For performers who write their own songs, an album's opening track is pretty tricky. There's a lot of pressure to write an excellent song that catches the listener's attention and entices them to listen further, but some artists get around this by opening their albums with cover songs instead. Here are eight great albums that open with cover songs.

1. MC5 - Kick Out The Jams (1969)

Though it would seem like the immortal "Kick Out The Jams" would have been a great opening track for the MC5's debut album Kick Out The Jams, the band actually went with a fuzzed-out cover of "Ramblin' Rose," written by Fred Burch and Marijohn Wilkin, and originally performed by Jerry Lee Lewis.

2. Frank Zappa - Burnt Weeny Sandwich (1970)

Before he became famous for making freaky rock records, Frank Zappa got his start playing drums in doo-wop bands. Zappa paid tribute to the genre on his 1970 album Burnt Weeny Sandwich, which opens with a cover of "WPLJ" by the Four Deuces. The album closes with another doo-wop cover, too: "Valarie" by Jackie and the Starlites.

3. Patti Smith - Horses (1975)

Patti Smith's "Gloria" can be very loosely defined as a cover song. While it features the same chord progression and chorus of Them's "Gloria," written by Van Morrison, all of the song's other lyrics and melodies, not to mention dynamics, are purely the creation of Patti Smith and her band.

4. Blondie - Parallel Lines (1978)

Blondie's classic album Parallel Lines actually features two cover songs: "I'm Gonna Love You Too" by Buddy Holly, and the album's opener, "Hanging on the Telephone" written by Jack Lee and originally performed by his band, the Nerves.

5. The Specials - The Specials (1979)

The eponymous debut album by seminal 2-tone ska band the Specials opens with not just one, but two cover songs. The first is "A Message To You, Rudy" by reggae artist Dandy Livingstone, while the second is "Do The Dog" by soul singer and comedian Rufus Thomas.

6. Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds - From Her To Eternity (1984)

Though the two aren't very similar musically, one of Nick Cave's biggest lyrical influences is Canadian folk singer Leonard Cohen, whose song "Avalanche" was recorded by Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds as the opening track to their debut album, From Her To Eternity.

7. Pixies - Bossanova (1990)

The Pixies always had elements of surf rock within its songs, most notably on "Tony's Theme" from Surfer Rosa, but the only time the band ever recorded an actual surf rock song was for 1990's Bossanova, which opens with a version of the Surftones' "Cecilia Ann." The cover is so faithful that the band even samples the reverb splash that opens the original.

8. Bob Dylan - Nashville Skyline (1969)

I've included Bob Dylan's Nashville Skyline at the end of this list because the song that opens it, "Girl From The North Country," isn't exactly a cover, but close to it. Bob Dylan wrote the song and originally recorded it for his second album, The Freewheelin' Bob Dylan, but in 1969 he re-recorded the song as a country ballad with Johnny Cash, and placed it as track one on his country LP Nashville Skyline. Basically, Dylan covered his own song.

What other albums open with a cover song? Let us know in the comments section!