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Cover Suggestions?

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My band, BingBong, plays mostly originals and we toss in a few covers. Our sound is kind of Pretenders, Blondie, Elvis Costello, etc. with female vocals. We enjoy the art of writing our own tunes and we are lucky to be in a town that appreciates bands doing originals.

Ideally, we like the covers to get the audience dancing (or engage them) in a set that's mostly originals. We've recently been talking about learning some new covers so that we don't do the same Cure, Modern English, INXS, or Bowie tunes. One of our members wants to do more modern pop tunes (what? 80's not modern?).

What songs have you covered that gets the audience going and that might be a good fit for BingBong? Any suggestions appreciated!

Sample - Here's our album: https://open.spotify.com/album/5OeIvzLvB9hvqiV8vg9VSL

 

https://www.bingbongband.com

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Here’s a few you don’t hear bands play every day:

Dave Edmunds: girls talk

The Romantics: what I like about you

Graham Parker: Stupefaction

Graham Parker: Endless Night

Elvis Costello: Pump it Up

Blondie: Heart of Glass

Eddie Grant: Electric Avenue

Devo: Whip It

M: Pop Muzik

Ian Lloyd: Slip Away

The Clash: Train In Vain

Joan Jett: Nag

Todd Rundgren: Bang the Drum

Gary Numan: Cars

Iggy Pop: Real Wild Child

David Johansen: Personality Crisis

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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My experience with going the described route is you will be a cover band within a year.  People always respond more favorably to music they know.  

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Doin’ it Right by April Wine might fit what you’re looking for!! Sure worked for several cover bands I was in. And it’s really fun to play!!

 

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Here’s another by Pete Townsend that seemed to fire a crowd up live. Rough Boy’s off the Broken Glass album. 

 

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4 hours ago, Studio Custom said:

My experience with going the described route is you will be a cover band within a year.  People always respond more favorably to music they know.  

We’ve held this formula for 7 years, just tired of the same covers.

Great suggestions! Keep’m coming!

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Not exactly pretenders vibe or huge hits but some of my fave under the radar tunes   That tread the alt/pop vibe.    

 

hoodoo gurus  bittersweet  
 

hole. Malibu 

concrete blonde  Joey  

divinyls.  touch myself  

Also love the presidents of the usa

version of video killed the radio star  from the wedding singer soundtrack    

 

 

 

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Come on, come on by Billy Idol is a party starter. Fun riff to play as well.

We used to cover this one in a band I was in, in the early 90's. Great fun to interpret in a guitar band. Obscure perhaps , but people love it
(guitardaddy mentions this song as well, take it as a good omen. Have faith in us, we know stuff):

 

And, seriously, if you want more options of cover songs than you even really need... ...just get the STIFF box set from Amazon. Everyone should have this box set at home. It's mandatory for a pop nerd. https://www.amazon.com/Stiff-Box-Various-Artists/dp/B0000032VR

Some fine tunes from that box set you can cover:

Ian Dury - Sex and drugs and rock n roll

Heart of the City - Nick Love

Solitary confinement - The Members

A new England - Kirsty Maccoll

Pick Me Up - The Inspirational Choir Of The Pentecostal First-Born Church Of The Living God

 

And this one, I love this one. Great riff. Hits them right in the face:

 

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The Joker by Steve Miller makes people dance. 

 

Studio Custom is right about the danger of devolving into a regular bar band. 

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Definitely all of you standing in front of either a brick wall or train tracks.  Preferably in matching leather jackets.

 

Oh, wait...   that cover...  ;)

 

Regarding Studio Custom's comment, I would suggest maybe taking an unexpected cover and make it your own.  Like take a Black Sabbath song and twist the arrangement to suit your sound/vibe.  I've done that in the past and while our band flamed out, we never became a cover band. 

 

There's a ton of bands on youtube now getting good mileage out of this.  Where it's almost a roleplaying thing for them by doing big band arrangements of Radiohead and whatnot.  It stretches the definition of cover band a little and seems to me that folks would be more likely to accept originals from you since you're not just a stunt double for the record.

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Mustang Sally.

Ice Cream Man.

Free Bird.

 

Did I miss any?

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Some stuff by P!nk - there are some good rocking ones, and how about some Katy Perry? Waking up in Vegas?

 

 

 

 

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2 hours ago, Steve Haynie said:

The Joker by Steve Miller makes people dance. 

In what alternate universe is this the case?

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5 minutes ago, MCChris said:

In what alternate universe is this the case?

It works down South.  Seriously.  People dance to The Joker. 

Try playing it sometime and watch the women in the audience. 

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Not all our dance floors have poles.

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1 hour ago, Steve Haynie said:

It works down South.  Seriously.  People dance to The Joker. 

Try playing it sometime and watch the women in the audience. 

That settles it: the South shall not rise again.

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This one's got a nice beat, easy to dance to:

If you're feeling inventive, you can always mash it up with U2's 'Desire' and/or George Thorogood's 'Who Do You Love'.  They've all pretty much got that 'Bo Diddley beat'.

 

 

Edited by crunchee
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31 minutes ago, crunchee said:

This one's got a nice beat, easy to dance to:

If you're feeling inventive, you can always mash it up with U2's 'Desire' and/or George Thorogood's 'Who Do You Love'.  They've all pretty much got that 'Bo Diddley beat'.

I haven’t heard that in twenty - plus years!

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Covers my past bands have played to get the booties shakin with positive results:

Stevie Wonder - I Wish, Sir Duke, Superstition

The Romantics - What I Like About You

REM - The End Of The World As We Know It

Jackson 5 - ABC, I Want You Back

Elvis Costello - How To Be Dumb, Pump It Up

CCR - Looking Out My Back Door, Proud Mary

ELO - Mr Blue Sky

Anything from Otis Redding.

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3 hours ago, Dave Scepter said:

What's the age and mindset of the audience?

Let’s say 30 - 60 years of age, leaning to the elder side.

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Mission of Mercy is a great suggestion for a female fronted band!

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