Songs with Earlier Histories Than the Hit Version

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Money Changes Everything

Written (by Tom Gray) and first recorded by The Brains (1978).
Re-recorded by The Brains (1980).
Hit version by Cyndi Lauper (US #27 1984).

From the wiki: “‘Money Changes Everything’ was written by Tom Gray, frontman of The Brains, and was the band’s only underground hit – released in 1978 as a 45 RPM single on Gray Matter Records. The initial underground success of the song led to The Brains being signed by Mercury Records. The group rerecorded the song under the guidance of producer Steve Lillywhite for their 1980 debut album, The Brains.

“Critic Greil Marcus, listing ‘Money Changes Everything’ at #10 of his Real-Life Rock Top Ten 1979, wrote: ‘Singer Tom Gray told his story in a strangled voice, as if he were trying to explain, but instead he laid a curse. This damned single ranks higher than I’ve placed it, but if it were anywhere else I couldn’t end with it, and there’s no other way the decade could end.’ Marcus would later write of the song, ‘It was hard, it hurt, and Cyndi Lauper’s version makes the original sound compromised. She makes you wonder if Brains composer and singer Tom Gray even knew what he was talking about.'”

The Brains, “Money Changes Everything” (1980):

Cyndi Lauper, “Money Changes Everything” (1984):

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