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SurfGuitar101 Forums » The Shallow End »

Permalink Guitarists Who Sometimes Sing, But Maybe They Shouldn't

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IronMaiden
Oh man, this should be a whole entire thread: guitarist who sometimes sing. Dave Davies (The Kinks) is really bad, and Keith Richards is pretty good (little t/a) Theres got to be more besides the obvious Link Wray's...

I would suggest a little tact here.

I think Phil Dirt once nominated the Insect Surfers with a phrase something like "justifably rare vocals." He may have been kidding, but there's a certain truth in the comment anyway. Why would they sing if they can play so much better?

Vocals haven't been very fashionable in surf music, especially post First Wave surf music, but a lot of the original bands did a fair number. In some cases they were pretty good. In most cases about the worst you could say is that they were much better at playing. I think the real reasons surf music lacks vocals are that the best songs in the genre lack them, and the genre attracts people who like those songs and prefer playing to singing, anyway. In other words, it's a self-fulfilling prophesy sort of thing.

Personally, I think the trick is actually just to find what your voice is suited for. Ginger Baker's voice, for example, was perfect for "A Mother's Tale." Mine works pretty well for "A Mighty Fortress is Our God," though I seldom have occasion to prove it. Anyway, I can only remember about half the first verse. Rory Gallagher's voice was perfect for what he did. Unless the other person in the car is a Motown fan. Just a word of advice on that one. Good really is relative in some fields.

I can do the bass part on any doo-wop song....

Dip dip dip dip dip..................

See?

Dick Dale sometimes sings and maybe he shouldn't.

Actually, I feel that way about pretty much all surf vocals because I'm a scrooge. Confused
I intend to follow in the all-instrumental vein because, personally, my singing voice is best kept boxed up. (Voice box! Get it!? That was a funny!)

I wonder if the truth be known, is that most of us play surf instramentals because we dont sing well?
I myself of course have a beautiful voice.
It just isn't any good for singing. ROTFL

Joel

Joelman
I wonder if the truth be known, is that most of us play surf instramentals because we dont sing well?l

That's the common rumor, but I prefer to take the high road and assume it's because surf guitarists generally play even better than they sing and want go with their strengths. I've certainly heard a number of them sing quite passably from time to time. On the other hand, there's at least one major band I won't name, that I sometimes think shouldn't even be allowed to pick an outside vocalist.

I think you have to match the voice to the song. While Dick Dale can't sing like Andrea Bocelli or Josh Groban, he does a respectable Ring of Fire. Know your limitations, pick the right songs.

Did I mention I do awesome vocals on Baha-ree-bah?

When we started our surf band, we thought one of the pluses was not having to deal with singing or lyrics. We now use this symbol on our CD's and promotional material.

image

CUTBACK

I sing in my role of Lonzo with "Lonzo & Oscar", the oldest continuously performing country comedy act for good reason ROTFL ... but I would never sing with our surf band. Seems like bad mojo or something...

Ron (ToneBoy)
The Mariners (1964 to Present) www.myspace.com/themarinersfirstwave
Lonzo & Oscar (1999 to Present) www.lonzoandoscar.net
www.myspace.com/lonzoandoscarcomedy
Billy Henson & Summerstorm (2001 to Present)

Oh, I love the "Parental Advisory" notice... great idea!!

Ron (ToneBoy)
The Mariners (1964 to Present) www.myspace.com/themarinersfirstwave
Lonzo & Oscar (1999 to Present) www.lonzoandoscar.net
www.myspace.com/lonzoandoscarcomedy
Billy Henson & Summerstorm (2001 to Present)

All 3 of us actually sing pretty well, we've been having lots of fun learning some old '60s tunes here recently and are going to start working some of them into the show.

"Singing is a trick to get people to listen to music for longer than they would ordinarily" -David Byrne

MikeG
"Singing is a trick to get people to listen to music for longer than they would ordinarily" -David Byrne

I wonder what that says about rapping. Smile

MikeG
"Singing is a trick to get people to listen to music for longer than they would ordinarily" -David Byrne

That's pretty funny, since I never listen to a song past the point where David Byrne starts singing.

-Warren

That was excessively violent and completely unnecessary. I loved it.

It's funny because it's TRUE Wink

paul simonon from the clash. if you've heard one of the 2 songs he sings in (guns of brixton and crooked beat) he sings with all the passion of a spare tyre, also he sounds a lot worse live (on "from here to eternity" you can hear this)

www.myspace.com/killsomefuckingtime

That's a part of what turned the Lava Rats into an all-instro band. We started out with a few vocal tunes, and they went over pretty well, but in the end, we decided we'd much rather be a very good instrumental band than a good instrumental band with some passable vocal tunes.

~B~

i like dick dale's voice for the most part, except when he starts getting real throaty..."well i love my baby, gonna tell the world i do" hahaha!

carl wilson could sing good, but its for the most part the instrumentals the beach boys lacked in, may i bring up their version of miserlou or moon dawg? eeewww...stoked and surf jam were very good, though.

The Tremblors on Facebook!

The Tremblors on MySpace!

HBkahuna
I can do the bass part on any doo-wop song....

Dip dip dip dip dip..................

See?

Ah, but do you know the next line, though?

(Recently I memorized the lyrics to the Theme from Batman, so I'm a bit full of myself ...)

CaptainSpringfield
That's pretty funny, since I never listen to a song past the point where David Byrne starts singing.

"Psycho-chanteur, je me suis! Fa fa fa faaa fa, fa fa fa ... " (counts on fingers)

JoshHeartless
i like dick dale's voice for the most part, except when he starts getting real throaty..."well i love my baby, gonna tell the world i do" hahaha!

carl wilson could sing good, but its for the most part the instrumentals the beach boys lacked in, may i bring up their version of miserlou or moon dawg? eeewww...stoked and surf jam were very good, though.

Na - The Beach Boys version of Moon Dawg is the best - I dig the way the bass comes in.

Chris

"You can't tell where you're going if you don't know where you've been"

Sonichris

Na - The Beach Boys version of Moon Dawg is the best - I dig the way the bass comes in.

Chris

I always wondered who were the dogs? I could live with out the dog barking parts. Maybe one bark and swat them with a newspaper.
ROTFL
Otherwise I think the song was good.
Joel

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