This site is dedicated to documenting pop songs that have been covered by another act. A covers project? No not quite. PopEatsPop is not really about famous songs being covered but rather when a pop act usually in a distant country records a song that is then swiped by another who tends to have a larger record company behind them! Any suggestions would be great! Drop a line at cartharsispopboy@hotmail.com

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Stuck on your heart, I hang on every word you say...

Bonnie Tyler-Simply The Best The original
Tina Turner-Simply The Best The cover that became an anthem for Tina & symbolises the Thatcher/Reagan 1980's
Jimmy Barnes/Tina Turner-Simply The Best Jimmy is quite sexy don't ya think? Nice earing sweetie
DJ Cammy-Simply The Best Trashy club cover. Sounds like an alien ate Cher.

Simply The Best by the Turner that is Tina was the last time a real power pop ballad dominated the world charts and probably dealt the genre its final blow. Thing is, it was actually wasnt originally by her but by the queen of the power ballad: the Welsh stunner that is Bonnie Tyler. However name a Tina Turner song most will scream out Simply The Best. Its like the song has fused itself to Tina even if the Bonnie original is very similar to the cover.

The song is sung outloud on most drunk nights out in lost discos where in which girls called Trish, Tracy and Megan decked out in the finest Argos bling get moshed out on Barcardi Breezers and lose their knickers to guys named Trev, Perry and Ryan. I know I've been there: its well fun! Whether or not the DJ actually plays the song the girls, at a certain stage of the night they'll start to sing it. Its bonding, its trash, its Essex and its the kind of song that would unify Girls Aloud after a huge fall out over who got the best boobtube on a recent FHM photoshot. A trancetrash remix is then quite natural and included here too!

So now for the PopEatsPop part. The song was originally given to Bonnie Tyler by the writers Mark Chapman and Holly Knight for her 1988 Notes From America album. The song was expected to be her comeback track as her career had gone stale after Holding Out For A Hero dominated the charts a few years previously. However it was deemed a paltry mish-mash of her epic no.1 single Total Eclipse of The Heart and her breakout hit single Its a Heartache. The record company refused to release the song in the US after the UK chart entry stalled at a career destroying no.95. Some fans have said it was this flop that ensured the end of Bonnie Tyler as a viable act. It was only in Norway where The Best made an impression. The record company thus tried once more with another single release to retrieve the career in the aftermath of the flop. That song was called Save Up All Your Tears which would, like The Best, become a hit for another huge female pop star(this time Cher) but sadly refused to pump anything back into Bonnie Tylers ability to sell.

A year later Tina Turner was looking for a hit that screamed hit single to push her LP Foreign Affair. That song was The Best and ultimately pushed the album over the ten million mark and as a single eclipsed Turners previous hits Steamy Windows, I Can't Stand The Rain, Private Dancer and Whats Love Got To With It. It stormed the Billboard charts in the U.S and all around the world. It would obtain iconic status when it was used in many sporting events and to me is rather symbolic of the rich-greedy ambiance that drenched the 1980's. With its crucial 1989 release its message rode a wave of Western triumphanism in the defeat of those awful Commies in the demise of the Iron Curtain. Turners edition and reason for its very success must located within this socio-historical context. The State/Hegemony was winning its wars however cold, showing off its weaponary, winning was everything and who cares about human rights abuses, those dying of AIDS/GRIDS and in poverty. This was a time of Victory and those rich enough to be on the right side of the moral might were simply the best and those weak Others were absolutely ignored. Turners version is an anthem for greed, conversativism, imperialism, the big man and capitilism. Indeed theres a version out there that reorganises the song in support of the UVF and is about "crushing the IRA" by "preparing for battle" and that "we'll fight to the death". So for some, it clearly outlines the problems of imperialism, war and violence that was endemic in particular polarities during the 1980's.

On the other hand, the Tyler original is simply a song about a lover in total awe of her boyfriend which is why i prefer her version despite its failure.

Today we have 4, yes 4, versions of the said song. Of course theres the Bonneh original, the Tina hit, the duet version Tina did with ozzie hunk-a-spunk Jimmy Barnes and a trashtastic pop cover that sounds like cows farting on it. Which is nice.


  • At 11:40 AM, Blogger Paul said…

    tina didn't do simply the best first? Well shut my freaking mouth! i remain gobsmacked. Indeed my flabber is quite gasted. i don't like that blokes earring though. but now i do want to listen to total eclipse of the heart - and not the westlife version (despite me slightly loving it) See what your post is responsible for ;)

  • At 9:30 PM, Blogger Poster Girl said…

    I love trashy dance mixes! (I wonder what that says about me, actually?)

    I had no idea "Don't Turn Around" by Ace Of Base was a cover (that first hit must've missed me)...and...um...to be honest, I'd never heard "Simply The Best" before (I know, what have I been doing, etc. etc.). I have so much catching up to do on everything released before, say, 2000.

    Two (excellent) posts in one day? We're getting spoiled!


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