Best Rock voice ever?


Man, this is a tough one.  I think I could go about twenty different directions, given the day and my mood.

But it seems like I always find myself asking this question when I hear Chris Cornell’s voice.  He’s got such a great delivery, and he can take you from a low, silky hum to a soul-killing howl in two seconds flat.  I’m thinking “Face Pollution.”  I’m thinking “Hunger Strike.”  Eddie Vedder’s in this class too, but his grades aren’t as good.

Then of course there’s Geoff Tate on “Jet City Woman.”  Janis Joplin on “Piece of My Heart.”  Tina Turner on “Proud Mary.”  Ann Wilson on “Crazy on You.”  John Fogarty on “Travelin’ Band.”  Freddy Mercury on “Stone Cold Crazy.”  Layne Staley on “Rain When I Die.”  Ronnie James Dio on “Holy Diver” (though I might slide Dio over into the “metal” category and let him fight it out with Rob Halford).  Rod Stewart on “Every Picture Tells a Story.”  Steve Perry on “Faithfully.”  I suppose you have to throw Robert Plant in there too.

It’s a fun exercise, and you could spend of lot of time and drink a lot of beer trying to come up with an ulitmate champion.  Thank goodness my iPod can hold pretty much every song these artists have ever done. 


14 Responses to “Best Rock voice ever?”

  1. axl Says:

    Axl Rose

  2. nicheplayer Says:

    Axl Rose…. Rings a bell. Was he in Metallica?

  3. Trotch-man Says:

    Chris Garcia of Sold Out. sold out berga, the best voice

  4. Brandon Says:

    Wow… pretty sure you’ve moved on to other topics by now, but how about
    Joey Tempest of Europe, Ray Gillen of Badlands and Black Sabbath, Lou Graham of Foreigner, Sebastian Bach of Skid Row and even Sammy Hagar on some of the 5150 VH stuff.

    You’re right, it’s fun just to idolize and get inspired.

  5. keith Says:

    yup Chris Cornell
    he rules!!

  6. sethy Says:

    thom yorke of radiohead, jeff buckly

  7. Matt Says:

    Rock music voice….Lemmy from Motörhead, Chris Cornell for sure, Axl Rose as well, John Kay from Steppenwolf, Joh Fogerty Creedence….uuhh….there are some good voices out there.

  8. Daniel Says:

    why hasn’t anyone mentioned DAVID GROHL of Foo Fighters. go listen to the first 30 seconds of Best of You off of In Your Honor

  9. Ben Says:

    IMO, Steve Perry (Journey), Dennis DeYoung (Styx) and Freddie Mercury (Queen) are the “cream of the crop” when it comes to most spectacular voices in rock.

  10. Benn L. Says:

    Chester Bennington (Linkin Park).. surreal.. how he could muster such voice.. never in my entire life have i seen somebody perform with that voice….. other singers seem to sound the same as the other..but his crawl voice and versatility is exceptional…

  11. shannon Says:

    Rob Halford, Ray Gillen, Chris Cornell, Layne Staley, Eddie Vedder

  12. SingPsyc Says:

    According to my wife (who is an opera singer with a decade of vocal training to show for it), the best rock singer is (technically speaking, now) hands down Ronnie James Dio. She says that his voice is phenomenal and I gotta agree. From Rainbow to Sabbath to Dio, he’s always been at the top of his form. Second place has gotta be Bruce Dickinson from Iron Maiden. Both guys have clearly had classical vocal training. My wife’s runners up include Klaus Meine, Freddie Mercury, Sebastian Bach, Rob Halford, and Pat Benatar. BTW, Pat Benatar originally wanted to become an opera singer!

    Someone mentioned Axl Rose. I always thought he sounded kinda like what Edith Bunker from “All in the Family” would sound like if she sang hard rock. 🙂

  13. Ki-San Says:

    John Lennon. The original rock voice. You’ve Got to Hide Your Love Away and dozens of other songs. Kurt Cobain had the same kind of velvet gravel quality going on.

  14. davidw1962 Says:


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