Take On Me by aha

I came across this 2017 acoustic version of Take On Me by aha on my Facebook newsfeed recently. The song is an old one, the rendition is new.

This 1985 song is a huge hit not just because it was an energetic pop song but because of the animated/live-action music video, which was considered very high-tech in the 1980s. Can it be turned into a slow song? Well, here it is…after 32 years. Gosh!


This song can be found in their 2017 live release “MTV Unplugged: Summer Solstice“. This is the first time in the band’s 30 year history that they have recorded an acoustic album. The Unplugged concert was filmed in Norway.

Have you seen the original MV?

I’m not good at picking up lyrics of English songs. All I can remember of this one is the chorus. I am including the lyrics so I can follow along as I listen to the song.


Lyrics

We’re talking away
I don’t know what
I’m to say I’ll say it anyway
Today’s another day to find you
Shying away
I’ll be coming for your love, okay?

Take on me, (take on me)
Take me on, (take on me)
I’ll be gone
In a day or two

So needless to say
I’m odds and ends
I’ll be stumbling away
Slowly learning that life is OK
Say after me
It’s no better to be safe than sorry

Take on me, (take on me)
Take me on, (take on me)
I’ll be gone
In a day or two

Oh the things that you say
Is it live or
Just to play my worries away
You’re all the things I’ve got to remember
You’re shying away
I’ll be coming for you anyway

Take on me, (take on me)
Take me on, (take on me)
I’ll be gone
In a day
I’ll be gone (take on me)
In a day

There are so many covers on youtube. Some are quite bad…including the version by A1. Here are some of the better ones, or at least, the ones I enjoyed.

Acoustic Covers

The following five are slow versions and are actually quite good.


1. Moon Loungers

2. The Blanks

3. Aqualung

4. John Black (Bedroom Cover Series)

5. McGoozer

On a budget but surprisingly good covers

1. Pop Punk / Rock Cover by Minority 905

This is good seeing how young the kids are.


2. Reel Big Fish – Take On Me

These guys looked like they had a blast doing this. I was smiling the whole way through the video.

3. Take On Me (a-ha) | FREE DAD VIDEOS

Not sure the dad should be singing this song with his daughter, but it is not too bad.

4. Pentatonix – Take On Me

An acappella version that is really good.

From Television Shows

1. Glee – Take On Me Official Music Video HD

A fairly good rendition with a similar animated/live-action video to go with it. Still, the original is better as the technology was 30 years older.

2. Vincent Vinel – « Take On Me » (A-ha) | The Voice France 2017 | Live

He is fun to watch. Did he win The Voice France?

3. VKation | X Factor 2017

4. Anni B Sweet’s Take On Me

A ukelele version?

Instrumental Covers

1. Brooklyn Duo and Ensemble Connect

Arranged and performed LIVE on cello, piano, and with chamber ensemble by Brooklyn Duo and Ensemble Connect.

2. Take On Me arranged by Tim Waters

According to the youtube channel, Hal Leonard Marching Band:

“Norwegian group A-ha took the American pop scene by storm in 1985 when Take On Me reached #1 thanks to an appealing style and also an innovative music video featured on MTV. Perfectly suited for the marching field, this arrangement contains all the drive and energy of the original.”

I think it is quite good.

3. Otamatone Cover

I have never heard of an otamatone.

 The Asian Influence

1. A-ha – Take On Me (K-Pop Version) by Seo In Guk

A korean version. A close copy of the original but not close enough. 😛

2. Take On Me by a-ha, North Korean Style

Performed by young accordion players from KUM SONG School, filmed in Pyongyang, North Korea December 2011.


This Take On Me cover list ends with this instrumental cover by 5 students from a school in North Korea. The lead singer of aha, Morten Harket said, “you can have fun even in North Korea.” Sending them a prayer.