I’ve always enjoyed Rod Stewart, including especially his remakes of the songs of others, such as “Handbags and Gladrags” (Cat Stevens), “I’m Losing You” (Rare Earth), “So Far Away” (Carol King), etc. My aunt was always partial to his disco era “Do Ya Think I’m S-xy”. In his early career he had much street cred as a rocker, singing great songs, accompanied by the very best instrumentalists, such as guitarist Jeff Beck. He’s long since become the accommodating butt of jokes, and there’s a mutual understanding between him and his audience that though he long ago sold out, the sell-outs are quite enjoyable, and they keep selling out. After a lucrative foray into the world of non-rock standards, he just released a new album of rock song remakes, including versions of:

…and more!

Yes, yes, the album is a little bit by-the-numbers, but it’s still enjoyable. He’s picked out good songs. He does them in his distinct voice, and you end up liking them as companions to the versions of the original artists.

“Father and Son” is another Cat Stevens tune. Stewart-Stevens is a nice collaboration. The original Stevens versions can become a little bit too dark if you listen to them for ten minutes or so, and Rod takes some of the edge off.

“It’s a Heartache” is a nice choice. Bonnie Tyler, who did the original version, has raspy voice that’s similar to Stewart’s. Compare/contrast/enjoy.

“Have you ever seen rain?” Who wouldn’t like this song? And the funny thing is, when you hear a Rod Stewart remake, you don’t tend to resent that it’s supplanting the original. They can live side-by-side.

“Love Hurts” Originally by the Everly Brothers. Then remade by metal group Nazareth. Finally, now remade by Rod Stewart. Who’s next?

Finally, for the ladies, here’s what this s-x symbol looks like these days, lounging on his yacht.

And for the guys, here’s a candid of Barbra Streisand.


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