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Paul McCartney is not a great singer.
19 February 2016
5.50pm
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Derek_Francis
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Paul's a very good singer, but I don't think he's among the greatest of all time, especially if you include underground and unsigned singers.  Top 100 material, maybe.  But definitely not top 10.

Is Paul a great song writer?  Without a doubt.

Is Paul a very progressive artist?  Absolutely.  Elvis and Mick Jagger were progessive too, but not necessarily amazing singers.  In the same token, Al Green and Angela Winbush are better singers than Paul but not nearly as progressive.

But if we're taking it by voice alone and base it on criteria like vocal range and such, I'm not so sure.  

19 February 2016
6.04pm
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Evangeline
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Well I do think that Paul is a good singer, I think it really depends on who you compare him to. Say you compare him to someone like Mercury, no, he's not that good. But if you compare him to Dylan or Steve Perry, he's great!

  It all about pereception and what type of voice a particular person prefers.

 Also depends on the style of song a singer can sing successfully. See that's where Mccartney succeeds, he can sing a song like Get Back while also sounding good on a love song, like Yesterday

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19 February 2016
6.19pm
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Holsety
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Sorry man, can't agree with you there at all. He was undoubtedly most capable of the group, especially at the end. His voice did deteriorate over time starting around the mid-70s, but he stayed in very good shape during Wings anyway. 

Paul was absolutely fearless as a singer, capable of so much that it's hard not to rank him highly. How many singers can replicate his performances? Not many. To rank him low to me means you'll have a lot of blank space in your top 100 list; but whatever you say. Paul also has a great vocal range, so not sure what you're saying there.

edit: Also want to say that you can appreciate his voice a lot more if you try to sing the same way he did.

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19 February 2016
7.55pm
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Beatlebug
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Holsety said
Also want to say that you can appreciate his voice a lot more if you try to sing the same way he did.

Agreed, 100%. 

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19 February 2016
11.57pm
Crimbus
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Alright mate let's be real here. I have to make my reply swift and just as purely by reading your post I was plagued with a splitting headach, the kind of headache one only receives after reading something so intensely out of touch with reality that you can actually feel yourself losing grey matter.

Paul McCartney is the greatest male pop singer of all time hands down, no questions asked.  This is almost OBJECTIVE FACT. Within only The Beatles discography alone we find him singing nearly every pitch on the piano, with every style, tone, nuance, timbre, swing, swagger, etc, etc humanly possible. Even if we look past the sheer genius of the songs and just take an aural gander at the man's voice from a purely technical standpoint... you are STILL looking at a complete master.  

Here is my tip to you gentlemen, I want you to go out and take a few singing courses.  (a year or two at least) and then come back to songs like, "Helter Skelter ", "Oh Darling", "A Taste Of Honey ", "What You're Doing ", and also the high harmonies to "Baby's In Black " and "No Reply " while you are at it.  Upon doing so you will suddenly realize, "Holy sh!&, this guy's voice is the literal reincarnation of Sri Krishna!", "I've been singing my whole life and I still can't do what this guy was doing at the age of 27!" "Wow that post I made two years back was way off!"

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20 February 2016
4.54am
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pepperland
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^^ I wouldn't say best male singer ever but definitely one of the best.

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20 February 2016
6.16am
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Mademoiselle Kitty >^..^<
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Replying against my better judgement, but I just can't resist.

The way some people go through such lengths to diminish Paul's abilities almost make me feel like they have a personal grievance against him. It makes me wonder what Paul ever did to those people to make them disrespect him so much.

As I've said elsewhere, taste is personal. You can prefer any singer over Paul, be it John, George, or Ringo, or even Justin Bieber. Arguing over that, would be akin to arguing over which food you prefer, or which type of weather you like better.

However, the things some people claim about the Beatles in general, and Paul in particular, go way beyond stating a preference. And what's more, some of the things that are said are just silly. Paul is not a classically trained musician, that is a fact. But he is a great musician, especially when you keep in mind that he, just like all the Fabs, is an autodidact. That is also a fact. His style of singing and playing may not be up your alley, but that doesn't make him less talented. I'm not a fan of Jimi Hendrix, but that doesn't mean he wasn't a great guitarist. See the nuance there? 

Anyway, I seem to be repeating myself. I'll be on my way now. Listening to some more Beatles music. Because unlike some, I do consider them to be great singers and I'd be happy to do nothing but listen to them for the rest of my life a-hard-days-night-paul-11

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20 February 2016
7.52am
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Ahhh Girl
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Thank you to those who have replied so eloquently. You saved me from my initial reaction which was to say "rubbish" and lock the thread. But, that would have been very unmod-like for me, and Joe would have had to have chewed me out or thrown me out of the mod office. I'm glad I just read the forum rules recently that say starting what might be a controversial thread isn't an automatic ding on a forumpudlian. Only constant badgering of The Fabs by a person is cause for concern.

I'm glad the thread exists now because I'm seeing such good input on Paul's singing ability. Can't have too much of that in my opinion.

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20 February 2016
9.04am
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Beatlebug
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I love the fervency of these replies. Proud Beatlemaniacs, gladly asserting their divine right to make a case for Paul McCartney , who, incidentally, is one of the finest singers I know so thank you very much. 

I'm not making fun of ye-- I'm in the same boat-- just appreciating the love. heart

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20 February 2016
9.13am
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Starr Shine?
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Derek_Francis said

But if we're taking it by voice alone and base it on criteria like vocal range and such, I'm not so sure.  

What criteria disqualifies Paul's singing from greatness in your opinion?

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20 February 2016
11.23am
Crimbus
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Ironically, Paul has one of the largest vocal ranges as well (in fact his range is larger than Freddie Mercury's), if we want to admire his voice purely by the vastness of pitches it can access. Which, in my honest opinion, isn't nearly as significant as pointing out the sheer virtuosity, control, and artistic intuition he possesses in all vocal performances. Take a listen to "Lady Madonna " next to "Fool on the Hill", or "Oh Darling" next to "I've Just Seen A Face ."  The man can change voices and styles on a dime and always deliver great soul and passion.  

There is no reason to point out that he is not a great singer as if he was limited vocally in anyway.  

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20 February 2016
11.51am
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O Boogie
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I disagree. Paul is a great singer, one of the best there has ever been. I think him and Mercury are very similar - they both have a tenor voice, and an incredible vocal range. And Paul can sing just about anything - from ballads to rockers, and that's an absolute transformation, which I don't think even Freddie can achieve. He can't rock it like Paul, IMHO.

Paul is comparable to Elvis, but not better. I mean, Elvis is as high as one can go, and Paul is in the same league. Dylan is arguably the greatest lyricist, but a mediocre singer.

Rolling Stone has Paul at no. 11, which is actually quite low. He should be at 5 or 6, along with John. But he is still ahead of Freddie, Mick Jagger, etc.

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20 February 2016
12.11pm
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Evangeline
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P3pperish said
I disagree. Paul is a great singer, one of the best there has ever been. I think him and Mercury are very similar - they both have a tenor voice, and an incredible vocal range. And Paul can sing just about anything - from ballads to rockers, and that's an absolute transformation, which I don't think even Freddie can achieve. He can't rock it like Paul, IMHO.

Paul is comparable to Elvis, but not better. I mean, Elvis is as high as one can go, and Paul is in the same league. Dylan is arguably the greatest lyricist, but a mediocre singer.

Rolling Stone has Paul at no. 11, which is actually quite low. He should be at 5 or 6, along with John. But he is still ahead of Freddie, Mick Jagger, etc.

I don't think Paul can top Mercury as a singer, saying Freddie can't rock a song is false. Of course they were both in different decades and made different music, it's not an easy comparison you've made. a-hard-days-night-ringo-15rockin' Queen song include, I Want To Break Free, We Will Rock You, The Invisible Man, and Killer Queen. 

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20 February 2016
12.24pm
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O Boogie
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I said he cannot rock it like Paul. There's difference, and I stand by it.

Besides, that's the comparison you made in your post by saying "he isn't that good when compared to Mercury", which in my opinion, is false, and unfair on Paul. 

 

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20 February 2016
12.32pm
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Evangeline
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P3pperish said
I said he cannot rock it like Paul. There's difference, and I stand by it.

Besides, that's the comparison you made in your post by saying "he isn't that good when compared to Mercury", which in my opinion, is false, and unfair on Paul. 

  I don't want to disrupt the topic so I'll leave this argument here. 

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20 February 2016
12.39pm
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O Boogie
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Just a discussion @Evangeline . I didn't mean it to come across as an argument. Peace n luv as Ringo would say. yoko-ono_01

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20 February 2016
1.28pm
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The title of the thread damns the outcome.  It's too simplistic.  There is no doubt in my mind that Paul's voice at it's peak was rich and fabulous.  He could do mellow ballad or rock screaming.  I'd compare it favourably even with Bing Crosby or Elvis in terms of how it gets my soul.  But how can you sensibly compare any of them though?  It's like comparing apples and pears.  (And I like apples best!) apple01

(With peace and love as above of course!)

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20 February 2016
1.43pm
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meanmistermustard
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Sorry but haven't we done all this very recently?* Why are we on another cycle of Paul can't sing very well?

 

*Yip. See here.

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20 February 2016
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Mademoiselle Kitty >^..^<
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Because that seems to be the latest 'cool' thing to say, apparently. Why anyone would come to a Beatles forum and start posting predominantly negative stuff about the Beatles (particularly Paul) is beyond me, but what do I know? ahdn_paul_01

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20 February 2016
1.58pm
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Starr Shine?
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 Why are we on another cycle of Paul can't sing very well?

 

Because it's a cycle just like how some threads are hot and not. It'll pass then start up again. As long at is is civil and cooler heads prevail then it's all good.

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