Cover Versions of #1s – The Fratellis and Weezer

Day Two of ‘cover versions’ week, and I’m being a bit self-indulgent. I’m including this pair not because I think they are amazing covers, but because they are by two of my favourite bands. Bands that will come nowhere near to featuring on my regular countdown, so here’s their moment…

The Fratellis – ‘Yes Sir, I Can Boogie’ (originally a #1 in 1977, for Baccara)

Like Miley Cyrus yesterday, this is another cover done for radio. Although a desire to cover ‘Yes Sir, I Can Boogie’ would be completely understandable by anyone, at any time, there is a little bit of context here. The Fratellis are Glaswegian, big football fans, and the Scottish national team had just qualified for the European Championships – their first tournament appearance in twenty-three years. ‘Yes Sir…’ was adopted as the team’s unofficial anthem, after a video of the players dancing to the song went viral. In the run-up to the tournament T-shirts were printed with the lyrics, the song title became a hashtag, and Baccara themselves put their full support behind the campaign. Scotland, as tradition demands, went out at the group stage… Away from this cover, The Fratellis are a band well worth discovering. Their biggest hit in the UK was glam-rock anthem ‘Chelsea Dagger’ – a #5 from 2006 that you all know, even if you don’t realise it.

Weezer – ‘Are Friends Electric’ (originally a #1 in 1979, for Tubeway Army)

I love Weezer. I love the Weezer that everybody loves (The Blue Album), and I love the Weezer that many people hate (everything they’ve released since The Blue Album). I even love ‘Raditude’. And I admired Gary Numan’s futuristic electro-chart topper, but I can’t help enjoying it a little bit more with Weezer’s trademark crunchy guitars. Crunchy Weezer guitars make everything better. This was released as the ‘B’-side to 2008 single ‘Pork and Beans’ (one of the band’s classics). Like The Fratellis, Weezer will never trouble the #1 slot – their biggest hit in the UK was 2005’s ‘Beverly Hills’, which made #9. They’re a bit better known than The Fratellis, but still worth discovering in more depth. Even ‘Raditude’.

Two more tomorrow…


6 thoughts on “Cover Versions of #1s – The Fratellis and Weezer

  1. Fratellis are fun and weezer are fab. If you were reviewing my personal chart toppers youd find them on top at least once. But not in the 90s oddly enough much as i love buddy holly and others that popped up afterwards. I got the fab video to buddy holly on disc with my computer i think. Prob wouldnt play these days im guessing…doh!

    • Yes, I remember being aware of the Buddy Holly video, and I was only nine or so at the time it came out. It must have been huge for it to make it through to my consciousness. Out of interest – what Weezer songs have topped your charts?

      • Interesting. That whole album felt like a step down from the two before it (White, and Everything Will Be Alright, which were real returns to peak-Weezer) but it still had some good songs on it. There are no Weezer albums that are complete duds, though, because Rivers just can’t help writing at least a couple of great pop songs each time…

      • And sometimes he gave them away to The Monkees, i can see the influence on Weezer. What Would Santa Do is a good xmas Monkees song from 2018 i play most christmases since it came out 🙂

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