Saturday, January 2, 2010

Four Fantastic Frontmen

Being a fantastic frontman isn't about being a pitch-perfect vocalist. It isn't about your personal style, or your dance moves. It isn't about your makeup or lack thereof. There are just some men (and ladies, too, but that's for another blog) that were born to perform. Here are four of my favorites:

Scott Weiland, Stone Temple Pilots/Velvet Revolver: This man is the pure embodiment of rock n' roll, for better or for worse. All glam, leather pants, and bare-chested posing; Scott Weiland is a show unto himself. Oh yeah: he can sing, too!

Maynard James Keenan-TOOL/A Perfect Circle/Puscifer: MJK is the anti-frontman. Preferring to stand in the shadows at the back of the stage when he performs live, audiences are often left squinting trying to make out his shape. Still, you can see his body rock back and forth, totally engulfed in the music as it swirls around and consumes him. As haunting a voice as any in the last fifteen years.

Daryl Palumbo-Glassjaw/Head Automatica: Daryl Palumbo is known for his dual roles as a screaming prince of post-hardcore in Glassjaw, and an electro punk as the frontman of Head Automatica. His vocals range from gutteral growls to emotional and straightforward pop. To see him live is to experience raw emotion. Doubled over as though he's in too much pain to go on in Glassjaw, or skipping about the stage and strutting in Head Automatica, Palumbo is a wonder to watch.

David Draiman-Disturbed: Draiman grabs hold of his audience with one hand and slams them against a wall of sound with the other. His commands to the audience to follow in his lead by yelling "WE ARE ALL DISTURBED!" do not fall silent on any crowd. Fists pumping in the air, Draiman asks everyone to release their anger and negativity at the concert instead of taking it out on others or carrying it inside. The audience obeys his every gruffly spoken word.


  1. Two of the most captivating men I've seen on a stage would be Ian Astbury of The Cult, and Groovie Man from My Life With The Thrill Kill Kult. Two men who seem totally in love with their jobs, know how to get a crowd going, and just put on a damn fine performance. Also, regardless of how I feel about the band, watching a Marilyn Manson show is surely like watching a mass brainwashing. Though I've seen them a number of times, the most memorable would be the West Palm Beach Auditorium in, I think, 1996, from the balcony. It was just me and Rob up there, and surely, every single one of those kids was in the palm of his hand. What charisma!

  2. Indeed, I have seen Manson twice...and he knows how to captivate the kiddies.
    The first System of a Down show I went to was like that as well. They were like sheep.