Big Rick Stuart
Fixing Led Zeppelin with Autotune (plus Sinatra, Aretha, Pink Floyd, Bill Withers)
One of my big issues with a lot of contemporary music is that it’s perfect. No bum notes. Tempo is as accurate as an atomic clock. Vocals that are 100% in tune. Performances are tweaked by various studio gear to the point where all humanity is squeezed out.
But imperfections and mistakes can result in beauty, character, engagement, especially with vocals. I prefer voices with character rather than those which are pitch-perfect. Mick Jagger. Tom Waits. Eddie Vedder. Courtney Love. You have to wonder if any of those people could get a record deal today.
Let’s take Robert Plant, for example. Led Zeppelin remains one of the great rock bands in history with Plant’s shrieking vocals an import part of the mix. But what if someone tried to fix Plant with Auto-Tune?