From Radiohead’s “Creep” to Britney Spears’s “Toxic” to Bon Iver’s “Skinny Love,” Ingrid Michaelson has a long and quirky history of covering other artists.
The tradition continues with “Army of 3,” a new video series on Michaelson’s website (www.ingridmichaelson.com) and YouTube. So far the indie-pop singer-songwriter, who’s touring behind a new album, “Human Again,” has posted videos of herself reworking Gotye’s “Somebody That I Used to Know” and Rihanna’s “We Found Love.”
“When I do a cover, my idea is not to do it better,” says Michaelson, who will play a sold-out show at House of Blues on Tuesday. “I’m not trying to one-up the original version. I’m doing it because I love the song. That’s the only reason.”
In that spirit, we asked Michaelson to weigh in on five artists she would like to cover her songs. She took the question to heart.
“To me it became a matter of who do I really admire,” she says. “I think I chose people who would take one of my songs and make it their own.”
1. Justin Vernon [from Bon Iver]. “He has such a distinct sound. Nobody else sounds like him. Even when he’s doing a cover, you know who it is. I feel like he brings his own essence and life to the covers he’s done.”
2. Miranda Lambert. “I fell in love with her song ‘White Liar’ a few years ago. I’m not huge on contemporary country music, but I ended up buying her record and loved it. I think she has a ferocity and fierceness in her voice.”
3. Björk. “How could you not? She would dissect a song. She would take one of my silly little songs and add an orchestra and sonic amazingness.”
4. Robyn. “I’d love to hear one of my songs done in a completely dance-y kind of way. I saw her live at a festival I did a few years ago. I was like, ‘Oh, my God, this is Robyn of “Show Me Love”!’ ”
5. Imogen Heap. “She’s a mastermind with a computer and an amazing voice. She deconstructs things and puts them back together. Her voice is dark and deep and different from mine.”