10 Great Versions of "Wild Thing"

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The Muppets Kermit and crew's tribute to Animal, of course, starring the furry, woooommannnnn-crazy drummer himself. Should not be confused with the "Wild Thing" recorded by the Creatures, Siouxsie Sioux and Robert Smith's gothy dalliance between early-'80s Banshees and Cure albums, which added suitably darker lyrics.

X Exene Cervenka sings lead on the L.A. punk vets' version, which makes perfect placement as Charlie Sheen's lights-out bullpen music in 1989's Major League. Not long after the film became a hit, actual major league closer Mitch "Wild Thing" Williams started using it too.

The Wild Ones Little is known about this mid-'60s New York band, except that they originally recorded "Wild Thing," written by fellow New Yorker Chip Taylor, and that sometime not long after, the song came to the attention of the Troggs. The Wild Ones' 1965 album The Arthur Sound does not contain "Wild Thing" but was once ranked the No. 1 obscure album in history.

The Runaways For some reason the author has always mistaken X's version of "Wild Thing" featured in Major League for Joan Jett. Perhaps it's because Jett's original band the Runaways played it often during their short-lived mid-'70s heyday, with late drummer Sandy West taking a rare turn on lead vocals.

Chimaira Our most recent "Wild Thing" was recorded by ear-bruising Cleveland metalcore outfit in honor of Charlie Sheen when the actor was at his full tiger-blood apogee. You can find it on iTunes, though not on Chimaira's 2011 album The Age of Hell.

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Chris Gray has been Music Editor for the Houston Press since 2008. He is the proud father of a Beatles-loving toddler named Oliver.
Contact: Chris Gray