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Which singer to pick?

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by Tommygun_ted, Jan 13, 2019 at 9:17 PM.

  1. The singer with the better voice

    134 vote(s)
  2. The singer who writes lyrics

    17 vote(s)
  1. So we're auditioning singers for our metal group, and we've narrowed it down to two people. We're going to vote as a band to decide, but just curious what you guys would go for. Both singers are local, have gigging experience, play an instrument and there for understand what the rest of the band is doing, and seem like decent, easy to work with guys. The dilemma is, one singer isn't as strong, but has a lot of experience writing lyrics, where the other singer has a slightly better voice, but doesn't write lyrics, or at least hasn't yet. I can write lyrics well enough, and I think there is enough creativity within the group to come up with something, but which would you guys go for? Again, not going to be making a final decision bassed on the feedback here, just curious as to what you guys would do.
    SactoBass likes this.
  2. Singer every time. Any fool can write lyrics
  3. ArtechnikA

    ArtechnikA I endorsed a check once... Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 24, 2013
    It's metal - not country ballads...
    alanolynn and songwriter21 like this.
  4. saabfender


    Jan 10, 2018
    At first I clicked singer. Then I thought about it. What kind of band do you want to be? If you want to do primarily covers, then of course, Singing Guy makes more sense. If you want to try to "get anywhere" as a band, you need songwriting.

    It's funny, on all those "Why wasn't this or that band more famous/successful?" threads, it always comes down to the songs. Look at Motley Crue. None of them stellar players, decent band, but man-alive, they've got a great catalog and none of them will ever go hungry because of that.
  5. ArtechnikA

    ArtechnikA I endorsed a check once... Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 24, 2013
    Songs, yes...
    I cannot recall a single Motley Crue lyric.
  6. Torrente Cro

    Torrente Cro

    Sep 5, 2013
    The one that doesn't play bass ;)
  7. Skybone


    Jun 20, 2016
    The one who's vocals suit your band.
  8. ThinCrappyTone

    ThinCrappyTone Mostly harmless Supporting Member

    Oct 1, 2011
    Massachusetts, USA
    I’d be more concerned with:
    - which singer is more reliable?
    - who has better live presence?
    - who is an easier human to deal with?
    - any addictions that might rear their head with either of them?
    - distance

    Edit: all things being equal, I’d take the better singer
  9. Lesfunk

    Lesfunk Supporting Member

    Depends on how bad the lyric writer sings

    I like a Bob Dylans songs much better when other people sing them
    3bc, larryatravis, MDBass and 3 others like this.
  10. You're not looking for a poet, right? So, it's singer every time.

    IMO, writing lyrics...or poem... can be learned, some will learn faster than other. Great vocal...you can't learn it. It's either you have it or you don't. You can learn to sing, of course, but that won't give you great vocal.
  11. buldog5151bass

    buldog5151bass Kibble, milkbones, and P Basses. And redheads.

    Oct 22, 2003
    I am not a metal head, but I didn't think lyrics was what made the tunes. But I would look at it like this:

    Are you satisfied with YOUR lyrics? Are they weak enough where your songs aren't worth releasing? Are his lyrics enough of an improvement where it will make or break the project? Unless the answers are no, yes, and yes, go with the better singer.

    Best I can do without hearing/knowing all the facts.
    Bunk McNulty likes this.
  12. songwriter21

    songwriter21 I have an obsession for wood. The musical kind.

    Jul 31, 2005
    Sponsored by Hipshot
    Tommy Lee's a pretty damn good drummer, though.
  13. kdogg


    Nov 13, 2005
    In my experience, a band’s appeal almost always boils down to the singer. Does he have the goods when you hit that first verse. Lyrics are not unimportant, but if the singer is mediocre, they won’t matter. IMHO of course.
    MattZilla and ThinCrappyTone like this.
  14. I forgot this.
    English is not my first language, most people here in my country do not speak English... but songs in English are popular here.

    Many people can sing songs in English, but ask them what the song is about...the meaning of the lyrics...or if they can translate it into our language...I'm sure some of them can not answer it...but that doesn't stop them from loving the songs, because, in my experience anyway, the lyrics of the song does not matter.

    So, again if it was me I would pick the better singer.
  15. 40Hz

    40Hz Supporting Member

    Yep. Lousy lyrics.
  16. bass40hz

    bass40hz Cigar smoker, scotch drinker, American Patriot Supporting Member

    Aug 13, 2014
    Sussex County, NJ
    no endorsements yet...Are you listening Spector, DR, GK, Line6?
    Go with the better voice, I write all the lyrics for my band a la Geezer Butler.
    Rock on.
  17. Joe Nerve

    Joe Nerve Supporting Member

    Oct 7, 2000
    New York City
    Endorsing artist: Musicman basses

    Charisma would be the deciding factor for me. That's what will do the band the most good. Tough to tell who has more of that though, unless you can get to see them in front of an audience.

    And FWIW, lyrics are subjective, and more often than not people arent even listening to them.
    redwingxix, rocu, eriky4003 and 4 others like this.
  18. Seanto


    Dec 29, 2005
    My take as well. For metal, quality lyrics can take a back seat. Depending on the type of metal, you won't hear them anyway.
    ArtechnikA likes this.
  19. bolophonic


    Dec 10, 2009
    Durham, NC
    I’d be leaning towards the better vocalist, unless the lyric guy has some sort of extra charisma that would put your live show over the top.
    monsterthompson likes this.
  20. GBBSbassist

    GBBSbassist I actually play more guitar... Supporting Member

    Nov 23, 2010
    There have been tons of superstars over the years with atrocious lyrics.

    Go with the better singer.
    higain617 likes this.

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