As anyone who has heard some of the Beatle cover albums out there knows, they run the gamut from good and bad to ugly. The recently released “The Minnesota Beatles Project Vol. 2,” a follow to last year’s edition doesn’t fall into the latter category at all. It’s a fairly charming collection of covers that is very listenable and, even better, doesn’t aim for the obvious choices.
Our favorites include “Revolution” by Total Babe that puts a breathy female lead on the song, John Lennon’s “Child of Nature” by Mason Jennings (see video), a nice version of “Real Love” by Lookbook and a stripped-down version (compared to George Harrison’s original) of “It’s All Too Much” by Polara.
Also, a vocal-laced cover of “And Your Bird Can Sing” by Rogue Valley takes a different avenue than the original, “Hey Jude” by Sound of Blackness is a nice soulful version and “I Want to Hold Your Hand” by Edison High School reminded us, for some reason, of Arthur Fiedler’s version with the Boston Pops.
The new disc has a couple of coups with appearances by Soul Asylum (“Good Morning, Good Morning”) and the Meat Puppets with Alison Scott (“Tomorrow Never Knows”). Mark Gehring, founder/executive director of Vega Productions, which put out the disc, and who is also executive producer of the album, says Soul Asylum’s old producer (Chris Osgood) appeared on “The Minnesota Beatles Project Volume 1” in the Suicide Commandos and he recruited them.
“They were all about the project,” Gehring says. “It’s their first official studio work in four years.” Gehring says the Meat Puppets have been wanting to record “Tomorrow Never Knows” for years. “And it turned out that their manager, Dennis Pelowski, lives in Minneapolis. He caught wind and they enthusiastically joined.”
There are some decidedly different tracks. How about bluegrass and “I Am the Walrus,” as by Pert Near Sandstone?
The disc, however, is very enjoyable and intriguing. And best of all, it’s for a good cause. One hundred percent of the net proceeds go to Minnesota public schools music and art programs. It’s available through Target.com.
Gehring says a third volume is in the works and will be released Dec. 8, 2011. “No word on bands yet,” he says, “although we have unofficial confirmations from some pretty spectacular bands.”
Have a comment? Leave it below. And be sure to subscribe. You won’t want to miss any of our foamcage.com columns. We have new stories and reviews with fresh, original news on at least one of these columns every day ––
Beatles Examiner: foamcage.com/x-2082-Beatles-Examiner
Paul McCartney Examiner: http://foamcage.com/x-34954-Paul-McCartney-Examiner
Vintage Rock ‘n’ Roll Examiner: foamcage.com/x-19248-Vintage-Rock-n-Roll-Examiner
TV on DVD Examiner: foamcage.com/x-10254-TV-on-DVD-Examiner
Please join us on Twitter: @stevemarinucci (RT’s are much appreciated!)
Make us a favorite here on foamcage.com.
Get our free Beatle news widget: http://tinyurl.com/2dan6jx
Get our complete Examiner news widget: http://tinyurl.com/275ge6w
© COPYRIGHT STATEMENT: This article is the original work of Stan. Under no circumstance may any portion of this article be broadcast, copied, published, rewritten or used without the permission of the author. To purchase this or any other article by Stan, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.