Although the main purpose of a band is to write and record their own music, sometimes having a band cover someone else’s song can give it a new life.
There are plenty of examples of this throughout musical history. One of the most famous may be “All Along the Watchtower” as performed by Jimi Hendrix. Although the song was originally written by Bob Dylan, the version that most people recognize—and the one that many critics argue brings its spirit to life—is Hendrix’s. Without belaboring the point, there are plenty of examples like this.
Today, we’re going to show you a more contemporary example.
Anybody who listens to popular music or rock is probably familiar with Kings of Leon.
For anyone who doesn’t know, they’re a group that originally formed in Nashville, Tennessee and are composed of three brothers and one cousin, namely Caleb, Nathan, Jared and Matthew Followill, respectively.
Since they first got started in 1999, their music included bluesy and Southern Rock influences, though they later moved into a more mainstream adult rock sound.
And that’s why is was particularly surprising to hear them do a cover of a dance-pop song!
In a live performance from BBC Radio 1, Kings of Leon decided to cover “Dancing On My Own” by Robyn.
Though Robyn is a successful performer in her own right, her songs are very synth-heavy and draw on an dance-pop sound—something that has almost nothing in common with the sounds Kings of Leon are known for! Still, the band was inspired by her music and decided to give it their own twist.
And after watching their performance, we’re so glad that they did!
As the song starts, it’s clear that the band has slowed the original song down considerably and moved the synth line onto a guitar.
Right from the beginning, the song sounds just like a lot of Kings Of Leon’s other bluesy songs. The guitar sound is very echoey and the drums are heavy in the background. As the vocal starts, it’s clear to see that Robyn’s lyrics can take on a completely different interpretation when they’re delivered this way!
By the time the band hits the chorus, the heavier guitars kick in and the band really hits their stride.
As they progress through the second verse, Caleb’s howling voice soars and really captures the meaning of the lyrics.
Although there are plenty of bands that sound better on a recording than they do live, this performance proves that Kings of Leon are just as good live as they are anywhere else.
Beyond that, they earn even more points by taking such a creative risk and making an unusual song completely their own.
After listening to this, it’s not hard to see why this video has more than 23 million views on YouTube!
No matter how big or successful a band gets, it’s still important that they remain willing to take creative risks like this one.
If there’s any lesson to take away from something like this, it’s that we shouldn’t get too comfortable in our own lives either. Though we can take years and years honing our skills at one special ability in one area, we shouldn’t get so stuck that we’re not afraid to branch out and try something new.
As this video shows pretty clearly, sometimes taking a risk leads to some of the best things in life that we wouldn’t have discovered otherwise.
Thanks to Kings of Leon for breathing new life into the song and giving such a great performance! Check the full clip out below:
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