Did Weezer Fire The Shot Heard Round The World?
The story behind Weezer's decision to cover and release "Africa" a song originally performed by Toto, is pretty accidental. My boss Simon had shared with me his enthusiasm for Weezer and then told me it was just a fan on twitter asking Weezer to cover the song.
Because sarcasm is what rules the world now, Weezer responded appropriately by covering Rosanna instead of Africa. While this is hilarious, Weezer still obliged their fan with what has now become a #1 Alternative Rock Chart Topper.
This is crazy but I love it! Millennials have always impressed me over the years with their selection of music from the past. They have always loved songs that I normally disregarded. I'll admit, I always loved the song Rosanna but never really appreciated Africa, at least not until Weezer brought it back to life.
Younger musicians have always traditionally covered songs from their predecessors. For example, one of the more popular Beatle's songs is Twist & Shout. But that was a cover, not originally their song. However they made it a hit and the song lived on. This was in the 1960s. Fast forward to the mid 1980s and genius movie maker John Hughes puts The Beatle's version of Twist & Shout in a movie, BOOM, that song becomes a hit again.
That leads me to the conclusion that music is timeless if it has the ability to speak to multiple generations. So was Weezer really stepping outside the box when they covered Africa?
Not exactly, let's not forget Disturbed sent an emotional shock wave around the world with their cover of Sound of Silence, originally performed by Simon & Garfunkel. I always loved the original but there's something about Disturbed's version that gives the song a different meaning. I personally think their tribute was flawlessly executed. The theme of the song remained the same but that dark passion which was missing in the original, bleeds through more when Disturbed put their sound to it.
Are you still with me? I'm impressed, this is a long article. Thank you for reading this much. It's good for you. I can go into how Metallica did the same thing when they covered Turn The Page, but I think you get the idea by now.
Regardless of what versions of songs you prefer, I work for an Alternative Radio Station and if I want to play songs like Africa, an Alternative band must cover it. Social media gives fans direct access to their favorite musicians, I'm already seeing a trend starting.
I want The Foo Fighter's to be next and cover a Beatles or Beach Boys Song. If they some how manage to do that, maybe, just maybe I can play some more of my favorite songs on my show.