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Singing like Lefty Frizzell

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Perhaps someone who is not really talked about is Lefty Frizzell. Lefty Frizzell was once a big country music star in the 40s, 50s and 60s; he at one time was competing with Hank Williams in the top charts, and toured with him many times. Lefty had a distinctive voice that influenced the likes of George Jones, Randy Travis, and many others. Leftys singing style was unique from the other singers from his time, he would sound out syllables for a longer amount of time than most singers, a vowel bending style is what it has been called too. 




How does someone try and attempt a singing style like this? Lefty was from Texas, so he had a distinctive accent, and then you add he had a distinctive singing style.  





One of the people that influenced Lefty Frizzell was musician named Jimmie Rodgers. Jimmie Rodgers is not to be confused with the Jimmie Rodgers who record Honeycomb, but the Jimmie Rodgers who yodeled, sangs songs like "Hes in the jailhouse now", and he sang a series of songs he called Blue Yodels. He influenced numerous people in Rock n roll, Country music, and Blues music, one of them being Lefty Frizzell. Do you think it is possible Lefty borrowed some of his style from Jimmie Rodgers? 





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    Part of getting someones singing "style" is hearing the personality and demeanor (the type of person being presented). It can be like acting.

     Hank whines about things and is depressed. Merle is matter of fact, authoritative. Lefty is like the smooth talking lady's man or a car dealer trying to convince you that his car is the one you want to buy. There is a kind of Swagger in his voice, Smoothly sliding  from note to note and maybe drawing them out a little at the end.

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  • 2 months later...

Hey I just wanna let you know, I saw in a documentary about Lefty ( I'm a fan too) that he would yodel to warm up, And would also use that approach in his phrasing.  You can hear it in " Always Late With Your Kisses", he slides in and out of his break, using the yodel to accent his phrasing.  Hope that helps 

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