democracy wins: derek webb covers leonard cohen’s ‘hallelujah’

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Tuesday, November 30th, 2010

democracy wins: derek webb covers leonard cohen’s ‘hallelujah’

since this past january, i’ve been blogging about derek webb’s latest innovative project called democracy vol. 1. earlier this year, fans could cast votes for up to 12 songs that they wanted webb to cover. then, the 12 songs receiving the most votes would be covered by webb for the album. the album has been in the process of being recorded over the span of 2010, with 1 track being recorded and released each month. over the past 10 months, webb released the first ten tracks. here’s the current track listing:

1. the beatles: while my guitar gently weeps
2. coldplay: fix you
3. bob dylan: the times they are a-changin’
4. gnarls barkley: who’s gonna save my soul
5. sufjan stevens: chicago
6. u2: where the streets have no name
7. huey lewis and the news: power of love
8. the beatles: eleanor rigby
9. simon and garfunkel: the sound of silence
10. radiohead: karma police

instead of releasing the the full list of tracks, webb is revealing each track month-by-month. and today, we found out the eleventh one.

november’s track is leonard cohen’s hallelujah.

i have to be honest, when i first saw that it was yet another cover of hallelujah, i rolled my eyes. how many more covers of this song can we take!? 🙂 but when i hit play, everything changed. it may be to quick to say, but this is probably my favorite song of the entire project. everything about it is right…because it’s absolutely nothing that you would expect. instead of the more introspective versions we’re used to hearing from jeff buckley and others, this is a rollicking, 60s throwback vibe. one of the first comparison that popped into my mind was the byrds and bands of that ilk. it’s something you would hear on an austin powers soundtrack…and i mean that in the absolute best way possible. 😉 it’s fun, it’s completely unexpected and because of that, it’s brilliant.

it’s a particularly great addition to an already great compilation of covers. but, don’t take my word for it. check it out for yourself. here’s the track.

derek webb / hallelujah: