A friend of mine happened to come across Mazzy Star’s 1993 album So Tonight that I Might See on Pandora today and posted his enthusiasm for the album, which he was geekin’ out to in college, on facebook. I wrote in a comment something along the lines of “you have no idea what Hope Sandoval’s voice does to me.” A while after I started to wonder what exactly I meant by that.
First, though, before I get any further along in this post, somebody put the entire album up on youtube (if you’re not familiar with Mazzy Star, at least check out the first track and get back to the rest of this post)….
I started to realize what I meant in my comment to my friend. I wasn’t gettin’ at that Sandoval’s voice (especially on their single “Fade into You,” which is the first track on the album and probably the band’s most well known song) made me hot for teacher. There is something about her voice and delivery or whatever that is completely disarming (Neko Case almost always has the same effect on me as well) – by which I mean there’s a quality in her voice that is damn near hypnotic, or that I just about melt when I hear it; I’m pretty sure if the whole band came and played a show in my basement that Hope Sandoval could pretty much convince me to do anything.
I’ll probably never be able to explain exactly what it is that gives Sandoval’s voice this kind of power – but if I only know one thing about it, it’s that it has a special quality that only a very few singers have.