A Word About My Repetoire

November 12, 2017
No one that I know is saying this, but I will. I listen to perhaps 100 songs every week in order to pull a few into my repertoire. It’s not that I don’t listen to the current crop of singer-songwriters, but I find very little there in comparison to the older material, which is generally speaking, humble, strong, artfully crafted, short and to the point, and delivered persuasively by real singing voices.
 
There are exceptions. But the newer material, especially the young men, generally sing in a whining breathy nasal about me, me, me, primarily complaints about what they need, and who must give it to them. They write in unpoetic everyday language best suited to an email message. Rudimentary beats, little depth, lots of repetition, machine-like. And there is absolutely no joy.
 
I won’t be drawn in to commiserate with you in your misery. You have to move me by making your idea bigger than you.
 
I want to hear a real man’s voice. This weak, feminine approximation appalls me. If any of these guys want to attract a mate, I can’t understand how they do it singing this way.
 
Yes, George Jones was a plaintive voice and we hear his tortured experience, but there is a strength and an artfulness in it and in the songs he sang. I don’t hear that from the singer-songwriter today. That is why very little of my material is drawn from the current catalog.
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