There are very few rules in music really. However, here is one that is almost 100% accurate: don’t try to do The Beatles or Whitney Houston.
Whitney is obvious. She was an absolutely singular talent whose voice…I mean, just “Wow.” Every time you heard her sing, you just kind of nodded and said, “Yeah, she’s the best.”
The Beatles warning comes from Peter Frampton, who at the height of his powers and success in the mid-70s did what he vowed he’d never do, and didn’t just cover The Beatles, but did a HIDEOUS movie based on their album, “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band.”
He was on top the the world.
His fall…he NEVER recovered from.
So when I woke up this morning and heard that Billie Eilish had performed “Yesterday” on the Oscars last night for their “In Memoriam” segment, I winced. I mean, here is a girl who is uber-talented, on top of the music world at age 17, and about to sing the theme for the next James Bond film.
Beware the Peter Frampton warning.
Then I heard it.
“Yesterday” is one of the few songs I ever learned to play on guitar. It is a classic, simplistic, Beatles tune. And she totally crushes it.
I was a fan before. I’m a believer now.