The most powerful voices in rock

… in my unbiased opinion, anyway. And no, I’m not talking about the cookie monster variety either.

Though I may have deep respect and appreciation for the following, they aren’t necessarily my absolute favorites. Except for one, maybe. Actually, a lot of my personal favorites aren’t even on this list, at all. I only thought these singers, in particular, were unquestionably successful in penetrating through, not only the massive walls of their band’s sound, but more importantly, the hearts and souls of their listeners. Their voices are, without a doubt, distinctively melodic yet forceful.

This list is by no means exhaustive, just what’s coming through my mind, at this very moment. So, in no particular order, I give you my choices… for the most powerful voices in rock music.

  • Chris Cornell – I can’t decide whether his voice is classic or unique. Maybe, both.
  • Freddie Mercury –  As Stevie Riks would say, he’s the queen of rock and roll. I agree.
  • Pat Benatar – She sounds like a rebellious operatic singer who broke out of the mold.
  • Ronnie James Dio – When Ronnie sings, don’t look in his eyes or you’ll turn into a pillar of salt.
  • Steve Perry – Could anyone possibly sing this good? I didn’t believe it, until recently.
  • Jim Morrison, Bono, Eddie Vedder – Could they be related?
  • Roger Daltrey – Do you watch CSI: Miami? Enough said.
  • Lou Gramm – He’s got pipes of a Jukebox Hero, that’s for sure.
  • Ann Wilson – Aretha Franklin’s sistah… from another mutha.
  • Melissa Etheridge – My back feels like it’s gonna break when listening to her songs. She’s that powerful.
  • Lane Staley – This guy’s voice can make a cobra dance like a snake charmer’s flute.
  • Kurt Cobain – I prefer Lane but I can’t deny the hypnotic draw of his voice either. Definitely, heir to the throne of Lennon.

Ummm… did I miss anyone? Of course, I did. Ya?

6 thoughts on “The most powerful voices in rock

  1. Wow… quite the list. I agree. Very happy to see Pat Benatar (she was an opera singer btw) — seriously she sings “You better run…” And well, I have a tendency to want to do just that.

    Powerful eh? Hmmm… I’m going to add some more old school. Bruce Springsteen, Bob Dylan, and Neil Young. (All very distinctive and definitely influential.) And maybe Mr. Elvis Presley. (Even after he went lounge.)

    Scoring for the women: Janis Joplin and Deborah Harry (as Blondie) …

    Oh, Janis! Of course. Missed that one. And yes, the Boss and the King, too! I agree. Although I just can’t feel the same effect coming from songs like Rapture, Maggie’s Farm and The Needle and the Damage Done. I may have to listen more closely. Thanks, Nat.

  2. I’d like to add Scott Weiland from Stone Temple Pilots, Robert Plant, the guy from The Strokes, and Skin from a band called Skunk Anansie. Boy, can that woman sing. If you haven’t heard her you should check her out. She’ll blow your mind. Your list is great but it’s so hard to narrow it down, isn’t it? I am enjoying your new blog. Gonna do any Aussie bands?

    A woman named Skin? I’ll have to check that band out, for sure. And yes… one Aussie band coming up, soon.

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