While Annie Clark has earned a lot of well-deserved acclaim as a songwriter and guitarist, she’s also a brilliant reinterpreter of other artists’ songs. From Big Black and INXS to Tom Waits and Dolly Parton, Clark has put her own distinct brand on everything from classic tracks to beloved obscurities since she burst onto the indie rock scene five years ago. Here are several of Clark’s best cover songs from over the years.
The Beatles – “Dig a Pony”
What: The Beatles’ “Dig a Pony”, from 1970’s Let It Be
When: Regularly while touring behind Marry Me and Actor. This version is from her performance at All Points West in Jersey City, New Jersey, on August 1st, 2009.
As far as St. Vincent cover songs go, this is where it all begins. Clark’s version of one of the best tracks from The Beatles’ final album was a staple of her setlist as early as 2007, and she’s offered up several different variations of her own rendition over the years. In most, Clark takes advantage of her own guitar chops and rockabilly-s up the main riff, muting her chords while singing John Lennon’s mostly nonsensical lyrics. She utilizes the breaks between verses to issue some real noise from her guitar, which makes the sudden transitions to her soft voice that much sweeter.