I Want It All"
Have you seen those Diet Coke commercials airing recently featuring a soulful, vocally-astonishing, stripped down version of Queen's "I Want It All"? The voice behind the ads is Andra Day, whose debut album, last year's Cheers To The Fall, is chock-full of dizzying good 'uns. The Queen cover (apropos) was apparently recorded for the ad campaign but I'm assuming it will be available for purchase soon (or at least one can hope).

Tori Kelly is my girl crush for a lot of reasons (including her fab, covet-worthy curly hair) -- the main being her ridiculous, seemingly effortless vocal delivery is so flawless, it blows my mind. Travis Garland is one of those few vocalists who can do Tori's original justice, simply because he also has that innate, insane vocal talent. Remind me again why both of these artists aren't everywhere. They should and need to be.

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