Non traditional acoustic covers

November 25, 2009 10:49 AM

I am starting a 2 man acoustic band. What fun, non traditional songs should we include in our set?

Seeing this today reminded me also of Jonathan Coulton's "Baby Got Back" -- songs redone in a completely different context/genre that become really fun and funny in the process.

So what are some other songs that would be fun to cover in an otherwise acoutsic pop/rock coffeeshop type setting?
posted by jpdoane (8 comments total)

I just now read the previous post and I guess my question is a subset of the challenge man v. sun recommends. I'll be interested to see what comes of that as well. Sorry for the quasi double
posted by jpdoane at 11:01 AM on November 25, 2009

This reminds me of a few AskMeFi threads, including this, this, this, and this. Sorry to be That Guy who just points you to other MeFi threads, but they look like good jumping-off points.

I'm listening to the mashup of Notorious BIG's "Party & Bullshit" and Miley Cyrus's "Party In The USA". If you & your partner did that live, you'd be rockstars in my eyes. Also, Stevie Wonder's "Superstition" and Cardigans' "Lovefool".
posted by knile at 4:12 PM on November 29, 2009

You might find something in the work of the late, great Jake Thackray - here's a taster. His humourous songs were very English and very non-pc, so might not go down with a US audience. Jake was an exceptionally clever lyricist and although I'm familiar with all his "hits" he can still have me in stitches while admiring the sheer brilliance of his wordplay.
posted by MajorDundee at 3:15 PM on December 6, 2009

Dammit seems to translate okay into acoustic (in my humble humble opinion). If it's a coffeeshop, you might want to :s/fu*d/loved/g though.
posted by tmcw at 12:47 PM on December 9, 2009

I heard a cover of Iron Maiden's "Run To The Hills" done in bluegrass style once. The Gourds did a great cover of "Gin and Juice." Try a Bessie Smith song. The possibilities are endless.
posted by not_on_display at 1:24 PM on December 9, 2009

Without knowing the standard of your playing abilities (and whether you're using a sequencer or not), this is difficult.

I think you could have a lot of fun coming up with unique versions of some of the following
(I know I would!):

Uncle Kracker - Follow Me
Jack Johnson - Good People
Fleetwood Mac - Never Going Back Again
Aztec Camera - Oblivious
Beatles - Blackbird
James Morrison - You Give Me Something
George Benson - Breezin'
Eric Clapton - Signe
Gypsy Kings - Volare
Harry Nilsson - Lime In The Coconut
Jamiroquai - Virtual Insanity
Joe Cocker - You Are So Beautiful
John Farnham - You're The Voice
Justin Timberlake - Senorita
Rodriguez - Rich Folks' Hoax
Sheryl Crow - Leaving Las Vegas

This sounds like a fun project of yours.

posted by Zenabi at 4:50 PM on December 19, 2009

P.S. I mentioned the sequencer because I have heard one put to very good use in an acoustic situation (subtle percussion.)

If I were you, I would just have a scroll through your favourite playlists and jot anything down that strikes your fancy.

From there, all you have to do is gather the chords and vibe!
posted by Zenabi at 5:02 PM on December 19, 2009

The Asylum Street Spankers did a great cover of Prince's 1999, and the similarly named Austin Lounge Lizards did a famous cover of Pink Floyd's Brain Damage. Both acoustic and only slightly bluegrassy.
posted by irisclara at 8:02 PM on January 20, 2010 [1 favorite]

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