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3 hours ago, the-ocean87 said:

Troll detected.

Grow up!

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Elvis is one of the biggest stars of all time, so is Frank Sinatra, but I could never rate them alongside what Robert Plant did, no where near, and Freddie Mercury?? surely this is a joke? Some forum in joke that I'm not in on?

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Ah it appears we're having another fanboy meltdown. :popcorn2:What is it with some Zeppelin fans becoming such trollish assholes? I see this happen time and again here and on Royal Orleans. 

3 hours ago, the-ocean87 said:

Re Elvis: I think he was very gifted technically. Otherwise he wouldn't be able to sing songs like "An American Trilogy" or "My Way" live the way he did.

Oh yeah, don't get me wrong, Elvis was a great singer on a technical level, I just don't think he was the best in terms of, say, range. But the power and versatility that he displayed was mindblowing. He really knew how to use his voice in order to blow people away. 

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7 minutes ago, ZepHead315 said:

Ah it appears we're having another fanboy meltdown. :popcorn2:What is it with some Zeppelin fans becoming such trollish assholes? I see this happen time and again here and on Royal Orleans. 

 

Maybe its because some fanboys join these sites only to find so called Zeppelin fans that are totally clueless. 

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Just now, Victor said:

Maybe its because some fanboys join these sites only to find so called Zeppelin fans that are totally clueless. 

Dude if you don't like Freddie Mercury that's perfectly fine, but calling people "clueless" and saying that they "need to get their hearing tested" just because they do is the epitome of snobbery. You're being a dick. If you can't handle others having different tastes than you, maybe you should leave or else quit acting like a child.

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Just now, ZepHead315 said:

Dude if you don't like Freddie Mercury that's perfectly fine, but calling people "clueless" and saying that they "need to get their hearing tested" just because they do is the epitome of snobbery. You're being a dick. If you can't handle others having different tastes than you, maybe you should leave or else quit acting like a child.

i can fully appreciate people having different tastes, I can understand Yes fans thinking Jon Anderson is the greatest vocalist of all time, or Genesis fans thinking its Peter Gabriel, or ELP fans thinking its Greg Lake, beacuse they were amazing unique vocalists but I'm just coming to terms with the fact that Freddie Mercury possibly is not a forum in joke and that some people here are serious...OMG!!!! HAHA!! I dont know whether to laugh or cry. 

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1 hour ago, Victor said:

i can fully appreciate people having different tastes, I can understand Yes fans thinking Jon Anderson is the greatest vocalist of all time, or Genesis fans thinking its Peter Gabriel, or ELP fans thinking its Greg Lake, beacuse they were amazing unique vocalists but I'm just coming to terms with the fact that Freddie Mercury possibly is not a forum in joke and that some people here are serious...OMG!!!! HAHA!! I dont know whether to laugh or cry. 

I like Freddie Mercury I think he’s a great singer one of the best.

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This thread is going absolutely nowhere!  Robert Palnt is a great singer, Elvis is The King and Freddy Mercury is so damn good as well!  Perhaps, leave it at that as they are three of the best ever.  No sense of who is better as three iconic singers and pretty tough than have three better than those.  In time some great ones will come along!  Will they be better?  We'll see, but tough competition.  Certainly, they are the best rock singers ever until you go into Pavarotti territory!  Just my say.

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4 hours ago, Victor said:

i can fully appreciate people having different tastes, I can understand Yes fans thinking Jon Anderson is the greatest vocalist of all time, or Genesis fans thinking its Peter Gabriel, or ELP fans thinking its Greg Lake, beacuse they were amazing unique vocalists but I'm just coming to terms with the fact that Freddie Mercury possibly is not a forum in joke and that some people here are serious...OMG!!!! HAHA!! I dont know whether to laugh or cry. 

At this point no one cares what you do, as long as you do it elsewhere.

 

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9 hours ago, ZepHead315 said:

Consider also how he was in terrible shape at this point, yet as IpMan said, his voice was still strong as ever:

 

Elvis suffered all-over pain as well as abdominal pain, particularly during his last year of life, and was prescribed Dilaudid which is used for terminally ill cancer patients. Geller, Grob, Hodge and others believed Elvis had bone cancer and after Elvis death, Dr. Nick told Vernon Presley that Elvis had bone cancer.

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My two cents- Geoff Tate in his prime was untouchable range wise.

Sammy Hagar has maybe the most solid vocals for rock music ever. Just the right amount of raspiness without being harsh and a lot of emotion.

In the studio? Plant. Easily. Aside from vocal abilities, his ability to sing intricate parts with the perfect melodies was pretty phenomenal. Something like Misty Mountain Hop really stands out. Plant used his voice like an instrument and actually created "riffs" just the same as Page was doing on guitar, ala Black Dog. Hey Hey What Can I Do is a really underrated vocal performance, with both the lyrics and emotion he uses to convey the story, while adding all the little ad lib style parts that fit so perfectly. Plant's intuition to know exactly how long to drag a note out was remarkable. Elvis had an untouchable tone and had amazing control over his voice, but he still just sounded like Elvis on every song he did. And he sure as heck wasn't writing riffs with his vocals.

The fact that I've been listening to Zep for three days straight may have influenced this lol. But I'll admit, I've not indulged enough in Elvis or Mercury to really argue about it. I do know Mick Jagger is the worst rock vocalist I've ever heard lol.

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13 hours ago, ZepHead315 said:

It's almost as if not everyone on this site has the exact same tastes that you do. Shocking, I know.

Everybody is entitled to my own opinion!

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Don't s a song is a brilliant vocal performance by both singers. In my alternate universe, Elvis frees himself from is management and comes to the UK to work with Plant Page/ Lennon and McCartney.  The five of them make a string of classic Lp's

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I can't stand Freddie Mercury personally, I mean he could sing but I'd rather listen to puppies being tortured.

I don't really see the point in the thread myself, I love Robert Plant & Elvis but they're nothing alike in terms of singing.

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28 minutes ago, Mook said:

I can't stand Freddie Mercury personally, I mean he could sing but I'd rather listen to puppies being tortured.

I don't really see the point in the thread myself, I love Robert Plant & Elvis but they're nothing alike in terms of singing.

I concur with all of this. Mercury was an excellent singer, but he always seemed very monotone to me. He couldn't hit really high notes or low notes, he just hovered somewhere in the middle. No one worked a stage like he did though.

Elvis vs Plant? Why not compare Pavarotti and Rob Halford? Or Johnny Cash and Brian Johnson? Very apples and oranges.

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8 hours ago, IpMan said:

At this point no one cares what you do, as long as you do it elsewhere.

 

HAHA!!!!

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Posted (edited)

I honestly don't give the vaguest who's 'the best' at anything.
All I'm bothered about is whether I like it or not.
Eg. Do I like Robert Plant's singing? Yes. Do I like Elvis's and Freddie Mercury's singing? No.
Does that mean that Robert is 'better' than Elvis or Freddie? No. Do I care? Nah.
I'm with Mook and Gibsonfan on this one.

 

Edited by Brigante

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What about Tiny Tim? Where is the love for TT??? No-one could jam on a kazoo like Tim could. That guy could wail!

:lol:

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13 hours ago, SteveAJones said:

Elvis suffered all-over pain as well as abdominal pain, particularly during his last year of life, and was prescribed Dilaudid which is used for terminally ill cancer patients. Geller, Grob, Hodge and others believed Elvis had bone cancer and after Elvis death, Dr. Nick told Vernon Presley that Elvis had bone cancer.

I read a very interesting article where a doctor theorized that Elvis' physical decline essentially began with a fall he took in 1967 where he hit his head badly and may have had a traumatic brain injury. Granted, the lifestyle he led certainly didn't help matters, but it does make you wonder.

https://www.practicalpainmanagement.com/pain/other/brain-injury/elvis-presley-head-trauma-autoimmunity-pain-early-death

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Posted (edited)
On Monday, April 09, 2018 at 1:34 PM, ZepHead315 said:

This is a rather enlightening discussion so far. Especially since my three favorite singers of all time (Elvis, Freddie Mercury, and of course Plant) have been brought up. Here's my two cents:

If I'm judging based purely on emotion, I'd give the vote to Elvis. The man may not have been the most technically gifted singer, but DAMN if he didn't know how to use his voice to move people. He could sing a gospel song and move non-believers to tears. In this clip, a man perfectly sums it up. Even if you knew nothing else about Elvis, you can tell how much he believed in what he was singing. Consider also how he was in terrible shape at this point, yet as IpMan said, his voice was still strong as ever:

Now, I'd agree that on a pure technical level, Freddie would probably win. He was sometimes shaky live, but he always nailed it in the studio. I'm no vocal expert, but I love how he had a clarity and tone in his voice that made it so that he could go from imitating Elvis on Crazy Little Thing Called Love, to soaring highs like Princes of the Universe. Also, like Elvis, he never lost his voice. On The Show Must Go On, he could barely walk due to the progression of his illness. And yet, in one take, he delivered what may very well be his greatest vocal performance ever:

He opera collaboration with Montserrat Caballe shows another side to him as well, and I think it proves that he could have easily had a career outside of rock and roll if he wanted to:

However, when I think of a rock vocalist, I don't think of Elvis or Freddie. I think of Plant. From 1968 to mid 1971, he had an incredible power and energy to his voice. He really was the fourth instrument of Zeppelin in every sense of the word. He had a raw sexual energy that was pretty much unmatched. Remember in TSRTS during SIBLY when that woman in the crowd is gazing at Plant utterly transfixed? He just had that power over people. Now, as we all know, his voice began to change in late 1971, but I think he adapted to it rather well. By 1977, he found a way to sing the songs again without straining his voice. I think he could have even done Immigrant Song if he really wanted to. In other words, I think he became a "smarter" singer. Hell, my favorite vocal performance he ever did in the studio with Zeppelin is I'm Gonna Crawl.

Ultimately, I love all three, but really it's apples and oranges. They all have a unique appeal, and to try to objectively rate one as "the greatest" is pointless. Music, and indeed all art, is entirely subjective.

I agree with most of what you say except the technical part about Elvis. I honestly think he was the most technical recordes singer of all-time. His range was ridiculous. He could sing rock, ballads, country, gospel, etc. He could sing, low, high, raspy, falseto, etc. I've never heard him a bad note. And like Plant, he had at least 4 major voice changes,possibly 6. 53-59, 60-67, 68-70, 71-77.

Edit: Seen you clarified. But the dude had range. :)

Edited by Chick-N-Picker

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Posted (edited)
On Monday, April 09, 2018 at 5:13 PM, Darth Hoek said:

Elvis' voice changed less over time for sure while Robert systematically destroyed his voice through abuse (smoking, drinking, performing while sick as hell, not sleeping, ect.), but adapted to the changes by becoming a more versitile singer.  Elvis' music is not as damaging to the the pipes as zep; the heavier side of the zeppelin catalogue is destructive as hell to sing at full volume to the human voice over time.  Look at the vocal ranges on the albums...singing the songs on anything post pg is much easier; even though the songs are some of their best, the top range sung on them is significantly lower than on the earlier albums at least to my voice and ear.  In my opinion the boots I have available support this timeline as far as live performance goes.

I watched the black and white Danish TV special from 1968/69 and then listened to a 1980 Brussles show off youtube and the difference in Robert's overall range is quite obviously reduced and often uses the aid of some miserable first gen octave effect on the early tunes to make up the difference.  Robert did and has adapted to these changes very well and is still one of the best singers around without a doubt; not being ableto sing something the same way your 20 year old self wrote it 50 years later is not something to be embarrassed about it is just a fact of life.

Also, Elvis didn't smoke and took pills rather than drink to excess as his chosen vice, and while still terrible for the body pills do not directly jack up your larynx like Robert's 10 year + assault on his voice box with whatever passed his way did.  Singing every night with an infected throat while still puffing it all is going to change your voice for the worse too.  Let's say Robert came out of 1973 still with the strong push behind the pipes, but the pipes were a bit dented and jammed up so they didn't quite resonate the same way as before. I feel Robert is and was an great enough musician to recognize the changes in his range and then adapt his singing to them in a style that was even better than before, since Presence is f'n amazing! 

Sadly, Elvis was a lounge act during his last years and was in residency in vegas as far as I am aware; as such, he wasn't dealing with the same rigors of the road and madness that someone on a Zeppelin tour would have undergone.  Imagine how exhausting that sort of endless and raging nomads's lifestyle must have been...

Finally, since some of this thread has turned into a bit of a "list your favorite vocalists" I will throw that in as well here for S&G's.  I think Elvis is the best rock vocalist who came out of the 50's (although Little Richard could scream better than anyone at the time for sure), Robert Plant is the best who came out of the 60's, and Freddy Mercury (yes, the obviously undeserving Freddy Mercury!) is the greatest who came out of the 70's.  Late 80's and 90's goes to Mr. Mike Patton of Mr. Bungle, Faith No More, Fantomas, and countless other band's fame.  The guy has soul, is absolutely crazy, and has a six octave range...of course, obviously I am impressed by vocal range; others may be more into a soulful style, gutteral grunting in time to a double kick drum, or a country twang (hopefully not!). Of couse this is all my opinion so there you go...

 

I agree about the way Robert damaged his voice. But in the 50's Elvis actually sang very harshly on a lot tracks, a lot. Really high and raspy. I heard thats why he changed singing styles to a more smooth suave style around 60-61. That it was hurting his voice.

 

But then 68 rolls around and he pulls it out of his asenal (deeper tone obviously). He uses the most and is way more prominent in 68 through early 69, but retains it through recordings and live performances in 1970. Then much like Plant from 71 onward. He is never the same, with out voice loss.

Everybody should watch the 68 comeback special that hasn't seen it. It truly shows peak Elvis. Heres a good example. Trouble/Guitar Man

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=LUZ9CBKk7Lw

Couldn't figure out how to make the video insert except as a hyperlink. Oh, well.

Edited by Chick-N-Picker

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I can't really answer the question posted at the beginning of this thread, but I agree that the 68 Elvis Special was amazing.  My favorite has always been this one - and check Elvis playing guitar very well indeed.

And as described above here is the 1977 clip of Unchained Melody just 6 weeks before he died in August.  He plays the piano here too.

  

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I think Elvis preserved his voice better, probably due to superior technique. It's also a lot easier to control singing in that range as opposed to wailing in the 5th octave like Plant did. I don't think his voice change was as noticeable as Plant's. I know we're comparing them when they were around the same age, but it would have been interesting to see what Elvis would have sounded like in his late 40s, 50s and 60s like we have with Plant. I suspect his voice would have aged well because of his technique and style. Plant of course can still sing his ass off, but he prefers not to sing in the 70s style, softer stuff is easier on his aging voice.

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