Behold! The Firebird’s annual Undercover Weekend (actually, Weekends, this time around) kicks off tomorrow, and local Saint Louis bands will be thronging to the stage to creatively put their spin on the likes of The Postal Service (Union Tree Review), Pavement (Sleepy Kitty), and Loretta Lynn (Tenement Ruth).
We at Speakers in Code love a good cover song. Seriously, it’s like crack to us. So, what better way to celebrate the onslaught of covers that will rain down on The Firebird tomorrow than with a 10 to Spin playlist, hand-selected so meticulously by Seth Porter, vocalist/guitarist of The Blind Eyes (along with Matt Picker and Kevin Schneider, your 2010 Riverfront Times Best Pop Band winner that will bravely take on Fleetwood Mac) mañana por la noche. Olé!
Check out what Porter (an AUCW vet, considering he and the band took on Elvis Costello two years ago) told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch about gearing up for Lindsey, Stevie, and the rest of the gang. The full AUCW line-up (featuring faves like Beth Bombara and Cassie Morgan, The Dive Poets, and Via Dove) can be found here. Our buddy Christian Schaeffer explains it all in his write-up for the RFT.
Seth Porter’s (of The Blind Eyes) 10 Covers to Spin:
The Cardigans – “Sabbath Bloody Sabbath” (Black Sabbath)
I get the impression that everyone in Scandinavia either listens to sugary sweet pop or crazy church-burning, brain-eating metal. I imagine the Cardigans listen to a little of both.
Donny Hathaway – “Jealous Guy” (John Lennon)
One of those great, simple John Lennon songs with emotionally bare lyrics. Cool to hear Donny’s voice really lay into it.
Shonen Knife – “Rain” (The Beatles)
Among my favorite Beatles tunes. There’s a certain charm to this shambling Japanese take on it.
Them – “It’s All Over Now Baby Blue” (Bob Dylan)
This is just a tremendous record, cover or not. Van Morrison’s early band. That electric piano is sampled on Beck’s “Jackass.”
Randy Watson w/ Sexual Chocolate – “The Greatest Love of All” (Whitney Houston)
That boy good.
Nina Simone – “To Love Somebody” (The Bee Gees)
You could just pick a Nina Simone cover out of a hat, but this song is so damn good to begin with that I had to pick it.
Santa Esmerelda – “Please Don’t Let Me Be Misunderstood” (The Animals)
Nina Simone actually does a great version of this one, too, although she lacks Santa Esmerelda’s Latin disco charm.
Seu Jorge – “Life On Mars” (David Bowie)
About as close to a perfect song as there is. I’m a sucker for bossa nova guitar playing and Portuguese, and this version is really understated and cool.
The Creepers – “Baby’s On Fire” (Brian Eno)
A little more snarling than the original. The kind of big racket I can get behind.
Aretha Franklin – “The Weight” (The Band)
The Band version may actually be better, but I can’t imagine wanting to sing a song once Aretha has had a go at it. Duane Allman is playing slide guitar on this version.