Summer Rewind: Five Great Covers of “Get Lucky”
As summer gives way to fall, we look back on some of the things that made the season of long days and short nights great. Undoubtedly, one of those is the "Get Lucky" hysteria that swept the nation in mid-April when Daft Punk made their glorious return to music with the track that would become the song of the summer. With Nile Rodgers on guitar and Pharrell on vocals combined with the French electronic duo, "Get Lucky" was groovy, sexy and completely addicting to anyone who listened. You didn't just press play on "Get Lucky" once, you pressed play and then worked the repeat button a few times. That's why the song broke the Spotify record for amount of plays in a 24-hour period, and why it has been played 125 million times via Spotify.
"Get Lucky" also taught us that musicians are, at their core, fans. Much like celebrities who do their laundry and get gum in their shoe like us normal folks, musicians appreciate the work of others like those who pay to see them. It didn't take long for "Get Lucky" to become the darling of covers, as Umphrey's McGee briefly covered the song a mere 24 hours after it was released. The wave continued through all acts, genres and mediums and thus, the "Get Lucky" craze was born. Now that the dust has settled, let's look back on some of the best covers of the Daft Punk smash hit.
The Stepkids took a break from their psych-soul ways to contribute a classy, laid-back version of "Get Lucky." As goofy as it is groovy, something about the bassline and vocal harmonies seems to work perfectly. The three-piece ensemble didn't need any sort of electronic beat to capture the danceability of "Get Lucky" either, using only an upright bass, snare drum and guitar. Also included are the geeky white boy dance moves we all broke out when this song came on.
Quite possibly the most inventive cover of "Get Lucky" yet, Russian guitarist Igor Presnyakov put together a beautiful acoustic arrangement for our enjoyment. Utilizing his percussive style of playing, Igor was able to mimic the beat while weaving the vocal line in throughout. Known for his cover songs on YouTube, Presnyakov knocked this one out of the park, with his video amassing over 1.5 million views.
Wilco's take on "Get Lucky," while more on point than the first two, is amazing for a couple of reasons. First, Wilco rarely works covers into their show, so when they present a full-cover set at their Solid Sound Festival, the time to take notice is right now. And naturally (because it's the song of the summer!) "Get Lucky" was included in the set. The other reason this cover is great is that Wilco keyboardist Mikael Jorgensen takes the final breakdown on and basically turns into a one-man Daft Punk. Jeff Tweedy singing is also quite hysterical, although he doesn't seem too enthused about it. Then again, this is the man who performed a Black Eyed Peas medley, so this certainly wasn't rock bottom.
(Drunk) Florence Welch
Don't lie, kids. When this song came on at your local watering hole and you had just the right amount of liquid courage in you, it turned into karaoke night immediately. Well, going along with our "musicians are people too" theme, this falls right in line. Florence Welch, of (you guessed it) Florence and the Machine, hopped on stage one night with a local band in south London to belt out some Daft Punk. She particularly embraced the "let's raise the bar and our cups to the stars" line, downing a shot while singing it. All of this makes Florence Welch, in fact, the perfect woman.
The internet can be such a cruel, dark place sometimes. This is not one of those times. Enjoy President Obama getting down to "Get Lucky." (Insert government shutdown joke here)
Honorable Mentions: The Roots' Captain Kirk and Questlove as "Black Simon & Garfunkel" on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, The Notre Dame Marching Band, and (surprisingly) Fall Out Boy.