Girls Aloud record the Pointer Sisters' 'Jump'; Atomic Kitten record Blondie's 'The Tide is High' and Kool and the Gang's 'Ladies Night'' Westlife record Billy Joel's 'Uptown Girl', Phil Collin's 'Against All Odds', Abba's 'I Have a Dream', and Barry Manilow's 'Mandy'-Thanks to the boom in TV-created pop stars, ancient pop classics have never had it so good, with 'Unchained Melody' massacred afresh by Gareth Gates and 'Bridge Over Troubled Water' eviscerated by Hear'Say.
But back in pop's early days, every record was a cover version.
Frank Sinatra and Ella Fitzgerald were famous for interpreting other people's songs, and the closest Elvis Presley ever got to writing one was when his manager, Colonel Parker, arm-twisted the rights away from the original songwriters.
The balance of power shifted when The Beatles and the Stones wrote all their own material, yet the great tradition of the cover version never died.
In this elegantly-tooled volume, Adam Sweeting gets the lowdown on cover versions - the worst, the most popular, the most frequently recorded, the most successful, the stupidest, the most tasteless, the most influential, and the ones nobody got around to yet.