I Saw Natalie Merchant in the Co-Op in 1993
We reached for cheese in the cold case at the same time, and I couldn't resist telling her she was brilliant.
She smiled and thanked me, saying the band was just passing through Tempe on tour. Then we went our separate ways.
That’s the whole story.
But just listen to Merchant’s voice. It’s one of the greatest of all time—up there with the singular voices of Neko Case, Whitney Houston, Chan Marshall, Ella Fitzgerald, Stevie Nicks, for both range and uniqueness. That’s why those 10 seconds of conversation stay with me 30 years later.
I just wanted to take this moment to celebrate her voice.