Friday, July 30, 2010

Dear Van and Prince: Do This

Two facts are now resoundingly obvious to me: Van Morrison should cover “Purple Rain.” And Prince should cover “And the Healing Has Begun.” See, this is the reason I would like to be a billionaire. Sure, I would give a lot to charity. And I would build a house somewhere quiet-ish and fill it with books. But I would also get Van and Prince on the horn and make this happen.

The reason I know these dueling covers should happen has nothing to do with Van or Prince, but with the Waterboys, a band I’m not even that familiar with. Through one of those YouTube rabbit holes that's hard to untangle, I found clips of the Waterboys covering both songs. The first, from 1986, features "The Thrill is Gone" (a Waterboys original, not the B.B. King song) and segues into "And the Healing Has Begun" (starting with the lyric, "And we'll walk down the avenues again"). The second is just "Purple Rain." Neither clip has video, just audio, and if you're like me you'll want to just listen rather than watch the photo collages.


Anonymous pf said...

This is brilliant, JW.

It's also reassuring to see the Waterboys get some attention. I went on a HUGE Waterboys kick after college and always figured it was one of those quirky things you're better of just letting go. But a while back I heard "Fisherman's Blues" on a jukebox in a bar (I think you might've even been there, JW) and it's irresistible, one of those songs that defies the worst of bad moods. Anyway, the point of this comment is that you should look up their cover of Van Morrison's "Sweet Thing" (at least I'm pretty sure they cover it). VM and Prince are clearly major influences. The Waterboys are a sort of distillation of all VM's and Prince's elfin joy and exuberance, uncomplicated by darkness and sexual energy -- which is sometimes exactly what you want.

11:34 AM  
Blogger figment said...

i got on here to mention "fisherman's blues," but i see it's already been done... that is a tune that sticks with you for a lifetime. catharsis in a song.

looking forward to hearing their take on prince and VM.

12:06 PM  
Blogger Miles Doyle said...

The Waterboys, definitely. One of Ireland's best. They did cover "Sweet Thing." A pretty good version, actually, with a few lines of the Beatles' "Blackbird" thrown in for good measure. Check out, too, "And a Bang on the Ear" and "The Whole of the Moon." Great, fun songs. "Fisherman's Blues," as noted, is in its own class. Their songs are best while under the influence, in a bar, alone or with a group.

11:03 AM  
Anonymous pf said...

LOVE "The Whole of the Moon." Also "Strange Boat."

9:50 AM  

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