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David Bowie Cover of the Week: Scottish Mist covers “The Loneliest Guy”

This was yet another week in which I had several quality Bowie covers to choose from for “Cover of the Week.” I selected this one, by musician and composer Rosario Ventrice, who goes by the stage name Scottish Mist because it is well done, is a rarely covered and somewhat obscure song, and has interesting albeit simple visual elements in the video itself.

The cover is fairly faithful to Bowie’s original, which in a way makes Ventrice‘s voice stand out as more distinctive. You’re not going to confuse this with Bowie’s original. Actually, you might not recognize it as a Bowie original in the first place. Though I’ve seen Bowie perform it while he was touring in support of Reality (which was his final tour, back in 2003), this is not a song I can remember ever hearing other than in concert and on the album. It isn’t a feel-good song and is a far, far cry from “Space Oddity” or “Heroes.”

Or maybe not. One of Bowie’s most consistent themes was isolation, and this song certainly is about that. It’s a very sad song about an isolated guy living in denial, though you kind of get the sense that he doesn’t believe in his own claim to be “the luckiest guy.” Ventrice captures the feeling and does a particularly good job on the guitar work, which is the central visual image of the video.

Despite his stage name, Ventrice is not a Scott but rather an Italian composer and singer from Calabria. According to his website, which you can access HERE, and which I am paraphrasing, he has over 35 years of intensive experience in music. In the last three years, he has collaborated professionally as an author with local and international composers. A versatile artist, Ventrice‘s work spans signature songs with lyrics and music, synth music, and classical music. He proficiently plays the piano, acoustic guitar, electric guitar, and electric bass. His passion for experimentation has also led to compositions in chillout and electronic music. Ventrice aims to express emotion and life through his soundtracks, songs, and vocal work, believing that music should evoke the right feelings, moods, and images, drawing from the tradition of the finest Italian songwriters.

As I mentioned, there were other very good covers posted this week. They include the following (link to the video by clicking on the bolded song title):

D.J. By Leeroy’s Musical Journey. I really like this rendition of one of my favorite songs. This guy goes all out— the video shows him not only singing, but playing all the instruments. And I really like his voice. Good job!

Always Crashing in the Same Car by Clive Butler. Straightforward and well done cover of this great song off Low. The repetitive visual is consistent with the theme.

Cat People (Putting Out Fire) by the Trust V Band. What I particularly like about this video is that the sound recording does a great job of just capturing the music and not the kind of distracting ambient sound that often appears on concert recordings. This appears to be an outdoor concert, too, so that’s even tougher (unless it’s dubbed, in which case I’d say even more care was put into creating the video).

Heroesby Christine Thornhill. I’m not sure if Christine Thornhill is involved in actually making this video or simply posting it. No matter, it’s the best “Heroes” cover of the week. I encounter multiple covers of this song, along with “Space Oddity” and a few others every week, such that the song selection counts against in my thinking. But the song remains great and this performance is really good.

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