Songs with Earlier Histories Than the Hit Version

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Poor Poor Pitiful Me

Written and first recorded by Warren Zevon (1976).
Hit version by Linda Ronstadt (US #31/C&W #46/CAN #9 1977), Terri Clark (C&W #5/CAN #1 1996).

From the wiki: “‘Poor Poor Pitiful Me’ was written and first recorded by Warren Zevon (with backing vocals by Lindsey Buckingham). In keeping with Zevon’s sardonic lyrical style, the song’s verses deal with a failed suicide, domestic abuse, and a brush with sadomasochism. (It is reputed to be a friendly swipe by Zevon at Jackson Browne, whose songs – such as ‘Here Come Those Tears Again'” and ‘Sleeps Dark and Silent Gate’ – could be dark and wallowing in pity.)

“Linda Ronstadt recorded her gender-altered version of the song during 1977. She would recall that (ironically) Jackson Browne had pitched ‘Poor Poor Pitiful Me’ to her and taught it to her in the living room of her Malibu home. Ronstadt’s interpretation would be released on her multi-platinum album Simple Dreams.”

Linda Ronstadt, “Poor Poor Pitiful Me” (1977):

Terri Clark, “Poor Poor Pitiful Me” (1996):

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