THE ORIGINAL: The White Stripes (2003)

This is probably the most popular song by The White Stripes, known for its incredible guitar riff, that sounds like an outtake from Iggy and The Stooges. Raw, rough and very rock and roll.

For all you gearheads who don’t already know, it wasn’t a bass guitar! Jack created it by his 1950s style Kay Hollowbody (semi-acoustic) that was run through a DigiTech Whammy pedal that was turned down an octave. It sounds very sinister, like the Big Bad Wolf is stomping toward your door, then add the thump, thump, thump of the bass drum, crashing cymbals and more loud guitars along with the sinister lyrics.

This song, when you listen to it loud enough, can make you think that you can overcome anything!

THE COVER #1: Nostalgia 77 (2005)

Believe it or not, this cover is even more sinister sounding than the original.  This version has been slowed down to a funky rumble, the beginning hook is louder and more fierce, and Alice Russell sings the shit our of it.

The added brass horn section sounds like a minor key blanket of sadness that envelops you in cobwebs. This is funky, slinky, sexy and sweaty.

THE COVER #2: The Dynamics (2007)

This is a reggae-style cover, and they do a great job with it. It has the signature opening hook, but actually played on a bass guitar! The spare drums, the titter-titter of the cymbal, organ, and clarinets (!) that make this a few clicks above a funeral dirge, despite the space-age synth sounds.

The lyrics are sung in an odd, high pitch, which makes this even more creepier. This is a prime example of what a great cover version is.


I really love all of them. The original for being so original, Nostalgia 77 for making it a sweaty and funky groove, and the Dynamics crafted a Reggae version that doesn’t make it so “Dub” that it gets boring. It’s a three-way tie!

Listen to them all, and I think you’ll agree.  If you don’t agree, keep listening!


About Author

Crystal C Durant

Crystal is today's black Renaissance woman. She lives in Harlem, is always up for a new experience, is a magnet for all kinds of crazy, and smells like fresh flowers.

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