Great Songs that Should Never Be Remade by Another Artist

LOS ANGELES – 1988: Pop Star Michael Jackson performs onstage in 1988 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)


Great Songs that Should Never Be Remade by Another Artist

This is a our short list and we’re sure you can think of many other songs, leave your choices in the comment sections. Some of these song have been remade and to be honest the revisions sucked. These songs should never EVER be made again. When the original artist sung it, the job was DONE!

Marvin Gaye “What’s Going On” the most part our choices are based on the depth to which the original artist performed the song. Originally the Motown brass laughed at this project and pretty much tossed it, thank God Marvin was adamant about releasing it…. This song has a permanent etch in the annals of the greatest songs ever recorded.

Gladys Knight and the Pips “Neither One of Us” and “Midnight Train to Georgia”

There will never and we mean NEVER be another Gladys Knight.

With all due respect to the Pips, Gladys MADE that group without question. We picked these two songs because there was an incredible level of transparent pain and emotion delivered expertly by Ms. Knight that few if ANY singers would EVER be able to duplicate. The music industry as well as the listening public is fortunate that very few of their song’s have been remade. The only one that comes to mind was a subpar Stepahnie Mills remake of “If I Was Your Woman.” Not Stepahanie’s best work but certainly Gladys’

Michael Jackson “Billie Jean”


In all honesty to remake any MichaelJackson song ESPECIALLY any song from Thriller is just disrespectful. No matter how much of a fan an artist is this material is best left as is. We cannot think of one single artist who can even attempt to remake any of Michael’s material even though…. The remake of “All I Do is Think of You” by 90s’ group Troop was actually not bad.


Earth Wind & Fire “Reasons” and “That’s the Way of the World”

Classic material… once again it should be left as is.

Cheryl Lynn “Got to Be Real” Cherly Lynn’s “Got to be Real” seemed like a complete rip of the Emotion’s “Best of My Love” but Cheryl sung circles around the otherwise amazing sisters and literally burried “Best of my Love” in the music industry dust.   This song is probably one of the most familiar songs introduced to every musical generation since it’s original 1978 release. This song is 35 years old and it still sounds brand new and can get any party started in an instant.

Chic “Good Times”

There will never be another Chic but there were many groups that tried to duplicate their concept including: the BB&Q band, Kleeer and 52nd Street. All were actually great groups in their own right but Chic was monumental. Good Times was not sung better than any other singer could sing it but it was pure attitude with this group and they were so unique, as a matter of fact there has been no other group that could duplicate Chic’s concept and success. 90s group Zhane remade Good Times and it was OK but nothing compares to the original.

Stevie Wonder “Isn’t She Lovely”

There are those reading this who will probably think of many other great songs from this stellar album that were better than “Isn’t She Lovely” but what seperated this song from the pact is that it actually CAN’T be made again because of it’s content. What made this song incredibly great was Stevie’s AMAZING deep and harmonious harmonica playing. While he played the Harmonica on many of his previous songs it jumps off the track on this one. Our other favorite by Stevie is “My Cherie Amore” another song that Motown did not believe in because of it’s French concept and title. They were WRONG.

Prince “When Doves Cry”

Prince has MANY great songs but there is something about “When Doves Cry” that seems to reveal a hidden truth burried in the writing and performance of this song. You really believe the words and the story. Singer Ginuwine remade the song a few years ago and it was actually not bad but Prince’s interpretation, attachment and personal adaptation is what makes it so great.

Miguel “Adorn”

You may ask yourself how Miguel made this list and it’s because in a current music industry that is viewed as stale by many music lovers Miguel is today’s Jackie Wilson, Prince, James Brown and Marvin Gaye all rolled up into one. His music is spectacular and an incredible moot point to anyone who complains about great music not being made anymore. This is a great song that can’t be denied

R Kelly “I Believe I Can Fly”

R Kelly is a genius and he doen’t get enough credit. This song will go down in history as one of the greatest songs ever made and it will be sung over and over and probably recorded over and over but his version is the best one and it’s incredibly inspirational.

Whitney Houston “Saving All My Love (for you)” how young Whitney looks on this original 45 sleeve. Since she is no longer with us this song, her very first release should never be remade out of respect for her legacy.

Luther Vandross “A House is Not a Home”

Luther was an AMAZING singer, it’s really ironic that he and Whitney did so much background work together before becoming big stars and now they’re both gone, it seems surreal. This song IS a remake per Dionne Warwick and a couple of other artists pre Luther but his version without question knocks it out the park. There is no artist that should EVER insult Luther’s version by attempting to remake it. This song has been SUNG.

Shirley Murdock “As We Lay”

Not one of our favorite songs but this song was so HUGE at Black radio that it would be playing and people would call in and request it be played again. Especially women. Shirley’s unique voice make this a signature song for her. Kelly Price remade it some years ago and….

Dennis Edwards “Don’t Look Any Further”

Recently, we heard a version of this song remade by some European group and we could not stop laughing, it was HORRIBLE. The lead singer didn’t even come close to Dennis’ interpretation of this surprise mid 80’s smash. Siedah Garrett was the perfect match for him on this song even though her vocals were a bit subdued (Do you remember her club single “Do You Want it Right Now?”) Her range is outrageous but while Dennis has sung many of the Temptations major hits this song is one of his BEST efforts and still sounds GREAT today.

James Brown “It’s a Man’s, Man’s, Man’s World”

James Brown was an incredible revolutionary. He was a great businessman and he knew the only way to control his career was to control his music. He motivated the black community at a time when it could have destroyed his career with songs like “Say it Loud (I’m Black and I’m Proud).” This song has so much depth and pain that it would still sound great today.


Rick James and Teena Marie “Fire and Desire”

God rest their souls once again, it’s surreal to imagine they are both gone and we missed their classic performance on the BET Awards some years back but this song was HUGE back in the day and it STILL sounds good. It has been remade and it should not have been nor should it ever be again.

Patti LaBelle “If Only You Knew” has never been afraid to showcase her amazing range but this song actually has her subdued like most singers sing songs all the way to the end and then she brings it home ending it with with amazing vocal precision, emotionally charged with a sincere confession of one-sided love that is begging to be rectified. Who of us hasn’t experienced unrequited love and felt the pain of it. There is something about this song that makes it one of Patti’s absolute best ever recorded. When it was released in 1983, but originally recorded in 1979 it had been shelved by Philly International records and Patti had been dropped as a solo artist by Epic Records. This single both saved and re-established her career.

Natalie Cole “I’ve Got Love On My Mind”

Natalie Cole came unto the music scene like a amazing singing maniac with a vocal range that was second to none and then she revealed that she has issues with drugs and she fell off for a while then returned much more subdued and laid back. Audiences were miffed and missed the original Natalie wondering why she was not hitting the notes that she once sneezed out. This song is one of the best songs she has ever recorded and it’s been remade several times, unfortunately, once again sub-par versions in comparison to hers.


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  1. Kevin, a great list! I would include Harold Melvin & Blue Notes “Be For Real”, Al Green’s “Love & Happiness” (most of his hit singles) Toni’ “Unbreak My Heart” & “Love Shoulda Brought You Home”,The Tempts “Papa Was A Rolling Stone” & Barry White’s “I’ve Got So Much To Give”; “Never Gonna GiveYou Up”


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