Tracks of 2014: Collaborations

Our look back at the best tracks of the year continues with some perfect partnerships.

Wilko Johnson & Roger Daltrey - Going Back Home A spur of the moment collaboration recorded in a week, this roaring meeting of dirty old minds was all the better for feeling like both were having the time of their lives, and now Johnson has the all-clear from cancer, his profile has never been higher.

Bernie Marsden & David Coverdale - Trouble One of the few Whitesnake alumni to hook up with David Coverdale again, Bernie Marsden may be a dab hand on the slide here, but he has his old boss’s mighty pipes to thank for turning this slow-burning, malevolent blues-rocker into something special.

John Hiatt & Gregg Allman - One Way Out This up-tempo romp comes from All My Friends, an all-star tribute to the Allman Brothers blues icon recorded at Atlanta’s Fox Theatre in January, and this is one of many memorable collaborations from that night.

Jimmy Barnes feat. Jonathan Cain & Ian Moss - Working Class Man On his 30:30 Hindsight album revisiting his back catalogue, the Aussie belter reunited with the Journey keyboard player who wrote his biggest hit. The result is a spirited, piano-laced roar through a tune that has become his signature tune, backed-up further by original Cold Chisel guitarist Ian Moss.

Within Temptation ft. Tarja - Paradise (What About Us?) As if their windswept symphonic rock needed to sound any bigger, these Dutch dramatists turned to ex-Nightwish chanteuse Tarja Turunen to add her soprano tones to this juggernaut of a track, and the Finn duly adds a touch of the supernatural to proceedings.

Billie Joe Armstrong & Norah Jones - Who’s Gonna Shoe Your Pretty Little Feet It was one of the more unlikely-sounding match-ups of the decade, let alone the year, but it turns out the Green Day man can croon it with the best of them, as he proved on this sweet lullabyish reworking of a Woody Guthrie song originally soaked in harmonies by The Everly Brothers

Hawkwind ft. Brian Blessed - Sonic Attack This deeply unsettling apocalyptic epic was injected with a new sense of melodrama, not to mention high camp, by the never-knowingly understated tones of Brian Blessed. The original’s chilling malevolence was somewhat lost, but made up for in macabre humour.

Johnny Sharp

Johnny is a regular contributor to Prog and Classic Rock magazines, both online and in print. Johnny is a highly experienced and versatile music writer whose tastes range from prog and hard rock to R’n’B, funk, folk and blues. He has written about music professionally for 30 years, surviving the Britpop wars at the NME in the 90s (under the hard-to-shake teenage nickname Johnny Cigarettes) before branching out to newspapers such as The Guardian and The Independent and magazines such as Uncut, Record Collector and, of course, Prog and Classic Rock