Lykke Li Unchained

Here to liberate us from Katy Perry’s terrible predicament is Lykke Li, the Gifted, Rich Kids Blues singer forged in the beautiful coast of Ystad, Sweden.

Li released a studio version of Unchained Melody today, a cover she’s been doing for years in concert, as well as with her son on Instagram.

It’s beautiful (listen to it here) and it got me thinking about all the other covers of Unchained Melody that keep making my arm hair sit up straight and weep (apparently there are more than 1500 recorded covers out there).

So here’s a brief history of that beautiful song and its various iterations:

1955 – Alex North and Hy Zaret

North and Zaret were tasked to write a song for the movie Unchained (1955) about a group of male prisoners. As you can hear, the original was…different from the iconic take by The Righteous Brothers.

1965 – The Righteous Brothers

Suave man, suave.

1966 – Lena Horne


1980 – Heart 


1986 – Leo Sayer

So that was the 80s.

1996 – LeAnn Rimes

She was 14!

2002 – Gareth Gates

So if N’Sync ever covered Unchained Melody, it’d probably would look like this. Not my cup of tea, but it did sell 4 million copies around the world so, good on him.

2006 – Cyndi Lauper

Time after time man.

2017 – Lykke Li 

And with that, I am slain.

2 responses to “Lykke Li Unchained”

  1. I adore Lykke Li (I’ve done two portraits of her, so far), but I’ve never heard this… it’s lovely. If you like the understated covers of this song, you might like Willie Nelson’s version, too, it’s gorgeous (:


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