We’re calling it: Taka Perry and A.GIRL deliver best Like A Version of the year
We might only be in July, but we are calling it: Taka Perry has delivered the best Like A Version of 2020. Taking on the daunting task of covering Kanye West was an ambitious risk for the 21-year-old rising producer, but he has absolutely stepped up to the challenge (and then some), pulling off an incendiary cover of West‘s hit song, ‘Jesus Walks’.
Teaming up with Western Sydney rapper A.GIRL for some absolutely formidable bars, and Gia Vorne and Emalia for additional vocals, Perry created a hard-hitting take on the song to make it a goosebump-inducing, jaw-dropping, show-stopping moment on the national broadcaster on July 3rd. A.GIRL stole the show with her lyrics, switching things up with the original to deliver her own bars in which she weighs in on Black Lives Matter, shouts out Western Sydney and takes aim at police brutality and systemic racism in Australia and around the world. And, just when you thought the version couldn’t get any better, Gia Vorne and Emalia have their own moments when they launch into Kendrick Lamar and SZA‘s ‘All The Stars’ to create a euphoric, melodic climax that takes things even higher.
The power of Like A Version has become very evident in recent years, with artists delivering game-changing covers week after week. With the huge success of such Like A Versions in 2019 as Denzel Curry‘s ‘Bulls On Parade’, Lime Cordiale‘s ‘I Touch Myself’, Alex Lahey‘s ‘Welcome To The Black Parade’ and more all appearing in the Hottest 100 of that year and amassing millions of streams and views, the weekly triple j segment has become something of a phenomenon of its own. Now, with ‘Jesus Walks’ under his belt, we can expect Taka Perry to also enter this upper echelon of Like A Versions.
Perry said of the cover, “I remember old school Kanye playing on the radio growing up and Jesus Walks was the song I loved the most. It’s such an iconic song and one that you think would have been done before but, surprisingly it wasn’t, so I knew I had to do it. I added ‘All The Stars’ because I felt like my favourite Like A Versions are the ones that give a nod to another song in their arrangement. What’s better than one cover? Doing two! I wanted to use the LAV platform to be able to shed some light on some of my favourite artists in the country that Australia may not have heard before. I decided to get in A.GIRL, Emalia and Gia, as they’re all so good at what they do, and unique to each other, that I knew they were the only ones that could take the performance where I wanted it to go. They’re also some of my closest friends so I loved being able to share it with them. I had been working with A.GIRL for a few years so I knew she would kill it on the verses while injecting such powerful messaging that needed to be heard. I then got Emalia to jump on for the SZA parts as she’s so effortless vocally and is the only vocalist I know that could pull off what I wanted. Gia, who I’d worked with on my current single Only U, was that cherry on top, who could bring all the choir parts together with her incredible tone.”
Watch the incredible cover below:
Words by Emma Jones