Ernie: Rubber Duckie
Kelly Hogan: Rubber Duckie
Larry Paulette: Rubber Duckie
[scavenge out-of-print '77 album]
Love Pigs: Rubber Duckie
[download out-of-print sesame street punk covers compilation]
The Buffalo Chips: Rubber Duckie
[purchase other in-print CDs from SUNY Buffalo's only all-male a capella group]
As a long-time cover collector, I tend to have a handful of different versions of pretty much any beloved song lurking in my collection. In the LP world, these coversongs were often hard to keep track of without some sort of overly obsessive catalog system, but the highly manageable universe of iTunes and digital music feeds my obsession, making it easier both to store and collect single tracks, and to find those tracks easily.
The fruits of such a media shift: I have not one but five versions of Rubber Duckie to offer up for this week's theme, and each one is decidedly different. Ernie's original is a classic, of course. But sweet-voiced alt-country crooner Kelly Hogan's piano-driven lounge take is delightful in its sultry innocence, all the more noticeable next to openly gay seventies artist Larry Paulette's funky, slippery, sexually charged take. And the contrast between the thrash punk of Love Pigs and the barbershop a capella arrangement from male group The Buffalo Chips should go without saying.
This isn't my whole collection, of course. There's also an oddly pedophilic-sounding Little Richard cover out there, plus a marching band cover from a prison band, and a disco take with Robin Gibb and the Muppets that sounds exactly like you'd think it does, among others. But I just couldn't bring myself to share those alongside the "good" ones today - perhaps we'll take on a "questionable cover songs" theme for April Fools Day this year, and I'll dig 'em up then instead.
Thanks to long-time cover blog Fong Songs for introducing me to two of these covers, by the way. Host Jamie Fong closed down the shop just this month, but he went out with a bang, and his final series - a top 101 covers countdown - remains up for the nonce.