1. The Band Trying To Show Off An Unexpected Side Of Itself
If you’re a soft, sensitive guitar guy looking to throw in a curveball, “Gangster’s Paradise” — the no. 1 single of 1995, and one of the most memorable songs of the 1990s — is a pretty safe place to start.
2. The Band Whose Fans Pretty Much Expect A Dirty Cover Song
Ben Folds has owned this territory ever since a song called “Rock This Bitch” became one of his live staples. Is a Ben Folds concert without a dirty song even a Ben Folds concert?
3. The Band That’s Playing This Because They’re Just Trying To Keep People From Leaving The Show
Your band’s got an EP. You don’t have enough material for a full set of original songs, though. The easy solution? Break out a rap cover everyone knows. Hey, it worked when you were busking!
4. The Band That’s Playing A Cruise, So Why The Hell Not?
You can get away with a lot of stuff when you’re in international waters.
5. The Band That Just Wants To Look Hip
And yet, the weird thing about this particular Fray cover is that it STILL fits right in on the Grey’s Anatomy soundtrack.
6. The Band That’s Signed To Jay-Z’s Label
When Mr. Carter tells you to do a cover song, you do that cover song, understood?
7. The Band That’s Doing This For Nerd Cred
The only catch: Sometimes, this starts out as the song you cover to surprise your fans, and becomes the song that your nerdy audience demands even though they’ve seen it at every one of your shows.
8. The Band That Wants This To Blow Up On YouTube
Like Karmin, or pretty much anything that comes up on YouTube when you search for your favorite song and the words “acoustic cover.”
9. The Band That Just Really Likes R. Kelly
This could be the national anthem one day, so technically, these guys are just being patriotic.