For every great song remake that comes along, there are several that aren’t so good. Wait, make that, “awful.”

Want to hear a great remake? Check out Seal’s incredible take on “Let’s Stay Together” by the Rev. Al Green.

This could have easily been a “Top 100” list, but I decided to pare it down to my top five list of all-time worst song remakes. Do you agree with my picks, or have something else in mind that’s (yikes!) worse than these?

  • 5

    'Some Kind Of Wonderful'

    Huey Lewis And The News

    Maybe we hated this more than the rest of the country, because Flint’s Grand Fund Railroad did the definitive version we know and loved. But Mark Farner and company’s time-honored rock anthem is also a cover. It was actually a minor hit for Soul Brothers Six, who released the song in 1967.

    I’ve got news for you, Huey:  It was some kind of ghastly.

  • 4

    'Downtown Train'

    Bob Seger

    I realize that it’s practically sacrilegious for a Michigander to dislike a Bob Seger song. I tried to like it. I really did! Being a lifelong Seger fan, and out of loyalty to Bob, I made a real effort to like his cover of the 1985 Tom Waits tune. But in the end, it was like trying to warm up to a best-friend’s wife or girlfriend who’s a total b**ch. Can’t be done.

    Rod Stewart’s 1989 cover reached #3, and doesn’t seem to turn as many stomachs.

  • 3

    'American Pie'


    Don’t mess with a classic: American Pie, Stairway To Heaven, and Hey Jude are off limits. Period.

    The 1971 tribute to the “Day The Music Died” drips with the emotion Don McLean felt as a teenager when he learned of the plane crash that killed Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens, and The Big Bopper. Madonna was about six months old. Her pop/dance version was a big hit in other countries, but was not as well-received in the US.

  • 2

    'You Shook Me All Night Long'

    Celine Dion/Anastacia

    This one gets extra points for its “cheese” factor. (Celine playing air guitar – really?) This little gem is from a 2002 live benefit concert in Las Vegas for the VH-1 Save The Music Foundation. Now that’s irony!

  • 1

    'Hotel California'


    A soft rap version of the Eagles’ 1977 stalwart. How much “pink champagne on ice” did it take to make this seem like a good idea? Although if you’re brave enough to listen, you’ll notice that TQ changed the lyric to “cold Cristal on ice.” Wow, classy.