Do you know that some of your favorite songs are actually covers? In fact, some of these covers are so popular that they have completely overshadowed the original versions. Here are some songs you might not have thought to be covers:
- Don’t Cha by The Pussycat Dolls ft. Busta Rhymes
- Twist and Shout by The Beatles
- Hurt by Johnny Cash
- I Love Rock’ n Roll by Joan Jett
Sometimes you listen to a cover of one of your favorite songs, and it completely overshadows the original, works as a satisfactory piece, or falls short of the original’s glory. Other times, you hear what you believe is a cover of your favorite song but find out that that song was actually the cover all along. In this article, we are going to surprise you as we talk about popular tracks you didn’t know were actually song covers.
1. Don’t Cha by The Pussycat Dolls ft. Busta Rhymes
Yes, you read that right! The world-famous Pussycat Dolls’ 2005 anthem “Don’t Cha” is actually just a cover. Just one year before The Pussycat Dolls released the song, the ex-backing vocalist of OutKast, Tori Alamaze, released it as her debut single. After a little dissatisfaction with the performance of the song, her label soon gave up the rights.
With Nichole Scherzinger and Busta Rhymes’s touch, the song hit the Number 1 spot on the UK Singles Chart.
Original Version: Don’t Cha by Tori Alamaze
2. Twist and Shout by The Beatles
Written in the year 1961 by Bert Berns and Phil Medley, Twist and Shout was first recorded by The Top Notes. The version was not successful on the charts until the Isley Brothers did a remake of it which went into the Top 20. Later in 1963, The Beatles picked up the song and did their rendition based on The Isley Brother’s version.
Original Version: Twist and Shout by The Top Notes
New Version: Twist and Shout by The Beatles
3. Hurt by Johnny Cash
It’s no surprise that upon listening to Cash’s version, you might thing that his version is the original; it’s actually a no-brainer because it sounds like a Cash song. Nevertheless, the song was written by Trent Reznor of Nine Inch Nails and appeared on his Downward Spiral album, for which he got a Grammy nomination.
In 2002, Cash covered the song and received critical and commercial acclaim, making the song his own. The music video of Cash’s version is believed to be one of the best ones of all time!
Original Version: Hurt by Trent Razor
New Version: Hurt by Johnny Cash
4. I Love Rock N’ Roll by Joan Jett
Written by Jake Hooker and Alan Merrill, the song I Love Rock n’ Roll was actually recorded by the Arrows back in 1975. Alan was the vocalist for the Arrows version and wrote the entire song by credited Jake Hooker as a debt settlement. Merrill said he wrote the song as a response to the song It’s Only Rock’ n Roll by The Rolling Stones.
In 1979, Joan Jett first recorded the track with two members of The Sex Pistols, Paul Cook and Steve Jones but rerecorded it in 1981 with the Blackhearts. Her song cover became a great hit, reached Number 1 on the Billboards charts, and also won her a Grammy.
Original Version: I Love Rock’ n Roll by The Arrows
New Version: I Love Rock’ n Roll by Joan Jett
Last Few Words
While some of these song covers are by world-known artists, they still got us wondering about how often we see big tracks overshadow the original versions. Whether it is an old song that gets a new life thanks to a famous remix or a new track that becomes a success because of its great cover, it seems as if the original tracks are left in the dust.
Eric Dalius is The Executive Chairman of MuzicSwipe, a music and content discovery platform designed to maximize artist discovery and optimize fan relationships. Beyond his work at MuzicSwipe, he hosts the insightful weekly podcast “FULLSPEED,” engaging with entrepreneurs from diverse backgrounds. Eric also contributes to education through the “Eric Dalius Foundation,” offering four scholarships for US students. Follow him on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, and Entrepreneur.com.