PROMPT: Take a super famous song and do something totally wacky with it—like make it a waltz. Change the genre. What would Britney Spears sound like if you made her song sound old timey? Is it possible? It’s up to you to find out.
SONG OF THE DAY:With a Little Help From My Friends
I like to have conversations about “what’s the best?” with my dad and my friends. Especially my dad. “What’s the best Hitchcock movie?” “What’s the best Beatles album?” It’s fun to pretend to be objective about it. Of course, we are expressing opinions, but it’s still fun to argue opinions and take them seriously for five minutes.
During the rest of the minutes, I don’t really take taste-driven opinions that seriously. I mean, of COURSE I have the best taste in music than anyone else. Of course. Along with the best taste in food, movies, beer, dogs especially…
One of my favorite topics for one such conversation is “What’s the best cover of a song ever?” I always propose this Joe Cocker version of the, cough cough, dorky second track on Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Heart Club band.
Now I love the Beatles, really I do. I love Sgt Pepper’s! But their version of this song, in my humble-not-even-trying-to-be-objective-here opinion, is downright terrible. But then Joe Cocker comes along and transforms it into a gospel song.
It was so good, it became the theme Wonder Years.
(By the way, I try to use the Wonder Years as an example when I’m talking to my students and they have no idea what I’m talking about. Youngins! They have no idea who Kevin Arnold even is! They don’t even remember the episode when Winnie Cooper comes in to a sick Kevin’s room all mad at him, punishing him by jumping on his bed and screaming if he wants coleslaw.)
Back to this song. I love the fact that Julie Taymor presents both versions in Across the Universe: