Monday, July 25, 2011

Dylan Cover #20 Sheryl Crow "Mississippi" Live

In this ongoing Monday Series we will be exploring various artists versions of Bob Dylan song's. Today's tune is a live cover by Sheryl Crow tackling "Mississippi" 

Thoughts on Dylan Original:
Here is a unique one for us, because Sheryl Crow actually released this song before Bob himself did.  While she announces it as a Bob Dylan song before this 1999 performance Dylan himself wouldn't release this for 2 more years on his classic Love and Theft.  He had recorded the tune for Time Out Of Mind, but decided to hold off releasing it for whatever reason and eventually offered the tune to Sheryl Crow to record herself. 

As for Dylan's "official version" of the song, it is an all-time classic.  I chose to talk about it this week because it had come up in conversation a few times over the weekend, as the alternate versions on The 8th Bootleg series, Tell Tale Signs, were discussed.  It had slipped my mind just how amazing this tune is and it can be argued (by me included) that it is the high point of his post Blood on the Tracks career.  Really a show-stopping jaw-dropper assuming of course the man ever plays it live....


Thoughts on Cover Artist:
Sheryl Crow has always struck me as a fine artist, and never really a great one.  She is talented and can sing a good pop/country song, but for some reason she never seemed to have enough oomph for me.  Looking back over her catalog of tunes, there are some solid entries but nothing that perks me up all that much, "Leaving Las Vegas" is cool tune and I dug it when it came out.  Maybe because of immense radio play, but "Everyday is a Winding Road" is pretty played out in my head, but I do still really enjoy her duet and performance with Kid Rock on "Picture" that right there is a hell of a tune.  Overall I am pretty in the middle on her, totally fine, just not really great.
Thoughts on Cover:
Crow obviously sped up the tempo and added a pop gloss to things on this live version.  She adds a quirky energy and new sense of motoring to the lyrics but is this really a good thing?  It seems like she is just getting through the song without really giving it much thought.  While the instrumentation is crisp, I like both the violins and piano fills, but unlike the last cover we discussed, which was too dramatic, Sheryl's version doesn't seem to be dramatic enough. 

It is a fine line I know but I don't think this version carries the weight that it should, and a quick mention of "guitar solo" at 2:54 in this live version, pretty dam silly.  Had there been a full on solo as opposed to a few strums, it may have bumped up my feelings, but as it is...

Rating C-

Wilson's Take:

No comments:

Post a Comment