Folk Me Up
July 7, 2012 8:41 PM   Subscribe

I'm looking for folky and bluegrassy covers of popular songs. Examples inside.
posted by moonroof to Media & Arts (61 answers total) 93 users marked this as a favorite
Single Ladies - The Cleverlys
and many of their other videos! Check out their channel.
posted by pupstocks at 8:46 PM on July 7, 2012 [1 favorite]

Round and Round- The Meat Purveyors
posted by kimdog at 8:48 PM on July 7, 2012 [1 favorite]

Shine - Dolly Parton
posted by argonauta at 8:57 PM on July 7, 2012

hmmm... interesting...

argonauta's link found me at Stairway to Heaven, also by Dolly.
posted by HuronBob at 9:00 PM on July 7, 2012 [1 favorite]

Anything by Hayseed Dixie. They mostly cover hard rock/metal songs, as in this version of "Highway to Hell," but they have also covered the Beatles and the Rolling Stones, among others.
posted by ronofthedead at 9:00 PM on July 7, 2012 [3 favorites]

Mat Weddle - Hey Ya
Ian Koh - Poker Face (and others)
posted by jessamyn at 9:05 PM on July 7, 2012

Gin and Juice by The Gourds
posted by tomjoadsghost at 9:11 PM on July 7, 2012

I'm having trouble getting my Amazon link to work, but how about "Beatle Country" by The Charles River Valley Boys?
posted by Rad_Boy at 9:12 PM on July 7, 2012

Ben Howard covered Call me Maybe.
posted by FirstMateKate at 9:20 PM on July 7, 2012

Custom Kings' cover of "Boys of Summer." It's also one of the most charming, creative covers I've ever heard.
posted by a hat out of hell at 9:31 PM on July 7, 2012

Luther Wright and the Wrongs - Rebuild the Wall
posted by hydrophonic at 9:31 PM on July 7, 2012 [3 favorites]

A lot of the songs covered by Iron Horse on the Pickin' On albums would qualify.
posted by doowod at 9:31 PM on July 7, 2012 [2 favorites]

Austin Lounge Lizards - Brain Damage
posted by unknowncommand at 9:37 PM on July 7, 2012

Andy Prieboy - Whole Lotta Love (original by Led Zeppelin)

I only have a Spotify link for this, unfortunately.
posted by Redfield at 9:47 PM on July 7, 2012

Re argonauta and HuronBob, I believe Dolly put out an album of bluegrass/country covers of rock songs a few years ago.

Maybe the collaboration between Jack White and Loretta Lynn would also work?

While searching Amazon for that, I also found an album called "Bluegrass Tribute To Jack White." Sounds interesting.
posted by Sara C. at 9:48 PM on July 7, 2012

It's more Irish/acoustic, but Glen Hansard's cover of Britney Spears' Everytime is so amazing, it just has to be shared.
posted by Aquifer at 10:10 PM on July 7, 2012

Sounds like a significant fraction of my record collection.

The Carolina Chocolate Drops cover of Hit 'em up Style is really worth hearing. As is everything they do.

Richard Thomson's Oops, I did it again is fabulous.

IF you're into scottish folk, The Battlefield Band's Bad Moon Rising is a lot of fun.

Matt Nathanson covers are more folky than bluegrass, but there are a lot of 'em and they're good.

You could make a case for all of the Johnny Cash American Recordings, depending on how wide your definition of "bluegrass" was. Also Billy Braggs "Johnny Clash" bits.

Now, if you want to go the other way, Tommy Shaw (of Styx) recorded The Great Divide, a straight-up bluegrass album. If you like Blues, he redid his own Blue Collar Man as a Chicago Blues song. That's out there.

Whew! That's enough for this reply...
posted by Mad_Carew at 10:18 PM on July 7, 2012 [1 favorite]

Here's Nickel Creek covering Britney's Toxic.
posted by kbar1 at 10:44 PM on July 7, 2012 [1 favorite]

Ricky Skaggs and Bruce Hornsby - Super Freak (this is awesome.)

Dolly Parton - Stairway to Heaven (which is actually really good just ignore the hokey choir.)

If you look around you can find a version of Toxic by Nickel Creek.
posted by fluffy battle kitten at 10:45 PM on July 7, 2012

Townes Van Zandt covering the Stones' "Dead Flowers" (as heard over the closing credits in Big Lebowski).
posted by notsnot at 10:50 PM on July 7, 2012

Your title reminded me of (fictitious) folk group The Folksmen's cover of Start Me Up.
posted by illenion at 10:58 PM on July 7, 2012

Trampled by Turtles covering Arcade Fire's Lies
posted by Snuffman at 10:58 PM on July 7, 2012

Sam Bush Band -- Bob Marley's One Love
(he also recorded this with the New Grass Revival)
posted by Wordwoman at 11:00 PM on July 7, 2012

Coyote Grace does a nice version of Bruce Springsteen's I'm on Fire

And this it's a bit more singer-songwritery, but I always get a kick out of Nina Gordon's Straight Outta Compton

I love this particular type of genre-crossing, thanks moonroof!
posted by cosmologinaut at 11:26 PM on July 7, 2012

Dawn Landes covered Peter Bjorn & John's Young Folks.
posted by mollywas at 12:00 AM on July 8, 2012 [1 favorite]

Apparently, Will Oldham (Bonnie Prince Billy) is an R. Kelly fan. (Bonus YouTube comment: "Thought he was Jamie´╗┐ from Mythbusters!") Additionally, this may stray a bit from folk/bluegrass, but I think it fits what you're looking for very well and it has a super cute video: Jenny Owen Youngs - Hot In Herre

In the definitely definitely folk category: Great Big Sea covers REM's End of the World and Cat Stevens's "Here Comes My Baby" (though I can't find that one online). Dar Williams covers Led Zepplin's Comfortably Numb, Midnight Radio from Hedwig and the Angry Inch, Fountains of Wayne's Troubled Times, The Kinks' Better Things, and David Bowie's Starman. Of course, you might also like Seu Jorge's Portuguese Bowie covers from The Life Aquatic. And that's without getting into all the other folk singers Dar's covered (with Cry Cry Cry there's a whole album).

I'll stop now.
posted by maryr at 12:27 AM on July 8, 2012

Metafilter's own cortex covered Wheel in the Sky.
posted by gamera at 12:41 AM on July 8, 2012

Bad Livers: Lust for Life (Iggy Pop)
Trampled by Turtles: Where Is My Mind? (Pixies)
Carolina Chocolate Drops: Hit Em Up Style (Blu Cantrell)
Iron Horse: Ocean Breathes Salty (Modest Mouse)
Punch Brothers: 2+2=5 | Morning Bell (Radiohead)
Yonder Mountain String Band: Girlfriend is Better (Talking Heads) | Crazy Train (Ozzy)
Greensky Bluegrass: Little Red Corvette (Prince) | Beat It (M. Jackson) | Road to Nowhere (Talking Heads) | Time (Pink Floyd)
The Ooks of Hazzard: Kids (MGMT)
Poor Man's Whiskey: Pink Floyd's "Dark Side of the Moonshine" (decked out in Wizard of Oz costumes)
posted by prinado at 1:42 AM on July 8, 2012 [1 favorite]

The Abrams Brothers do a cool cover of Viva la Vida.
posted by ersatzkat at 3:56 AM on July 8, 2012

...and Carbon Leaf covers Crazy Train. It's awesome.
posted by ersatzkat at 3:57 AM on July 8, 2012

For many more, go to the music section of Amazon and search for the word "pickin" or the phrase "bluegrass tribute".
posted by yclipse at 5:05 AM on July 8, 2012

The recently departed Doc Watson: the Moody Blues Nights in White Satin
posted by blob at 5:51 AM on July 8, 2012

Hmm. Fiona Apple doing her own "Extraordinary Machine" with Nickel Creek?
posted by MonkeyToes at 5:53 AM on July 8, 2012

Do a YouTube search for Jesse Morris and Six Pack. He was a busker in San Francisco's BART system who unfortunately committed suicide last year. Here, he sounds just like Johnny Cash while covering Black Flag.
posted by AJaffe at 5:57 AM on July 8, 2012

Jeff Mangum: I Love How You Love Me
posted by scruss at 6:06 AM on July 8, 2012

Strummin' with the Devil, David Lee Roth's weird novelty bluegrass compilation of Van Halen covers.
posted by Luminiferous Ether at 6:42 AM on July 8, 2012 [1 favorite]

Death Trip by the Bad Livers.
posted by bunderful at 6:42 AM on July 8, 2012

Couldn't find a full youtube of it, but Nickel Creek covered Radiohead's (Nice Dream). Also possibly of interest: Saturday Night Hay Fever, which is disco covered bluegrass style.

In a related but not exactly same wheelhouse: the late, lamented Asylum Street Spankers cover NIN's Closer.

Nthing the Hayseed Dixie recommendation. They are not all hard rock covers; one of my favorites of theirs is a Scissor Sisters cover (I Don't Feel Like Dancin').
posted by immlass at 6:42 AM on July 8, 2012

Patti Smith, Smells Like Teen Spirit.
posted by Rube R. Nekker at 8:14 AM on July 8, 2012

Cover Lay Down might be right up your alley. (Most recent entry features Steve Earle and his son, Justin Townes Earle, who does a good version of The Replacements's "Can't Hardly Wait.")
posted by MonkeyToes at 8:29 AM on July 8, 2012

CW Stoneking's Seven Nation Army
posted by mixing at 8:36 AM on July 8, 2012

Are you familiar with the work of Marvin and Mavis Smiley?
posted by Rash at 8:47 AM on July 8, 2012

Earl Pickens and Family did a folky cover of the entire U2 classic "The Joshua Tree" -- the one that I always go back to is the one where they made "With or Without You" into a waltz (that is, changed the time signature from being in 4 to being in 3)
posted by secretseasons at 10:16 AM on July 8, 2012

The District -- Firework
and Clem Snide did a whole EP of Journey covers.
posted by dizziest at 10:57 AM on July 8, 2012

I have this Bluegrass Tribute to Velvet Revolver album which works surprisingly well.
posted by merocet at 11:06 AM on July 8, 2012

Richard Shindell - Born in the USA
posted by epj at 2:29 PM on July 8, 2012

The Punch Brothers do a lot of covers- Just What I Needed is a favorite.
posted by oneirodynia at 3:43 PM on July 8, 2012

the avett brothers did a cover of bruce springsteen's glory days.

robin pecknold of fleet foxes did a really lovely cover of bob dylan's it ain't me, babe.
posted by kerning at 3:50 PM on July 8, 2012 [1 favorite]

Alt-country group The Gourds cover Snoop Dog's Gin and Juice.
posted by mon-ma-tron at 5:35 PM on July 8, 2012

Sarah Jarosz - The Tourist
posted by koucha at 5:57 PM on July 8, 2012

Mike Phirman and Chris Hardwick (of The Nerdist) were a college music-comedy duo at UCLA, called "Hard 'n Phirm," and they made a bluegrass Radiohead medley called "Rodeohead." It makes me laugh.
posted by Sunburnt at 6:48 PM on July 8, 2012

Nearly 20 years ago Run C&W made a couple of fairly entertaining albums playing 'that sweet soul music the way God intended it to be played. Bluegrass Style.'
posted by pupdog at 5:00 PM on July 9, 2012

Bluegrass Tribute to Lazy Eye by Silversun Pickups from Vitamin Records' Radical Reinterpretations album. (Spotify link to the whole track) That album also has bluegrass tributes to Tool (Aenema), Hellogoodbye (Here (In Your Arms)), The Fratellis (Flathead), Kelly Clarkson (Never Again), and Joss Stone (Tell Me 'Bout It) (Spotify links bc the tracks aren't up on YouTube).
posted by Lexica at 1:04 PM on July 10, 2012

ronofthedead: "Anything by Hayseed Dixie."

Agreed; their cover of "Centerfold" is particularly amazing.

As a side note, Snoop loved the Gourds' bluegrass cover of his "Gin and Juice".
posted by WCityMike at 9:42 PM on July 11, 2012

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