The Craft Of The Cover Essay

2605 words - 10 pages

There is nothing new under the sun. This could be considered to be the unofficial credo of the Postmodern movement, and it wouldn’t be an inaccurate statement to make. There are few universal themes; the pursuit of love, the satisfaction found in hard work, the youthful struggle against the status quo, the hatred of oppression and control being among those most often quoted, and there are only so many ways to package and repackage these messages in a fashion readymade for public consumption. Pop culture is like a melting pot for these ideas. It is a cultural stew brimming with themes and Grand Narratives. And yet the Postmodernists scorn the idea that there can be new themes discovered, and new modes of presenting those themes in a perfect, complete way. This struggle to discover new ways of revealing truth to the public has caused artists throughout history to turn to cover songs. And this use of covers has become emblematic of the Postmodern philosophy, whether due to the stagnation of the creativity of young artists, or the nostalgia with which Postmodernists view the past.
A cover song is a song that is played by an artist other than the original creator. If I were to start a band and play “Smoke on the Water” by Deep Purple, I would be covering their song. Performances of old hymnals and American spiritual folk tunes like “House of the Rising Sun” and “Where Did You Sleep Last Night?” are all covers, simply played by artists as a means of connecting with their audience through mutually well known songs. In the 1950s and 60s, however, the purpose of covers began to change. Record companies began having artists rerecord songs, “for the purposes of disseminating it among a broader or different section of the record-buying public from that of the original [audience]. At this time many international popular music hits were in fact cover versions by established white performers of songs originally recorded by black artists on small regional labels” (Marks and Witmer). Still, this began to change as artists began covering not obscure songs by cult artists, but mainstream hits (John Lennon’s cover of “Stand By Me” by Ben E. King is an example of this). And as this shift towards the prominence of the song exceeding the prominence of the performing artist occurred, the modern ideal of a cover came into being.
But why? Why are cover songs such universal things, and why do artists continue to perform songs written countless years before? Besides the obvious explanations of the odd tribute and for the sheer joy of performing these songs, one can turn to this Postmodernist idea; that there is nothing new to be created, only old ideas to be rehashed. Of course an argument could be made as to the use of covers as cultural capital. In Paul Dimaggio’s article on cultural capital, we learn that, “… cultural capital refers only to those cultural resources that are, first, institutionalized and, second, broadly understood to be prestigious” (Dimaggio...

Find Another Essay On The Craft of the Cover

Book Cover on The Chrysalids Essay

555 words - 2 pages For my Independent novel study project, I chose to do a book cover on The Chrysalids. The cover of a book cannot target a specific audience; however, I constructed mine to target people in the age group 12-18. I chose that specific group because the main character, David, is in that group when the story is being told; thus, the audience can relate to the characters at personal level. My visual is very obvious to deconstruct. In the bottom half

Never judge a man by the cover of his wallet

1037 words - 5 pages 1. Many parents could tell you that while a dirty diaper may initiate a midlife crisis, it is one of the least likely precursors to an ethical dilema. I would have agreed a month ago, before the night my 2 year old unleashed a new chemical weapon and the babywipes went AWOL. I woke my husband up, ran to the store down the road, bought some wipes, and on my way home I fell head first in front of a car. Luckily, the driver was watching for

Wicca the Complete Craft by D.J. Conway

1493 words - 6 pages Wicca the Complete Craft was written by D.J. Conway. This book was published by Crossing Press in 2001. It covers and goes through very thoroughly the many ceremonies, traditions, holidays, beliefs, and much more of the Wiccan religion. Wicca the Complete Craft was written with the intent to help someone go through the process of joining the Wiccan religion rather than a reference for someone to simply learn about the religion. Do not let me

The Value of Art, Craft and Design in the Primary Classroom

1355 words - 6 pages The Value of Art, Craft and Design in the Primary Classroom This rationale is going to discuss the value of art, craft and design in the primary classroom. I am going to emphasise the importance that art and design has, within the primary curriculum. I will also emphasise, how my resource pack promotes the value of creativity in the primary classroom. The teaching of art and design has many benefits, one main benefit is that it promotes

Dont Judge a Book by the Cover

593 words - 2 pages they eat. Such a thought is ridiculous.      Instead of looking at clothing and what one is eating, character should be the basis for opinion. Judging a book by the cover only leads to surprises, and in this case, judging a human by dress can lead to surprises as well. Just because a man or woman may not dress as nicely, they’re not necessarily bad or even poor. The particular individual may not care what anyone thinks

...don't judge me by the cover....

1085 words - 4 pages uttered no words, words were pointless to describe my feelings of finally belonging, finally being loved. We got home, and I was given a warm place and my new friend was tending to my wounds. Soon, I felt as good as new and when night fell, we both curled up by the crackling fire and I wanted to give so much and it felt so good to be loved once more.But the message is, you should never judge a book by its cover, and I am a great book although my cover is very weather beaten. It's the inside that counts and mine are brimming with hundreds of inky pages.

Exploring the Possibility of a Government Cover-Up with the John F. Kennedy Assassination

4300 words - 17 pages as to what really happened to the President of the United States that day. Many aspects of the government’s explanation of the events can be proven false, suggesting a government cover-up. The assassination of the President was obviously heavily reported. Reports in the November 23, 1963 London Times stated as the shots rung out, chaos broke out in the plaza. People hurled themselves to the ground while police officers and secret service agents

The effects of mountain biking on bulk desity and terrain cover.

1179 words - 5 pages the behavior of the mountain biker and the physical impact that this has.This study aims to find out the impact mountain biking has on the bulk density and terrain cover of an area and report on the severity and speed of the process.PELIMANARY CONCLUSIONIMPACT ON SOIL AND VEGETATION WILL BE INCREASEDMATERIALS AND METHODSStudy area: The study was conducted on the campus grounds of University College Worcester at the rear of Woodbury building. The

The questions were given as a study guide for my Hinduism test. The answers cover the basics of the religion.

1592 words - 6 pages STUDY GUIDE FOR FIRST TEST - HINDUISM.What is the name of the scriptures of Hinduism? When were they written? Which part of them describes the philosophical beliefs of Hinduism?Vedas was written in 1500 BC. Philosophical sections (upanishads) are included. The hymn sections are the oldest. The others were added at a later date and each explains some aspect of the hymns or follows one line of interpreting them.What are the four goals in life in

Organizational Behavior Importance Paper, this essay depicts the importance of organizational behavior in the workplace. Cover empowerment and ethical decisions

1009 words - 4 pages Organizational Behavior ImportanceOrganizational Behavior Importance PaperOrganizational Behavior ImportanceINTRODUCTIONHow important organizational behavior in the work place is determined by the head of that organization. I feel that organizational behavior studies can be very beneficial to almost any organization. The field of organizational behavior draws on a variety disciplines, including employee empowerment and ethical decisions. These

Values and Motivations of Islamic culture (Cover story, Time, Sept 13, 2004, Struggle for the soul of Islam)

1672 words - 7 pages more than willing in nailing themselves on the cross, which, in a sense, announces that they are no longer strictly distinguishable from worker- bees.In this cover story, the father finally talked his son out of trouble, when millions of other Muslim families may have the same scar but with less luck to be healed. During the studying of Muslims value and culture, I perceived reinforced ideas about this society being a successful "corporation

Similar Essays

The Craft Of Kundera Essay

770 words - 3 pages One of max Beerbohm's cartoons shows Mrs.Humphry Ward as a very little girl,saying to a sardonically smiling Matthew Arnold:"Uncle Matthew ,oh why will you not be always wholly serious?"The question arises unbidden in the novels of Milan kundera.The mind behind the novels is essentially serious,and yet they are very funny,sometimes farcical.Our puzzlement is not wholly laid to rest in Kundera's new book,The Art of The Novel.The title evokes the

The History Behind The Craft Of Letterpress Printing

773 words - 4 pages A Quick Look at the History of Letterpress Printing Even with the advent of technology, the old business of letterpress printing remains to be a sought after craft for artisans who are in the pursuit of a beautiful work of art. With its timeless appeal and superb aura of quality, letterpress printing brings a sense of class to any printed material that offset printing, or any other form of printing method, could not achieve. What is

The Salem Witch Craft Trials Essay

2167 words - 9 pages Since there never was a spurned lover stirring things up in Salem Village, and there is no evidence from the time that Tituba practiced Caribbean black magic, yet these trials and executions actually still took place, how can you explain why they occurred?The Salem Witchcraft Trials began not as an act of revenge against an ex-lover, as they did in The Crucible, but as series of seemingly unlinked, complex events, which a paranoid and scared

The Great Gatsby Cover Analysis

651 words - 3 pages classic for all high-school students.The cover provides an excellent source of symbolism and insight into meaning of the novel. The sad, hypnotic eyes of a woman shine through the night sky like two headlights. Inside the eyes, the irises appear as lounging nude women. A green tear streams down from the one eye and vivid red lips complete the face. No nose or other recognizable facial forms appear on this figure, but a few dark streaks behind the