It's common knowledge among my friends that I have a deep love for good song covers. Several years ago, back when I had an MP3 player, a friend commented that I had more song covers than I did originals in my playlist. I contested the point at the time, but I later realized that she was right. I know that there are many people who think song covers are from Satan, so if you're one of those people, feel free to click away now. However, if you also enjoy good song covers, then here are ten of them that I think are better than their originals (in no particular order).
1. "Kiss the Girl" -- Chase Holfelder
Chase Holfelder likes to take songs in a major key and arrange them in a minor key. For those of you who aren't musically inclined, that basically means that he gives the songs a darker feel. This is my favorite of his major-to-minor covers, and it'll give you a good idea of what it feels like to make that change.
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2. "Just a Dream" -- Kurt Hugo Schneider feat. Sam Tsui and Christina Grimmie
Kurt Hugo Schneider is well known for his song covers, and this is perhaps the most popular of his arrangements, especially since the tragic death of featured vocalist Christina Grimmie (RIP). She and Sam Tsui are both powerhouse vocalists, and they certainly blew me away in this powerful, yet beautiful, arrangement.
3. "Let It Go" -- Alex Boye feat. One Voice Children's Choir
It was, perhaps, inevitable that a cover of Frozen's hit song would appear on this list. Of all the covers available of this song, this is definitely my favorite. If you haven't seen this video, and if you don't yet hate this song, it's worth a watch.
4. "She's So High" --Alex Goot
As much as I love the original version of this song, I can't help but love this version more. Perhaps it's because I'm a sucker for piano. I also think that the piano fits the song better than guitar, but you're free to disagree with me.
5. "Dark Horse" -- Peter Hollens feat. Sam Tsui
In addition to being a sucker for piano, I'm also a sucker for a cappella music. This cover of Katy Perry's "Dark Horse" uses no instruments other than the human voice, and just like all good a cappella, I can't help but appreciate it...perhaps a bit too much.
6. "Heartless" -- Kris Allen
Kris Allen originally performed a shorter version of this cover on season eight of American Idol, and it blew everyone away. After defeating Adam Lambert for first place on the show, he included a full cover of the song on his first album. Both versions can be found on YouTube, but I've included the album version here.
7. "Chandelier" -- PVRIS
Brought to you by the album series Punk Goes Pop, this version of Sia's hit song provides a bit more edge to the already upbeat track. I know of many exceptional covers of this song, but I think this one is my favorite. If you're a fan of this song, though, I encourage you to check out the Sara Bareilles live cover of it and Jordan Smith's performance of it from The Voice.
8. "Lean On" -- Pentatonix
I suppose this item could simply be titled, "Any Cover by Pentatonix." This a cappella group proved that fame can come without the use of instruments. After winning The Sing-Off, this group rocketed to fame with their unique a cappella style, reaching platinum status with their Christmas album, That's Christmas to Me. "Lean On" is, perhaps, my favorite song off their latest album. If you're not familiar with this group, I strongly encourage you to check them out.
9. "Love the Way You Lie" -- A Skylit Drive
Another one of my favorite Punk Goes Pop covers is this one right here. Again, the punk style gives the song more drive and more edge. Add a bit of screaming (but not too much), and you've got what I consider to be an exceptional cover.
10. "Toxic" -- Glee Cast (Season 5 Version)
For Glee's 100th episode, the creators decided to have fans vote on their favorite past Glee performances. The top numbers were revamped for this special episode, and from this came my favorite Glee number of all time. The show's first performance of Toxic was good, but this one far surpassed it in my opinion. The arrangement is considerably slower than Britney does it, but the Latin feel that has been added here makes it more provocative than the original. I absolutely love this cover, so if you're not too busy calling me a heathen for enjoying a cover of one of Britney's biggest hits...give it a listen.