Songs with Earlier Histories Than the Hit Version

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Torn

First released (as “Brændt [Burnt]”) by Lis Sørensen (1993).
Also recorded by Ednaswap (1995 | 1997).
Hit version by Natalie Imbruglia (US #1/UK #2/CAN #1/BE #1/SWE #1 1997).

From the wiki: “‘Torn’ was written by Scott Cutler, Anne Preven, and Phil Thornalley during a demo session in 1993 before Ednaswap was formed. This song has been covered a surprising number of times, considering that it was written by a nearly unknown alternative rock band. The first recorded version of the song was, in 1993, a translation by Danish singer Lis Sørensen, ‘Brændt’ (which translates to ‘Burnt’ in English). Stylistically, Sørensen’s 1993 version is very close to Natalie Imbruglia’s 1997 version, most likely because (as co-writer Preven has said in an interview) the early Ednaswap demo [not available] was almost exactly like Imbruglia’s version.

“Ednaswap was a Los Angeles-based band that recorded between 1993 and 1998. Frontwoman Anne Preven came up with the band’s name after she dreamed she was in a band of the same name that was so bad they were booed off-stage. The group’s self-titled 1995 album, on which their first recording of ‘Torn’ was included, was the band’s only record for EastWest, and the album was never put into wide release. Ednaswap was released from their contract and, then, was immediately signed by Island Records. Another, more grungy and hard-edged version of ‘Torn’ was included on Ednaswap’s only Island album, Wacko Magento (1997).

“Imbruglia’s version gained the song its widest recognition. And, of all the versions of the song (‘Torn’ has also been recorded by Norway’s Trine Rein, plus various other Ednaswap versions), Imgruglia’s is the most pop-oriented. Her recording was nominated for the Grammy Award for Best Female Pop Vocal Performance in 1998 (losing to Celine Dion’s ‘My Heart Will Go On’).

“In 2012, Torn was declared as The #1 Best Pop Song by Q Magazine in their Q Special Edition 1001 Songs Ever. Billboard ranked ‘Torn’ as its #26 Best Pop Song of the Decade based on Pop radio charts compiled between 1992-2012. In the UK, Imbruglia’s ‘Torn’ is the 85th biggest selling single of all time.”

Ednaswap, “Torn” from Ednaswap (1995):

Ednaswap, “Torn” from Wacko Magento (1997):

Natalie Imbruglia, “Torn” (1997):

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