How Would You Describe Me To Your Friends?
Now you know I love singing, and I love playing. I’ve done lots of both of those things. What I haven’t done much of is being very good at describing what it is I do. Rather than write what I think I sound like, I thought it would be interesting to put it out to you! What do YOU think I sound like? What I mean is, if you were going to tell a friend to check out my music, how would YOU describe me?
To figure out what words to use, I create a short survey and sent it out to my newsletter subscribers. I collected replies for four days; forty-one people responded. My inner math / statistician nerd compiled these fancy charts from the results, and my inner web master posted them here for all to see.
1. Choose up to FOUR artists from the list below who you would mention when describing me to someone else.
Are there any other artists that you would mention? Or particular combinations of artists? You know, like… “the crooning blues of Bob Dylan and the lyrical themes of David Bowie”… (I just made that up. Not about me. But that would be an interesting artist, non?)
>>> This is tricky because I don’t feel I know many of these other artists well enough to compare! But here’s what I do think: There is a lightness or breeziness to your music, a quality of which the one Corinne Bailey Rae song I know also shares. I love the Emmy Lou Harris song “Goodbye” (is it a cover??) and I can imagine you singing that, and I also think you guys share some vocal similarities (a softness, an emotiveness). I would also mention Lucinda Williams, not because I know her music but because I remember you raving about her as an influence.
>>> Like Katie Melua or Marti Jones, very fancy and various.
>>> Reid Jameson – another Canadian darling. I think you complement each other in your approaches, even though I guess you’re quite different.
>>> Karyn Ellis; She particularly reminds me of Karyn Ellis. Maybe a little Jane Sibbery in the freedom and innovation area.
>>> You know, for the most part, none of the above…and that’s probably why I was drawn to you…finally someone that doesn’t fit into a category that has her own natural and distinct style both in words and music.
>>> Perhaps, a little bit of Kat Goldman’s insights into life — her own as well as the lives of many of the rest of us.
>>> If Audrey Hepburn could sing…
>>> Jane Siberry
>>> I don’t know most of those artists and you do not sound like the ones I do. I would describe you as your own thing, without comparing!
>>> Iris Dement, theres’s an artist just like you Lynn something who talks about meeting in the supermarket, a fly in an airplane, sensitive modern guys… blast I just don’t remember her name but it will come to me and I will forward it.
>>> You have the quirky lyrics of Regina but you sound like Kathleen.
>>> Gabrielle Papillon
>>> Eve Goldberg
>>> The poetic power of Leonard Cohen and the vocal charm of Sarah MacLachlan.
2. Choose up to FOUR genres that you would use when describing my music to someone else.
Yeah, I know… nobody wants to be boxed in. But give me your best guestimation, svp! Are there any other genres (or variations of the the ones mentioned above) that you would use? For example, how would you classify my music in your playlists?
>>> I just would tell people you fit into the genre of “Fun and loving life”
>>> Can I say “all of the above”? I have described you as “big-sweaters and party-dress, lyrical folk-pop with a deep emotional undercurrent” or something to that effect.
>>> Theatrically inclined; is there a genre for that besides opera?
>>> Strong songs with great arrangements and the right mix of melancholy and humour.
>>> Unique and amazing.
>>> Sad songs with happy music !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
>>> I can count, yet mentioned five here. Naive Modernist Canadiana? New category, lol.
>>> Coffee House
>>> Girly folk – Sweet, Funny, Playful.
>>> This is a hard one because it depends on which song you are singing at the time… Some of your songs are more folk – ballads, while others are comedic, others quirky… that’s what makes you so special! ;)
3. Below are a bunch of words that have been used to describe me in reviews, etc, over the years. Choose up to FIFTEEN words that you might use to describe me / my music to someone new to it. I’m looking for words that capture the “vibe” of my songs, my music and / or my performances.
(Then I asked: Of the words you chose, what are the THREE that stand out the most? (Feel free to add others I’ve missed as well.) The Xs beside the adjectives in the chart above show which adjectives considered to be most important. Below are a couple of other comments, too.)
>>> Ooh that was fun! Hard to choose three, but I’ll go with… girlish, fragile, whimsical. I also like “light”, but I don’t mean light in content or emotion. I just hear light when I listen to your music! Like breathing, like air, like a breeze through the heaviness that many artists get stuck in.
>>> Bittersweet (like good dark chocolate). Playful (like an uninhibited, naked 5-year-old). Witty (because you know you’re smart and like when people react). + Lyrical.
>>> CINAMMONY! joyous, and heart-breaking. cos damn.
>>> Clever, upbeat, whimsical; subtle.
>>> Original, heartfelt, stylish (strong)
>>> Twangly (twinkly+twangy).
>>> Honest and Humorous. Creative. Musically and physically. Your CD holder you made out of cardboard and a coffee filter is still one of my faves. It’s a cool piece of art!
>>> Playful, quirky (I said that before I read the list!), witty.
At the end of the survey, I invited people to leave their thoughts. And there were lots of thoughts left. Find them here on the Fan Review page.
Although the survey is officially signed off now, I am leaving it open for anyone who happens upon it and would like to take a few minutes to fill it in: Click here to add your thoughts on what I’m doing. I’ll check back occasionally, and add new comments on my website.