The Kentucky-based band’s 2008 album, Evil Urges, threw fans and critics for a bit of a loop. While about half of its songs sound like typical MMJ fare, it also offered up left-field tracks like today’s SOTD, ‘Highly Suspicious.’
This is a rather upbeat song, but My Morning Jacket does with it what they do with pretty much every song they cover — turn it into a melancholy dirge. Jim James’ voice is just naturally mournful.
My Morning Jacket has covered Prince more than any other act, in part because ‘Purple Rain’ is a staple in their live shows and in part because they did many tributes to His Purple Highness following his death.
Second to Prince among MMJ live covers is Bob Dylan, whose songs both famous and obscure have found their way into setlists. But the band has recorded Dylan songs in the studio setting as well.
According to setlist.fm, Elton John is MMJ’s ninth most covered artist. They’ve played ‘Rocket Man’ 16 times between 2000 and 2016.
While the band is lauded for its original songs, they clearly derive a lot of pleasure from playing the songs of others, particularly in their live shows. I’ll spend the rest of this week featuring a few of those performances.