Sunday, December 14

X Factor Blog

. Sunday, December 14

On Saturday evening Alexandra Burke won X Factor 2008. Her immediate reward is to release a single, available this week, and no doubt have the Christmas number one. Last year Leon Jackson won the contest and released ‘When You Believe’ a cover of a Whitney Houston and Mariah Carey song, the year before that Leona Lewis hit the number one spot with ‘A Moment Like This’, originally by American Idol victor Kelly Clarkson.This years song choice has caused controversy however as the winners single is ‘Hallelujah’ by Leonard Cohen.

This news has outraged the stuffy elitists out there who believe ‘Hallelujah’ is the most beautiful song ever written and that some scummy reality show winner has no right to even touch this most hallowed of musical ground. What they don’t seem to realise is that this song has been around more times than Pete Burns on a record player. Inevitably a Facebook group has been created for these people to gather their thoughts. There are wall posts on there are just misguided indie snobbery at its worst. For example, “
Jeff Buckley will be spinning in his grave” and “This is poetry sung by a poet. What will happen is that we will inevitably have our ears filled with the false sentiment and fake posturing of the talent search winners. Let's force others to remember Buckley's version or even make it top the charts so that the teenagers who know no better can be educated in true talent.”, “Let’s force others to remember Buckley’s version.” What a haunting image, I must have missed the memo saying great music is that which is blasted down your ears by a sweaty internet geek while you’re handcuffed to a radiator.

According to Wikipedia ‘Hallelujah’ has 170 official covers, so really what difference is one more going to make? There is no chastity belt on this song, Leonard Cohen has been pimping it out for decades. The fact Cohen is behind this might shock some of the people whinging too. See Jeff Buckley didn’t actually write this song. He just covered it. It’s essentially karaoke. Sure, he did it nicely but he didn’t put an end to the songs life.

If people cared that much about this song they should have got on the bandwagon years ago when it became the byword in T.V slush moments. To date the song has sound tracked weddings, funerals and births on shows ranging from The O.C and Hollyoaks though to Ugly Betty and ER. Where were the hordes of fans ‘reclaiming’ it then? I don’t think Jeff Buckley would have given a shit about Seth and Summer being together quite frankly.

I think everyone who downloads ‘the original’ (give me a break)to try and counter act the X Factors unstoppable march to the top is a moron. It’s a cover version, who cares who’s doing it now? Everyone from kd Lang to American nu-metallers Alter Bridge have had a stab at this. Alexandra is a worthy winner (her duet with Beyonce was amazing) and has an incredible voice. For a song that is essentially a hymn her gospel style is perfect. Her version will earn a classic songwriter a very nice Christmas present and kick start a very promising career for a 20 year old girl. Stop being pompous and uppity and go listen to ‘Grace’. Alone.




Bucklberry said...

I'm a great lover of Buckley, and joined the Facebook group, but my posts there have probably been deleted now as I was banned for asking "What's the point? Cowell will always win, he has a TV show."

Sadly, there are way too many of his fans who're very 'precious', yet those very same fans couldn't tell you what the b-side to So Real was...mandatory euthanasia might be an idea.

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