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Saturday, 12 May 2012

Great voices

While a great riff or drumbeat may be the first thing to grab the attention in a song, it’s
a voice that will keep me coming back. There is something ethereal about a great voice, something that’s tied to destiny or fate or whatever, but some people are given voices
that are meant to be shared.

From the beautiful and emotive to the powerful and cool, these are my five favourite voices. There are plenty more I love, but on this particular day, these five are the tops.

My number one was easy, Jeff Buckley. Jeff’s voice had an incredible range, from soulful power to a delicate warble; it was both heartbreaking and life affirming. It is indeed a tragedy that he only recorded one album, but what an album, and what a voice.

My next voice was greatly influenced by Buckley, but Thom Yorke has also had the longevity to demonstrate a number of distinctive styles, from the Buckley-esque Bends falsetto through to the lower-register almost rap on Hail To The Thief songs, such as Myxomatosis, and everything in between.

Stevie Nicks’ voice is all about power and distinction; her voice is special because there isn’t anything else like it. Similarly, Lou Reed’s voice brings an ice cool attitude despite
not being a typical voice.

Lastly, Harriet Wheeler of The Sundays has a voice so sweet it’s like having another kind
of sundae poured into your ears. I often listen to her vocal at the end of this track over and over. Need I say more?

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