Best Concert Cover - 2004
Ben Folds & Rufus Wainwright, "Careless Whisper"
At face value, the pairing of Ben Folds and Rufus Wainwright on a multi-city tour should have been a disaster: the misogynistic "Brick"-meister in a frat-fueled piano duel with the precious, operatic Canuck crooner. And predictably, their sets at the Fox (which turned out to be a Folds crowd) were drastically different in texture. When a vest-clad Rufus strolled out in the middle of Folds' jaunty set, it smelled of the obligatory "Ebony and Ivory" cover. But the key ticklers found common ground in the form of every frat boy's secret gay crush: George Michael. Straddling their respective wooden benches, the pair burst into as earnest a take on "Careless Whisper" as has ever been taken. Utterly devoid of sarcasm, the rendition left the audience with the feeling that no, in fact, they would never, ever dance again, their feet as guilty as Bill Clinton puffing on a Monica-soaked cigar.