Looking back at The Raconteurs’ 2006 live cover of Gnarls Barkley’s ‘Crazy’
It’s not often you see Jack White make many concessions towards popular culture. The singer recently confessed to not having a smartphone which left a stunned reflection in the world’s collective black mirror. But on the odd occasion he does – it’s always special.
In 2006, with his indie supergroup The Raconteurs, White took to the Lollapalooza stage armed with not only hits from the band’s recent debut record Broken Boy Soldiers but some fist-pumping, crowd-pleasing covers. Their cover of Gnarls Barkley’s mega-hit ‘Grazy’ getting some very special Jack White treatment.
Having had a wealth of success with The White Stripes, The Raconteurs offered an outlet for White. No Longer the only star attraction, White benefitted from sharing the limelight with and the vocal duties with Benson – his guitar work finding a brand new lease of life.
The new lease of life loosened the highly-strung White enough to even cover a chart-topping pop song, Gnarls Barkley’s ‘Crazy’. The song had been earworming its way across the world for a few months and something about the soul duo’s first single clearly resonated with White. The guitarist chose the Raconteurs as an outlet to dissect and serve up the song like a sushi master.
White plays the nodding intro of the track without too much fuss but he soon begins to slice up the song as his creaking vocal make a series of sneering and snotty giggles in the face of Cee Lo Green’s smooth as butter voice. The complete antithesis of the original production, White and the band’s version replaces Danger Mouse’s smart and succinct sampling with a rearing guitar and an attitude for creativity.
It wouldn’t be the only track that The Raconteurs would cover for the Lollapalooza crowd. The band also took on David Bowie’s ‘It Ain’t Easy’ and Nancy Sinatra‘s ‘Bang, Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down)’ to complete a truly remarkable set.
Sit back and behold, Jack White at his creative and pulsating best, covering Gnarls Barkley’s at Lollapalooza in 2006.