Best Vocalist(s) of All Time

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by Kent Gray, Sep 16, 2020 at 8:40 PM.

  1. Kent Gray

    Kent Gray Resident Thread Starter

    I looked around and didn't see any recent threads, so I thought I'd start one. Please point me to a recent one if it exists.

    I say "vocalist" instead of "singer" because singers tend to be trained. They can have terrific control and even range, but this training can't give their voices something unique; a tone that is captivating.

    My favorite all-around vocalist is Tom Jones. He's both a great singer and a great vocalist. He had it all. My favorite rock vocalist is John Lennon; definitely not trained but terrific tone and growl. My favorite female singer/vocalist is probably Aretha Franklin, but there have been some others that came and went that were awesome.

    I'd love to hear about some others so I can check them out. Thanks.

    '05Train, DBMartin, polchik and 3 others like this.
  2. SJR

    SJR Senior Member


    Sam Cooke.
  3. Warm_tunes

    Warm_tunes Well-Known Member

    Yep, end of thread.
  4. SJR

    SJR Senior Member

    Ha! It’s not even close, IMO.
  5. Kent Gray

    Kent Gray Resident Thread Starter

    Anything that really stands out for you? I have him on itunes doing "Cry Me A River."
  6. Brian Lux

    Brian Lux One in the Crowd

    Placerville, CA
    To me "best vocalist" means someone whose voice sounds great to me, even if not technically the best, and someone whose singing reflects a lot of feeling. With that in mind, my favorites are:
    Neil Young
    Paul Westerberg
    Juliana Hatfield
    Steve Wynn
    Michael Stipe
  7. Steve Minkin

    Steve Minkin Forum Resident

    Healdsburg CA
  8. SJR

    SJR Senior Member

    You could argue almost anything he’s done. Check out a hits collection. Or go straight to A Change Is Gonna Come.
  9. SJR

    SJR Senior Member

    Ah, beat me to it. Yep. Perfection.
  10. Kent Gray

    Kent Gray Resident Thread Starter

    Exactly. Not necessarily trained or technical, but they have a tone or unique style that sets them apart.
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  11. Bender Rodriguez

    Bender Rodriguez RIP Exene, best dog ever. 2005-2016

    female - Aretha Franklin
    male - Otis Redding or Roger Daltrey depending on my mood
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  12. Kent Gray

    Kent Gray Resident Thread Starter

    That's great! Yeah, you can tell Cooke from a mile a way. Really unique voice; the perfect amount of rasp
    SJR likes this.
  13. Steve Minkin

    Steve Minkin Forum Resident

    Healdsburg CA
    Bessie Smith
    Billie Holiday
    Joe Williams
    Ella Fitzgerald
    Carmen McRae
    Sam Cooke
    Little Willie John
    Frank Sinatra
    Dean Martin
    Bing Crosby
    Perry Como
    Anita O'Day
    Irene Kral
    Lauren Newton
    Jackie Wilson

  14. halfjapanese

    halfjapanese Gifs moider!

    Another Cooke zample...
    angelo73 likes this.
  15. gkella

    gkella Let there be songs to fill the air

    Toronto, Canada
    Ray Charles for me...
    polchik and RSteven like this.
  16. RSteven

    RSteven Forum Resident

    Brookings, Oregon
    Male Vocalists:

    Elvis Presley
    Charlie Rich
    Frank Sinatra
    Roy Orbison
    Nat King Cole
    John Gary

    Female Vocalists:

    Patsy Cliine
    Ella Fitzgerald
    Sarah Vaughn
    Carrie Underwood
  17. Chemguy

    Chemguy Forum Resident

    Tie: Dylan and Sinatra
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  18. sami

    sami Mono Rules

    Down The Shore
    Frank Sinatra
    Jerry Garcia
    Otis Redding
    Hank Williams
    Willie Nelson
    Sam Cooke
    Nat King Cole
    Patsy Cline
    Ella Fitzgerald
    Billie Holiday

    There are many others, but that's a good start.
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  19. There are lots in each generation. I couldn’t even come in with a top tenit’s that difficult.
    mark winstanley and angelo73 like this.
  20. DPK

    DPK Forum Resident

    Lexington, SC
    Michael Stipe
    Jim James
    Natalie Merchant
    angelo73 likes this.
  21. Fischman

    Fischman RockMonster, ClassicalMaster, and JazzMeister

    New Mexico
    Los Hombres:
    Ronnie James Dio
    Roger Daltrey
    Rik Emmett
    Justin Hayward
    Dan Fogelberg
    Chris DeGarmo
    Rick Medlocke
    Ian Anderson
    Buddy Guy
    Bruce Dickinson

    Las Mujeres:
    Karen Carpenter
    Sarah Vaughan
    Sass Jordan
    Billie Holiday
    Grace Slick
    Beverly Kenney
    Ann Wilson
    Stevie Nicks
    Dinah Washington
    Aretha Franklin
    angelo73 likes this.
  22. Radagast

    Radagast Forum Resident

    I'll add Ian Gillan...
    Johnny Rock N' Roll and angelo73 like this.
  23. skyblue17

    skyblue17 Forum Resident

    New York City
    He is my personal favorite but I genuinely think Robin Gibb fits the bill.

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  24. Umbari

    Umbari Forum Resident

    Paul McCartney
    fuse999, urasam2, tteal and 2 others like this.
  25. 4-2-7

    4-2-7 Forum Resident

    SF Peninsula
    Eva left use with her version of everyone else's songs with her beautiful voice.


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