The Original vs. The Cover – “You Better Run”

For this version of The Originals vs. The Cover, we are tackling the Young Rascals 1966 song “You Better Run” off their album ‘Groovin'”. The song was written by Eddie Brigati and Felix Cavalliere both members of the band. The song was considered a disappointment for them as it only went to #20 on the Billboard Charts. The disappointment was due to their previous song going #1, “Good Lovin'”. The Cover version is by Pat Benatar and hers didn’t do as well only going to #42 just missing the Top 40. But hers is famous because it is the 2nd Video ever played on MTV, yep, right after ‘Video Killed the Radio Star’. And since MTV didn’t have a lot of videos back then, it got played a lot.

The song is a kiss off to a bad relationship. Some girl did one of the guys wrong and it was telling her to get lost, run and hide and get away from him. As well as it worked for them, Pat Benatar took and gender reversed it and now she’s telling the guy to the same and it was a great twist to the song. Let’s get to the battle and see who needs to run after this one. Before we do that, I want to thank Barry Gropman for his email and recommendations for ideas for this series.

THE YOUNG RASCALS:

The first thing you notice with their song is that bass guitar. It is the driving force as that repeated chord patter takes you up and down and back again. It is great. The song is really simple for them, with that bass line, the guitar riff and the great drumming by Dino Danelli. Felix’s vocals are filled with pain and that delivery of the vocals is so superbly deliberate and well paced. He makes it sound serious and full of anger. The harmonies on the chorus are great as well. Really killer track.

PAT BENATAR:

Pat Benatar’s version turns up the guitar with Neil Giraldo and Myron Grombacher’s drums are slamming. The bass is there, but now it is a full on guitar rocker and the guitar takes over that part. Pat’s vocals are…well…amazing. There is so much anger in her vocals and she is a total badass ready to kick this guys ass if he shows up again. It would make me run. She totally modernized the song to be a pure hard rock anthem and she totally made it her own as I didn’t realize it was a cover until years later.

THE VERDICT:

You could go either way with this one. The Young Rascals original is a classic track. I love the bass work and Felix really delivers a great vocal as I really love his approach on the lyrics. Pat turns it in to a total hard rock, almost metal, song. Her vocals are unmatched by anyone and Neil’s guitar is really the driving force. But for me, it is always Pat Benatar. It was her version I heard first, her version I always think of when I think of this song and I never tire of hearing her. So Pat Benatar for the win here for me, but I know you all might have different views, so lay them on me.

I am really interested in hearing what everyone else thinks of these two songs.  Let me know which version you like the best and why.  Feel free to leave a comment and talk about the song and tell me how right or wrong I am on this one.  Thanks for stopping by and have a great day.

LYRICS:

“You Better Run”

What you tryin’ to do to my heart?
What you tryin’ to do to my heart?
You go around tellin’ lies
You’re runnin’ ’round with the other guys
What you tryin’ to do to my heart?

You better run, you better hide
You better leave from my side
What you tryin’ to do to my soul?
What you tryin’ to do to my soul?
Everything I had was yours
And now I’m closin’ all the doors
What you tryin’ to do to my soul?

I love you girl, I love you so
Can’t you see and don’t you know?
I can’t stand your alibis, your tellin’ lies, you drop me wise
Myself, I can’t stand anymore
Oh, what you tryin’ to do to my head?
What you tryin’ to do to my head?
Now I gotta draw that line
You’re not gonna take my mind
What you tryin’ to do to my head?

You better run, you better hide
You better leave from my side
What you tryin’ to do to my soul?
What you tryin’ to do to my soul?
Everything I had was yours
And now I’m closin’ all the doors
What you tryin’ to do to my soul?

I can’t stand anymore, leave me alone, woman!
Go way, too much, have mercy!
I need you, I need you!

24 thoughts on “The Original vs. The Cover – “You Better Run”

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