Cover Wars: Not Fade Away Edition

Like this one, you can’t vote for this one:


Bob Dylan: On a personal note, it was November 14th, 1999 when I saw Phil Lesh & Friends open for Bob Dylan at the Worcester Centrum. Turns out both bands wanted to play NFA that night, and they both did. It was a great night of music, but for the cover war that took place that night, advantage Dylan.

Side Note: Basically every Grateful Dead sideband has kept NFA in their repertoire, but at the risk of being a little redundant, we have chosen to exclude the likes of Ratdog and Phil & Friends from Cover Wars, when the Dead are already included.

Oh yeah, and Zimmerman can DANCE.


Bruce Springsteen: This version from The Boss seems to depend heavily on the crowd interaction side of things, maybe it’s a “gotta be there” kind of thing…


Crowded House: This came my way via ScottyB, and I really dig the back-up vocals. There seems to be some confusion towards the end of the performance. Fans of Australian witty banter must check it out.

Grateful Dead: Performed 531 times, 3rd place for Dead covers behind Me & My Uncle (616 Times) and I Know You Rider (550). Embedded within the Imeem playlist above is a killer version from 1970, and below here is a nice one from July 4, 1989. I dare you to watch Jerry and Brent interact and not smile.


Max Creek: Not Fade Away > Turn On Your Lovelight > Not Fade Away. It would appear that this sequence is frequently performed this way by Max Creek (Multiple versions I listened to also had a tease of Led Zeppelin’s Heartbreaker at the end). I have always been a fan of Scott Murawski’s guitar work and he does not disappoint in the audio embedded above, or this more recent version:


Outformation: There’s a little digi-noise at the beginning of this, but it goes away after the intro. Nice guitar work from Sam Holt. These guys are currently on tour, so go check them out.

The Radiators: Did that guy just solicit the crowd for drugs? We’ll just ignore that, because after that, The Radiators bring their own form of swamp-rock to a great little sequence of Not Fade Away > Hey Mona > Bo Diddley > Not Fade Away. A fitting tribute to the roots of all this music.

The Rolling Stones: Lifted from, “According to an article in The Daily Mail on April 6, 2006, at the time the Rolling Stones weren’t talking to each other so Gene Pitney, who knew the group through their manager Andrew Loog Oldham, claimed it was his birthday. He asked them all to drink a water glass full of cognac to celebrate and the result was this memorable cover of a Crickets B-Side. Phil Spector is credited with playing maracas on the record but in fact he was playing an empty cognac bottle with a 50 cent piece. (thanks, Edward Pearce – Ashford, Kent, England)”

Found this on YouTube:


Rush: File this (for me anyway) under the you learn something new everyday category: 1973, Rush’s debut single was Not Fade Away. I had never heard this until we selected NFA for this week’s Cover Wars.

Warren Zevon: I wanted to include at least one solo performance of the song, a nice sparse arrangement performed by the late Mr. Warren Zevon.

That’s all I’ve got. Trying to keep it brief and let the readers cast their votes without too many negative banner ads blasting Rush’s stance on NAFTA or Bob Weir’s willingness to sit down with Billy Kreutzman without any pre-conditions. Hidden Track both denounces and rejects these types of tactics.

Vote early and often (No you can’t vote often):

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10 Responses

  1. the stones giv this song its rightful place in music history , with its bo diddley style guitar playin , they should have the publishing rights as its such a good take! for a 1min 45 sec song it gets anybodys bones janglin!!!!!!!

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