Great Songs Have Multiple Lives
Great songs can have multiple lives.
When they come into our lives the first time, they are fully formed. The melody, the chords, the lyrics, the production. They cast themselves - cement themselves - in our collective consciousness, more often than not, affixing themselves to a particular point in time, a feeling, an emotion.
But what makes the song great isn't any sort of superficial treatment. It isn't the production, or the use of a synthesizer, or a particular type of guitar.
It's the underlying melody, the honesty, the feeling. Which transcends the superficial.
Which is why if you take a great song, and strip away the fancy production work to, say, simply a voice and guitar, it still retains its magic.
And when you then push it in a different direction (alter the arrangement, for example, slow it down), it transforms once again, without losing its individuality, its magic.
Because great songs, at their core, are about a purity of intent, a clarity of message, an honesty of emotion.
Which is what allows them to have a life beyond the 'original'.