Cover of a song by a great, underrated songwriter - check
Solid pop song with a great hook - check
And with that, let's check out Owen Paul's cover of "My Favourite Waste of Time." Paul ended up as a U.K. one hit wonder; while this song went to #3 on the charts, he did not have another charting single. Sadly, both Paul and this song are mostly unknown outside of the U.K.
Owen Paul (born Owen Paul McGee in Glasgow, Scotland) reportedly decided to go into the music business after hearing the Sex Pistols. How that path led him to well-crafted power pop is anybody's guess. At any rate, he released several singles after "My Favourite Waste of Time," none of which charted and eventually became a producer in the later part of the decade. In 1989, he produced the Taboo album for the Japanese rock group Buck-Tick. During the marketing efforts for the album, he got into a dispute with the record label, and left the industry for 15 years.
Since 2002, Paul has returned to recording and performing, mostly in the U.K. and Europe.
As was alluded to above, "My Favourite Waste of Time" is a cover of a Marshall Crenshaw song. Crenshaw is a seriously underrated songwriter who should have become more successful in my opinion. This song was a demo recording that was used as the B side of Crenshaw's one hit, 1982's "Someday Someway."
In recent years, "My Favourite Waste of Time" has been covered by Freedy Johnston, Bette Midler, and Ronnie Spector.