Wednesday, 20 October 2010

Voice of the Century

This phrase was much-repeated in the obituaries of Joan Sutherland. And, undeniably, her voice was a splendid and beautiful thing -- but calling it 'the voice of the century' is exactly wrong. Hers was the voice out of the previous century -- as if, on the strength of the excellence of Landor's Latin verse we called him 'the poet of his age'. I've been idly contemplating the most plausible candidates for 'voice of the (20th) century', and I'd say I've narrowed it down to: Ella Fitzgerald; Elvis Presley; John Lydon. Not sure there are any other candidates.

1 comment:

mahendra singh said...

I would like to suggest Betty Carter, and in place of Ella Fitzgerald … heresy in some quarters, I know, but there it is