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Jimmy Scott

Unearthly sounds

posted 5/1/2008

Although he sings a traditional kind of jazz, Jimmy Scott's singing is an extreme thing. Most immediately unusual is its range: Scott was born with Kallmann syndrome, which prevented his voice from changing. The voice is often described as a soprano or alto, but those terms are a bit misleading — it's unmistakably male even if it lies an octave above other male voices. Also striking is Scott's treatment of rhythm, which resembles that of a edgy jazz instrumentalist: he hangs way back from the beat, rushes ahead of it, suspends

 
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