Australian country icon Kasey Chambers has unveiled an unexpected cover, sharing her version of Eminem’s ‘Lose Yourself’. Chambers’ version of the Academy Award-winning song was recorded live at Newcastle’s Civic Theatre in June. Chambers debuted the cover live at the Wildflower Festival in March.
While the original is a percussive piece of rap-rock, Chambers turns the song into a slow-burning, eight-minute epic. Beginning with little more than banjo and her own voice, the track slowly builds, with her band joining in to provide a raucous finale.
Kasey Chambers – ‘Lose Yourself’ (Eminem cover)
“Eminem has been one of my favourite songwriters for many years,” Chambers said. “We listen to a lot of him in our house. I’ve been mostly influenced in my life by writers who bravely put fearless emotion into lyrics and no one does that better than Eminem.”
She added, “Eminem makes me feel things when I hear him. Not always the most comfortable things but I’m not sure that music is always meant to make us feel comfortable.”
Chambers had been contemplating a cover of ‘Lose Yourself’ for years, but it wasn’t until the COVID lockdowns that she found the time to learn the lyrics and write a melody. Chambers said the experience of translating it to the live stage was one that both she and fans resonated with deeply.
“It was a strange but beautiful epiphany, listening to the song and seeing a commonality of people all over the world, clinging desperately to a chance at greatness,” Chambers said. “‘Am I really crying to a bluegrass version of a rap song from the 2002 movie 8 Mile?’ My god yes, yes I am.
“I had no idea that audiences would respond to it like they have. Something else takes over my body when I play it and I get completely lost in it. I can honestly say it’s the most I’ve ever connected to a performance of a cover song in my life.”