Tuesday, July 11, 2006
Haunting Voices: Or Continually Recurring To The Mind
I’ve been thinking about how some voices just grab you completely unaware. Clay Aiken was like that for me. The minute I heard him, I was hooked. One reason why I adore putting his songs on my iPod and then shuffling is when it comes on unexpectedly, it stops me dead. It is as good as I remember. The other interesting thing is that it somehow fits in beautifully among the other artists I have on the iPod. I mix it all up – Elvis Costello and Gene Pitney, Eric Clapton and Eric Andersen, Ten Years After and Ella Fitzgerald. Tom Paxton and Van Morrison. Ray Charles and Fred Neil. Aznavour and Dylan. Andy Bey and Santana. It’s all wonderful music. And Clay works with them all.
Clay’s voice can be so haunting. Mary Did You Know. I Can’t Make You Love Me. Fields of Gold. Such beauty.
Another voice that I always found haunting was Tim Buckley. I adored Tim’s music and incredible voice. His Goodbye and Hello is a beautiful showcase for his stunning vocal range and powerful lyrics in a folk-rock style. While his Happy Sad highlights a more jazzy feel with a small ensemble and sparse understated instrumentation.
Tim Buckley died in 1975 from a drug overdose. He was only 28 years old and the world lost a magical musical explorer. Here’s a clip of Tim singing a rare acoustic version of Song of the Siren on the show The Monkees.
Tim was a wonderful songwriter. He was also an awesome interpreter of songs. Here’s a clip of Tim singing the great Fred Neil’s The Dolphins.
Wow - that was a time when voices really mattered.
Tim's son, Jeff Buckley also met a tragic end, drowning at the young age of 31. He had come to Memphis to start the recording of his second album. His debut album Grace marked him as one of the most promising artists of his generation. His passing deprived the musical world of another amazing talent.
If you’re interested in these two fascinating men, consider reading Dream Brother: The Lives and Music of Jeff and Tim.
Here is Jeff’s haunting rendition of the brilliant Leonard Cohen’s Hallelujah.
From his debut album, Grace, is simply sublime:
So . . . what does this have to do with Clay Aiken? Not really sure – except that certain voices, certain souls touch us. I am drawn to Tim Buckley and Jeff Buckley’s voices. I am drawn to Clay Aiken’s voice. They are beautiful. As can be heard in Clay singing Mary Did You Know on The View.
This blog's Quote is: Beauty without expression tires - Ralph Waldo Emerson.
Posted by The ConCLAYve-Nan at 3:51 PM