Hive Five: Jack White’s Weirdest Covers

Jack White performs on 'Saturday Night Live', March 2012. Photo: NBCU

Almost every album Jack White helms includes a cover song, and his new solo album Blunderbuss continues the trend with a cover of Little Willie John’s “I’m Shakin’.” White is deadly serious about rock’s lineage, so he’s a firm believer in the cover-as-tribute. It’s why Son House’s “Death Letter” was arguably the White Stripes’ most ferocious live number, and why the final song at the final White Stripes concert was a cover of Leadbelly’s “Boll Weevil.” This ain’t no karaoke; White sees his choice in covers as an extension of his art.

Through his three bands and various side projects, White’s put his spin on songs from all the requisite rock categories: rockabilly, delta blues, Dylan, Dolly, etc. But he has also culled material from several seemingly random sources. Below we’ve compiled Jack White’s five most unexpected cover songs.

1. The White Stripes do Patti Page’s “Conquista”

Considering White’s dalliance with marimbas on Get Behind Me Satan, as well as Jack and Meg’s outfits on the cover of Icky Thump, the White Stripes’ garage-mariachi “Conquest” cover doesn’t seem so outlandish in hindsight. But then there’s the all-Spanish 7-inch version, “Conquista,” which is batshit crazy. This was Jack White’s Casa De Mi Padre moment.

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