Best Voice Alive

by George Watches Things

My picks; the runner-ups, in alphabetical order:

  • Ed Asner

I don’t know much about Ed Asner, but he was one of the big joys of Up, for me. His is the gold standard in grandfather voices, in my opinion.

  • Clint Eastwood

Eastwood’s voice is a grainy one that utters famous lines in famous movies all the time. Is it the grit that causes the famousity (oh, is that not a word?) of the lines or the stakes of delivering the line that causes the grit?

  • Ira Glass

He is the host of brilliant public radio program This American Life, and he has been for over a decade now. I don’t know what exactly to call his voice, other than wide-heard. Is he the radio voice of our time? Also, does anyone else think that he looks distinctly British (even though he’s a Baltimore boy)?

  • Willie Nelson

Ah, yes. A musician. So few of the great music voices are still alive. And I’m sure there are some new whipper-snappers making sweet melodies out there today, but I limit my new music listening. I’m not a country fan… I’m a Willie Nelson fan.

  • Chris Rock

It was my favorite part of Everybody Hates Chris, and EHC was a great show that had a lot of great pieces. His voice is in the all-times.

  • Jerry Seinfeld

What is the deal with Jerry’s voice?!?! (That joke is old.)

  • Sarah Vowell

I actually didn’t know what Sarah Vowell looked like until I went to Google to get the picture above. She is frequently featured on the aforementioned This American Life. You may not know who she is, but you probably know her voice.

  • Sigourney Weaver

I’m going to mention Ms. Weaver again when we get to cameo performances, but she has a great voice! Favorite vocal performance: Holes.

  • Ted Williams

If you haven’t heard Williams’ story, I’ll recap it for you: this man was born in Bed-Stuy, served in the Army, and went to voice acting school. Wikipedia says he has nine children. But drug and alcohol abuse caused him to become homeless. Until, that is, someone discovered his amazing voice. Watch the video below:

And the winner is

  • Alec Baldwin

When he’s not busy being my favorite person on Earth, Alec Baldwin is exercising his amazing voice on both his NPR show and NBC’s 30 Rock. Rock has long been the perfect outlet for his silky tone, mainly because he plays highbrow Kabletown exec Jack Donaghy, my second favorite person on Earth. My only complaint: the noises he produces in the 2008 film Lymelife, which I reviewed here.

And now for the readers’ picks:

There was no consensus here. No one got more than one vote. Congrats to the 17 co-winners:

  • Adele
  • Christina Aguilera
  • Tony Bennett
  • Michael Buble
  • Vin Diesel
  • Jon Foreman
  • Whitney Houston
  • James Earl Jones
  • Liam Neeson
  • Mandy Patinkin
  • Robert Pattinson
  • Ron Perlman
  • Alan Rickman
  • J.K. Simmons
  • Lily Tomlin
  • Mark Wahlberg
  • Jeffrey Wright


Φ Next award: Best New TV Series

Φ Thanks for voting! And please continue to do so!