Nick Cave Honors T. Rex And ‘SNL’ Producer Hal Willner With A ‘Cosmic Dancer’ Cover

For many years, SNL sketch music producer Hal Willner had been working on a two-disc tribute record that features star-studded covers of T. Rex’s Marc Bolan, who was a 2020 Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame inductee. Tragically, Willner passed away from complications due to the coronavirus a few weeks ago. But, his vision still lives on: The tribute album he had worked tirelessly on is still seeing a September release. Wednesday, a preview of the tribute album debuted with Nick Cave’s cover of the swooning number “Cosmic Dancer.”

Willner’s project, titled AngelHeaded Hipster: The Songs Of Marc Bolan And T. Rex, features 26 tracks from a wide range of artists. Musicians like U2, Kesha, Devendra Banhart, and Todd Rundgren all contributed covers to the record.

Ahead of his “Cosmic Dancer” cover, Cave praised Willner’s “limitless imagination” in a statement, further emphasizing his encyclopedic knowledge of music: “Hal was our visionary, our ringleader, always working against reason itself, armed with a deep love and bottomless knowledge of music.”

Rachel Fox, a longtime collaborator and supervising producer for the tribute record, echoed Cave’s message: “Hal had a unique vision of Marc Bolan’s music, and working on AngelHeaded Hipster brought him great joy. Speaking for those closest to him, we will forever be heartbroken at the untimely loss of our beloved friend and irreplaceable creative engine. Hal, who referred to AngelHeaded Hipster as his ‘White Album’, was eager for everyone to hear these beautiful songs and to start thinking about Bolan and T. Rex again. This album is a testament to Hal’s spirit.”

Listen to Nick Cave cover T. Rex’s “Cosmic Dancer” above., and find the AngelHeaded Hipster cover art and tracklist below.


1. Kesha — “Children Of The Revolution”
2. Nick Cave — “Cosmic Dancer”
3. Joan Jett — “Jeepster”
4. Devendra Banhart — “Scenescof”
5. Lucinda Williams — “Life’s A Gas”
6. Peaches — “Solid Gold, Easy Action”
7. Borns — “Dawn Storm”
8. Beth Orton — “Hippy Gumbo”
9. King Khan — “I Love To Boogie”
10. Gaby Moreno — “Beltane Walk”
11. U2 – “Bang A Gong (Get It On)” (Feat. Elton John)
12. John Cameron Mitchell — “Diamond Meadows”
13. Emily Haines — “Ballrooms Of Mars”
14. Father John Misty — “Main Man”
15. Perry Farrell — “Rock On”
16. Elysian Fields — “The Street And Babe Shadow”
17. Gavin Friday — “The Leopards”
18. Nena — “Metal Guru”
19. Marc Almond — “Teenage Dream”
20. Helga Davis — “Organ Blues”
21. Todd Rundgren — “Planet Queen”
22. Jessie Harris — “Great Horse”
23. Sean Lennon & Charlotte Kemp Muhl — “Mambo Son”
24. Victoria Willians & Julian Lennon — “Pilgrim’s Tail”
25. David Johansen — “Bang A Gong (Get It On) – Reprise”
26. Maria McKee — “She Was Born To Be My Unicorn / Ride A White Swan”

AngelHeaded Hipster: The Songs Of Marc Bolan And T. Rex is out 9/4 via BMG. Pre-order it here.