On The Beauty Of The Voice (no, not the TV show) 

Have you ever noticed that some of our most incredible songwriters also have singing voices that are, well, difficult to listen to? When considering three of my favorites - Tom Waits, Randy Newman and Townes Van Zant, I think you'd have to agree that none of them possess what could be called "classic vocal style and range", right? Townes' singing voice had a colloquial quality and a homeyness that made his lyrics so accessible. The same could be said for Randy Newman, who adds liberal doses of world-weariness and bathos to his delivery. Tom Waits' singing voice reminds me of someone who gargles with razor blades. But you can't argue that his style perfectly serves his idiosyncratic music and lyrics.

I recognize the genius of all three of these artists (and now, as I'm typing this, another - Leonard Cohen - comes to mind). I marvel at the diversity in their singing voices, their tools of delivery, and also at the level of artistry of their wordsmithing, and how the symbiotic relationship of those two elements combine to create ... The Voice.

Here's an example - Tom Waits performing Come On Up To The House

Have a wonderful week, everyone!

Here's a tune for your downloading pleasure - Hurricane Woman Blues - from my second CD Up We Go.

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