The 5 best covers of Britney Spears’ “Toxic”

There are so many versions of Britney’s “Toxic” that it’s hard to keep up. All of which is a testament to the talented Cathy Dennis‘ song writing skills (also famous for her Kylie comeback song).

∞ Random Interest Snippet: seven of Cathy Dennis’ compositions have made it to number one in Britain, including Kylie Minogue’s “Can’t Get You Out Of My Head” and Katy Perry’s “I Kissed A Girl” (as co-writer).

Whatever you think of Britney and the pop genre in general, “Toxic” is a great song with a sexy melody over a darkly seductive minor chord progression and a lot of talented musicians seem to know it.

These, in my opinion, are 5 of the best ‘reworkings’ of Cathy Dennis’ great tune.

Download the Nickel Creek version guitar tab at the bottom. Copyright issues mean the guitar tab’s been removed – you can get the Britney songbook from here: Britney Spears — In the Zone: Piano/Vocal/Chords

1. Stevie Ann

First up is Dutch Songstress Stevie Ann‘s soulful acoustic reimagining. She’s changed the chords somewhat but retained the general tune and added her own emotional power to the vocal performance.

2. Fork

Freaky Fins Fork do a great a cappella version of the song. They create the instrumentation with their voices in an impressive and engaging way.

3. Yael Naim

French-Israeli singer-songwriter Yael Naim, known for her MacBook Air tune, puts her own stamp on the song with a heartfelt piano version of similar sentiment to Stevie Ann’s.

4. Mark Ronson

Retro Funk Producer Mark Ronson puts his signature jazzifunkified spin on the proceedings.

5. Nickel Creek

And finally, this folky/bluegrass version by acoustic music trio Nickel Creek is my favourite (the sound and video is of a poor quality but it’s good enough to get the idea :). Chris Thile‘s performance antics bring it all home!

Honourable Mentions

There are a couple of surprisingly effective mash-ups too:

Linkin Park’s “Faint” – takes a brutalising; the way these guys copulate with the hip hop fraternity this mix could be more prophetic than humorous – after all, they’d be only two degrees away from hip hop legend Timbaland if they partnered with Britters… xD

B-52’s “Love Shack” – against all odds (one’s a kitschy, alt-pop throwback – the other’s a high-octane, over-produced pop epic) the two songs work together remarkably well! This one’s high on my list of favourite mash-ups :).


Download the complete Guitar Pro 5 file (.gp5) (including violin, mandolin arr. for guitar, double bass, vocal) from here.

Please note: this file is currently at version 0.8 (i.e. not complete yet) Check back soon for final version!

If you don’t have Guitar Pro you can download the demo here.

Copyright issues mean the guitar tab’s been removed – you can get the Britney songbook from here: Britney Spears — In the Zone: Piano/Vocal/Chords

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The 10 most unlikely duets of the last 30 years
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9 responses to “The 5 best covers of Britney Spears’ “Toxic”

  1. Pingback: From the Blogroll: Musicalis Eclectica « At the Lighthouse·

  2. Pingback: The 5 best covers of Rihanna’s "Umbrella" « the interactivist·

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