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The Covers: IV – “Don’t Let The Sun Go Down On Me.”

April 2, 2020

In the previous two posts were songs by The Who, one original, and one a cover.

For this post, I am featuring Roger Daltrey in a recording he did not make with The Who. Daltrey’s version was the first I heard. It was on an amazing soundtrack from an even more amazing (and intentionally silly, but very stylish) vampire film, called “The Lost Boys.” The movie and soundtrack were released in 1987. I’m not a big fan of horror movies, but damn this film was great.

One reason I liked the movie so much.. it was mostly filmed in the beautiful and rather creepy Northern California coastal city of Santa Cruz, and the Santa Cruz Mountains. During the early to mid ’90’s, I spent a lot of time in that city, and the neighboring, smaller city of Capitola (though very little time in the creepy parts) and lived up in those mountains for four summers.

I don’t know about vampires, but there is a lot of weird stuff that goes on in Santa Cruz County. If you visit, stick to the tourist areas. No joke. And don’t go wandering in the heavily forested mountains either. Friendly locals told me not to do that. “Deliverance”-type people up there and who knows who else.  There’s reasons this film was set in a fictionalized version of Santa Cruz County.

I will put the trailer for “The Lost Boys” at the bottom of this post.

First though, the original recording, by Elton John, from his “Caribou” album, which was released in 1974:

 

Sir Elton released a live version of this song with George Michael in 1991. The two had previously performed the song together in 1985, with Elton playing piano and George singing. This was for the massive Live Aid concert series.

I’m not selecting that one as the cover for this post, even though I like both Elton John and the late George Michael. Besides, with Elton performing on it, it is not a cover.

As with previous and future posts, my goal with this one is to provide a cover version that sounds somewhat different from the original. And sounds at least as good, or in this case, even better, in my opinion, than the original.

Here is Roger Daltrey’s version:

Quite different, indeed! Epic.

A strange thing about this version.. the ending guitar riff sounds very similar to the bridge in Billy Idol’s “Eyes Without A Face,” only slowed down. Did Steve Stevens, Billy idol’s guitarist and co-songwriter, play on the song you just heard? I looked up Stevens on Wikipedia, and did not see a credit for him listed under soundtracks, and also googled around awhile trying unsuccessfully to find a list of performers on Roger Daltrey’s track.. so my guess is no. But the guitar tone and the riff sure sound similar to what I hear in “Eyes Without A Face.”

In the next two posts, I will focus on Dolly Parton songs, one of them an original, and one a cover. I just realized it was a cover a few minutes ago while researching the song. I will be posting the original of that song, Dolly’s cover, and then a radically different cover.

As promised.. here is the trailer for “The Lost Boys.” One of the best horror movies ever.

 

 

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