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Other Female Singers

Discussion in 'A Song For You: The Carpenters Forum' started by song4u, Sep 11, 2012.

  1. song4u

    song4u Well-Known Member Thread Starter

    As a casual listener from way back, I have learned a lot on this forum about the music of the Carpenters; Karen being it's heart and soul. So I was wondering . . .
    Since Karen's passing, are there other female singers whose style you appreciate and tend to listen to? They don't necessarily need to compare to her sound or style (who could, really). I am open to suggestions of different singers to listen to and thought since we all already have a love for Karen's voice in common, we could offer suggestions for further listening.

    I am a HUGE Basia fan, from the beginning of her international career in the 80's. I also like other artists who really make you listen to the lyrics, like Carly Simon, Fleetwood Mac's Christine McVie, and Heart's Nancy Wilson.

    Who do you listen to? :whistle:
  2. newvillefan

    newvillefan I Know My First Name Is Stephen

    This probably comes from hearing Karen at an early age, but I MUCH prefer female voices. Those with power, those that don't have power, doesn't really matter to me. I can go from Karen to Agnetha (ABBA) to Celine Dion. I just love the range of certain singers, the intonation of others.

    Not many people like Celine, but this vocal performance blows me away every time. A girl at the top of her game. Watch the people who cry with emotion as she's so close to them. Amazing.

    BarryT60 and CarpentersToYou like this.
  3. Mark-T

    Mark-T Well-Known Member

    I like low female voices. (Wonder why?!?) I mostly now listen to the men- Chris Tomlin, Michael Buble, Sting, Maroon5 (though I wish the lyrics were cleaner!)
  4. Actorman

    Actorman Active Member

    I tend to prefer female voices as well, but my taste in them runs quite the gamut. After Karen, the female vocalist I listen to most often is Julie London. In no particular order, my other all-time favorites are Olivia Newton-John, Carole King, Laura Nyro, Lesley Gore, Nancy Sinatra and Patsy Cline. They couldn't be more different from each other, but I love them all for different reasons.
    I'm sure I will include Rumer in that list someday, but she is still "new" right now. I generally don't count someone as an "all-time" favorite until I've been a fan for several years. She's definitely my favorite current artist and the first female vocalist in more than a decade that has truly excited me to the point of minor obsession.
  5. Toolman

    Toolman Simple Man, Simple Dream

    Specific to female voices, big Christine McVie fan, as well as Dusty Springfield and Adele (who reminds me very much of Dusty). Linda Ronstadt, especially the "Cry Like a Rainstorm" and "Simple Dreams" albums. "Ingenue" by kd lang. Pink is good, but I could do without the "Parental Advisory" language. Not a prude, but that stuff just seems to take the classiness out of the music.
  6. Harry

    Harry Charter A&M Corner Member Moderator

    I've always gravitated towards female vocals. As a child, I liked some things by '50s artists like Mary Ford, Patti Page, Doris Day, and in particular, I was drawn to the sibling harmony of The McGuire Sisters.

    As I grew older, by the mid-'60s, it was Lani Hall and her co-lead with Brasil '66 than knocked me out, and that was followed in a few years by Karen Carpenter. Around the same time as Karen, but hardly noticed, there was Susan Jacks of The Poppy Family. It would be many years before I really dug in to all that there was of her recordings. Susan Jacks at times to me, sounds very much like Karen Carpenter, and I regret not following their recordings more closely at the time, but at least I did finally manage to get with the program.

    Other '70s artists that had me listening to them included Lani Hall as a solo artist, Carole King, Carly Simon, Helen Reddy, and Anne Murray. It seemed like everything these ladies did for awhile sounded pretty good, but with Karen Carpenter around, I never fully invested in their records like I did with Carpenters. They were fun to hear on the radio, and I enjoyed each and every hit they had, but didn't run out to buy records.

    In the late '70s, early '80s, a couple of ABBA records caught my ear, but overall, I didn't think much about them at the time. I've since found that I really like pretty much anything that Agnetha and Frida sang on.

    In the late '80s, I latched onto Corinne Drewery of Swing Out Sister as a voice that I really liked. I picked up each and every Swing Out Sister release for awhile, and then somehow lost touch and had to play catch-up later.

    It happened on December 28th, 1999 that I discovered Andrea Corr and The Corrs. This family band had that sibling harmony thing going on that I'd liked since The McGuire Sisters. I couldn't get enough of them, and actually traveled to Australia to see a couple of live concerts. They were a band for only a few more albums and years before breaking up to do the family thing, and I hope that they someday get back together to create some more music. Andrea and Sharon Corr have each released solo albums, but they're not quite the same.

    In the mid-2000's, a female sound on a music system caught my ear while eating in Zermatt, Switzerland. I asked our waitress who informed me that the CD playing was by an Italian singer named Laura Pausini. To me, the recordings sounded a lot like The Corrs, but sung in Italian. After exploring all of Ms. Pausini's albums at that time, I still tend to gravitate to her hits album and her then current RESTA IN ASCOLTA. The other albums were okay, but didn't quite knock me out.

    And lately I've been delving into Rumer. I need to spend more time with her recently released second album, but I know that the first one has really knocked me out. At times she sounds very much like Karen Carpenter, and at others, hardly at all.

    Michael Kessler likes this.
  7. byline

    byline Active Member

    Rumer guested on the most recent "Live From Daryl's House" episode with Daryl Hall, and was quite good. Her vocal style reminds me more of Dido's than Karen's, but I really enjoy her pure, understated delivery.
  8. song4u

    song4u Well-Known Member Thread Starter

    Wow! You've all given me a lot of listening to do. Thank you! I need to broaden my "horizon"s and start listening to some younger singers. I all but gave up after Karen, with the exception of Basia. She has a very different voice, but like Karen, she has an incredible vocal range and control.

    Like some of you, I also like listening to Carole King (the Tapestry album was my favorite) and Agnetha of ABBA. Some others I like that weren't mentioned were Marilyn McCoo, Dionne Warwick, Petula Clark, Natalie Cole and Whitney Houston. There's also a singer I heard on YouTube named Claire Dela Fuente who has a gorgeous lower voice. I grew up hearing Perry Como, Andy Williams and Nat King Cole, as well as Teresa Brewer, Ella Fitzgerald and Rosemary Clooney. The latter may be why I gravitated toward Karen's voice.
  9. Jamesj75

    Jamesj75 Well-Known Member

    Absolutely GREAT TOPIC!

    Although Karen was and will always be my favorite singer, I have enjoyed other female singers as well, including some of Karen's contemporaries, such as Melissa Manchester (my 2nd favorite), Carly Simon, Olivia-Newton John, Carole King, and Helen Reddy.

    I also have a tendency to prefer some of the more obscure works of certain singers, for instance: Heart's "Dog and Butterfly," Linda Ronstadt's "Dreams to Dream," Fleetwood Mac's (Stevie Nicks') "Beautiful Child," Donna Summer's "There Will Always Be a You," and Celine Dion's "Immortality."

    Speaking of Linda Ronstadt, among her many musical genres, I really enjoyed her "Trio" work with Dolly Parton and Emmylou Harris---such great harmonies.

    In the current realm, mark me down as a fan of both Lady Gaga and Taylor Swift. I found out about Rumer from reading this website, and I have become a huge fan. So thanks to all of you!
    BarryT60 likes this.
  10. song4u

    song4u Well-Known Member Thread Starter

    I went on YouTube and checked out some of the singers mentioned here. I had forgotten about Melissa Manchester's "Midnight Blue" on the Melissa album - I don't know how - I about wore out the vinyl at the time. One of my favorites from that album is "I Don't Want to Hear it Any More". Chill factor.

    I love the Corrs version of Dreams! Quite different from Fleetwood Mac and I prefer the Corrs. Andrea Corr has a beautiful voice. Rumer has her moments. I will continue listening . . .
    Jamesj75 likes this.
  11. RainyDays

    RainyDays Active Member

    Of modern day singers, I have found that I enjoyed most of the work of Amy Winehouse. After she passed away I started hearing some of her stuff, and she was a legit and solid artist -- that she was a tortured soul/a little bat s h i t crazy helped her voice to make for great distinction in a time when generic pop music/"artists' swarm around and collect unassuming fans. Amy had a sultry, deep voice that carried rich, mysterious emotion and her R&b, soul, jazzy sound is refreshing and cool.

    It's just sad that Amy isn't around to help even out the shallow, bubblegum sound of today. I mean someone like Lady Gaga is the farthest thing from an "artist", with a overproduced, vacuous, club music sound that will not hold up over time. It's all image -- without the attention-seeking outfits, what's really there? Adele is distinctive and I appreciate that, but her voice is all over the place. I like some Katy Perry.
  12. Jamesj75

    Jamesj75 Well-Known Member

    It's so refreshing to read a positive post! I had the same experience as you with regard to the Melissa album; it's one of those rare recordings in which every song is great, one of my all-time favorites. I've ended up buying her entire catalogue, most of which was unavailable on CD for many years.
  13. Jamesj75

    Jamesj75 Well-Known Member

    I will politely disagree with you and defend Lady Gaga. Many would give the same criticisms of Katy Perry who you like (and so do I, for the record). Gaga may not be an "artist" by your definition. I don't think she has a spectacular singing voice, but her talent is undeniable: as composer, musician, choreographer, and showman. I enjoy her songs, with their typical hooks and danceable beats. But I also appreciate her courage and her unyielding voice on several social issues. She has been at the forefront on the bullying issue alone. Not many people will put themselves on the line like she does, for fear of alienating fans. I admire that. Whether her songs will "hold up over time" is anyone's guess.
  14. song4u

    song4u Well-Known Member Thread Starter

    Thank you Jamesj75, and wow about your collection. I just love Melissa Manchester's soulful style. I didn't like songs like "You Should Hear How She Talks About You" so much. I know it was the genre of the time, but it really didn't do her voice justice. She has that raw, natural sound that belongs to ballads.

    I have to admit, I never listened to Amy Winehouse or Lady Gaga because of the image portrayed by the media. I know, I know, I felt the media was usually unfair to K & R - I didn't care about looks and image and just appreciated their talents. Now I'm guilty of doing what so many did back in the 70's. So I've given them a listen. Briefly. No offense intended to you fans of theirs, but I don't think I was missing anything much. They may be very talented musically, but you can't tell, even when you close your eyes.

    I think Adele has genuine talent and I really like her lower range. Taylor Swift is one of those rare pop stars who still seems like a nice, unspoiled person, but I don't think there's a real 'hook' to her voice. Maybe if I heard the right song . . .

    I am enjoying reading all of your posts! :)
    Jamesj75 likes this.
  15. AM Matt

    AM Matt Well-Known Member

    Here is the Bugaloos with "Castles In The Air" (Caroline "Joy" Ellis on lead vocal): from late 1970. Matt Clark Sanford, MI
  16. AM Matt

    AM Matt Well-Known Member

    The Bugaloos "The Senses Of Our World" (Caroline "Joy" Ellis on lead vocal): from the debut episode September 12, 1970 on NBC Saturday morning. Matt Clark Sanford, MI P.S. The Bugaloos: The Complete Series DVD from Rhino Home Video is out of print.
  17. Jamesj75

    Jamesj75 Well-Known Member

    song4u: First, thanks for your kind words. I enjoy reading your posts, too! For instance, I like your critique of current female singers.

    Further, I also want to follow up on Melissa Manchester. I have almost all her recordings. Melissa definitely had some hits, but to me she has always been underrated. I agree with your assessment of "You Should Hear How She Talks About You," which won Melissa a Grammy; I think it was more an award for her body of work rather than for that song alone (as Grammy voters often do). But when you mentioned the song, "I Don't Want to Hear It Anymore," I was blown away. You are right about the "chill factor." I had to listen to that CD again. Another favorite of mine from that album is "This Lady's Not Home Today." One of her minor hits is actually probably my favorite: "Fire in the Morning," although she has stated she didn't care much for it. (This is similar to my enjoyment of the Carpenters' "Solitaire" as my favorite, and Karen didn't care much for that one.)

    I agree with you that Melissa has a "soulful style" and excels mostly with ballads. In my opinion, other songs of hers that bring these points home include: "Lights of Dawn," "Come in From the Rain," and "When I Look Down That Road." So many others, too.

    Finally, I saw Melissa in concert once in the 1970s, once (in a play, "Song and Dance") in the 1980s, and I saw her in 2011 at EPCOT in Orlando, where she performed 3 mini-concerts (each about 35 minutes long) and signed my Melissa album (though the signing was done backstage not in my presence). I cherish it, and I cherish the music. I'd love to read more of your thoughts on her, too, at your convenience.
  18. Toolman

    Toolman Simple Man, Simple Dream

    That's the same reaction I have. Adele seems to have stepped out from an alternate universe where Xtina, Brittany and Katy never existed, one where singers just sing and respect the song. No studio pitch correction crutches, no incendiary devices in the brassieres, no distracting vocal runs that resemble the sounds of a dying howler monkey. I did like Perry's "Firework", but with so many of the current female singers there's hardly any way to tell if they can actually sing or not. If Adele's voice wanders a bit -- I'm not sure it does -- it IS "real".
    toeknee4bz likes this.
  19. RainyDays

    RainyDays Active Member

    Yes, but her social issues and being a show(o)man are seperate from her abilities as a singer. I just feel there's no substantial soul to her stuff; she's a performer more than I consider her a singer.
  20. no1kandrfan

    no1kandrfan Active Member

    @song4u: I am also a huge Basia fan. And while she and Danny's music is quite different from the Carpenters, I find that I can relate and lose myself in Basia's vocals as I could with Karen. Plus Basia overdubs her recordings and I find the harmonies quite similar to Karen's.

    I do listen to contemporary female singers but none have captured my attention to the point where I am a devoted fan or collector - Rumer is very good, but I find her overall too slow.

    Bette Midler, Eydie Gorme (spanish recordings), Patsy Cline, Peggy Lee, Sara Vaughan, Ella Fitzgerald, Toni Tennille, Diana Krall, Carly Simon, Carole King and Brenda Russell are all on my iPod.
    Must Hear This Album likes this.
  21. A&M Retro

    A&M Retro Well-Known Member

    Karen will always be my favorite. Nobody can touch her unique vocal style, vocal quality and sincerity. But everybody on this site knows that already.
    But I also love Carly Simon. She's totally unique, and has her own sound. And she's a killer songwriter and storyteller.
    Linda Ronstadt is another favorite. I discovered her albums in the late '70's, and was a huge fan by the time she released "Mad Love" in 1980. I still love that album. She sort of went new wave/light punk for that record, and, though critics weren't crazy about it, I loved it. Her standards album, "What's New", is a classic, as well as her early Capitol and Asylum releases.
  22. song4u

    song4u Well-Known Member Thread Starter

    I hope it's ok to post URL's . . .
    Some of my favorites are: (If anyone wants to listen to something different - otherwise, carry on)
    Carpenters' "Desperado" (Currently unavailable on YouTube that I could find)
    Carpenters' "Let me be the One" - Karen in her prime
    Carly Simon's "Night on the Ocean"
    Basia's "From Now On" live at XM
    Matt Bianco's (with Basia) "La Luna"
    Melissa Manchester's "I Don't Want to Hear it Any More" (This was a Dusty Springfield song, and I love Dusty, but Melissa knocks this song out of the park!)
    Dusty Springfield's "I Only Want to be with You" Live http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M5LS---oX7Y&feature=related (You go girl!)
    Agnetha Faltskog's "If I Thought you'd ever Change your Mind" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JimNwp8jm5Q
    Jamesj75 likes this.
  23. Jamesj75

    Jamesj75 Well-Known Member

    song4u: Thanks for posting these!
  24. cam89

    cam89 Active Member

    Another singer besides Karen Carpenter that I adore...is Sandi Patty, and she was a huge fan and considered Karen her inspiration when she was growing up in Anderson, Indiana. Sandi has such a remarkable voice and the way she conveys her feelings in a song are amazing!
    I also adore Celine Dion and Mariah Carey...and the way they sing beautifully and WITH emotion...different styles than Karen but still nonetheless are amazing artists!! They can bring a tear to my eye too....
  25. Harry

    Harry Charter A&M Corner Member Moderator

    Lots of love here for Basia. Interesting. Don't want to threadcrap, but she's never been my cup of tea, for some reason.

    And I knew I'd forget someone important in my listing earlier in the thread, and thankfully someone else mentioned her, and that's Dionne Warwick. She's simply the voice of Bacharach/David unlike most others. Karen was one of the exceptions, of course.

    I also forgot Marilyn McCoo-Davis and Florence LaRue Gordon of The 5th Dimension.


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