American Covers Club

There's nothing wrong with a great songwriter taking someone else's tunes for a spin -- especially since most would agree that Mark Eitzel can often let pissiness creep into his own material. His recent collection of covers, Music for Courage and Confidence, is so full of tongue-in-cheekiness, it's hard not to smile, even when just perusing the track selection: There's "Snowbird" (originally made cheesy by Anne Murray), Culture Club's "Do You Really Want to Hurt Me," and Glen Campbell's "Gentle On My Mind," all which seem tailor-made for Eitzel's brand of sad self-effacement. But he sounds altogether chipper on Curtis Mayfield's "Move on Up," the album's standout.

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