Picks and Pans Review: Sounds Off
Paul Anka—yes, Paul Anka!—reworks pop hits from the '80s and '90s on his new disc Rock Swings. We asked the 64-year-old former teen idol about put ting some swing into these songs.
"IT'S MY LIFE" (BON JOVI) I identified with its message. There's a parallel with "My Way."
"EYE OF THE TIGER" (SURVIVOR) I knew that I could take license with the melody and that the message would still prevail. It's got a "Mack the Knife" kind of feel.
"JUMP" (VAN HALEN) This was easy. I said, "Let's bang it out with the brass."
"THE WAY YOU MAKE ME FEEL" (MICHAEL JACKSON) There's no taking away from Michael Jackson's talent. I tried "Billie Jean" first, but it didn't work.
"SMELLS LIKE TEEN SPIRIT" (NIRVANA) Forget how [Kurt Cobain] screwed up his life, there was poetry in that kid. My original album title was Smells Like Paul Anka. But I thought that would be asking for trouble.