Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Maybe, you're gonna be the one that saves me...

Made famous by Oasis, the song Wonderwall is loved by all who hear it.
A karaoke classic and guitar playing sing-a-long, what is there not to love about this song.
What if I told you there was another version of this song.
A version that strips the upbeat and adds the mellow.

Ryan Adam's does a cover of this song, and I can guarantee that anyone who is "in the mood" will love every one of his soulfully drenched words and softly picked guitar sounds.
Adam's version turns the famous Wonderwall into a haunting song, remastered with emotion.

Ryan Adams' version is almost chilling, but it's so beautiful that I can't help but listen to it again and again. I love Oasis' version too, but Ryan Adams' version has so much more depth to the song.
- Lauren Twocock, Newark, England, 24.12.2006

Despite the loyalty from Oasis fans voting the original song the better version for reasons varying from simply being original to the recognizability of the song from the first note, even Noel Gallagher of Oasis says Ryan Adams is the only person who ever got the song right.

Oasis rocks
I like more the original song
- Carolina, Mar del Plata, Argentina, 29.09.2007

I do admit often times cover songs do not compare to the original, but every now and then a band comes along and takes an already famous song and makes it their own. Ryan Adams is not the first, and will not be the last, to take a classic, put a different spin on it, and leave the listener transfixed on his every word. For example, the Smashing Pumpkins mastered Stevie Nicks Landslide, and Johnny Cash captured spotlight with Nine Inch Nail's Hurt.



  1. oasis will always belong to the masses. an international anthem. adams has created an intimate and personal rendition to appeal to the individual.. for them to call their own.

  2. There are a few things that I think come into play when asking a question like this. One, we need to know if our listener is a traditionalist. Most people who are will argue the original is pure, just as they do when things change in other songs, or other avenues of our culture such as sports. I believe bias could play a large role in answering this question.

    Personally, when critiquing the songs, it appears to me that the Oasis version can be misunderstood due to the inclusion of the drums and somewhat upbeat nature, as opposed to Adams' version where the focal point is his voice. It is, as you stated, haunting. We find most listeners of music don't focus on the lyrics of a song, and the Oasis version allows us to move to the music, whereas Adams' version really engages the listener more in what the song is really trying to say.

    The song itself is quite amazing. For protraying the meaning of the song and moving the listener, I vote for Ryan Adams. For a larger, more generic pop audience, Oasis.

  3. I have to agree with Rick, both songs need to be considered in different contexts. The Oasis version works so well because it is almost universal, in being generic and popular, nearly everyone knows it, or at least recognizes it. There has been many a sing-a-long at parties to their version after possibly one too many drinks. I remember in Cancun a few years ago, locals on the bus sing and play the guitar for the tourists heading out to the bars, and the one song that sticks out as a memory for everyone that was on the trip was a rousing rendition of Oasis's Wonderwall. I also think the popularity of the original kind of adds to the Ryan Adams version, in that not nearly as many people know it, and it exists as almost a hidden gem. Great question though.

  4. I also have to agree with Rick. It all comes down to preferences, and what an individual enjoys. I personally love listening to music for a songs lyrics rather then the beat and tempo, although that makes a song more enjoyable. My friend on the other hand doesn't listen to the words but enjoys the beat of songs. That being said though, I will always favour the origional over any cover no matter how well the cover was done. The of course that being said, maybe if I had heard Ryan Adams version first before Oasis' I might favour Adam's. It's hard to say.

  5. I'm actually listening to oasis right now. If I did have to choose, I'd say Ryan Adams takes the cake. Everybody covers wonderwall because it's such an easy song to play and sing. And, like you said, Adams takes the song and makes it his own. I kindof like covers that deviate from the original. I've heard Oasis play Wonderwall, I want to hear Ryan Adams play it. Cat Power does a cool cover of Frank Sinatra's New York you should check out.

  6. Both are great in their own way. For me personally it depends on my mood. I have always liked the Oasis version simply for the fact that its an emotional song that's very upbeat. On the other hand, the Ryan Adams version has a lot more raw emotion to it which makes it more soothing to listen to. Ultimately when choosing which version to listen to you need to ask yourself: do I want to listen to the song for its ability to pick me up? Or do I want to listen to the song for its ability to mellow me out and keep me calm.....

  7. I think we all know who would make a better version of this song.......Mr.T feat. Gary Coleman

  8. It seems for the most part everybody seems to agree that which song version is better depends on the individuals personal preference and mood- which I agree with completely.

    Oasis is and always will be a recognizable class.
    Adams recreates this song making it a vocal masterpiece.

    a pick me up vs. a calm me down.


  9. I agree with your statement on it being the mood, and the individual. By no means do I intend to tangent this discussion, but for a second, recall the song Smooth Criminal. Some of us think Michael Jackson, others, Alien Ant Farm. Both versions are completely different, and offer the listener something to be desired.

    It is this example (though I could have chosen a plethora of others, I know) that can be applied here. Adams' rendition is a great change to the song, and offers us something fresh to something familiar. In saying that, whenever you hear a cover of a song in which you do not know the original, most people will seek out the original, though they may not like it as much.

    This begs another questions raised by J. The version you hear first might sway your decision, because that becomes your basis to compare. It becomes your original. This reverts back to my original statement of being a traditionalist and opinions created in such a mindset. Interesting thought indeed.

  10. Ryan Adams' version is absolutely the best. So much more emotional depth and feeling than Oasis. Well done Jess. :)