Tag Archives: cover versions

Latest show now on Mixcloud

BrassrootsThe latest mix of covers, funk, soul and reggae is now available for your listening pleasure on Mixcloud – listen here.

As the last couple of funky covers mixes have been pretty laid back affairs I’ve kicked this week’s off with a an absolute banger.

If you’ve never heard of Brassroots you’re in for a treat. A brass band in the mould of Hypnotic Brass Ensemble they’ve knocked out great versions of cover version staples including Karma Police and Seven Nation Army. Their version of Good Life starts off as a toe tapper but soon builds up pace.

From brass we go reggae with a couple of classics including Eek-a-Mouse’s ‘Wa Do Dem’ a great cover of The Beatles’ ‘Let it Be’ and one of the strangest reggae covers in my collection – Tom Jones’ ‘Delilah’ covered by friend of Massive Attack Horace Andy!

Horace is playing this year’s Big Chill – I hope to see him there as he was due to play a few year’s back but didn’t. Crack may or may not have been involved!

We’ve then got a reggae/dub version of Roots Manuva’s ‘Witness’, a handful of funky mash-ups including a funky Adele remix. And even some House of Pain, Kriss Kross and Public Enemy samples for good measure.

To end, a couple of chilled out tracks from the new Good Times album from Notting Hill Carnival Stalwart Norman Jay MBE. Norman has announced this week that his famed bus won’t be parking itself in Notting Hill this August bank holiday weekend for the first time in 30 years. Help support him in funding next year by buying the album here. 

So many great tracks on the album but I’ve opted for one that reminds me of my childhood. ‘Ghetto Disco’ brings back memories of my teenage years, growing up in the deepest darkest hood in a small leafy rural village called Sandhurst  in Gloucestershire. That school disco was rough.

Full tracklisting can be found at Mixcloud. Listen to the show here.

Next mix will be out in a fortnight with a distinctly summery feel.


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Cover It Up! Sound System radio show 13/6/11 now live

Coveritupshow 2The second episode of the Cover it up! Sound System’s radio show is now live on Mixcloud. Listen to it here. 

This week’s show kicks off with some laid back reggae covers, passionate northern soul and Duran Duran covered by an African Funk band – what’s not to like!

We’ve dropped the voiceover from this episode and will continue to do so in future shows – so you can listen to the mix uninterrupted by our west country tones.

Full tracklist below:

1 - Alton Ellis - You've Made Me So Very Happy
2 - The Creations - A Dream
3 - Jimmy Hughes - Lock Me Up
4 - Toots & The Maytals - Take Me Home Country RoadBuy
5 - Kokolo - Girls On Film
6 - Mayer Hawthorne - Just Ain’t Gonna Work Out
7 - Letta Mbulu - What’S Wrong With Groovin’
8 - Frankie Paul -I Know The Score
9 - Easy Star All Stars - Karma Police
10 - Unknown - Mary Jane
11 - New Birth - Honeybee
12 - Gang Starr - Check The Technique
13 - Boy Meets World - Hey Young World
14 - No1 De No1 - Guajiri Van
15 - James Brown - Sunny [Regrooved By Featurecast]

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Red Stripes at the ready…

Notting Hill Carnival

That'll be £12 please

It’s Notting Hill Carnival this weekend. 30 years of Norman Jay’s Good Times at carnival as well, so I’m gutted I can’t make it.

To console myself, I’ve been pulling out some tracks for a special  carnival mix to be posted here over the next couple of days.

I’ll then be playing it all day Sunday and Monday while putting £4 in a bin every time I open a can of Red Stripe and asking an aggressive stranger to charge me £3 every time I need a piss. Just like being there. But with less 15-year-olds  on coke sporting ridiculous caps. I hope.

So far, I’m thinking old skool hip hop, including EPMD and Young MC; some big dancehall tunes (shabba); classic jungle (Shy FX etc); a few party cover versions; maybe even some dubstep for the ladies…

Let me know your suggestions for carnival classics to be included via comments below.

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Cover of the day: Jackson Sisters – Why do fools fall in love

Jackson Sisters

The Jackson Sisters - Made Mojo's top 10 list of colour blind all-female groups

I rediscovered this chunk of catchy soulful-disco whilst digging through a neglected box of vinyl in my garage over the weekend and it’s been stuck in my head since!

This was originally recorded by Frankie Lymon & the Teenagers in 1956 (Frankie was a teenager himself when recorded so not as dodgy as it sounds ).  Amazingly the original only reached no.6 in the billboard charts at the time but remains a wedding dj favourite (usually played after the happy couple have fucked him/her off by asking for anything by Robbie Williams).

Frankie died of a heroin overdose aged just 25 but not before establishing a template for success followed by future child prodigies Stevie Wonder, Mickey Jackson and S-Club Juniors.

Testicle-twisting versions

There are quite a few dodgy cover versions of the track kicking around, including a bollock-wrenching rendition from the Beach boys and a passable 80’s-buddy-movie-soundtrack-esque version by Supremes hard man Diana Ross.

And if you thought his version of ‘Sweets for my sweet’ warranted a nasty case of diabetes you should listen to C.J Lewis’s slaughtering of this track on Spotify.

The Jackson Sisters version was released on their first and only (I think?) self-titled album.  They’re most well known for the rare-groove classic ‘I Believe in Miracles’ but they inject some  disco in to this great cover version.  My vinyl version has a lovely crackle – courtesy of years of abuse at my hands – that really adds to the track, for me.  Unfortunately I haven’t recorded my version to mp3 yet so you’ll have to make do with this version courtesy of youtube:

No she-males

The sisters were not the female sisters of the Jackson 5  (Janet, Rebbie) and didn’t include Jackson she-male LaToya.  They were: Jacqueline Jackson-Rencher, Lyn Jackson, Pat Jackson, Rae Jackson and Gennie Jackson who recorded on Tiger Lily Records (same label as Richard Pryor).

I’m fairly sure this Jackson Sisters version  appears  as a sample on The Avalanches fantastic first album, but I may be wrong.

P.S – I realise I haven’t updated this blog for ages but hope to add a few more posts this week and next as I’ve dug out some classic covers.  If I get my act together there might even be a mix to upload!

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Ring the alarm…



I just came across this classic early 90’s hip hop cover of Tenor Saw’s best-known reggae hit ‘Ring the alarm’ by Fu-Schnickens as I was sorting through some old tunes.  I’m sure the neighbours enjoyed the bass during its first spin for about 8 years!

Tenor Saw (whose real name was Clive!) died tragically young at 22 when hit by a speeding car.  Check out another track of his –  ‘Golden Hen’ – as well, another great bit of 80’s digital reggae.

Fu-Schnickens never really had the success they deserved and split after their second album.  They had some great names though –  Chip Fu, Moc Fu, and Poc Fu.  Which coincidentally are three of my favourite dishes from the local Shanghai Kitchen…

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The greatest Beatles cover version ever…

With the re-release of The Beatles back catalogue and Beatles Rock Band there have been loads of articles on the best Beatles track and best cover versions over the last month.  So, I thought it was about time I nominated my favourite Beatles cover version.  Here it is:

Esther Phillips – And I Love Him

Post a comment below to vote for your favourite.  But, be warned, if you vote for this you’re not welcome here:

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Big Chill festival covers special…

Coming soon... Big Chill Festival covers mix

Coming soon... Big Chill 2009 cover versions mix

The first of the regular cover version mixes after the summer break will be themed around The Big Chill festival.

It was a bit of a different festival experience for me this year as we took our 1 year old daughter along but it was as enjoyable as ever.  My highlights included Max Romeo’s memorable sunday afternoon set, Dennis Bovell’s Dub Band, Amadou and Mariam, Alice Russell and Craig Charles’ saturday lunchtime DJ set.

Norman Jay’s sunday lunchtime set (and yes, the sun was shining)  started with a great cover version I hope to include in the mix.  Basement Jaxx had mixed reviews from elsewhere but I thought they were great.  Full of energy and perfect for the Friday night headliner slot to set the tone for the weekend.

I’ll post the 60-minute mix next sunday morning (fortnightly sundays as usual) but by way of a sneak preview expect a few cover versions played at the festival as well as a couple from previous years.  I’ll post previews of tracks featured over the next couple of days.

In the mean time, add your comments below to suggest any covers you heard during the festival season.

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