Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Under The Covers with Traditional

"Amazing grace how sweet the sound/That saved a wretch like me/
I once was lost but now I'm found/Was blind but now I see"

Second Hand Songs lists The Beatles as the most covered artist in existence, but I have to argue that Traditional is the rightful bearer of the title. Not much is known about the man, but it seems like pretty much every artist out there has been drawn to his music at some point or another. In this post alone we feature artists ranging from Aretha Franklin to Dropkick Murphys, from Willie Nelson to Veggie Tales (I'm gonna go out on a limb and say this is the only time in history the latter two have been mentioned in the same sentence, although I could see Willy being a big fan).

Some highlights: Spirtualized somewhat ironically begins its "Peace On Earth" variation of the song with the Star-Spangled Banner. Paul Simon and Ladysmith Black Mambazo drift into an African language about halfway through. Aretha Franklin manages to drag it out to 11 minutes. Dropkick Murphys' cover fucking rocks, obviously. Jerry Garcia's is my personal favorite. Bela Fleck adds some much-needed banjo to the mix. We saw Braddigan perform the song at World Cafe, although without a segue from "Walk With You." Pete Seeger's is marked "explicit."

On a slightly heavier note, this is a bittersweet post for me. On Friday I'll be leaving for eight weeks to work as a counselor at a camp in NH. Unfortunately, what the mountain air enjoys in crispness it lacks in WiFi. I'm aiming for a post every three days, but Benjy's gonna have to hold down most of the fort for the remainder of the summer. And seeing as he's living in the Midwest, the fort could suffer some serious decay over the coming weeks.

But hope is not lost. Before you know it, The Canals will be at 110% again, swinging for the fences, going for the jugular, busting its ass, taking what the defense gives it, and playing an all around solid game. We have some big surprises in store for the fall (when a Canal says big, he means BIG), so make sure to stick around. And who knows, maybe you won't even notice I'm gone.

Charlie Daniels - Amazing Grace
Jerry Garcia - Amazing Grace
moe. - Amazing Grace
Rod Stewart - Amazing Grace
Willie Nelson - Amazing Grace
Veggie Tales - Amazing Grace
Spirtualized - Amazing Grace
Pete Seeger - Amazing Grace
Aretha Franklin - Amazing Grace
Dropkick Murphys - Amazing Grace
Paul Simon & Ladysmith Black Mambazo - Amazing Grace
Bela Fleck & The Flecktones - Amazing Grace
Braddigan - Walk With You -> Amazing Grace



Christy said...

Veggie Tales is an excellent addition to this post. 8 weeks as a counselor, go you! I think it's great you're doing that WiFi or not. =o)

vjb2 said...

What, no Sarah Silverman rendition from "Jesus Is Magic"? If you've not seen it, she manages a one-woman trio, though how is the gag.

Anonymous said...

The Lemonheads, back when they rocked, also covered this on "Hate Your Friends." For reasons I can't even begin to imagine, the Library of Congress has it online:

Our tax dollars at work. God Bless America!

Anonymous said...

Oh. The Library of Congress has a special collection of Amazing Grace up right now. 32 total versions. I'd paste the URL but it's too long. They've got Sam Cooke and Elvis and the Indiana University of Pennsylvania Marching Band among others.

Anonymous said...

Amazing Grace is also masterfully performed by Five (a brass quintet for any occasion).