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Thread: Interpretive singers and singers-songwriters

  1. #1
    Moderator Ken Cheng's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2002

    Default Interpretive singers and singers-songwriters

    A number of folks out there are fans of interpretive singers...i.e. singers who don't write their own songs, but sing songs either written for them by professional songwriters or cover songs already made famous by other, earlier artists.

    Nothing innately wrong with that, but I've always preferred singer-songwriters to interpretive singers. There's a certain authenticity to a song being sung by its writer that often, even the most gifted interpretive singer can't quite capture.

    I also prefer musicians who play an instrument (or multiple instrument) as well as sing, especially if his/her instrumental prowess is of equal importance to the final product as the vocal.

  2. #2
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2006


    Here's an odd story, about the song "And the Band Played Waltzing Matilda". The song was aired in its current form during a folk competition. The custom was for the competitors to cover existing songs, but an early competitor performed original material, so all the others followed suit. Eric Bogle performed "And the Band Played Waltzing Matilda". which knocked out the audience. It didn't win, but it caught the imagination of the listeners, one of whom asked for permission to perform it, and was granted it.

    Bogle returned to his normal life. Some years later, he was approached by a visitor, who asked him if he was the Eric Bogle who wrote "And the Band Played Waltzing Matilda". Apparently the lady who asked Bogle for permission to perform his song did so at a folk festival afterwards, and another, more famous singer heard it and covered it in turn with commercial success. Others followed suit, taking the song across the Atlantic. Meanwhile Bogle was unaware of the success of his song, until this visitor came to seek out the original songwriter.

    Some time after the song had been interpreted by various singers, the original songwriter eventually recorded his own version.

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