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Natalie Merchant — Space Oddity
Album: Live In Concert
Avg rating:
5.8

Your rating:
Total ratings: 1714









Released: 1999
Length: 4:28
Plays (last 30 days): 2
Space Oddity
Ground Control to Major Tom
Ground Control to Major Tom
Take your protein pills and put your helmet on

Ground Control to Major Tom
Commencing countdown, engines on
Check ignition and may God's love be with you

(spoken)
Ten, Nine, Eight, Seven, Six, Five, Four, Three, Two, One, Liftoff

This is Ground Control to Major Tom
You've really made the grade
And the papers want to know whose shirts you wear
Now it's time to leave the capsule if you dare
"This is Major Tom to Ground Control
I'm stepping through the door
And I'm floating in a most peculiar way
And the stars look very different today

For here
Am I sitting in a tin can
Far above the world
Planet Earth is blue
And there's nothing I can do

Though I'm past one hundred thousand miles
I'm feeling very still And I think my spaceship knows which way to go
Tell my wife I love her very much she knows"
Ground Control to Major Tom
Your circuit's dead, there's something wrong
Can you hear me, Major Tom?
Can you hear me, Major Tom?
Can you hear me, Major Tom?
Can you....
"Here am I floating round my tin can
Far above the Moon
Planet Earth is blue
And there's nothing I can do."
Comments (338)add comment
as bad as it can get
Some people on RP can't stand Dengue Fever and the Khmer singing style. 
Well, I for one can't stand Natalie Merchant's voice. I want to, I've tried to but... nope. 
 Punkysoup wrote:
Yikes. This doesn't need to exist AT ALL.
 
Nor do you, but I would never wish for that.
I want to hate her for this.
Even though it was well performed, she didn't make it her own.
I was surprised how much I like this version. I'm not normally a Natalie Merchant fan, but this one adds some soulfulness and groove the original lacks. I like how much slower it is than Bowie's studio recording.
Stopping just short of murder, probably at the point when the guitarist sticks to the first bars of the solo.
nope. 
very bold to cover such an iconic song - better make sure you bring something to the table.
Generally do not like cover version of anything but this is actually very good IMHO and does the original justice.
Yikes. This doesn't need to exist AT ALL.
Not one of NM’s stronger covers. OTOH, “because the night’” is hurricane force.
essential Natalie . . . 9 for me
Y?
alright. it's unanimous then. we all really like this version! her bio is quite interesting!
Ok to listen to, but I don't think it adds much to the original song.
Why should i listen to this crap, when there's a perfect original version. For all i am concerned she can sing in the shower i like to do so myselve, but don't bother anybody else with your "art" and leave the real stuff for Bowie to perform.
 brollo wrote:
She shouldn't have.
 

Why; that's a great version!
She shouldn't have.
 Proclivities wrote:


Your theory is completely baseless.  Low ratings are derived from people disliking songs and voting accordingly, not by an imaginary "statistical bubble" derived from the first "lurker" commenting and then other "follower lurkers rushing to claim to have been that one single lurker".  That's not even possible.  A lot of people don't care for Natalie Merchant's voice, therefore some of her songs receive low ratings here, but many of her songs do not.  Anyhow, it has nothing to do with these "social media" goblins that you have dreamed up - there is no conspiracy against Natalie and her fans.  Musically, this isn't a bad version, but her singing just sounds lifeless and disinterested.
 
What's more, I gave this one a 4 and I generally like NM. This rendition of the song just rubs me the wrong way. Doesn't do much differently than the original, but what I feel it does differently is syncopate the vocal rhythms in a few places in a way that I just don't care for. Doesn't seem "lifeless" to me, but certainly disjointed.
 old_shep wrote:
The reason for the low score on this, and other NM songs, is that all the "social" media lurkers hiding behind their monitors out there offer their opinions only after one braver lurker takes a big chance and press their mouse button first.  So one low score generates a stastical bubble due basically to all the follower lurkers rushing to claim to have been that one single lurker with a twichy index finger.


 

Your theory doesn't seem very well-founded.  Low ratings are derived from people disliking songs and voting accordingly, not by an imaginary "statistical bubble" derived from the first "lurker" commenting and then other "follower lurkers rushing to claim to have been that one single lurker".  That's not even possible.  A lot of people don't care for Natalie Merchant's voice, therefore some of her songs receive low ratings here, but many of her songs do not.  Anyhow, it has nothing to do with these "social media" goblins that you have dreamed up - there is no conspiracy against Natalie and her fans.  Musically, this isn't a bad version, but her singing just sounds lifeless and disinterested to me.
she should be jailed for this, absolute rubbish. a solid 1
Went to see her last night in Brighton and she was amazing. Such a powerful and soulfull voice. Just her and guitar for the most part. Her on her own at times. Great stuff if you are a fan like me.

I am afraid that this is a rubbish cover though.
Spot on and live to boot !
You are the King of the Segues, Mr. Goldsmith.
Aside from the awesome eclectic mix of music, I love these little juxtapositions of tracks connected by artist or title...... Peter Schilling's Major Tom, Natalie Merchant's cover of Space Oddity, and David Bowie's Cat People - nice !.  Keep up the good work RP {#Notworthy}

    Major Tom hates this cover{#Fire}
If I were the David Bowie estate, I'd sue.
Made on Earth by humans
!Y?
 SeriousLee wrote:
I love this cover. And I'm not even a Merchant fan. {#Cheers}

 
I'm the opposite, like Merchant, not this cover.
oh my god -  lift off forever
Terrific cover!
No covers, RP!
Pretty amazing live.
 meinthecorner wrote:
Well...we all make mistakes from time to time. Funny how she's managed to make a career out of it, though!

 
i love this comment so much.
omg. the worst.
Normaly I don't like covers, but this one I like. {#Dancingbanana}
i mean if you gonna cover it at least make it your own and dont sound like some shitty band you book for your shitty cousins wedding you dont really care about. 
Pretty decent cover.
I love this cover. And I'm not even a Merchant fan. {#Cheers}
Not a good cover.
why...?

...did she do this to that song?
...does it get played here at all?
 VH1 wrote:
She should be beaten, tarred and feathered for the crime she committed to this song!
 
"Beaten, tarred and feathered"?
Wow.
Maybe save up your pennies and buy a clue.
Well...we all make mistakes from time to time. Funny how she's managed to make a career out of it, though!
She should be beaten, tarred and feathered for the crime she committed to this song! {#Stop}{#Frustrated}{#Fight}{#Beat}{#Ass}{#Whipit}
This is horrendous. She's sharp on every note. Please staaaaaaahp.
crap-o-la...
 
 

Hey Bill there is a reason it's rated in the '5" range!
{#No}
 Shotoverplain wrote:
Please play the real thing not these shallow, weak, naboroeous cover versions 

 
"naboroeous"; congrats, you've invented a new word.
Nice to hear an homage to Bowie recorded before his demise. Any Bowie songs covered in 2016 just seem like the trendy thing to do,
Good gawd, WHY?
 BlueHeronDruid wrote:
Ponderous drivel.

 
Or just plain crap!
Ponderous drivel.
 Schmoogsley wrote:
Ugh! Can't stand her. Sorry. {#Moon}

 
horrible...
lame
Average Rating: 5.2

I believe the people have spoken. 
Nothing compares to the original.
But this is a great tribute, performed by Steven Wilson: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NGNRaUOg6JE
Please play the real thing not these shallow, weak, naboroeous cover versions 
What a prediction of the song order tonight...
Ugh! Can't stand her. Sorry. {#Moon}
 RiverOfLife wrote:
This is brave ...  A cover is also an homage - think of it as showing another take.

True - maybe this one doesn't really need a different take {#Smile}

Also, guys - the programming here is awesome ...{#Notworthy}

    Peter Schilling Major Tom (Coming home)  =>  Natalie Merchant - Space Oddity  =>  David Bowie - Ashes to Ashes (LIve)

 
Brave indeed, but it's not terrible. I like the fact that she doesn't try the do anything radically different, because any attempt to do so would fail given the perfection of the original.
 IrieTom wrote:
Frank Zappa, to David Bowie, in regards to Adrian Belew.

Details:  https://ultimateclassicrock.com/david-bowie-frank-zappa-adrian-belew/


Skydog wrote:
who said
"f**k you Captain Tom"
to whom and why?
.
.
(yes, he said captain instead of major)

 

 
{#Yell}WE HAVE A WINNER!!
I like it.  Nice interpretation of a classic, IMHO. 
What is the need for this cover?
I think we could have lived without this version.
 
 RiverOfLife wrote:
This is brave ...  A cover is also an homage - think of it as showing another take.

True - maybe this one doesn't really need a different take {#Smile}

Also, guys - the programming here is awesome ...{#Notworthy}

    Peter Schilling Major Tom (Coming home)  =>  Natalie Merchant - Space Oddity  =>  David Bowie - Ashes to Ashes (LIve)

 
+1
This is brave ...  A cover is also an homage - think of it as showing another take.

True - maybe this one doesn't really need a different take {#Smile}

Also, guys - the programming here is awesome ...{#Notworthy}

    Peter Schilling Major Tom (Coming home)  =>  Natalie Merchant - Space Oddity  =>  David Bowie - Ashes to Ashes (LIve)
Frank Zappa, to David Bowie, in regards to Adrian Belew.

Details:  https://ultimateclassicrock.com/david-bowie-frank-zappa-adrian-belew/


Skydog wrote:
who said
"f**k you Captain Tom"
to whom and why?
.
.
(yes, he said captain instead of major)

 


Too much vibrato. Too much bathos. Bowie's song was brilliant because of the dispassionate delivery.
 
Is she singing w/o "gusto"? {#Whisper}
 treatment_bound wrote:
Natalie, 

May God's love be with you, but please stay away from Bowie covers.

 

 
Agreed, sounds like she is drifting off to sleep...{#Sleep}
Too soon.  Maybe another couple hundred years.
 
Waste of 4 minutes
who said
"f**k you Captain Tom"
to whom and why?
.
.
(yes, he said captain instead of major)
Argh no no no no you're ruining something beautiful...stop!!!  {#Frustrated}
Nice cover! Cool Bowie set this afternoon:

David Bowie - Lady Grinning Soul
Nirvana -  The Man Who Sold the World
Natalie Merchant - Space Oddity 
Natalie, 

May God's love be with you, but please stay away from Bowie covers.

 
Bill is working overtime today
before this Nirvana doing "The Man Who etc"
before that Bowie's "Lady Grinning Soul"
i wonder what's next
"An Occasional Dream"  from Bowie's 2nd album would fit
 
19% give it a 1.

19% give it a 7.

I love Natalie Merchant - "Tigerlily" is a classic - but I will pass on this one. Maybe it's just that the original is so damn good. 
Hard to cover Bowie. Good effort.
Great voice. Really nice feeling to this version.

What a pleasant surprise: One of my favorite artists covering another of my favorite artists. Hadn't heard it before. Timely or untimely, it's a real jewel, and I lean strongly to the latter. It could only have been better if he had performed it with her, as with Michael Stipe and "Candy Everybody Wants". Hey, I can dream.

P.S. I just read some of the negative comments below. Wow. Well, like all of Natalie's work she had excellent musicians, who provided a faithful rendition, and I obviously really enjoyed her vocals. As I always do. So there's another perspective. Peace.


I like her voice very much, really.
Tastes are different. RP serves many of them.
Thanks for that.
Anything from Natalie Merchant.
 George_Tirebiter wrote:
{#Stop}

Worst. Version. Ever.

If this is supposed to be a tribute of some sort, it's a bad one.



 
Totally agree! 👍
Haunting voice, sounds a bit like Tom's Diner to me.
I kinda like this cover.  Must be something wrong with me I guess....
1 - Awful - Terrible rendition - Even Shameful - Hope it's never played again!
Nope.
 leafmold wrote:

Because it sucks.

 
So because you don't like it.  Which is fine, but you can tell (just by looking) that your opinion isn't universal.
 dwhayslett wrote:

Just because you don't like it?

 
Because it sucks.
{#Stop}

Worst. Version. Ever.

If this is supposed to be a tribute of some sort, it's a bad one.


90s Coffee House Crap
 
If there's anything on this earth that could make me miss Bowie MORE today, it is being subjected to this horrible cover.
Not a big fan of this version. Here's a link to another one... voice isn't any better than Natalies unfortunately, but wow the scenery...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KaOC9danxNo 
Yuck.
Not sure if this was played in tribute; I heard this and just flipped to a headline announcing David Bowie's death. Sad to lose another GREAT musician. Long live Ziggy Stardust! {#Cry}
 Kaw wrote:
No not this version...

 
Just because you don't like it?
I like it.  Certainly not the same as the original, but lovely nonetheless.
 
Bowie Released a new album Black Star like 3 days ago. how bout some of that?
Decent, but only because there is so much margin to mess things up when starting out from something utterly brilliant.
 doesn't hold a candle to the genius of the man himself
 
 Kaw wrote:
No not this version...

 
 

I was thinking the same thing. Only David himself can pack the right punch for this one....


 MrPelicano wrote:
This performance is so uninspired and, I think, self-indulgent.  If you're going to cover a bonafide classic, bring your "A" game and do something interesting. Here, Natalie Merchant is channeling Cowboy Junkies but not making it work.  And the guitar solo should make Mick Ronson roll over in his grave.  Definitely not her best work.

 
Mick and David are certainly partying today.  RIP Mr Bowie.
Bill, show some respect!!! Stop playing these terrible covers!!
No not this version...
This performance is so uninspired and, I think, self-indulgent.  If you're going to cover a bonafide classic, bring your "A" game and do something interesting. Here, Natalie Merchant is channeling Cowboy Junkies but not making it work.  And the guitar solo should make Mick Ronson roll over in his grave.  Definitely not her best work.
Kill me now 
 
Most excellent on toast
What a bunch of whiners. It's a recording of a live performance. I like it a lot. Sorry if David Bowie couldn't make it to sing along with her.{#Roflol}

You all expect something marvelous or it's not worth listening to. {#Stupid}
 pankman wrote:
What a horrible voice, out of tune the whole time.

 
I'm pretty sure you're not using that phrase correctly.
 I like Natalie, and don't mind the song too much, though it does seem a pretty uninspired, bland version. But CafeRacer wins RP on this thread with this comment.

CafeRacer wrote:

Had he lived long enough, I'm sure Christopher Hitchens would have eventually written a book entitled "Natalie Merchant Poisons Everything"



 


I thought murder was illegal?
Why don't you stop playing things like this when the rating is so low!!!  She's got an awful voice!!!!!
There was no reason for her to record this. None. I wish I could give it a -1.
Call me crazy but this version works for me. I'm just saying....
I don't generally dislike Natalie Merchant - some of her recent albums in particular are pretty good. But this rendition could not be more pointless. She doesnt even attempt to give any meaning to the words - she just sings them like they don't mean anything. The song becomes just that - a song. All the angst, tension and drama of David Bowie's original is gone.
What a horrible voice, out of tune the whole time. 3 points for this one, considering the godlike song.
I don't think the lady does the band justice.
 spot on!

 Chumbawamba-1984 wrote:  

Well here she comes! Bill had been reading your comment.


 RabbitEars wrote:
now we need to hear kate singing rocket man!


not my version !