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Freaky Friday: Gentlemen Hall cover Kendrick Lamar’s 'Bitch, Don’t Kill My Vibe'

by Caitlin Carter   Jan 24, 2014 14:39 PM EST

At Music Times, we love a good cover song. There's something wonderful about repurposing music and essentially bringing life to another creation. Music is not a rigid and inflexible product but rather a malleable one that allows songs to take on a new life as others reimagine it. Nothing gets a crowd more excited than seeing one of their favorite bands cover one of their favorite songs. The cover song makes music accessible to new audiences, and spreading music is what we are all about. Welcome to Freak Friday. Each week we highlight a new cover song that we're crazy about. Have suggestions? Send them our way! This week, we give you...

Song: "Bitch, Don't Kill My Vibe"
Cover Artist: Gentlemen Hall
Original Artist: Kendrick Lamar

Why We Love it: Kendrick Lamar is nominated for seven Grammys, and come Sunday, he could officially be a Grammy winner. It's really no question that he is the biggest name in the rap game right now, so being able to make a cover of one of his songs just as good as the original is quite the feat. Boston indie-pop band, Gentlemen Hall, took on the good kid m.A.A.d city track, swapped the hazy beat and tantalizing guitar and reimagined it with pulsating synth, tribal drums, strings and woodwind instruments, including the pan flute. It maintains the chill vibe of the original but shifts the focus to lead singer Gavin Merlot's breathy, sensual vocals. It's East Coast indie covering West Coast hip-hop, and they nail it.

Background: "Bitch Don't Kill My Vibe," off Lamar's debut good kid m.A.A.d city, peaked at No. 7 on Billboard's Hot Rap Songs chart, No. 9 on Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs and No. 21 on the Billboard Hot 100. It was also nominated for "Track of the Year" at the BET Hip Hop Awards. Versions of the song featuring artists such as Jay Z, Lady Gaga and Emeli Sandé have since been released.

Check out Gentlemen Hall's version and compare it to the original here. Let us know what you think in the comments section below!

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