Dangerous Minds has an interesting post about songs that you (probably) didn’t realize were cover songs. For instance: Did you know that Soft Cell’s “Tainted Love” was originally recorded by Gloria Jones in 1964? Fascinating. “The tune was written by Ed Cobb of The Four Preps who originally offered it to The Standells, who turned it down. Jones’ recording was a commercial flop that later achieved some notoriety in the UK.” Who knew? And who knew that “I Write the Songs” by Barry Manilow was first recorded by Captain and Tennille (on their 1975 Love Will Keep Us Together LP) and that they only recorded it after David Cassidy had the first release of the song as a single? ASTOUNDING. But the CRAZIEST fact is that Kim Carnes BEYOND ICONIC New Wave classic “Bette Davis Eyes” was originally a foot-stompin’ Country & Western song from the early ’70s. It’s TRUE. And you are going to PLOTZ when you hear it!
Kim Carnes’ 1981 recording of “Bette Davis Eyes” spent nine weeks at number one on the Billboard Hot 100 and was Billboard ’ s biggest hit of that year. It was originally recorded in 1974 on Jackie DeShannon’s album New Arrangement. The original version is drastically different from Carnes’ new-wavey cover. DeShannon’s recording is straight up honky-tonk.
Listen to the Jackie DeShannon version below and prepare to have your WORLD SHAKEN.
Here’s the version we all know and love.
Now head over to Dangerous Minds and check out other mind-blowing cover songs that folks like David Bowie, Pat Benatar, Toni Basil, and Eric Clapton later made famous.