Posted by: kubiakl | October 8, 2008


Covers can suck, we all know it.  How many times have you groaned as another crappy bar band launches into “Sweet Home Alabama”?

Covers can also be great.  I especially like it when a song gets changed when it’s covered.  Look at “All Along The Watchtower” – even Bob Dylan agrees that the Hendrix version is THE version.

“Rollin’ And Tumblin'” is a song that has been through many changes.  The first recorded version is from 1928, and I know that Jeff Beck did a version in 2001.  Bob Dylan did one in 2006.  That’s nearly 80 years.  It’s also gone through name changes; Robert Johnson recorded it as “If I Had Possession Over Judgement Day” with altered lyrics.

I took the time to track down a few different versions of the song.  Of course, the Asylum Street Spankers version of “If I Had Possession…” is already posted here so we’ll skip that.  We’ll start with Cream, since they were mentioned in my last post:

Very upbeat style, almost bluegrassy.  Jack Bruce kills on harmonica and vocals.  Now we’ll move to Jeff Beck’s version, sung by Imogen Heap:

Funky bass lines, with a scary overtone, this comes off much darker than the Cream version.  One of my favorites is R.L. Burnside’s:

Straight up juke joint boogie sound.  R.L. and company know how to keep a groove going.

And because I liked it, some random guy playing an instrumental version:

Lastly, here is Eric Clapton performing “If I Had Possession Over Judgement Day” at the Crossroads Guitar Festival.  That’s Doyle Bramhall II playing guitar on the left.


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