Best Cover Songs

Steps to making a good cover song: 1) Start with a song that is already good or has potential to be good 2) Improve on the original version or make the song live up to potential and 3) do something special to make the song your own. Whether through better musicianship, vocals, emotion, etc. a great cover version takes the original song and gives it a new life.

This is a collection of the cover songs that were most certainly better the second time through.
Don't agree with the list? Vote for an existing item you think should be ranked higher or if you are a logged in, add a new item for others to vote on or create your own version of this list.

The Top Ten

1
All Along the Watchtower - Jimi Hendrix (Bob Dylan)
Bob Dylan sometimes played Hendrix's version on stage, that's gotta mean something!
Out of the ten songs here, I feel this is hands down the best. No question. There will never be another Jimi Hendrix. He was so amazing and unique.
Absolutely phenominal. Fits into every era. This man was a true genius!
[Newest]Even bob dylan was inspired after hearing this version.. Hail!

2Crying In the Rain - A-ha (Everly Brothers)
I normally don´t like cover versions, but this one is really good!

Daisymorot

A-ha is always so original but the one time they covered, it was also great!
There are many great songs from Everly Brothers among them is this one "Crying in the Rain"
Zyma

3Knockin' on Heavens Door - Guns N Roses (Bob Dylan)
Gun's and Roses do this song better than anyone, this happens a lot with Dylans songs, a great writer and lyricist with a unique voice but whose songs are oten better with other performers take on them. Gun's and roses version adds a awesome heavy element to this song and make the changes sound amazing! better than any on the above list.

Cantonez

much better than 7 covers! this cover is much better than the original song, this is the best GUNS N' ROSES cover ever!

rock2metal

Awesome cover! It should be on the top of the list! In my opinion, this song sounds best when played with an electric guitar. I think the main reason for the success of this song was slash's guitar playing. His solo was just unbelievably amazing!

winner333

[newest]
This song is genius! Doesn't matter how old you are, it's always a hit!

4To Love You More - Sarah Geronimo (Celine Dion)
,, definitely.. ,, from the start of the start contest,, I olredy knew that she's gonna win the competition.. ,,

fherline_67

to love you more is here winning piece in the compitation.. by celine dion. and her voice fitted (ala) celine dion of the philippines..

tata919

Celine is at her best, suits her vocal range. I actually thought the song was written and composed for Dion. I have never heard the original, but I can't imagine it surpassing this one.

5Rock and Roll - Heart (Led Zeppelin)
Its on HEART's Greatest hits CD.Not the CD from the 80's the one when HEART was a real rock, Band 1975-1980.

jerryw08

And thatÂ's a fact. No one can sing Zeppelin like Ann Wilson. The BEST woman singer Rock ever had.
No one can sing Zeppelin like Ann Wilson.
[newest]
Just pure talent here, Ann sings and Nancy rocks!

6Respect - Aretha Franklin (Otis Redding)
Wonderful voive carry the song.

7Mr. Tambourine Man - The Byrds (Bob Dylan)
Bob Dylan, the best songwriter ever, himself said that no one could play this song any better, which was right. This is such an amazing rendition while I'll agree that the other songs on this list are good I just like this one the best. But notice how 3 of the top 4 songs are Dylans covers...
"Wow, you can even dance to that! " Bob Dylan after hearing the cover
This is definitely the winner here. Killing a Bob Dylan song is hard to do but they did it. Crazy stuff

8Hurt - Johnny Cash (Nine Inch Nails)
Actually my favorite cover song is Jimi Hendrix's version of 'All along the Watchtower'. But seeing this great piece of art so far down here, I just feel like I have to give it my vote, because it is not only one of the best covers but easily one of the best songs ever recorded. So I think it is a shame to see Johnny Cash's beautiful and unique version of this great song on rank 32 (and I mean by now everybody should know that it is a cover so that is not an excuse)
No doubt this song tops the original by a hundred times, johnny cash's final songs were mediocre but this songs stands right with the best of him
This is easily the best cover. The video makes it the best I've ever seen. Johnny Cash makes this average song into a masterpiece that perfectly ends his career.
[Newest]Simply adds a degree of gravity, weariness and regret to a great song -whilst the accompanying Video is a masterpiece

9Dust in the Wind - Sarah Brightman (Kansas)
When Sarah covers a piece of music, the unique beauty of her voice and the sensitive emotional phrasing she brings to it leave her name forever inscribed on that song.

timhatcher

I actually like Sarah's version better than the original. She's a genius.

tarot_contralto

No way is it better then the original

10Smooth Criminal - Alien Ant Farm (Michael Jackson)
The fact that I didn't hear much good (or bad for that matter) about the original before this came out should say something. They also did this at a time when admitting to liking Michael Jackson was just something you didn't do, which is kinda cool. This version is also better by a mile.
I liked the original song, but AAF made an even better version.

rock2metal

Why I choose this?...
bob dylan is better I think...

muhammadfajri

[Newest]A lot of covers don't deviate much from the original. This one, however, is quite unique.

djh101


The Contenders

11Turn The Page - Metallica (Bob Seager)
One of Metallica's best songs ever! Metallica is my favorite band forever and is a big part of my life and they rock! GO METALLICA! you guys are the best!

usmcmike43

Amazing! I was speechless when I fist heard this song. And it took me forever to actually find it, but thanks to Pandora... I finally found it!
Yes even their covers are epic! M/best band ever... this song has a meaningful video and the solo is so cool!

rahulsharma1


12You Really Got Me - Van Halen (The Kinks)
When Van Halen covers a song they always make it better than the original version of it. And this just owns the kinks version

rocker1796

The original Kinks tune was great - not the sort of tune that gets one-upped much - but the Van Halen cover just blows it away.
Ray Davies even said this version is better than the original.
[Newest]Best cover by far!

13Rolling In the Deep - Linkin Park (Adele)
The Best Cover Ever! Although it it is newer than many of the items at the top(at this moment)...

And it is 100 times better than Adele Version of the song...

I Hated this song too much but when Chester Bennington sang it and Mike Shinoda took the piano, it was totally a different experience...

Chester's Voice cannot be compared he's 10 times better than Adele!

Awesome Cover... Linkin Park for Life

shouryat2b

Rumor has it that Adele made a cover of this song.

Chester really blew this song out the competition. Amazing vocals with Shinoda on the piano. It was just beautiful
Chester's awesome voice and Mike's addictive tunes. Gives me goosebumps every time I listen to it. Linkin Park doesn't do a lot of covers. But when they do, they make it better than the original. LINKIN PARK ROCKS!

14Sweet Dreams - Marilyn Manson (The Eurythmics)
The lyrics are dark and creepy, Marilyn Manson made the song fit the lyrics. Unfortunately it will never get the recognition it deserves because he is Marilyn Manson.
The songs lyrics were meant to be creepy but the original isn't creepy sounding, Marilyn Manson changed it to it's true form.
the cover by marilyn manson has so much more soul than the original. respect 4 MM

elitan


15I Will Always Love You - Whitney Houston (Dolly Parton)
Even though Whitney's wasn't better (though it was SO close) she brought the song out into the mainstream.

LadyLioness

I find it crazy that I'm adding this. Maybe it's because everyone thinks that it was her song.
Way better than the original version!
[Newest]Should be number 1 or at least 2. I know Dolly Parton wrote it but admit it Whitney sang it better

16Man Who Sold The World - Nirvana (David Bowie)
Truly... the magic of Kurt Cobain... Best Cover ever!

hereisHorizon

Can't believe this song is way down in this list.. This together with all along the watchtower-jimi hendrix are the best cover songs to be ever performed
The best cover of Nirvana and all time, they made it better than David Bowie!

I think this one must be in the principal list
[Newest]This is the best ever! It should be at least in the top ten


17Hound Dog - Elvis Presley (Willie Mae)

18Walk This Way - Run-DMC (Aerosmith)
This is not a cover

19Proud Mary - Tina Turner (Creedence Clearwater Revival)

20Give In to Me - Three Days Grace (Michael Jackson)
Woah. I didn't even know that this song was an mj one. Three days grace rocks
Best song I've ever heard, this cover is actually better than the original... The reason I started to listen to MJ is because of this song!
AMAZING!
I never thought this was a cover...so great adm and the guys are killing it...just love this song

21Twist and Shout - The Beatles (Topnotes)
john lennon recorded this song while he was having a bad cold and that's why this sounds so good!

Mathx

Most people don't know it's a cover song. That's the ultimate praise to a great cover song. Should be much higher than number 39.
I had no idea it was a cover! I feel a bit bad about that now, but that is definitely a sign that this was a brilliant cover.

sameera62


22To Feel the Fire - Gackt (Stevie Wonder)
like better than the original ^^ really good song. maybe not to well english pronunciation. but still the song rocks!

23Whiskey In The Jar - Metallica (Thin Lizzy)
Metallica just put a new life in this song. And James' solo was just great. What I want to tell is that Metallica popularized this song and just made it monumental like the band itself. Unfortunately this song has a really stupid video. Anyway an all time classic and Metallica just put some of their mind and soul to create a masterpiece.
I cannot believe that this song ain't made by them! Perfect!
Metallica has a grammy for that song!

kkkppp


24Come Together - Michael Jackson (The Beatles)
I kinda liked it when the Beatles sang it. But it's a really cool song ya know. Oh and just one more thing my comments are always at the last on the list. Why is that?
Great Cover, everybody judges this one because of the artist and because people thought he crossed the line by being a good business man instead of beatles fan. Still he is a great beatles fan and nailed this one making it fresh and interesting for the first time it has been covered. He should had left it in Moonwalker though. Putting it on the HIStory album was unnecessary. It doesn't fit the sound of the album at all.
This song was an amazing song for Michael. He made an awesome video for this and you just can't take your eyes off him... xo

love4mjj


25Thoughtless - Evanescence (Korn)
They took an already amazing song and made it that much better this is deffinaetly number one quality. Evanescence really understood the song and were able to take it and add their amazing style too.. AMAZING

26House of the Rising Sun - The Animals (Clarence Ashley)
This is by far the best hands down cover song of all time a classic.

This is amazing, I cry every time I hear it

27Hallelujah - Jeff Buckley (Leonard Cohen)
This is such an underrated cover. This is personally one of my favorite covers of all time, showing the true talent behind Jeff's composition. He writes these solos himself, which takes talent guys. Some of my personal favorites are this, Jimi Hendrix's All Along the Watchtower, Heart's Rock and Roll and Guns N' Roses' Knockin' on Heaven's Doors
This song will never be such a beautiful masterpiece if Jeff Buckley never covered it. I listened to the original and totally hate it, I can respect Leonard's genius in lyrical composure but the execution of the song is horrible in my opinion. Jeff Buckley ripped apart the song and stripped it down to a pure, simple but nonetheless wonderful work of musical art.
Once you get to the point where people think that you wrote the song, it's safe to say that the cover was amazing. This cover is monumental and made it the legend it is today.
[Newest]How is this not number 1? This is one of the greatest songs ever by one of the greatest voices

28Cross - Eyed Mary - Iron Maiden (Jethro Tull)

29Feeling Good - Muse (Anthony Newley and Leslie Bricusse)
Muse has made this song into an epic - original use of a loud speaker - hidden away at the end of Origin of Symmetry this has become a firm fan favourite and a must=play at live gigs - this has to be higher than number 32
Moving cover version by a legendary rock band
Matthew's voice is beautiful and haunting.

karica4


30Wicked Game - HIM (Chris Isaak)
normally I don't like cover songs that much and I always like the original song better. but HIM's wicked game is the only covered version of a song which is better than the original.. so in my opinion HIM has to be the number one!

31Walk - Avenged Sevenfold (Pantera)
Matt is the only vocalist of a new metal/rock band that still has gritty vocal of the 80's heavy metal
A7x did the best cover song... did you ever listen to Walk...? this should be in the top 5...

skt

13th? are you kidding me?! should be in the top 5 at least! A7X did a great job here!

32Roll Over Beethoven - ELO (Chuck Berry)
Everyone has covered Chuck Berry. But this is one of the most well crafted and a real tribute to Chuck.

33Paranoid - Avenged Sevenfold (Black Sabbath)
This songs has no changes with the old one... This is an awesome creation of avenged sevenfold... They shown us what can they do and how better they are... That's why I just love a7x... And avenged sevenfold for life..
Avenged, in this song gives Paranoid a pimp. No many changes in here and there, but, still pimped

34Diamonds and Rust - Judas Priest (Joan Baenz)

35Live and Let Die - Guns N' Roses (Wings)
I've heard this song 100 times! This is the best cover song all time! They change the bored song to a crazy hard rock song! It deserves to be in the top!
AMAZING!

ryanfarolddanielwenas

This is Truly a great song. It deseves to be in the top

36The Green Manalishi - Judas Priest (Fleetwood Mac)

37Gloria - The Doors (Van Morrison)

38Over the Hills and Far Away - Nightwish (Gary Moore)
Not a lot has been changed in orchestration, none at all in lyrics, but the voice of Tarja has taken a great song to a new level.

39Wish - Linkin Park (Nine Inch Nails)
I heard the NIN version and didn't really like it that much, but then I heard the LP version and it was awesome. Linkin Park rules.

lukestheman4

Way better than the original, it has angel voice, with... DEVIL SCREAMS! Chester hit the spot to be the Top 1. To those who likes scream and growls, this is a perfect Semi-death metal cover for you! M/
Really the best cover ever. I don't think the NIN version is so good, but Chester and Linkin Park really makes it have that angry, rough tone that NIN couldn't give.

40Louie Louie - The Kingsmen (Richard Berry)
The Kingsmen took an R&B song, stripped it down to its essence, and created the greatest party song of all time.
Louie Louie has to be for sure in the top 10.

sUx2Bu


41I Don't Want to Miss a Thing - Regine Velasquez (Aerosmith)
listen to her R2K album and you'll see what I mean.

The album was back in 2000 yet she can still sing the song in the exact same tune.

reigne27

She takes one of Aerosmith's most popular song, makes it her own (without making it something totally different) and does the impossible: makes it better than the first.
only regine who can song.. this version.. ^_^

audrey


42Cinnamon Girl - Type O Negative (Neil Young)

43Am I Evil?- Metallica (Diamond Head)
AM I EVIL? YES, YES I AM >:D
MUAHAHHAHHAHAHAHAHHAHHAHAH, Best song on this list by far.
Why the hell is it so low though really?
It sucks how underrated all these songs are, just because of people who love pop and pop rock, POP SUX.
This song brought Diamond Head and the "New Wave of British Heavy Metal" to America's Metalheads' attention.

thethrasher

An epic classic, forged by Diamond Head, and perfected by Metallica. Cheers to James Hetfield and the boys!

44Master Of Puppets - Trivium (Metallica)
Great Song already Trivium just added a youthful energy to it
Much better than metallica.. Trivium rules!

45The Ghost of Tom Joad - Rage Against the Machine (Bruce Springsteen)

46Something - Shirley Bassey (The Beatles)
Shirley Bassey's cover of George Harrison's Perfect Ballad actually has sold more copies than the original Beatles release >>> which is 'Something' in itself! Harrison's song was the perfect vehicle for Bassey's emotionally charged and powerful range /register vocal abilities. See Shirley Bassey sing this song, live, on YouTube)

47That's All Right - Elvis Presley (Arthur Crudup)

48Blue Suede Shoes - Elvis Presley (Carl Perkins)

49Blue Monday - Orgy (New Order)

50Diamonds - Any Given Day (Rihanna)

51It's All Coming Back To Me Now - Celine Dion (Pandora's Box)
Jim Steinman wrote the songs "Total Eclipse Of The Heart" popularized by Bonnie Tyler, Making Love Out Of Nothing At All" popularized by Air Supply", I'd Do Anything For Love But I Won't Do That by Meatloaf and this song "It's All Coming Back To Me Now" originally recorded by Pandora's Box in 1989 and in 1996, Celine Dion made her version to it which brought great success to her career. The song was also recorded again by Meatloaf with Marion Raven in 2006. Celine's version of this song is superb, and noone can make the song better than her. Great music video. Everything is just perfect. This song is undoubtedly the greatest song of all time.
Celine has a voice that no one has and it is a god giving talent and its the song ever she has a range that no one can top not even Mariah Cary can top plus she is the number one singer in the world and can belt out any song with so much power that it knocks the socks right of your feet. Plus she is a real person and is not fake or full of them selves unlike some famous people I now who think there the greatest thing since slice bread plus she gives some her money to charity and is a greacious, kind, funny is a great person and a amazing mom to her son and has a loving relationship with her husband for a long time and no one can top that no matter how hard they try.
Noone can deny the fact that the first time the person listened to this song would really feel the power and the greatness of the song. Wrote by famous songwriter Jim Steinman, "It's All Coming Back To Me Now" has proven itself that it is the greatest song ever. Great arrangement. Great vocals from Celine Dion, Fantastic lyrics, bundled into a very classic, unforgettable and enthralling song. This song has made an indelible mark both in music and on human memory.

RLAAMJR


52Let It Go - The Last Sleepless Night (Idina Menzel)

53Soldier of Fortune - Opeth (Deep Purple)

54Hallowed Be Thy Name - Machine Head (Iron Maiden)

55Land of Confusion - Disturbed (Genesis)
Why is this song way down here? This is by far the best cover of a song. David Draiman did such an excellent job on the vocals and the rest of the guys matched the instrumentals perfectly!
I voted for Hurt by Johnny Cash but I have to say, that it's silly to vote for a cover when it sounds exactly like the original song. Land of Confusion is a great cover. Especially the guitar solo is epic and on the original it was a little bit boring. But both versions were great.

56Free Bird - Juliet Simms (Lynyrd Skynyrd)

57The Green Fields of France - Dropkick Murphys (Eric Bogle)

58Higher Ground - Red Hot Chili Peppers (Stevie Wonder)
The Song That badly needed a cover to be good.

Sorry but how the hell is Michael Jacksons Come Together on the list.

In fact I believe that Aerosmith did the song better than Michael Jackson but not better then The Beatles.

Also Ooops!... I Did It again is a pop song not a rock song before infact Children of Bodom ruined the song.

Even though I don't mind Stevie Wonders Version too but Red Hot Chili Peppers made it their own song.

Also I should add that it is one of Red Hot Chili Peppers best songs too
One of the best bass lines to ever start a red hot chili peppers song. Ever. New album this august vote for this song if your siked
Early hit for them

59I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking for - Disturbed (U2)

60I Heard It Through The Grapevine - Marvin Gaye (Gladys Knight)
This cover is so great that we almost forgot the original song.
This has got to be the greatest original and cover song of time. Both #1 hits.

61It's My Life - No Doubt (Talk Talk)

62All Time High - Jarvis Cocker (Rita Coolidge)

63The Trial - Dark Funeral (King Diamond)

64Marry the Night - Adam Lambert (Lady Gaga)

65My Mind Is Ramblin' - The Black Keys (Junior Kimbrough)

66You're No Good - Linda Ronstadt (Betty Everett)

67America - Yes (Simon & Garfunkel)
Shows what brilliant musicians Yes were and are.

68Paranoid - Megadeth ( Black Sabbath)

69Word Up! - Korn (Cameo)

70#9 Dream - a-ha (John Lennon)

71No Quarter - Tool (Led Zeppelin)
A genius pays homage. Tool's haunting and thunderous rifts pound this song deep into your psyche. Brilliantly interpreted! Tool fans, check out Staind's cover of "Sober. " its not amazing, but its rare and worth a listen.
The margin between these two songs is by far the most narrow.. The only song on this list or any where rock gods and geniuses covered other rock gods and geniuses

72How I Could Just Kill a Man - Rage Against the Machine (Cypress Hill)

73Where Did You Sleep, Last Night? - Nirvana (Leadbelly/Appalachian folk song)
This deserves top 5
What kind of people visit this page anyway?
44?
Seriously? I'm sure a lot of votes will change once people actually hear this
One of my favourite songs in the MTV Unplugged performance (hard fight though), Kurt voice just give me shivers every time I listen to this song.
omg, i get shivers from just hearing the last lines he sings

odin666


74Hey Jude - Wilson Pickett (The Beatles)

75Just the Way You Are - Pierce the Veil (Bruno Mars)
This is amazing
I mean come on people this is PTV we're talking about!
Every song by them is just mind-blowing
They're an amazing band and this should be in the top 5

76Thor - Therion (Manowar)

77Hallowed Be Thy Name - Cradle of Filth (Iron Maiden)

78Stone Cold Crazy - Metallica (Queen)
Anyone who listens to Metallica says all their songs are good. Given if it was before the Black Album. But, I'd say it's still one of the worse covers I heard.
Metallica's greatest cover!
STONE COLD CRAZY, YOU KNOW!

gibsonrock53


79It's Raining Men - Geri Halliwell (The Weather Girls)
much much and much better than original. Geri did a great job!
I have read many negative comments about Geri's version but I love it so much! For me, she performed it very well. It suited her and thanks to Geri, everyone started listening to the original one

Magnolia


80American Pie - Madonna (Don Mclean)
I don't care what haters say. Madonna sang it very well. She made it look unique in its own way. The song was a huge hit all over the world. Even Don Mclean loved it

MadgeLover


81Tuesday's Gone - Metallica (Lynyrd Skynyrd)

82Right Now (Na Na Na) - Asking Alexandria (Akon)
This is totally awesome PLUS this is AA..

83Born To Be Wild - Steppenwolf (Mars Bonfire)
Mars Bonfire was a fictitious name John Kay made up to try to weasel out of a bad contract with their record company at that time. It didn't work, John Kay wrote Born To Be Wild.. Under the pen name "Mars Bonfire"
Steppenwolf made this song famous! Much better than the original in my opinion.

THEMASTER


84The Best - Tina Turner (Bonnie Tyler)

85Burnin' for You - Iced Earth (Blue Ă–yster Cult)

86Bad Romance - Halestorm (Lady Gaga)

87Under Pressure- My Chemical Romance & The Used (Queen)
mcr are pro. the used arent my style but this is an awesome song

mattbellamyisagod1234


88Without You - Mariah Carey (Def Leppard)
Wow. This was a cover done by Nilsson of a Badfinger tune. Maria covered a cover of a cover. Nilsson's version was incredible and deserves to be on this list.
Even definitely Leppard thinks her cover is the right one after waiting for years for someone who could make it right...

89Love the One You're With - Stephen Stills (The Isley Brothers)

90Torn - Natalie Imbruglia (Ednaswap)
better than the original many thought that she did the original song

ronluna

I agree with ronluna.. it's an amazing song I didn't thought that this is actually a cover song
Natalie is great her voice is angel-like.. Is that even correct? Angel-like? Buhhh whatever

91Love Don't Live Here Anymore - Madonna (Rose Royce)

92Dreamer Deceiver - Skyclad (Judas Priest)

93Gimme a T for Texas - Lynyrd Skynyrd (Jimmie Rodgers)

94I Love Rock 'n' Roll - Joan Jett (The Arrows)
this is the version everyone is probably most familiar with

95Bad Company - Five Finger Death Punch (Bad Company)
When I first heard this song it blew my mind and I wondered, "How the hell did I even not hear this version before? " This remake is sick beyond belief (in a great way)! FFDP did the song great justice and Bad Company would be PROUD at this version! It needs to be WAY higher on the list.
I feel like the cover is better than the original, easily one of my favorite songs
One of the best cover songs I have ever heard. Good classic rock song originally, FFDP turned into a hard hitting kick ass war anthem

Nightlock


96Run - Leona Lewis (Snow Patrol)

97Power Of Love - Celine Dion (Jennifer Rush)
I've always heard "The Power Of Love" played on the radio before and I really didn't like the voice because the singer's voice was shrill. When I've learned that Celine sung this song too, I decided to know her version 'cos even if DJ's mistakenly name the singer of the song as Celine, I know that it wasn't her 'cos the voice wasn't beautiful. And when I heard a better version of this song, I immediately recognized Celine's voice. And I was right 'cos when i finally got her "The Colour Of My Love" album, I knew that her own version was the best one. The Power Of Love has also become a hit especially that Celine also sung a high note at one part of the song. Great lyrics.

RLAAMJR

A british singer did a cover of this song for a advert recently and it's better than both of these

98Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds - HYDE (The Beatles)
No one else can do a better version of this ever.

99The Evil That Men Do - After Forever (Iron Maiden)

100Astronomy - Metallica (Blue Ă–yster Cult)
Metallica turned it into a diamond from a piece of coal.

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This list was created 8 years, 273 days ago and has been voted on over 11,000 times. This top ten list contains 400 items, has been remixed 17 times and has been blogged about 3 times.

Updated Tuesday, October 28, 2014


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