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Entertain Us: The 21 Best and Worst Covers of Nirvana's ‘Smells Like Teen Spirit’

Here We Are Now, Entertain Us

It’s been 20 years now since the release of “Smells Like Teen Spirit,” the Nirvana song that almost single-handedly changed the face of popular music. In those two decades, a dizzying array of artists have covered the song, from “American Idol” contestants to Willie Nelson to Miley Cyrus. Some renditions were haunting and revelatory; others were one step short of rock and roll sacrilege.

In honor of the song’s anniversary, and in anti-honor of Miley’s horrendous cover, I’ve rounded up the 21 best and worst versions of “Smells Like Teen Spirit” ever made, giving each a positive (“Entertain us!”) or negative (“Nevermind.”) ranking. Note: I skipped parodies (“Weird Al’s” “Smells Like Nirvana, Pansy Division’s “Smells Like Queer Spirit”) and omitted an especially painful cover I stumbled upon by Limp Bizkit, which made me die a little inside. Enjoy.

(Photos: Top, Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain; Bottom, Getty Images)

By Jeff Royer

The opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Comcast.

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