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Served Three Ways: Three Covers of Rolling Stones’ “(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction”

The memorable three note guitar riff powering the Rolling Stones’ “(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction” was intended as a throwaway placeholder to be replaced with a blaring horn section. The band ultimately decided to stick with the guitar, and, according to Mick Jagger, it was that track that “changed [The Rolling Stones] from just another band into a huge, monster band.” The track ended up being the band’s first-ever number one hit in the United States. Initially the song was only played on pirate radio stations in England because the lyrics were considered too sexually suggestive but it later became the band’s fourth number one hit in the UK as well. It’s been covered numerous times by artists including Devo, Britney Spears (you don’t want to hear it – trust me), and Aretha Franklin (you do want to hear this one). You’ll also find a great, 12-minute version on The Great Lost Album by The Vagrants. Each of these versions offer an original take on the track.

Cat Power – (I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction
Otis Redding – (I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction
P.J. Harvey & Bjork – (I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction

I want to hear which one is your favorite, so tell me what you think in the comments.


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Posted by Matthew Hickey

Matthew is the music editor and co-founder of Turntable Kitchen. He’s addicted to vinyl records, pour over coffee, craft beer, small batch bourbon, and pan roasting pork chops.

  • Brian

    Bjork singing backup on Satisfaction?!?!?!

    At least she starts out singing backup before she tears that badboy apart! Dig the brooding vibe P.J. holds throughout.

  • Brian has it right: I thought for sure I was going to say Cat Power…but once Bjork comes through on the cover with PJ Harvey, there’s no going back. It stings to put Otis in the corner, but his version just feels too joyful–as opposed to the anger that makes the Stones’ original so powerful.

  • You know, Julia, you nailed it. I love Otis with all of my heart and soul, but he doesn’t sound nearly as frustrated as one might expect. However, his version still is pretty awesome because it incorporates the horns that the Stones originally intended to use for the original.

  • When I originally found that version my mind was instantly blown. I mean, how awesome is it that P.J. Harvey and Bjork teamed up to do this specific song? Far too cool.

  • Brian

    Ha! It ones of those tracks where you’re like “This can’t be real”

    It’s like Beck and Thom Yorke covering I’m Set Free by Velvet Underground together. I still listen to that and can’t believe that it actually happened.

  • Kostas500

    You are the most miserable person to say something like that for Aretha Franklin!! You know nothing you poor sophomoric kid

  • Thanks for the polite comment friend. You may be right, it’s possible I know nothing. Nonetheless, I do suggest you take a second to reread the post. I would before I left a nasty comment on someone’s website. If you did reread it, you’d notice that I actually said not to bother with the Britney Spears version, but suggested you DO listen to the Aretha Franklin cover.

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