22 thoughts on “13 Famous Singers With Surprisingly Bad Vocal Habits

  1. This article is hit and miss for me. Agreed, some of the examples are vocal fails, and most of these things can make singing harder, but some are unnecessary. I’m sure some of these examples are also anamolies in an otherwise better set of performances. Especially Eddie Vedder. His sound is definitive of the whole genre. You would recruit tongue tension if you wanted to parody an American 90’s grungy rock singer.
    I’m not even a fan of Myley either but her fans love her sound. Ray Charles was nasal for his whole career, but to fans of the style it was character not nasality.
    Sorry if I’m generalising, but being an opera coach you probably would correct all of these things. But in contemporary music there are tensions that relate to vocal qualities that can be lived with, if done correctly and offset with releasing exercises.
    Like I said, I partly agree with you. Just don’t agree with the angle.

    1. Well as a singer and life long Musician myself, I think Eddy Veddar was the WORST male vocalist..ever! He has no range at all, sounded flat on his recordings and even worse live. He always sounded like he was having a heart attack singing. He also always sounds like he is singing the same note.

  2. I think that this has been done very well. I am both an opera singer and jazz singer, so i understand both techniques and nothing should hurt or strain. Chris, This is about technique. People like Ray Charles were popular but that doesn’t mean that automatically gives them the right to a good technique. With hard work, there is a way of achieving a contemporary sound following the above. Classical technique (although it may seem very different from contemporary music) is highly relevant to a good technique and can be applied to any type of music. I think that people don’t understand the word “opera” and just associate it with too much vibrato and therefore so far removed from contemporary singing. Art music is much more than this and we have a lot to learn from it. It’s where contemporary music came from.

    Very good example with Kathleen Battle by the way.

  3. Elaine
    what about gasping out in on mic like you hear Katy Perry in hot and cold?do you gasp in mic?
    how do you calm heavy breathing down after concert?

  4. I guess you’re not including singers whose actual style is singing off-key – since you don’t have the obvious Morrissey (of the Smiths). Or maybe you’re just not going back that far . . .

  5. Why you should listen to someone who can be heard breathing on mic like Elaine is bad.
    message me craig sparky facebook

  6. All of these singers have great feel and emotional expression. Unfortunately for their voices, this is what the audience wants. Like a famous athlete, they will or are paying the price. Good luck changing the world’s musical tastes.

  7. Anybody can grow their vocal range yet it takes a considerable measure of practice, time, and persistence. I used to have the capacity to just sing in mid-section voice and falsetto.

  8. Well, no wonder you are gonna find flaws with some current day mainstream singers that are completely reliant on technology, and whose fame is a complete mystery.

    What flaws do Mavis Staples have?

    1. Well Mariah Carey and Kelly Clarkson were, and to an extent, still are good vocalists. They’ve lost much of their range and ease, but still could knock out most of their competition, the only good vocalists in today’s relevant music are Beyonce, So Hyang from Asia, and Ariana Grande shows lots of potential, but I stress potential.

      1. Hey, there’s always Ailee and Hyolyn. Solji as well. There’s a lot more out there, totally relevant singers.

  9. But Taylor is improving so much!!! She doesnt sound flat all the time!! Maybe 45% are flat LIVE performances but she have a great potential and plus the emotion added to the song that makes us, SWIFTIES to love her

  10. This article is spot on. Thank you for expressing what I have been thinking for years. This was also a gentle reminder to myself of what not to do while performing. Bravo!!!!❤

  11. Very interesting. As an amateur musician I should have been more aware of all these vocal nuances. I’m wondering what faults might be found with Elvis – my all time favourite.
    I remember David Foster telling Neil Young he was singing flat and Neil objecting, “But David, that’s my style!”
    And to me, a lot of the bossa nova singers seem to be flat.

  12. What about Demi Lovato? She seems to have a great voice on her recorded tracks, and even sometimes live….but it seems like the majority of the time she sings live she is completely off key, or her pitch is off…Im not a music guru so I have no idea what it is but she definitely is off live.

  13. I kind of agree Eddie Vedder is a far from perfect singer but he sounds emotional and interesting, I’d listen to 10 Eddies over Celina Dion.

  14. very helpful article! I took voice lessons in college and the instructors thought I was good. I just wanted to see if i could do it. I didn’t keep up with it consistently and find myself falling back into bad habits. I like the examples to help understand the concepts.

    I know they still don’t get a ton of respect as a band, but simon lebon of DD I think to this day has managed to keep his voice in good shape – so he must be doing something right after 40 years of performing. Too many of my favorites are dropping off in the last few years – DB, MJ, GM, Prince… *sigh*

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