MUSIC, LEADERSHIP, CULTURE… and humor (sometimes)

Blind Singers (Affirmative Action for the Blind)


Have you ever thought about how funny and illogical it is that people tend to give  more credit to BLIND singers?  Think about this for a moment with me. . . what does SINGING have anything to do with SEEING?  “Wow… that’s amazing!  He’s blind but he sings so well!”   Singing and seeing are stand-alone abilities that don’t require the help of the other.  Blind people should be given props for their resiliency in life and their overcoming the odds within the flow of society, but when it comes to singing?  Please.  

On the other hand, if a person is born with a hole in their throat and is able to somehow do a perfect rendition of “You Raise Me Up,” operatically– now, that’s impressive!  That’s something we can marvel at and say, “Wow!  Dude is missing part of his larynx but he’s still killin’ it!”  Now that’s overcoming odds!  

Now, there are GREAT singers who also happen to be blind like Stevie Wonder and Ray Charles.  However, it is pretty safe to say that even if they had the ability to see like everyone else, they would still be given the same amount of respect and notoriety because they are great singers.  Plain and simple.  You ever try to sing “Superstitious” or “Georgia” at the Karaoke bar?  You sounded pretty ridiculous, right?  

Show me a blind pilot or a blind doctor.  I may not choose to give myself over to their care but I will surely give that person props.  A blind singer? Their lack of sight has nothing to do with pitch, tone, or phrasing!  

I was inspired to write about this because it’s something I have always wondered about– along with the questions of why there are braille dots at drive-up ATMs (scary… perhaps a future blog entry?), and why people park on driveways and drive on parkways (things that make you go “hmmm”)–but more recently, I was pretty bothered by the completely patronizing vote-in by the American public of Scott MacIntyre into the top 13 of American Idol.  This is surely a case of what I’d like to call, Blind-Man Affirmative Action and it’s not fair to others who are more deserving of a spot.  I know that Scott is only partially blind but I could name at least 10 guys from this season who were more deserving than Scott.  Did you hear what the judges have been saying about him?  Even Simon Cowell is in on the act and I know for a fact that had Scott MacIntyre had perfect vision, Simon would be ripping him– because honestly, Scott is not that good.  He may be a champion in life and he is an inspiration in many ways, but in no way is he one of the 13 best singers in America!  

Don’t get me wrong! Ultimately, I am happy for Scott and he is a feel-good story but consider my simple point and straight logic: singing has nothing to do with sight!  Cheers.  

Hear for yourself….



13 responses

  1. Joe

    Scott is good when he’s using the piano at least; but i doubt that he will make it all the way

    March 6, 2009 at 8:29 pm

  2. Stephen

    Yea I definitely agree with you that Scott is getting a lot of the sympathy vote. But I do give him lots of props to be able to learn to play the piano without the ability of sight. There were a lot of wacky things this season that have irked me. Like voting Tatiana in OVER and OVER again. Her singing isn’t too bad but do they honestly think that America would vote for her? In my opinion she was used to keep the show entertaining. Even from hollywood week you can tell that none of the judges really thought she had a chance but she still kept getting through. They just kept giving her false hope. Just another reason why So You Think You Can Dance > American Idol.

    Nice site btw!!

    March 7, 2009 at 9:03 am

  3. I haven’t been following American Idol this year but watched the youtube clip – I know sometimes they have off days on American Idol but if he always sounds like this he shouldn’t be on American Idol.

    March 8, 2009 at 7:01 am

  4. Shock Rocker

    This is awesome! I couldn’t agree more. And I don’t think you could be any more on target. The general public is too often just plain ignorant and most of the time seemingly stupid and definitely too uneducated. This explains why TMZ has so much authority. (that’s a totally different discussion maybe you’ll write about that). But I definitely wanted to thank you for sharing. I can’t help feeling the urge (Now that I’ve read this) to goto a drive thru ATM (while driving) and ask for vision assistance with my transaction. Or maybe try that the next time I’m at In N Out. (ma’am could you help me eat this please, sorry I’m blind. Thanks for sharing.

    March 8, 2009 at 3:02 pm

  5. I hope that people will give me good reviews on my writing because I spell bad and write no good. Hehehe

    March 9, 2009 at 9:34 pm

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  9. Hello,
    Interesting, I`ll quote it on my site later.

    April 20, 2009 at 1:08 am

  10. Thank you! I would now go on this blog every day!

    April 22, 2009 at 7:25 pm

  11. if ray charles and larry king were blind how did thy play the piano

    October 3, 2009 at 5:00 pm

  12. if ray king and ray charles were blind how did thy play the piano

    October 3, 2009 at 5:01 pm

  13. if ray king and ray charles were both blind how did thy play the piano

    October 3, 2009 at 5:02 pm

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