Friday, August 28, 2009

Pattern Recognition #3 -- Pop Semi-Covers

This summer a big thing on Top 40 radio was what I can only describe as a "semi-cover" song--in which the artist doesn't actually cover the original song, or even sample it, they just lift the original's entire hook and reappropriate it into their own song--as the entire hook.

This is genius. Writing a dull, meandering verse is easy, but writing a catchy, satisfying, radio friendly chorus is hard. And writing a catchy, satisfying, radio friendly chorus that is a decade or two old and has already stood the test of time and embedded itself into the collective consciousness? That's damn near impossible!

This could be booming business, when you consider how many popular hit songs other artists have come up with over the decades! Just scan through the list of past Billboard #1 singles, cut out the chorus, and insert it in between a few verses you've written in the same key, and you've got a road-tested hit, with BONUS NOSTALGIA VALUE!

If you're not sure what I'm talking about, here's 3 examples from this summer:

Flo'Rida -- "Sugar" (chorus is the chorus of Eiffel 65's "Blue")

Flo'Rida -- "Right Round" (chorus is the chorus of Dead or Alive's "You Spin Me Around")

Khristina Debarge -- "Goodbye" (chorus is the chorus of Steam's "Na Na Hey Hey Kiss Him Goodbye")

I feel like there were 1 or 2 more than that as well....anyone recall?

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