Wednesday, April 14, 2010

All That Glitters Is Gold...

No more drama! Mary J Blige boldly takes on an iconic classic rock song.
Stairway To Heaven

In the classic rock oevere (is that a word? I think I see it now and then used to mean like a set of something) there are certain songs that are considered sacred cows. One of those songs is the Led Zeppelin classic, maybe their best known jam, "Stairway To Heaven".

Hard to believe I didn't hear "Stairway To Heaven" until almost a decade in to my listening to rock music. This and "Free Bird" I only knew of by reputation. When I heard Led Zeppelin on the radio, it was almost always "D'yer Mak'er". Or "Rock and Roll". Sometimes "The Battle Of Evermore". It was about 1989 when I went thru a Led Zep phase and bought Led Zep IV which contained the legendary tune. I liked it enough to use the song in a video production class I was taking, got a decent grade for it too.

Sometimes a song starts showing up on my radar for no real reason. It just happens. While searching Itunes for interesting cover versions of well known songs, I came across an Imix that included "Stairway To Heaven" by Dolly Parton. My first reaction was this had to be a joke. Dolly Parton? Really?? After playing it, while the song had a certain kitchy appeal I had to admit that Dolly sounded real commited to the performance of the song. I could actually take her version seriously and enjoy it while at the same time poke fun. Can't pass up a song like that can I?

If you answered "No, he can't" then you would be right. About a week later I went to Itunes again and could not believe my eyes. Mary J Blige, an excellent R&B artist (one of the few modern R&B performers I consistently like even though I only have a handful of her songs) covered both "Stairway To Heaven" and "Whole Lotta Love". "Whole Lotta Love" is a bit of a mish mash between guitar rock and dance beats that doesn't quite fit together. Her "Stairway To Heaven" was more of a straight ahead cover, a little respectable although definitely karaoke. Gonna give her credit for taking this one on at least.

Still, it was just weird how in a few weeks "Stairway To Heaven" covers have just been popping up in front of me, so that folks is my KRQR double shot for today. Well, maybe I should throw in the original too.

And she's buy-yuy-ying a stair-air-way. To heave-ennnnn....

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