I love to write, I love to record, I love to play… but my first love: I love to sing. And not just in one style or genre – I enjoy the challenge of shape-shifting my voice and vocal approach to fit the music I am singing.
As a long-time professional vocalist who has performed in venues ranging from local nightclubs to high end society gigs, such as a Presidential Inauguration, I have had to learn a wide variety of songs written and/or performed by other artists – for specific gigs/recording projects or to stay abreast of what’s currently popular. Keeping up with a wide-swinging vocal and stylistic pendulum has a way of stretching you – you can’t just sound the same on every song as you would with your own original music… and therein lies the challenge and skill – and the reward – for singing cover tunes. I highly recommend it to any budding vocalists out there. Resist the pressure to be pigeon-holed… embark on your own vocal exploration! (my 2 cents, anyway :)
Being a vocal chameleon has served me well in my original music, as well – it suits my eclectic writing style. My writing “mood” for each song tends to be a revelation – it unfolds as I write (That is, unless I am specifically writing to a cue.):
- sometimes a sultry bluesy rock song like Sea of Silence
- or a pop rock song like Only Cause I’m Lonely (Me Again)
- or a classical-flavored ballad like Dream
- or a funky, bluesy tune like Dark Night of the Soul
- or R&B electronica like Symphony of Angels
(or as the musician who mixed and mastered the tracks for the original release dubbed it: “Angelic R&B“)
- or an emotional ballad like Waiting Within
- or an edgy rocker like Fever In Your Soul
- or a romantic R&B ballad like My Kindred Soul
- or an inspirational holiday hymn like Joy
- or even dark gritty Gothic Metal tunes like What’s Left Behind and Blinded
(I didn’t write the last one, “Blinded” (it was written for me by my then-writing partner in VoS), but I had to craft a vocal approach to suit it)
- or… well, you get the picture. There are many different styles I explore in my writing.
One of the the things I love about writing my own music (or collaborating with another songwriter on theirs) is divining a “vision” of it (sometimes more than one :) and deciding how I want to express it. I am grateful to the variety of music I enjoy and have had to learn/perform – and the many different talented vocalists/songwriters who intrigue me – for giving me a wide musical vocabulary. It’s all part of my “no limits” approach to music.
There is quite a large variety of artists who have influenced me over the years and songs/styles that I love singing. I’ve shared a few of them on my Vox Eclectic page, but the list is more extensive. There’s so much great music out there!
Here are two of my favorites. I’ve made the full songs available for free download in appreciation for your support (Thank you!) – click the download link on the player.
Use Me by Bill Withers – Funky Soul
Excerpt (just a taste):
Full Song (click the link on the player to download):
Beautiful Goodbye by Amanda Marshall – one of my favorite rock ballads from an amazing artist and songwriter. (Amanda: Please start recording and touring again. We miss your musical presence!)
Excerpt (just a taste):
Full song (click the link on the player to download):
More cover tunes:
Some more of my original music: