Cover Tunes Whose Popularity Surprised You?
OK cover band guys (and gals). Looking for songs that you didn't know were so popular until you started playing them in your band.
In my case, I always knew tunes like "Brown Eyed Girl", "Mustang Sally" and "Sweet Home Alabama" were layups but here are few that surprised me (and still do) with how regularly they get the crowd going:
- "Cant You See" (Marshall Tucker Band)
- "Wagon Wheel" (Old Crow Medicine Show)
- "Baton Rouge" (Garth Brooks)... I had never even HEARD this song before I had to learn it for my current band
- "Dust on the Bottle"
- "Fishin in the Dark"
- "Neon Moon"
Yeah, I play a lot of country...
I have played every song you listed except Baton Rouge. The one that surprised me was Wagon Wheel. We had to learn it for a wedding about 5 years ago. When I watched the OCMS video on you tube I thought what a bunch of happy crap this is. It is now one our best songs and always packs the dance floor.
Recently, I narrowly avoided a music project that would have gone nowhere, but there was one song of theirs I wanted to play. LA Woman by the Doors. Played correctly, this song fills the dance floor.
Just - Radiohead
In The Meantime - Spacehog
Danger High Voltage - Electric Six
Take A Picture - Filter
I've always thought "Take A Picture" was a great song. And "In The Meantime" would be a blast to play. But yeah, I would have never guessed them to be crowd favorites in a cover bar band scenario.
I Kissed a Girl - Katy Perry
I'm in a classic rock cover band with a female singer. We started playing this one as a joke, and we learned the crowd, especially the ladies totally dig it.
'Take Your Time' The SOS Band
Believe it or not : Ziggy Stardust.
It's not really danceable or anything. Somebody asked for it as a request and I happened to know the lyrics off the top of my head.
I play in 4 or 5 bands and ,except for the horn band, I have to do Ziggy during the gig. Somebody always asks for it & it goes over great.
Teenage Dirtbag - Wheatus!
Caused a huge rush on the dancefloor at a recent wedding - young and old alike!
More than anything else it has to be "Homegrown Tomatoes" by Guy Clark. It wasn't even a big hit in Texas, but Europeans seem to love it, maybe because it's easier to grow tomatoes here.
Best part about baton rouge is that brooks didnt even write it....
Sweet Caroline is a huge tune around here, as well as wagon wheel and 7 Nation Army.
Long Distance Call by Phoenix. The first time we did it it was only really to make the set longer and we thought it'd be fun. But it became a staple of our set and is the only song we've played at every gig, because of how well it went down. It also sounds nothing like anything else we play.
It's about 10 minutes in on this video http://youtu.be/1ihhbkVrlOM
My first band without a family member was a country band that played a lot of BPOE, AmVets, etc. The first time I played out with them I was boggled by the number of people in a country environment asking for a Clapton song. The next time we got together for practice the BL said we are going to learn Tulsa Time. Again I'm thinking Clapton and then he pops in a tape of Don Williams doing it. It was a line dancin staple and line dancin was big so we played it every night, sometimes (by relentless request) more than one time.
When my little country band plays "Dancing Queen" (ABBA) and "I Want You Back" (Michael Jackson) the dance floor goes nuts. We'll call a "freestyle" dance once or twice a set. Not everyone knows how to two-step or line dance.
Another one is "Don't Stop Believing" (Journey). We do a breakdown during the song to let the crowd sing. It's amazing the response we get. Good stuff.
Thank you for your indulgence,
Oh yeah, "Tulsa Time". Forgot about that one.
I've only done "Sweet Caroline" once or twice my entire life but that one surprised me too.
"Kryptonite" by 3 Doors Down is another inexplicable crowd pleaser which, thank God, is a part of my past.
Monkees "I'm A Believer" is a biggie too that I didn't expect when we started doing it.
Rocky Racoon (Beatles). Became very popular in my bar playing days (mostly nights).
Don't Stop believin' doesn't surprise me at all
I was in a metal band a few years back and we started covering "Beeleseboss" by Tenacious D. We loved the song, but we just trough it on a setlist and all of a sudden the crowd (mostly stoner/metalheads) gets going and is singing along to the song, getting on stage with us; it was an awesome experience. We opened the show, and the other bands (headliner included) didn't get anything close to that kind of response.
Our rhythm guitarist wanted to do "A Certain Girl" by Warren Zevon. I didn't think it would do much as it hardly even charted. (Seems like most people only know songs that made the top 40!)
It goes over great and the crowd always ends up singing the "What's her name? / Ahhhhhh! parts".
We put I'd Love to Change the World by Ten Years After in for ourselves one night and it has become a staple. Can't tell you how many times people have come up and commented on what a great song it is and how they had forgotten about it.
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