1994 was the year I discovered Van Morrison. Covers of two of his songs became top 40 hits that year. First up was John Mellencamp & Me’shell NdegeOcello’s re-do of “Wild Night”. Later that year, Brian McKnight covered “Crazy Love” on the Jason’s Lyric soundtrack. Van The Man’s “Brown Eyed Girl” was also a favorite of the Tower Records crew I worked and spent most of my social time with. It certainly seemed to come out of the jukebox at least once every time we went drinking together.
McKnight’s cover of “Crazy Love” is excellent (especially if you can tolerate mid-’90s adult contemporary production), but the original version (from 1970′s fantastic Moondance album) has it beat. Van Morrison is as good a soul shouter as anyone to come from Ireland (I don’t know that he has much competition there, tbh) but “Crazy Love” finds him singing in a near-whisper. No pyrotechnics, but it’s as passionately performed as any other song in his catalog.