Friday, January 06, 2006

You'll Never Find...

...a singer with vocals quite as deep, raspy, and soulful (not to mention bass-laden) as Lou Rawls. The always cool R&B vocalist died this morning at Cedar-Sinai Medical Center at the not-so-old age of 72, a victim of lung cancer. I remember when I first discovered Rawls. I was still a kid in New Jersey, flipping through channels, and stumbled across his telethon (could it have been WOR-9? WPIX-11?). The highlight, of course, was when he capped things off with his trademark songs "You'll Never Find Another Love Like Mine" and "Lady Love." (I used to occasionally confuse him with Don Cornelius, the host of Soul Train.)

In addition, there may never be as cool a rendition of "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas" as his.

2 comments:

Patrick O'Hannigan said...

Lou Rawls was great, but another great -- Johnny Cash -- could match him for "bass-laden vocals."

We'll leave Barry White in the baritone range.

And Isaac Freeman of the Fairfield Four is too little known; his bass voice is positively subterranean (see, for example, "Home of the Blues" by the Nashville Bluegrass Band, where NBB collaborates with the Fairfield Four on an awesome gospel number called "Roll, Jordan, Roll") -- Freeman's bass makes subwoofers fall all over themselves.

miklos rosza said...

Ah, I think so far as basso profundo goes there was only one Howlin' Wolf.

Strangely enough, there was a documentary about him the other night at 4 in the morning. It featured some b&w footage of him performing that was incredible.

Lou Rawls was great too, in a different mode.