Glee Cast version vs. original song

Glee Cast version vs. original song

Photo Credits: RABIDA / AGGIE

It must be said.

Disclaimer: Before you disagree or get upset, I have, like, really incredible taste in music. Also, I took a class called “Intro To World Music” so, yeah… I know what I’m talking about. Plus my Glee playlist has 12 followers.

“Forget You (Glee Cast Version)” vs. “Forget You” by CeeLo Green

Am I saying Gwyneth Paltrow is a better musical artist than CeeLo Green? No. Does she absolutely body “Forget You”? Yes! We learn that Paltrow is a triple threat (acting, singing, dancing) seconds into her performance as Holly Holiday, the Spanish teacher who liberates the Glee Club from the chokehold of Mr. Schue. The original “Forget You” is a beloved classic, but it does not have Santana Lopez belting over the last few notes — which, honestly, is enough to make any song better than the original. Also, Paltrow won an Emmy for her performance so… I’m sorry, but maybe when CeeLo gets his Emmy, we can talk. It is very subtle, but if you really understand music and the lyrics, you undertand that Paltrow is singing from a feminist standpoint by switching to he/him pronouns (queen behavior).

Winner: Glee Cast

“Don’t Rain On My Parade (Glee Cast Version)” vs “Don’t Rain On My Parade” performed by Barbra Streisand

I’m sorry, but Ms. Streisand was just not hitting those notes like Rachel Berry! The original is retro, I suppose, but it’s honestly kind of hard to listen to Streisand’s version because the Glee Cast version is burned into my brain. It is a heightened, emotional experience. The stakes are high (sectionals), the outfits are to die for (big red bow on the back) and Rachel is giving it her all. When she sings “I’ll march my band out” and the rest of the Glee club walks out? Yeah, that’s history. They’re gonna teach that in schools. In the end, both #Jewishgirlsslay.

Winner: I mean, twist my arm…Glee Cast

Any Cover Sung by Will Schuester vs. The Original Song

By now, everyone knows Will Schuester is a freak who should not be allowed near children, but I don’t think we, as a generation, bully him enough for his musical flaws. He has the unique ability to make every song bad and every scene boring. His performances instill debilitating physical discomfort in viewers forced to watch him strain his voice to a Journey song while writhing on the floor. His disgusting rendition of “Gold Digger” should have been banned from national television and made me stop liking music for a while. Will Schuester, trust you will be dealt with.

Winner: Nobody. We all lose when Will Schuester is allowed to perform. #lockhimup

“The Rocky Horror Glee Show” vs “The Rocky Horror Picture Show” (Soundtrack)

The first time I watched “The Rocky Horror Picture Show” was jarring. I expected the fun songs I knew from Glee, but instead I was met with terrible voices and an incomprehensible plot. Now, I know the girlies who went to the midnight showings every Saturday are going to be mad, but hats off to Glee for taking only the good parts, because that movie is a mess. That said, every song on the Glee album is an incredible serve. “Damn it, Janet” is the best song Finn has ever performed; we get to hear Kurt’s weird little voice singing nonsense on “Science Fiction Double Feature” and “Time Warp” creates instant euphoria. It really is musically better in every possible way.

Winner: Glee Cast

“Girls Just Wanna Have Fun (Glee Cast Version)” vs “Girls Just Wanna Have Fun” by Cyndi Lauper

This cover is a disgusting travesty. It’s like Ryan Murphy was given a direct order to completely butcher Lauper’s version beyond salvation. The original is something fun for the girls to get ready and party to. The Glee version is Finn (a man) singing a slowed, acoustic ballad rendition to Santana after outing her to the whole school. If the musical aspect weren’t enough, the presentation of homophobic beast Finn as a hero is. Quite possibly the worst Glee cover of all time. Definitely in the top five at least. 

Winner: Cyndi Lauper

“Poker Face (Glee Cast Version)” vs “Poker Face” by Lady Gaga

It’s hard to compare anything to the cultural revolution that is “Poker Face.” Glee knew this and switched it up. Unlike “Girls Just Wanna Have Fun,” the rearranging of “Poker Face” makes the original almost unrecognizable but keeps the good parts. In the show, it is a mother-daughter duet, which is great because they are both amazing singers but also because it makes you really contemplate how two non-blood related women can share one bone structure. It may take six to 12 listens to enjoy, but once it clicks, whew! True musical rebirth.

Winner: Tie

Honorable Mentions for the Glee Cast: Any Madonna song, “Survivor/I Will Survive,” “Bust Your Windows,” “Don’t You Want Me,” all songs performed by the Warblers, “Run Joey Run,” “Landslide,” “Thriller/Heads Will Roll,” “Edge of Glory,” “Valerie,” “I’m Still Standing” (which, way better than Elton John, but not better than the “Sing” (2016) version) and “Blame It on the Alcohol.”

Honorable Mentions for the Original Artists: None. Two-hundred and seven Glee songs charted on The Billboard Hot 100. Take notes.

Written by: Livvy Mullen — arts@theaggie.org