Classically good singers in rock/punk

Clearly you don’t have to be a good singer to be in a successful band. In fact, sometimes it helps to have a distinctive voice, no matter how bad it is. And if it’s a punk band all bets are off. These thoughts mainly came to mind listening to Gwen Stefani try to sing a duet with Sting during the Super Bowl.

Given that… I figure some guys and gals who can actually sing well sneak in despite the particular genre. I don’t mean classically trained, since that’s pretty damn unlikely, but maybe good enough to take the training if they wished.

Any nominations?

The qualties for a rock singer (especially a male one) are different from a classical singer, who tend to sing higher and more sweetly. Robert Plant, for instance, is a fine rock singer, but I doubt his voice would cut it doing opera (OTOH, opera singers like Pavorotti would sound pretty lousy trying to do “Whole Lotta Love”).

So first we have to define what it means to sing well.

I think Pat Benetar took classical singing lessons when she was young. I have never heard her sing live to tell if it shows in her voice.

Belive me not, as you will…

Dee Snider of Twisted Sister was trained. He really could sing fairly well. He just didn’t want to.

Pat Benatar was classically trained

Sheryl Crow had some classical training and has sung with Pavarotti.

Aretha Franklin is the Best. Singer. Ever. and replaced Pavarotti when he couldn’t sing at the Grammys and she tore the place apart.

Geoff Tate of Queensryche is generally considered to have a fine voice and could’ve done classical if he had chosen to.

Chris Cornell of AudioSlave and Soundgarden (aka: “The Throat”) is a genetic freak who could sing anything he wanted to if he put his mind to it - his voice is in the Michael Jordan category - just head and shoulders above his peers.

Rob Halford, formerly of Judas Priest, could hit notes - cleanly and in full voice - for days.

There’s a bunch out there. And SmackFu I am not sure what you were saying about the Stefani/Sting duet. Between the two, Stefani has a more tuneful voice - Sting’s has such a bizarre timbre that I bet it would be tough to duet with…

Freddie Mercury and Cass Elliot were both rock singers who sang as well as anyone in the classical world.

I take a lot of grief for being a Meat Loaf fan, but that boy’s work is opera; it just has guitars.

Get out your old copy of Dark Side of the Moon…I know you have it somewhere. Listen to Clare Tory doing “Great Gig in the Sky.”

Rufus Wainwright fits the OP exactly. He’s a classically trained opera singer, who’s making his very own style of pop infused with operatic tendencies. Insanely good stuff.

Burton Cummings supposedly had a four octave range…

Amy lee from Evanescence has the sort of pure voice that doesn’t get heard much these days.

Seconding Meat Loaf, Burton Cummings and Freddie Mercury and adding in Annie Lennox and believe it or not, Cyndi Lauper, who when she’s not lisping babytalk style, has an amazing set of pipes.

Actually, now that I think about it, George Michael has improved tremendously too - under all that overdub crap there’s a man with a fine voice.

It’s damn all true on Cyndi Lauper. She’s got something like 5 and a half octaves in those pipes. Amazing.

The singer from Joydrop is pretty good. The guy from Tool isn’t bad. The vocalist from Opeth is up there too, when he’s not growling. Ben Folds seems pretty good to me.

I wonder how many people recognize King Diamond’s voice. He’s a Danish metal singer (usually wearing Kiss-like makeup), he is similar to Rob Halford but maybe even greater in range.

And to show you I have somewhat divergent tastes - how about Art Garfunkel as well?

I always thought his appeal was in spite of his voice. I like his music, but his voice always seems a little thin and reedy - it just adds to the geek image.

Katie Noonan of the Australian band george studied piano and opera at a conservatorium. She has a very impressive range, as does her brother and fellow bandmember, Tyrone. Their mother is a professional dramatic soprano.

Jeff Buckley springs to mind as another singer with (or “who had”, rather) a great voice.

I’m confused. I don’t remember anyone named Clare Tory being part of PF. Is he a guest singer ?

If I recall correctly she’s the girl that did the AHHH-UH-UH-AHHHH-etc and supposedly had an orgasm while doing it :eek:.

OP, could you elaborate on what you said about Gwen? I’ve always thought she was an amazing singer. If anything she was just out of breath at the Super Bowl from running around the stage.