Switching Styles is a blog about all the joys of cover and parody versions of songs…but what exactly are covers and what are parodies? And what’s the difference?
Let’s start with covers. Covers are a recording or performance of a song that was already recorded by a different musician, according to the Merriam-Webster dictionary. They are alternative versions of songs. These are songs that have been adapted to something different using different tempos, instruments, arrangements, keys, and vocals. They can change everything, or change a combination of things or change just one thing. It’s like taking your grandma’s famous salmon casserole recipe and changing it a bit to get a slightly different recipe. It’s still your grandma’s casserole, but with your personal flair.
Parodies are the same kind of idea. According to the Meriam-Webster dictionary, a parody is a literary or musical work in which the original is closely imitated for comedy or satire. The point of parody is usually seen as humour but parody artists do go beyond that. There have been a lot of song parodies created with a political or activist purpose, which is really interesting and rather cool. Creating a parody is like using a Microsoft Word template. Everything you need is right there, you just need to tweak it, and add your own words. It’s still a word template, but with your own personal flair.
The main difference between parodies and covers is the lyrics. Parodies typically change the lyrics and keep the style, while covers typically change the style and keep the lyrics. However, this is a rather simplified explanation because there are ranges to each genre. Despite their differences, both of them are extremely versatile in their ability to completely change a song. It’s possible to have 100 different versions of a single song and none of them be exactly the same.
It’s the main reason as to why covers and parodies are insanely amazing.