5:36 pm - 09/14/2012

The Best Cover Songs of 2012... So Far

With the proliferation of televised singing competitions and the rise of the YouTube superstar, the cover song is now more popular than ever. Fans who shell out for summer concert tours have come to expect more than just the artist's hits — and thankfully, most superstars are happy to oblige. Here are some of the better pop covers from the past couple of months.

Kelly Clarkson's cover of "We Found Love," originally by Rihanna
Kelly Clarkson unveiled one new fan-requested cover on each stop of her 2012 summer tour, sometimes out-performing those who made the songs famous. She took Rihanna's synthy hit into a soulful direction in Virginia Beach.

One Direction's cover of "Use Somebody," originally by Kings of Leon
Those who doubt 1D's vocal talents should check out the lads' interpretation of this 2008 alternative hit, which they took on tour in early 2012. Harry's never been dreamier.

Nelly Furtado's cover of "Feel So Close," originally by Calvin Harris
Furtado's acoustic cover breaks the song down to its sparest elements, revealing a gorgeously written track beneath Harris' bouncy dance beat.

Usher's cover of "Pumped Up Kicks," originally by Foster the People
Usher's best known for churning out club bangers and saucy boner jams, but he can rock out, too. Check him injecting one of the most ubiquitous songs of 2011 with some extra attitude.

Ariana Grande's cover of "Die in Your Arms," originally by Justin Bieber
Ariana Grande's vocal delivery on this sweet-as-sugar cover was so pitch perfect, Justin tweeted a link to the video with the comment, "WOW..u killed it ... Ur voice sounds amazing."

Miley Cyrus' cover of "Lilac Wine," written by James Shelton
Unfortunately, Miley Cyrus' vocal chops are often overshadowed by her celebrity — people forget that she's got real pipes. They're on full display in this mellow rendition, one of several covers Miley recorded in the summer of 2012.

Madonna's cover of "Born This Way," originally by Lady Gaga
Sometimes it's not about the music, it's about the attitude. The Queen of Pop took a swipe at her colleague Lady Gaga at each of her concerts this summer when she incorporated Gaga's self-love chorus into her 1989 hit "Express Yourself," illustrating their sonic similarities.

Adam Lambert's cover of "Is This Love," originally by Bob Marley
American Idol alum Adam may have been relying on a lyrics sheet to get through one of Bob Marley's greatest hits, but you wouldn't have been able to tell from listening to him nail it.

The Wanted's cover of "Iris," originally by Goo Goo Dolls
The Wanted has been perfecting their acoustic cover of "Iris" for a couple of years now, hitting a peak with their April performance for San Diego's Slacker Radio. It's like 1998 all over again.

Katy Perry's cover of "N***as in Paris," originally by Jay-Z and Kanye West
Katy Perry is nothing if not courageous (she is dating John Mayer, after all). The California girl slapped on a Yankees cap to roll through her own candy-coated version of Jay-Z and Kanye West's biggest Watch the Throne hit. Even if we prefer Aziz Ansari's "Emojis in Paris."

Cookie Monster's cover of "Call Me Maybe," originally by Carly Rae Jepsen
The summer's most-covered song was almost old news by the time Cookie Monster got his mittens on it, but he managed to put his own original spin on it with a very important lesson about sharing one's sugar.


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glass_houses 15th-Sep-2012 12:17 am (UTC)
I loved this one (and it's my video so yay~)

Panic! at the Disco - I Believe in a Thing Called Love (The Darkness)

and this one (also mine)

Patrick Stump - This Is How We Do It (Montell Jordan)

and yes obligatory Iris love, go TW

Edited at 2012-09-15 12:21 am (UTC)
die2nitelive4ev 15th-Sep-2012 12:40 am (UTC)
Flawless taste, all of PATD covers are flawless
glass_houses 15th-Sep-2012 12:58 am (UTC)
glass_houses 15th-Sep-2012 01:02 am (UTC)
lol I'm rewatching the video for the first time in forever and I was so drunk, that's why it's all shaky lmao
highlikeme 15th-Sep-2012 12:45 am (UTC)
unf patrick stump.
panicgaybar 15th-Sep-2012 12:51 am (UTC)
unf Patrick
card91 15th-Sep-2012 12:58 am (UTC)
klmnumbers 15th-Sep-2012 03:45 am (UTC)
That PATD one is great
bellatrixella 15th-Sep-2012 05:22 am (UTC)
yesssss to everything about both of these videos! omg
horrible_tomato 15th-Sep-2012 04:44 pm (UTC)
damn amazing taste is amazing!!!
my fav P!ATD cover is Dog days though :)
acloseprecision 15th-Sep-2012 09:17 pm (UTC)
panic's cover is flawless and patrick is amazing at anything he does
iheartfamke 15th-Sep-2012 03:45 am (UTC)
My Kings covering my Queen <3
bohhead 16th-Sep-2012 08:21 pm (UTC)
lmao everyone i know says this is 10000x better than the original
bottomofursoul 15th-Sep-2012 12:20 am (UTC)
Missing Demi's cover of American Honey
glass_houses 15th-Sep-2012 12:22 am (UTC)
ddlovato 15th-Sep-2012 12:34 am (UTC)
ddlovato 15th-Sep-2012 12:30 am (UTC)
yessss ia
champagnexdream 15th-Sep-2012 12:20 am (UTC)
I can't even hate on that Goo Goo Dolls cover. It's pretty good, aside from the stupid-ass harmonies in the chorus.
bodyline 15th-Sep-2012 12:20 am (UTC)
only here for Cookie Monster tbh
roguedandelion 15th-Sep-2012 12:22 am (UTC)
The best The Wanted cover
glass_houses 15th-Sep-2012 12:22 am (UTC)
I don't even know the original song but they're so cute
xanvalleys 15th-Sep-2012 12:22 am (UTC)
going to listen to all of this, i've only heard an embarrassing 2 out of these
whitefox 15th-Sep-2012 12:22 am (UTC)
Katy Perry's cover of "N***as in Paris," originally by Jay-Z and Kanye West

Edited at 2012-09-15 12:23 am (UTC)
piratesswoop 15th-Sep-2012 01:11 am (UTC)
i don't know if this is mavin or maden but the moon brothers are so cute and flawless

blue_spinel 15th-Sep-2012 01:27 am (UTC)
omg what are these from? these kids are too cute!
sweetestbliss1 15th-Sep-2012 04:06 am (UTC)
that's Maden! (I think...he looks so much like Mason when he was younger!)

Edited at 2012-09-15 04:07 am (UTC)
goldynchickie 15th-Sep-2012 02:54 am (UTC)
inkblot_hearts 15th-Sep-2012 12:22 am (UTC)
The inclusion of Miley Cyrus makes this list irrelevant.
dynamite_state 15th-Sep-2012 12:27 am (UTC)
I doubt you even clicked the video
inkblot_hearts 15th-Sep-2012 12:28 am (UTC)
Obviously. I'd rather my ears didn't bleed.
ddlovato 15th-Sep-2012 12:31 am (UTC)
makahakat 15th-Sep-2012 12:25 am (UTC)
lilac wine is fab, haters are so transparent when it comes to that song tbh!
a_wa 15th-Sep-2012 12:50 am (UTC)
Agreed 100%.
superchocobear 15th-Sep-2012 11:18 am (UTC)
I can't stop listening to it
animalsrule_xo 15th-Sep-2012 05:48 pm (UTC)
exactly but whatevs!
dynamite_state 15th-Sep-2012 12:25 am (UTC)
givemethepeasx 15th-Sep-2012 12:29 am (UTC)
sia sings the original
dynamite_state 15th-Sep-2012 12:31 am (UTC)
ya, it's that Sia song

xanvalleys 15th-Sep-2012 12:28 am (UTC)
i'm rewatching xf and i'm sooo into him
bollyhood 15th-Sep-2012 12:30 am (UTC)
givemethepeasx 15th-Sep-2012 12:31 am (UTC)
britneys 15th-Sep-2012 12:43 am (UTC)
His entire album is great. I'm surprised at how much I love him.
mrsarigold 15th-Sep-2012 12:57 am (UTC)
IA! Love this whole album so much
asherlev1 15th-Sep-2012 02:23 am (UTC)

How is the album doing btw? Aiden is SO good.
glass_houses 15th-Sep-2012 12:25 am (UTC)
1D should have done Sex on Fire, tbh
azn_trang 15th-Sep-2012 02:03 am (UTC)
hahahahah if only management was that lenient
infinite93 15th-Sep-2012 12:25 am (UTC)
I didn't know Miley could sing so well
pink_dog 15th-Sep-2012 12:43 am (UTC)
i am surprised and impressed
kerrigwen 15th-Sep-2012 05:28 am (UTC)
I was (pleasantly) surprised at how well they all sang in that cover.
givemethepeasx 15th-Sep-2012 12:28 am (UTC)
laserlipstick 15th-Sep-2012 01:50 am (UTC)
yes! i love this so much.
amandaplan 15th-Sep-2012 02:16 am (UTC)
love this cover so much
humbug 15th-Sep-2012 05:41 am (UTC)
YAS. flawless angel.
bohhead 16th-Sep-2012 10:26 pm (UTC)
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