Track of the Day: 'The Promise' by Sturgill Simpson

Editor’s Note: This article previously appeared in a different format as part of The Atlantic’s Notes section, retired in 2021.

A reader goes country:

To your series on transformative cover songs, I’d like to submit “The Promise” by Sturgill Simpson. It took me several listens to even recognize this plaintive country ballad as a cover of When in Rome’s new wave hit.

Digging the Notes section, BTW.

And I’m digging the song stuck in my head now. I also remember it—the original version—featured in the closing montage of Napoleon Dynamite.