67. Blinded by the light (Manfred Mann's Earth Band)

The main-stream pop hits that Manfred Mann scored in the sixties, like Pretty Flamengo and Mighty Quinn, hardly prepared us for the high-class rock music he produced in the seventies as Manfred Mann's Earth Band (image credit). Their best effort for me is the cover of the Bruce Springsteen song Blinded by the light from their 1976 album The roaring silence. They take the original and give it a totally new treatment, which has been likened to a master filmmaker visualizing a novel - surely one of the most impressive covers ever. A condensed version was released as a single and became a rather unlikely USA Billboard Hot 100 #1 hit. I prefer the extended album version, which has the merit of an inspired instrumental intermezzo. The ending of this song with its abrupt tempo change is particularly memorable.

Other songs by this act that would have qualified: not applicable.


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