First Songs I Knew Off By Heart

Like most people there are songs in my life that I know very well because they are in my family's record collection that I discovered as a pre-teen. By record collection I mean how all the seven singles and LPs owned by every member of my family was stored. There was no one in my family who was into music enough to cultivate a collection based on genre, music history or pretention. The songs and LPs were just what was liked by whoever in my family and available in the local stores. So we are talking about white Rhodesia from the 1960s to independence in 1980 whereby the country became Zimbabwe. This is a very narrow racial, social and political outlook on life that translate to what music was being played on the radio. I would sit near the big wooden hi fi radio with inbuilt record player in our lounge room with the seven single records (without sleeves) slotted into the record rack. I would listen to one after the other all afternoon, and sometimes I would replay some. These are the ones I know so well that, as The Carpenters say, I can sing along with them (all verses) if they come on the radio or shuffle onto my mp3 player: 

My Coo Ca Choo by Alvin Stardust

Angie by The Rolling Stones

Seasons In The Sun by Terry Jacks

Rose Garden by Lynn Anderson

The Leader of the Gang by Gary Glitter

Sunglasses by Hilary

Ooh Wakka Doo Wakka Day by Gilbert O'Sullivan

and, of course, Yesterday Once More by The Carpenters 

Soundtrack to Friday - Everything is Covered

Songs have been covered by different artists since time began.  So much so that in Australia Triple J radio station has a regular segment called Like A Version .  In keeping the tradition of celebrating the reinvention of the popular song, here are my top five selections in no particular order:


The original by The Carpenters

A cover by Sonic Youth


With A Little Help From My Friends

The original by The Beatles

A cover by  Joe Cocker

Knockin' On Heavens Door

The original by Bob Dylan

A cover by Randy Crawford

Another cover by Guns n' Roses

I Just Don't Know What To Do With Myself

The original by  Tommy Hunt

A cover by Dusty Springfield

Another cover by The White Stripes

Tainted Love

 The original by Gloria Jones

A cover by Soft Cell