Vance Joy performs powerful stripped-back cover of The Pogues classic Fairytale of New York
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Vance Joy performs powerful stripped-back cover of The Pogues classic Fairytale of New York

VANCE JOY has returned with a new stripped back over of The Pogues’ classic festive hit Fairytale of New York.

It’s been two years since the Australian singer-songwriter released his second album Nation of Two.

Best known for singles like Riptide and Fire and the Flood, he’s now back on the scene with an acoustic cover offering a different take on an old Irish favourite.

Vance Joy – real name James Keogh – skirts around the controversy concerning the original version’s lyrics too, opting to sing an altogether different line in place of the offending lyric.

In place of the contentious line, sung by Kirsty MacColl, who calls Shane MacGowan a “cheap, lousy f****tt”, Vance sings “You’re cheap and I’ve had it”.

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The change appears to have gone down well with fans on YouTube.

“I'm impressed with the wording to avoid explicit and controversial lines,” one wrote.

“You change it to not say the slur my love for you is never ending,” a second added.

Not that Keogh is especially critical of the original, of course.

Sharing his festive effort on social media, he also spoke of his admiration for The Pogues and a song he ranks among “the greatest”.

“In the spirit of sharing this season I wanted to do this little cover for you,” Keogh wrote.

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“Fairytale of New York is one of the greatest songs.”

The simple video, which has been directed by Carlos Costa and shot by Guillermo Barguñó, has already racked up over 20,000 views on YouTube in just over 24 hours.

Vance Joy’s cover of the Irish favourite follows hot on the heels of Miley Cyrus’s cover of The Cranberries’ signature hit Zombie.