The problem with Weird “Al” is that there is never a natural connection between his lyrical and musical parody and this leads to the music veering closely towards plagiarism. This Doors satire sounds exactly like them especially the organ which is flat out hysterical and the lyric is a witty swipe at the flakes on craigslist: “Got a trashcan of Styrofoam peanuts, you can have em for free, you can drop by on the weekend and pick ’em up from me, but the trashcan ain’t part of the deal, only givin‘ you the peanuts, get real!” But why are they together? What was the connection between weight and Michael Jackson (“Fat”) or Billy Joel and Spiderman (“Ode To A Superhero”)? If he ever makes that connection he will be a true great.
Train Under Water – Bright Eyes
Daylight – Matt and Kim
Mona – Bo Diddley
Ugly – Jotto
I See Monsters – Ryan Adams
Scarlet Tide – Joan Baez
If you have only one cover of a Costello to buy here it is (if you have two include Dave Edmund’s “Girl’s Talk”). Produced by Steve Earle and from Ms. Baez distinct take on modern folk “Day After Tomorrow”, she is in fine voice singing of war and tides of blood. The writer himself did a great version of this at the Beacon the other day as well. It’s just one of those songs that work.
May You Never – John Martyn
Blood bank – Bon Iver
Lithium (Solo Acoustic) – Nirvana
Answer Me My Love – Nat King Cole
Answer me – Renee Fleming
There is the Nat King Cole who invented the small jazz trio and there is the Nat King Cole who was the star of his own TV variety show and a pop phenomena. This lovely song (originally Italian? sounds like it) is a representative of the latter and very nice too -he is like the Obama of jazz -completely unruffled by his heartbreak. The great American soprano seems to not be singing in her natural range here but it is an excellent cover oweing more than a little to Mr. Cole’s version.
Brother Sport – Animal Collective
Angeliou – Van Morrison
The Trolly Song – Judy Garland
Oh No – Andrew Bird
Talking New Bob Dylan – Loudon Wainwright III
Here is a satire where the lyrical and musical satire mesh completely. A brilliant heads up to Dylan by a former new Bob Dylan. best line: when he forgets the name of one of Bobby’s albums: “Oh, i’ve got, I’ve got it. “Self Portrait”, Well, it was an interesting effort”. By the end of the song his teenage daughter is locked in her room listening to “Everybody must get stoned…”
I’m Throwing My Arms Around Paris – Morrissey
Brooklyn Go Hard – Jay Z
Prom Queen – Lil Wayne
Turn It On – Franz Ferdinand
There’s No One As Irish As Barack Obama – Corrigan brothers
This is not a parody -they mean it believe it or not and, if the sample at the end is accurate, they might be right.