One Song/Three Versions – Beggin’

The Music Enthusiast likes to mix it up a little, throw down a song’s original, and then a couple of (hopefully) radically different versions. We’ll call this one the international edition for reasons which we shall see.¬†

Wikipedia: “The Four Seasons are an American¬†rock band that became internationally successful in the 1960s and 1970s. In 1960, the band known as¬†The Four Lovers¬†evolved into the Four Seasons, with¬†Frankie Valli¬†as the lead singer,¬†Bob Gaudio on keyboards and tenor vocals,¬†Tommy DeVito on lead guitar, and baritone vocals, and¬†Nick Massi on electric bass and bass vocals.

The band’s original line-up was inducted into the¬†Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1990¬†and joined the¬†Vocal Group Hall of Fame¬†in 1999. They are one of the best-selling musical groups of all time, having sold an estimated 100 million records worldwide.”

ME has always liked the Four Seasons, even seeing the (he believes) so-so musical Jersey Boys (with someone playing a young Joe Pesci.)* “Beggin;’ is a song used in the play and on the soundtrack.

Their first hit, in 1962. was with the song “Sherry.” As it happens with pop bands, by 1967 they were pretty much played out, later having a resurgence in the mid-70s with “Who Loves You” and “What a Night.” (“Sherry” is on my Indispensable 150 list, a list of pre-Beatles tunes that your mother would know.)

But in that “Summer of Love” year of ’67, they released the Bob Gaudio/Peggy Farina tune, “Beggin'”. (Notably, Farina sang with a 60s girl group named The Angels who had a hit with “My Boyfriend’s Back.” Aerosmith reportedly titled their Permanent Vacation album after the ‘If I were you I’d take a permanent vacation” lyric in this song.)

“Beggin'” wasn’t a huge hit but did make its way to the Top 20. According to Wikipedia, it was overshadowed by Valli’s solo recording of “Can’t Take My Eyes Off You.” I love how the label says “Featuring the ‘sound’ of Frankie Valli.” Could Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons be too far off?

In 2007, Norwegian hip-hop duo Madcon released a new version of the song with rap verses. This version reached number one on Norway’s VG-lista chart for 12 nonconsecutive weeks and received the “Hit of the Year” Spellemannprisen award.

The single also became popular throughout Europe –¬† in France, the Netherlands, and the Wallonia region of Belgium (the non-Wallonia region, not so much) it peaked at number one. Overall, Madcon’s “Beggin'” was Europe’s 11th-most-successful single of 2008.

M√•neskin (Danish¬†for ‘moonlight’) is an Italian¬†rock¬†band formed in¬†Rome¬†in 2016. The band is composed of vocalist¬†Damiano David, bassist¬†Victoria De Angelis, guitarist Thomas Raggi, and drummer Ethan Torchio.

They rose to prominence after finishing second in the eleventh season of the Italian talent show X Factor¬†in 2017. Their international breakthrough ensued when the foursome won the¬†Eurovision Song Contest 2021¬†for¬†Italy¬†with the song “Zitti e buoni.”

These guys really rocked this up. Who knows if the singer even knows what the lyrics mean? I dig his style. This was a pretty big hit early last year. My wife tells me they use this in her exercise class:

*Referred to as “Joey,” Pesci was a friend of Tommy, Frankie, and Nick, and helps introduce Bob Gaudio to them.

Source: Wikipedia

14 thoughts on “One Song/Three Versions – Beggin’

  1. Love this idea! One time my ex wife borrowed my iPod and said, “Do you really need 5 different versions of the same song?!” Yes. Yes, I do! Great read!

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    1. Thanks. I’m endlessly fascinated by the different ways people interpret songs. If you’re ever bored, I’ve done a number of these, which you can find by using the search bar.

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      1. I plan on checking them out! I feel the same way, Jim. I heard Sinatra doing the Beatles’ Something on my way into work tonight – interesting take on it and he had a lot of praise for the song itself.

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        1. Yes. “Best love song in 50 years,” he said. Thought it was a Lennon/McCartney song. I get a kick out of how he throws ‘Jack’ in there.

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  2. I knew some Four Seasons songs (I guess their bigger hits) but not Beggin’. These two renditions are pretty good. While hip hop, in general, isn’t so much my cup of tea, I think it’s cool what Madcon did here. I also like M√•neskin’s take – looks like it’s their most-streamed song in Spotify. I think I prefer this over ‚ÄúZitti e buoni.”

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    1. Backstory: I heard the Maneskin version on the radio and really dug it. I was shocked to discover it was a cover of a Four Seasons tune. It rang a faint bell but really wasn’t much of a hit here at all. Then as I’m playing Maneskin version on YouTube, my wife comes in and says We do that at Zumba. Here I thought it was obscure but it was a pretty massive hit. Interesting chords, too.

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    2. Zitti e buoni sounds like something I’d order. Hey, it’s not a bad song at all. Nice to see a rock song win Eurovision instead of some of that dogshit I hear.

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      1. That’s too funny, Jim. Those were exactly my first thoughts when I first saw the song title, which really sounds like it could be an Italian pasta dish!

        And, yep, it’s nice to see a decent rock song win this contest. Of course, another great winner many moons ago was Abba’s “Waterloo”. But everything in-between is largely forgettable.

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        1. When people in Europe voted for the best Eurovision winner of all time – and this was fairly recently – “Waterloo” was the winner. A great song and maybe the best pop song of all time. I’ll have to do an Abba post some day.

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