• Crimfants/Wikimedia Commons

In order to research this post (about my five favorite versions of Smokey Robinson & the Miracles’ “The Tracks of My Tears”) I had to make sure that my favorite covers were in fact the best ones. Which means I had to cross-check them against every available, YouTube-existing version of the song. Which means I repeatedly contemplated suicide.

In the process of being horrified by a song I previously thought to be infallible, I realized something important about the Motown sound: Everyone loves it. That means every no-talent bucket of contagious hate has to produce a rendition of a classic Motown song. As a result, the prisoners at Guantanamo Bay have an inexorable soundtrack for their stay.

Here are the five worst covers of “The Tracks of My Tears.” Proceed with caution.