Friday, January 27, 2006

Novel Covers?

So I went shopping the other day. Grocery shopping. I desperately needed some dish washwer detergent and some milk but as always, while there, I got a few more things. You know, the red bell peppers were on sale and the Asian pears looked real pretty too. So I was going around the store when somewhere around the freezer, I noticed what I was listening to.

Let me give you some background about our No Frills supermarket. They put the best music on. You can find me often sing along while I'm shopping and, I kid you not, but it even happened once or twice that I enjoyed a dance in one of the quiet aisles.

Okay, the point - the point is the song I was listening to. Love Song was playing, but to my surprise it was a cover. I had no idea someone did a cover to Love Song (by The Cure), and as soon as I got home I checked it out. Turns out 311 made the cover in 2004. Okay, so I'm a bit behind on my music news due to... well.. no excuses really. Other than age perhaps?

My point?
My point is that I rarely like covers as much as the originals.
There are some covers I don't mind that much like Johnny Cash's cover to Nine Inch Nails' Hurt, or even this one - 311's cover of Love Song.
But there are some, like Alanis Morissette's awful cover of Seal's Crazy that drive me up the wall.

Yeah, so?
So it just occurred to me - what if someone made a cover for a novel?
Yes, I know that novelization, novels based on screenplays, exists, and vice versa too. But have you ever seen or heard of a novel based on a novel? Not an expansion, not a fanfic, not a next installment, but the same book written differently?
I haven't encountered any and the whole concept sounds weird.

Why, then, songs and movies are being remade constantly?

Oh, well, just a thought...

To The Cure -
Whenever I'm alone with you
You make me feel like I am young again
Thanks ;)

Listen and/or watch the video of Love Song
Love Song Lyrics

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redchurch said...

Oh you crazy girl I didn't know you were a fellow Cure fan!

Figures. :)

You should try out Cat Power's version of Wonderwall. I never liked Oasis because Noel Gallagher has one of the most whiney voices I've ever heard, but when I heard Cat Power's version of the song I immediately recognized the decency of the songwriting for the first time. Sometimes all it takes is a woman's voice. :)

Melly said...

Glad to have amused you, redchurch. Funny enough, 'crazy girl' is one of the best compliments I received lately :)

I'll check that version out.

As for Oasis I tend to have mixed feelings. I absolutely love some of their stuff, but can't really stand some of their other songs.

Ryan Oakley said...

Everyone's been covering Homer for a few years now.

Melly said...

I didn't think about that one... true... true!

Cavan said...

Strangely, I'm reading this exact kind of thing in my Rise of the Novel class right now.

Two years after Samuel Richardson wrote Pamela, Henry Fielding wrote Shamela, which was the exact same novel, with all the same events and conversations, except that he changed Pamela from an innocent girl to a flirtatious, sexual one.

melly said...

Wow, how cool. I had no idea.
Have you read both?
Which is better?
And how do you go about with copyrights and all???

Cavan said...

Frankly, I didn't really like either of them, but Shamela was 350 pages shorter and had a bit of humour in it (relatively speaking, anyway). However, I'm sure you hard pressed to find the English Lit student who wouldn't tell you Pamela is the better book artistically.

Anyhow, I'm not sure what copyright law was back in the day (they were published in 1740 and 1742) but, thanks to today's laws, I doubt if a book like Shamela would be able to be taken on by a major publisher today.

Melly said...

Well, I never took English past what I was required to in university, so to my shame, I've actually never heard of Pamela/Shamela.
(And they never talked about it in thermodynamics class ;)

Yes, I doubt that today this would work. Say I wanted to rewrite LOTR, I don't think I would be allowed...

Benjamin Solah said...

I'm a fan of Marilyn Manson's covers, like 'Sweet Dreams' and 'Tainted Love'

The concept for novels sounds odd.

Melly said...

I guess it's a generation thing, Benjamin. I danced to the tunes of the originals when I was a teenager, so now it's difficult to accept these new versions.
You, otoh, probably heard the new versions first, so it might be that the originals sound "weird" to you, that they sound like a cover.

Deborah said...

Love Song happens to be one of my favorites, Melly. These guys looked absolutely bored and did a poor job of lipsincing, lol. But I enjoyed listening to the song once again. Thank you for sharing this. :)

As for the Pamela/Shamela novels, never heard of 'em.

Melly said...

Oh, phew! I thought I was the only one who didn't hear of them.
Thanks Deborah :)

Cavan said...

If it's any consolation, I hadn't heard of either novel (or either author, for that matter) three weeks ago.

Melly said...

Actually, it is a consolation. I often fear that because my background isn't English Lit or anything in the Arts, that I lack a lot of knowledge.
Thanks Cavan for both expanding my knowledge and for this :)