There are singers and bands that we all know well, and some of them – let’s face it – we wonder how on earth they got the success they have. At the same time, there are a multitude of singers and bands who either haven’t made it to success, or who have had limited success, but whose voices or performances are seriously underrated.
This article is dedicated to them. Please feel free to add names of bands and singers who you think are underrated to the guestbook towards the bottom of the page.
Thea Gilmore is a British singer-songwriter of Irish origin. She has been well-thought of in the music press but has had limited chart success. She has opened for Joan Baez , and Uncut magazine described her as “the best British singer-songwriter of the last 10 years…and then some”.
Kate Nash is a British singer-songwriter, guitarist and pianist, whose song “Foundations” reached number 2 in the UK charts, and whose album “Made of Bricks” reached number 1. At the Brit Awards in 2008 she was named “Best Female Artist”.
Her career began by performing local gigs and uploading her music to MySpace, After solo success, she has since joined a punk band, The Receeders, as a “side project”, but she continues to be a solo musician as well.
Marina and the Diamonds:
Marina Lambrini Diamandis is a Welsh singer-songwriter, better known by her stage name Marina & the Diamonds. The stage name is from a translation of her Greek surname, and although many people believe “the Diamonds” are her backing group, it refers, in fact, to her fans.
Her fame began when she reached number 2 on the BBC Sound of 2010 poll. She was also nominated for the Critics’ Choice at the 2010 BRIT Awards, and came 5th in SHREDnews’ “Ten Artists To Watch in 2010” list. In addition she won the award for Best UK & Ireland Act at the 2010 MTV awards.
She has described her own music as “an indie artist with pop goals”, and has been compared to Kate Bush and Florence and the Machine.
Regina Ilyinichna Spektor is a Russian-born, American singer-songwriter and pianist. She lived in the Soviet Union until she was 9, when Soviet citizens were permitted to emigrate. They chose to leave the country because of the ethnic and political discrimination that Jewish people faced in the Soviet Union.
Having settled in the USA, Regina studied classical piano with Sonia Vargas, practicing on a piano in her Synagogue, as well as tabletops and other hard surfaces. She began writing her own songs, and her talent gradually began to be recognized in performances in the anti-folk scene in New York City.
In her songs, Regina plays creatively with lyrics, pronunciation, language, accent, and literary allusions.
The Dresden Dolls:
The Dresden Dolls is an American band from Massachussetts, consisting of two artists: Amanda Palmer and Brian Viglione. The pair formed a band in 2000 after meeting at a Halloween party where Amanda had sung solo, and soon gained a cult following.
Due to a fear of being described as “goth”, they invented the phrase “Brechtian punk cabaret” to describe their musical style, and the “cabaret” element of this is represented by the way they dressed up with dramatic make-up, and encouraged audience members to get involved with the show by doing performance art.