Between this playlist and Sunday’s, I have reached a hasty conclusion:
When black artists cover a white rock song, they tend to approach it with a lot of sincerity. When white artists – especially alt-rockers – cover a black funk or soul tune, they often seem to be half-joking.
What’s up with that?
Still, these tracks can be entertaining.
1. “Don’t Stop ’Til You Get Enough” – Julian Coryell, Robin Danar
Julian Coryell (pictured above) is the son of jazz guitarist Larry Coryell. His reimagining of Michael Jackson’s monster hit was a collaboration with producer Robin Danar for the 2008 album “Altered States.”
2. “I Will Survive” – Cake
One year ago, I pointed you to a free download of a Barry White cover by the alt-rock band Cake. This track is even more tongue-in-cheeky than that one.
3. “Oh Girl” – Me First and the Gimme Gimmes
I had never heard of the Bay Area punk-pop band Me First and the Gimme Gimmes before assembling this playlist. Their 2003 CD “Take a Break” also includes revved-up covers of “Ain’t No Sunshine,” “Isn’t She Lovely,” “I’ll Be There,” “Hello” and more.
Matter fact, let me share another one from them. Here’s Lionel Richie’s “Hello.” I could do without the goofy bit at the end. Otherwise, it’s a righteous cover.
4. “Erotic City” – Arto Lindsay
Arto Lindsay is a longtime rock experimentalist beloved by the critics. Robert Christgau bestowed a rare A+ upon Lindsay’s 1996 album “Mundo Civilizado,” whence comes this Prince cover.
But even the presence of Bernie Worrell and Melvin Gibbs on this track won’t inspire me to spin it many more times.