Pin It
Favorite

In Defense of Cover Bands 

by Luke Baumgarten & r & & r & & lt;span class= & quot;dropcap & quot; & W & lt;/span & alk into a bar -- any bar, doesn't matter. Find the hippest kid in the joint (you know what to look for, it's instinctual). Ask him who the last cover band he/she saw was. Most likely, he/she will invite you out for a smoke, just so he can flick a lit American Spirit in your eye. You'll then be told he/she hasn't willingly been to see a cover band unless it happened to be the background music playing during an especially cheap PBR/Olympia/Sessions drink deal.





Cover bands are maligned for a reason, but it's a shrill, snobby reason and we're tired of it. The lack of original artistry gets thrown around as the crippling flaw of cover bands as though mere originality makes something any good. Bon Jovi is original, and he gave us "I'm a cowboy / on a steel horse I ride."





Songs get covered for a reason. Often, they're brilliant additions to the pop canon. Paul McCartney's "Yesterday," an undeniably great song (just try to deny it), holds the world record for most covers. But even if the songs that get covered aren't great, they at least serve as touchstones. They're the songs that everyone knows and that everyone can sing with, making them things that remind us of how similar we are. This is a good thing.





One of the more memorable nights of my life began at the Star deep into my last year of college. I was getting fitfully tanked with friends while some large black man (with bass chops so filthy I thought the thing was an extension of his arm) belted out "Hit Me Baby One More Time."





Exactly why I remember that night isn't important. What is important is that, when I remember it, Britney Spears runs through my head, not one of the 20-odd songs (all gems, I'm sure) I heard played by a half-dozen hopelessly original indie bands later that night.





The songs that cover bands cover are relevant culture-wide. They resonate with us and thus, to some extent, cover bands themselves resonate. That's logic. Since there's no sense fighting logic, here's a cursory list of some of the area's more austere cover artists you'll want to get acquainted with:





CLASSIC ROCK


Nighthawk


Ray Vasquez





COUNTRY


Exit 7





JAZZ/BLUES/SOUL


Cary Fly


Charlie Butts and the Filter Tips


Cool Stack


Fat Tones


Sammy Eubanks


Schauer with Friends





POP/VARIETY


Blynd Spot


Cruizers


Nova


P.J. Destiny


Save Lefty





This list is an attempt at noting the active cover bands in the area. If we missed yours, let us know who you are and what you're about. Write [email protected]
  • Pin It

Latest in Comment

  • Class Act
  • Class Act

    Seeing through money differences can build relationships focused on fairness
    • Sep 22, 2016
  • Don's Ultimate Con
  • Don's Ultimate Con

    Trail Mix: Trump's birther problems and Johnson's polls
    • Sep 22, 2016
  • Transparent Motives
  • Transparent Motives

    One candidate's an open book; the other is shrouded in secrecy. Guess which one isn't transparent enough
    • Sep 22, 2016
  • More »

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Today | Wed | Thu | Fri | Sat | Sun | Mon
Lost Egypt: Ancient Secrets, Modern Science

Lost Egypt: Ancient Secrets, Modern Science @ Northwest Museum of Arts & Culture

Tuesdays-Sundays. Continues through Jan. 6

All of today's events | Staff Picks

More by n/a

  • Iron Upgrade
  • Iron Upgrade

    The new one is smart and funny and action-packed, and it’s bigger and better and sleeker. And Downey does it again, this time ramping up Stark’s arrogant wisecracking, telling anyone who’ll listen (mostly women) that, via the creation of his powerful Iron Man suit, he’s brought years of uninterrupted peace to the world.
    • May 12, 2010
  • Get Out the Vote
  • Get Out the Vote

    With all the uncertainty in the world these days, hot wings and cold beer are two things we can get behind
    • Nov 9, 2009
  • Seeing Gay
  • Seeing Gay

    A festival showing GLBT from all angles
    • Nov 9, 2009
  • More »

Most Commented On

  • To Kill the Black Snake

    Historic all-tribes protest at Standing Rock is meant to stop the destruction of the earth for all
    • Sep 8, 2016
  • Murrow's Nightmare

    Debate moderators need to be much more than an onstage prop to make our democracy work
    • Sep 15, 2016
  • More »

Top Tags in
News & Comment

election 2016


trail mix


Briefs


green zone


marijuana


Readers also liked…

  • To Kill the Black Snake
  • To Kill the Black Snake

    Historic all-tribes protest at Standing Rock is meant to stop the destruction of the earth for all
    • Sep 8, 2016
  • Spark of Change
  • Spark of Change

    Why Chris Hedges thinks we're ripe for revolution
    • Mar 4, 2015

© 2016 Inlander
Website powered by Foundation