Sharon Van Etten has shared a cover of the Nine Inch Nails’ song “Hurt,” which originally appeared on the 1994 studio album The Downward Spiral and was famously covered by Johnny Cash. Van Etten covered this song in support of the “Song That Found Me at the Right Time” Series, hosted by the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline and Sound of Saving. Both of these organizations and this series are used to promote suicide prevention and awareness.
The video opens up with a brief statement by Van Etten, as she discusses her own personal struggles with depression. The take on the song is done is a more grungey style than the original, with catchy electric guitar chords and Van Etten’s solemn voice forming the center of the song’s angst.
Van Etten explained that she was introduced to this song by her older brother, and that it was a way for them to communicate deep feelings without expressing themselves through direct conversation.
“I was the cliché middle child and always felt misunderstood, and then the oldest brother was the one that I connected to the most with music,” Van Etten told Pitchfork. “When I was learning to play guitar, he gave me a box of cassettes. By the time ‘Hurt’ came on, I just remember connecting to it so much but also realizing that my brother had listened to it, and we’d never really talked about any deep feelings, but we always shared music. It was my first sign that my brother was trying to connect with me on a more emotional level than just ‘we’re sharing music.'”
Van Etten has collaborated with a number of artists this year such as Queens of The Stone Age’s Josh Homme, Norah Jones and Fountains of Wayne. She has collaborated multiple times this year with Fountains of Wayne in honor of their late frontman Adam Schlessinger, who passed away earlier this year and appeared at the Jersey 4Jersey live stream with the group. She also appeared at the live stream hosted by Courtney Barnett and Lucius earlier this year.
Photo Credit: Kalyn Oyer