Songs to shout- or talk-sing along to: What are your favourites?
June 6, 2016 5:56 AM   Subscribe

Please can you recommend any songs with shout-singing or talk-singing instead of proper singing?

I've decided to finally bring my songs to life and I've come to accept that I can't sing for toffee which is a shame, as I have a lot to say. My voice is appalling. I could learn to sing but it would take a decade + vocoder, so i'm looking for alternative methods.

What i'm not looking for:
Proper/skilled rapping, anything by spoken-word poets or singers who are just speaking with music in the background or anything in this thread. Those examples involve just speaking. I need more intonation.

What I am looking for:
Anything else. Aggressive-talking, talk-singing, shouting, screaming, very basic singing without much melodic movement...

Ian Dury - Hit Me With Your Rhythm Stick
Killing Joke - Fall of Because
Boyd Rice - Out Out Out
Pere Ubu - Go
The Fall - Psykick Dancehall
Magazine - The Light Pours Out of Me
posted by ihaveyourfoot to Media & Arts (29 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
How about James Brown's "Say It Loud – I'm Black and I'm Proud"?
posted by neushoorn at 6:04 AM on June 6, 2016

Anything with Fred Schneider in it, so Rock Lobster, etc. If you want more shouty than sprechgesang, Fred's Steve Albini-produced Just Fred album from 1996 brings it. It has the most demented take on Nilsson's “Coconut” legally possible.
posted by scruss at 6:41 AM on June 6, 2016 [2 favorites]

Slaves - Cheer Up, London
Girl Band - Pears for Lunch
Monotony - Luxury Flats
posted by misteraitch at 6:53 AM on June 6, 2016

Well, of course there's the famous one, Elaine Stritch's "Ladies Who Lunch".
posted by WCityMike at 7:03 AM on June 6, 2016

Anything at all by The Hold Steady.
posted by parm at 7:04 AM on June 6, 2016 [1 favorite]

My favorite shouter is Ted Milton of Blurt. (The whole 1981 "Blurt in Berlin" album is an underappreciated classic.)
posted by neroli at 7:16 AM on June 6, 2016

Mountain Goats, Cubs in 5
Elvis Costello, Waiting for the End of the World
Pavement, Conduit for Sale!
Temptations, Ball of Confusion
Minutemen, History Lesson, Part II
Lou Reed, Romeo Had Juliette (or pretty much anything else on that New York album)
posted by miles per flower at 7:17 AM on June 6, 2016

Sinead O'Connor - Famine is a bit "talking over music" but also has a lot of vocal rhythm and intonation. It also has a chorus that is sung but would work well being spoken. There are other songs on that Universal Mother album that may fit your parameters.
posted by soelo at 7:24 AM on June 6, 2016

Red Hot Chili Peppers, Scar Tissue.

Kiedis sings the chorus but the verses are really just talk-sing.
posted by tuesdayschild at 7:32 AM on June 6, 2016

All of Rex Harrison's "singing" in "My Fair Lady."
posted by Melismata at 7:32 AM on June 6, 2016 [3 favorites]

Mountain Goats See America Right perhaps?
posted by snarfois at 7:42 AM on June 6, 2016

Awesome. Thanks a lot!
posted by ihaveyourfoot at 8:51 AM on June 6, 2016

Cake, Short Skirt Long Jacket
Shawn Mullins, Rockabye
Ted Leo and the Pharmacists, The Ballad of the Sin Eater
posted by holborne at 9:03 AM on June 6, 2016

I love White Rabbits "Percussion Drum" - I'd definitely describe it as shout-singing.
posted by billiebee at 9:28 AM on June 6, 2016

"Tubthumping" by Chumbawamba
posted by charlen at 10:14 AM on June 6, 2016

Can't believe no one has mentioned Common People as performed by William Shatner, arranged by Ben Folds Five

Edit: shit, hit post too soon once again. Didn't see what you were not looking for.
posted by St. Peepsburg at 10:29 AM on June 6, 2016

Pixies, Monkey Gone to Heaven
posted by JoeZydeco at 10:43 AM on June 6, 2016

Violent Femmes! Kiss Off and Blister in the Sun, for instance.
posted by ourobouros at 11:20 AM on June 6, 2016

Nada Surf - Popular
posted by sacrifix at 11:24 AM on June 6, 2016

Cake - Comfort Eagle.
Soul Coughing - Super Bon Bon.
Butthole Surfers - Boiled Dove.
Sonic Youth - Tunic (Song For Karen).

It occurs to me that there's a fine line between talk-singing and rapping.
posted by Ursula Hitler at 11:42 AM on June 6, 2016

Toy Dolls - Nellie the Elephant (Also the whole Dig That Groove Baby album.)

I'm on a broken phone but Oi music is all about this. Just stick with the very early stuff to avoid the NF/right wing crap.

Sham 69 - If The Kids Are United
Cockney Regects - Oi Oi Oi
posted by Room 641-A at 11:59 AM on June 6, 2016

(sorry, I hadn't hear the Shawn Mullins in a while, and it's too much toward what you're not looking for, now that I listen to it again. So scratch that one. The Cake and the Ted Leo would still work for you, though.)
posted by holborne at 12:43 PM on June 6, 2016

Sleaford Mods.
Arab Strap.
Half Man Half Biscuit.
Archie Bronson Outfit.
mclusky / future of the left
Royal Headache.
The Burning Hell.
Delta 5.
LCD Soundsystem.
Art Brut.
posted by ZipRibbons at 1:48 PM on June 6, 2016 [1 favorite]

Psycho Killer - Talking Heads
Victoria - The Kinks
Whip It - Devo
Mexican Radio - Wall of Voodoo
Magneto and Titanium Man - Wings
Rip Her To Shreds - Blondie
Precious - The Pretenders
M-A-R-T-I-N-A - franc
Re: Your Brains - Jonathan Coulton
Kundalini Express - Love and Rockets
I'm Gonna Be - The Proclaimers
King Tut - Steve Martin
Ghostbusters - Ray Parker, Jr.
Don't Stand So Close To Me - The Police
Rock Me Amadeus - Falco
posted by Room 641-A at 4:19 PM on June 6, 2016 [1 favorite]

Suicide - Ghost Rider
The Ex
posted by hydrophonic at 7:46 PM on June 6, 2016

When I think of shout-talking songs, I always remember (and then have to track down the title of) Dance This Mess Around - B52's.

Easy fun chorus if the words go too fast: Fire - Scooter.

Moody and haunting: Tango Till They're Sore - Tom Waits

I never know what genre to consider this: Kosmic Debris - Frank Zappa, but it probably leads right into Existential Blues - Tom "T-Bone" Stankus. (There's an entire genre of "talking blues" songs, of which I'm mostly familiar with the parodies.)

Song of its time: Yuppiedrone - Pheremones
posted by ErisLordFreedom at 7:54 PM on June 6, 2016

AC/DC - She's Got the Jack
posted by fings at 10:34 PM on June 6, 2016

I've been revisiting The Flying Lizards recently. Best known for Money, but it turns out they did some great, subversive covers of other songs too.

I also really like Ice Cream by New Young Pony Club which has the same style of delivery.
posted by comealongpole at 8:31 AM on September 17, 2016

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