Just last week, I was writing about the many fine covers of Nick Lowe's "(What's So Funny 'Bout) Peace, Love & Understanding?" and this week I am seemingly besieged by covers of one of my fave Stones tunes, "Under My Thumb".
Out of the many covers of this legendary Jagger-Richards composition, two really caught my ears and eyes: Canada's Steelheart (which, funnily enough featured future Loverboy members Paul Dean and Matt Frenette) and Chicago's own Hounds, who were led by John Hunter.
What is so striking about the two versions, released the same year, is how virtually indistinguishable they are from one another. Both versions take the song in a very disco-oriented direction, which is quite funny when you consider the venues both bands were used to playing: biker bars, for example.
Of course, the Stones and bikers have always been a bad combination, so Hounds are tempting fate either way, if you ask this writer. As for covering the Stones, unless you're 1000% convinced that your version is superior, what is really to be gained?
As for Canada's Streetheart, bonus points are immediately awarded for not only giving their version a slick disco sheen, but the performance itself is actually pretty glammy to boot.
So mixing the Sweet, the Stones and the Bee Gees in '79 sure seems like a recipe for chart mayhem, right?
While the song was a Top 20 hit in the band's home country, it failed to give them the break out hit in the U.S. and around the world, forcing the band to fracture. Drummer Matt Frenette and guitarist Paul Dean would soon form Loverboy and wind up conquering North America on their own a few years later.