Posts Tagged ‘music’

Thoughts on a Rush cover album

Back in September 2010, after leaving the PNC Bank Arts Center following a Rush concert, my friend Randy shared with me a curious idea he’d been mulling: an album of Rush songs reinterpreted, rearranged, and performed by various female recording artists.

We both were intrigued by this notion, and though we had a few vague ideas about how it might play out, we never really worked out the details.

The idea has stayed with me ever since however, and today I sat down for a few minutes and brainstormed twelve Rush songs — a number of the band’s better-known hits plus a few “deeper” cuts from various albums — and a dozen female artists who I think would bring something new or interesting to them:

“The Spirit of Radio” — The Donnas
“New World Man” — Shakira
“Nobody’s Hero” — Sheryl Crow
“Entre Nous” (acoustic) — KT Tunstall
“The Pass” — Adele
“Dog Years” — Liz Phair
“Bravado” — Fiona Apple
“Presto” — Beyoncé
“Fly by Night” — Dixie Chicks
“Closer to the Heart” (acoustic) — Indigo Girls
“Limelight” — Katy Perry
“Tom Sawyer” — Lady GaGa

Part of what I like about this lineup is that it has artists who represent a broad range of music styles.

The Donnas and Liz Phair have the hard-rock chops to deliver kick-ass guitar-driven tracks; Sheryl Crow, Fiona Apple, Adele, and KT Tunstall all have soulful qualities that I think could evoke some profound pathos from their tracks; Dixie Chicks and Indigo Girls could bring fresh country and indie-rock aesthetics to two classic Rush songs; and pop artists like Shakira, Beyoncé, Katy Perry, and Lady GaGa would challenge perceptions of three well-known Rush hits plus one “deep” track (and help drive sales, no doubt).

What do you think, readers? Great idea? Terrible idea? Would you choose different tracks and/or artists for such an album? If so, which ones?

ETA: Great suggestion from my friend Brandy Hauman for a bonus track:

“Working Man” — Halestorm

Yes, a touch of metal was just what this lineup needed.

ETA II: Russ Colchamiro suggested this great artist; I added my choice of music:

“Overture/The Temples of Syrinx” — Joan Jett

Upon further reflection, it became clear to me that I had the last two recommendations backward. Listening to Lizzy Hale’s mighty wail, I realized the bonus tracks ought to be:

“Working Man” — Joan Jett
“The Temples of Syrinx” — Halestorm

Yes, much better, I think.

Revisiting old opinions: RUSH

Yesterday, I read an interesting article on in which its author re-evaluated long-held opinions about the oft-maligned television series Star Trek Voyager, Andromeda, and Farscape. It didn’t much change my opinion of any of those three shows for better or for worse, but this sentence got me thinking:

This holiday season and on through til the End of Times, we’re giving each of you the opportunity to ignore a petty prejudice and embrace something new.

It led me to ponder my long-held opinions about three middle-period albums by my favorite band, RUSH. Specifically, Hold Your Fire (1987), Presto (1989), and Test for Echo (1996).


Soundtracky Goodness

As many of my friends and some of my readers know, I like to collect movie and television soundtracks. I listen to them to set a mood and achieve the right frame of mind while writing.

Recently, for a project I was working on, I rectified a long-standing gap in my collection. I purchased some of the soundtracks from episodes of the original Star Trek TV series. (more…)