Monday, November 17, 2008

Jim James, music critic

Rolling Stone has put up a bunch of ballots from their not very persuasive recent list of the “greatest singers of all time.” They're fun to look through. Hetfield’s feels right, with Ronnie James Dio as his fave and high marks for Lemmy Kilmeister and Sean Harris of Diamondhead; Beatles-worshipper Ozzy Osborne puts John at No. 1 and Paul at No. 2.

But the best I see is from Jim James of My Morning Jacket, who seems to have actually taken seriously the task of ranking history’s greatest singers. He puts “Marvin Pentz Gaye Jr.” in the top slot and includes Jimmie Rodgers, Louis Armstrong, Bon Scott, Wayne Coyne, Nina Simone and Gram Parsons. That’s a fine, honest, learned list, and it’s what I wish the final product was more like.

Interesting thing: a bunch of people on these ballots chose Bon Scott, who didn't make it to the Top 100. Wonder where he placed?


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