Pete Yorn Shares a Playlist of Future “Classics”

Ahead of his live stream show on March 13, Yorn assembled 10 tracks that could potentially warrant a sequel to his recent covers LP.

This weekend, Pete Yorn will be playing a set of stone-cold classics—his own compositions, as well as those of other artists. Tomorrow evening he plans on airing a live stream wherein he’ll perform his 2009 LP Back & Forth in its entirety, sprinkling in a handful of covers from his newly released The Classics project, which features a wide range of familiar tunes from Pixies, Simon & Garfunkel, and more.

In addition to these covers, though, Yorn has a long history of reinterpreting popular songs. He’s been tapped to cover the Buzzcocks and Albert Hammond for film soundtracks and asked to contribute to tribute comps for the Ramones and Springsteen, while “Young Folks” became a popular live staple for the artist when he succumbed to the running joke that “Pete Yorn” sounds enough like “Peter, Bjorn & John” to warrant some confusion. 

Ahead of tomorrow night’s stream, we asked Pete to throw together a playlist of tracks he’d include on a second Classics LP should it ever come together, mostly settling on live favorites from past tours. Stream the playlist below, and grab your tickets for the stream here.

Iggy Pop, “China Girl” 

Bowie had the popular version, which I love, but I modeled mine more after iggy’s version.

Bruce Springsteen, “NYC Serenade” 

I played this one at my first-ever live show in LA. The strings at the end crush me in the best way.

Buzzcocks, “Ever Fallen in Love” 

I was asked to cover this for the Shrek 2 soundtrack. Such amazing energy in this one. Pete Shelly is one of the greats.

Ramones, “I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend” 

I covered this one for the Ramones’ We’re a Happy Family record. It was through that project that I first met Johnny and Linda Ramone and we became great friends.

New Order, “Bizarre Love Triangle” 

The lyrics to this one really hit home around 2008-09 when I was often covering this one at live shows.

Albert Hammond, “It Never Rains in Southern California” 

The Farrelly Brothers asked me to cover this one for their film Stuck on You. I was on tour at the time and ended up tracking it in a hotel room with my friend, producer, Ken Andrews.

R.E.M., “Driver 8” 

This was one of the first songs I learned to play on guitar around age twelve. Years later Peter Buck noticed I was playing a C when I should be playing an A-minor in the verse, so he corrected me. It was a eureka moment.

The Rolling Stones, “Dead Flowers” 

I loved this song and used to cover it when Minibar was my backing band. They always brought a proper country-tinged swagger to it.

The Smiths, “There Is a Light That Never Goes Out” 

Always one of my favorite Smiths songs emotionally and melodically—I have been known to cover this song at my live shows for over twenty years now.

Peter, Bjorn and John, “Young Folks” 

I started covering this one at live shows as sort of a winky joke due to the confusion some were having because their band name sounded a bit like “Peter Yorn.”  People were often coming up to me saying they liked my new song “Young Folks.” I really loved the song too, so I figured what the heck, I might as well just play it. There are some rare live versions of my performances of it on YouTube I believe…


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