Make a Cover Song Your Own
A well-crafted cover song can be a thing of beauty and raise your chances of getting attention. Here are three tips to help get you started on making someone else’s great song yours.
Change the tempo
Make an uptempo song into a ballad or a romantic song into a snappy dance number simply by speeding up or slowing down the beat. Don’t be random about the tempo change though… try to keep the integrity of the lyrics in mind when making tempo choices.
Change the melody
Who says you have to sing the exact same notes as the original singer? Of course, you must follow most of the melody but feel free to make slight changes (going up where the original singer went down on a note for example). Add subtle ornamentation to impart the message that this is your personal take on the song, especially if you’re changing the style from pop to R&B.
Change the feel
Reggae anyone? Or take a dance song with a heavy disco beat and transform it into a sweet acoustic ballad. Transform a funk song into hard-hitting rock with stacks of guitars. Tickle the listener’s ear by starting the song with a familiar hook from the original. The goal is to lure the listener in and imagine them thinking “Hmmm. I think I recognize this song… what is it? …OH YEAH!” The joy of recognition is half the fun.