I was raised in a home where music was held at very high value. My dad has experience running sound and developed a rather large and eclectic mix of everything from Boston, to Hank Williams, to Steely Dan, to Herb Albert and the Tijuana Brass. I don't think it's ever been possible to nail down my dads favorite because he has WAY to many!
My mom got me hooked, and I mean HOOKED, addicted, completely head over heals in love with Jazz. She got me started with groups like Manhattan Transfer, and Take Six, and I gradually dipped in to the seemingly bottomless well of big bands. Pretty soon my disc man (yes, I still remember the old thing. Used to skip if you looked at it wrong) was spinning CD's packed with music from the Count Basie Orchestra, Harry Connick Jr, John Pizzarelli, Duke Ellington, Buddy Rich, and countless others. But, while I loved and absolutely craved that stuff, there was just something about the human voice and the things it could do that pulled me in more than anything else.
I found myself soaking in and mimicking artists like Ella Fitzgerald, Kurt Elling, and Mark Murphy. Soaking in and listening to every inflection, every consonant, every quote in every shade of any color they chose. Then I dove in to the incredible, and masterful stylings of Bobby McFerrin. He used his voice in ways I had never heard before and had explored the farthest reaches of his instrument. He had gained an understanding of how the human voice could be manipulated, stretched, shaped, colored, painted, and however else you want to describe it. McFerrin is simply one of the most, if not the most, gifted and skilled artists on the planet. And don't argue with me because I'll just slap you in the mouth with my old disk man.
With all of that said,
The human voice, Acapella music, anything that truly showcases what the vocal chords can do. THAT is what truly excites me.
So here's a little song I wrote... (Pun completely intended.)