Joe Cocker


I haven’t written a great deal about singers who have covered Bob Dylan on this blog, but the news today of Joe Cocker’s passing makes me want to note that he was one of the best in this genre. His best known cover is certainly his 1969 version of “Just Like a Woman”, which was the last song on side one of Cocker’s debut album: With a Little Help From My Friends (the same album ended side two with a cover of “I Shall Be Released”). I’ve put that up top here.

Grooveshark has actually had someone compile a lovely little collection of nine Dylan covers by Cocker – including the unlikely “Catfish”! I’ll be listening to this play list today and thinking about the late, great Joe Cocker. Rest in peace.

One thought on “Joe Cocker

  1. Rusty

    First, praise for Joe Cocker, a great interpreter of songs–there’s a long list of his work where I think, “Oh, yeah, that’s another way to do that excellent song–maybe even better than the original way.” (I certainly think more of “She Came In Through the Bathroom Window” after hearing him do it than I do as a standalone entry in the Beatles canon.)

    It’s hard to consider the relationship between Joe Cocker and Bob Dylan without also mentioning Cocker’s longtime collaborator Leon Russell, himself an inveterate coverer of Bob Dylan songs (and sometime Dylan producer). I posted the superb Cocker/Russell duet on “Girl From the North Country” earlier here, and I especially like his “It Takes a Lot to Laugh, It Takes a Train to Cry,” from Leon Russell & the Shelter People.

    When this project is over, you are hereby charged with the responsibility of curating a CD-length “Best Dylan Covers” compilation (I don’t even care if you leave off my favorites–you habitually make wrong-headed critical judgements, but you’re always interesting about it.)

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