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Not to be confused with Tribute act.

A cover band (or covers band), is a band that plays mostly or exclusively cover songs. New or unknown bands often find the format marketable for smaller venues, such as pubs, clubs, or parks. The bands also perform at private events, for example, weddings and birthday parties and may be known as a wedding band, party band, function band or band-for-hire. A band whose covers consist mainly of songs that were chart hits is often called a top 40 band. Some bands, however, start as cover bands, then grow to perform original material. For example, The Rolling Stones released three albums consisting primarily of covers before recording one with their own original material.

Cover bands play several types of venues. When a band is starting out, they might play private parties and fundraisers, often for little or no money, or in return for food and bar privileges, although many professional musicians refuse to do this. With enough experience, a band will begin to "play out" professionally at bars and night clubs. Some cover bands are made up of full-time professional musicians. These bands are usually represented by an 'entertainment agency'.

Unlike some famous bands, when the cover bands consist of professional musicians they often do not have a 'fixed line up' of musicians, rather they are often made up of a flexible line up of session musicians, utilizing "dep" (deputy, that is, stand-in) musicians where necessary. The music industry is considered by many musicians as a relatively difficult industry to make an income in, and cover bands can be a good source of income for professional musicians alongside other work.


Cover bands play songs written and recorded by other artists, usually well-known songs (as compared to "original" bands which play music they themselves have written). There are a wide variety of cover bands - some cover bands play material from particular decades, for example, a 1980s cover band. Others focus exclusively on the music of a particular group, usually iconic groups, and are called tribute bands. It is not uncommon to find tribute bands performing the songs of The Beatles, Led Zeppelin, Kiss, Pink Floyd, Oasis, Duran Duran, Aerosmith, or U2. Some cover bands will play a variety of song styles, from different artists, genres, and decades. Another type of cover band is one that plays songs in a different genre or style than that of the original composition (e.g., jazz versions of what were originally hard rock songs).

Some cover bands perform covers that are of a different musical genre from the originals. For instance:

Examples of cover acts[edit]

Fictional cover acts[edit]

  • Rock Star starring Mark Wahlberg who had a small group that performs cover songs from a fictional band called Steel Dragon. He eventually became the lead singer of the said band when a recorded performance was seen by the band members.
  • The Wedding Singer features Adam Sandler as a cover singer who performs for wedding parties.
  • Detroit Rock City is the story of four teenagers in the 1970s who are in a Kiss cover band called "Mystery."
  • Saving Silverman features three friends who are diehard Neil Diamond fans, and they form a cover band called "Diamonds in the Rough."
  • In an episode of The Simpsons, Otto Mann hires a cover band called "Cyanide," which he says is a tribute to Poison. In another episode, "Covercraft," Homer and several other characters form a band that covers the fictional 1980s band Sungazer, with Apu as the lead singer, but when the real band's lead singer dies, the remaining Sungazer musicians make Apu their singer.
  • In the American Dad! episode "Finances with Wolves," Klaus the goldfish swaps brains with the lead singer of an Earth, Wind and Fire cover band.

See also[edit]


Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cover_band — Please support Wikipedia.
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71966 news items

The Independent Weekly

The Independent Weekly
Thu, 28 Apr 2016 06:52:30 -0700

Before that, his experience included a cover band that played Ratt and Cinderella tunes in the town's bars just for fun. Young, who is about twenty years Robinson's senior, has known Robinson since the now-singer was a kid. He even played in a band ...

Alternative Press

Alternative Press
Thu, 28 Apr 2016 18:46:44 -0700

Note: The title of this story has no ill intent. It's meant to be fun. As mentioned below, All Time Low began as a Blink-182 cover band. All Time Low frontman Alex Gaskarth is a big fan of Blink-182's new song, “Bored To Death.” He shared the new today ...


Wed, 27 Apr 2016 06:18:45 -0700

D'Angelo made a rare public appearance on The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon on Tuesday night to tribute Prince with a moving version of the late icon's solemn ballad “Sometimes It Snows in April.” Singing at a piano in what would've been a ...

Entertainment Tonight

Entertainment Tonight
Tue, 26 Apr 2016 23:22:30 -0700

In honor of Prince, D'Angelo joined Maya Rudolph's cover band Princess on Tuesday's Tonight Show, where they delivered an emotional performance of the late music icon's 1986 single "Sometimes It Snows in April." Rudolph and her musical partner, ...

Entertainment Weekly

Entertainment Weekly
Sun, 24 Apr 2016 08:11:15 -0700

Saturday night's concert from Princess, Maya Rudolph and Gretchen Lieberum's Prince cover band, was in the works for months as part of the fifth annual Moontower Comedy and Oddity Festival in Austin, Texas. But the ladies planned something extra ...

Bend Bulletin

Bend Bulletin
Fri, 29 Apr 2016 00:07:30 -0700

Portland's prime Pink Floyd cover band Pigs on the Wing will perform at The Belfry on Saturday (that's a lot of hard “Ps”). The band brings its psychedelic show — complete with scaled-back lighting and stage effects reminiscent of Floyd's '70s heyday ...
The Portland Mercury (blog)
Mon, 25 Apr 2016 14:11:15 -0700

Former SNL castmember Maya Rudolph (who also has a new variety show in the works) is the ringleader of a Prince cover band called "Princess." This weekend at the Moontower Comedy & Oddity Fest in Austin, Princess did a moving (and fun) tribute to the ...

International Business Times

International Business Times
Mon, 25 Apr 2016 11:45:00 -0700

“It can't be a Blink cover band with Matt [Skiba] trying to sound like Tom [DeLonge] and me trying to recreate something. It needed to be something in the new zone, a new band, but keep the legacy going because I love Blink,” Feldman said. “I want that ...

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