Monday, January 11, 2010

Week 2, Day 8: Perfect Pitch

This week is all about figuring out what defines me as an artist in the minds of my fans and potential fans, aka "my brand." I won't ignore the fact that I've made a bit of a mess at branding myself having started out my career singing faith-centered music, gathering a decent following, then switching my genre to "singer songwriter." But I do believe that messes can be cleaned up and I am hoping this chapter helps me accomplish just that.

So many artists (and people in general for that matter) are not specific enough about who they are and what people can expect from them. When people I meet learn that I am a recording artist, they almost always ask what genre I sing and who I sound like. Many artists (including me, at one time) want to believe that they don't sound like anyone else out there, but I have learned that potential fans lose interest if they can't walk away with a firm idea of what you stand for.

This concept is the same for any person in any place in life. Confession: I get so frustrated when I hear a woman say, "I'm just a stay-at-home mom," or perhaps someone else, "I'm just a student right now." JUST??? Last time I checked, those jobs were really hard and entail so much. I'm always so much more engaged when people spice up their job descriptions with more details and ditch the apologetic approach to who they are.

This week, I'll be digging into the nitty gritty of who I am as an artist by answering a series of questions that will help me come up with the perfect pitch. Having a pitch will help me define myself to fans and important people in the music industry. I think I'm going to need your help. Today's question to ask is this: What artist(s) do I most sound like? (If you'd be so kind as to leave your opinion in the comments below . . .)

Addendum-- Yup. Still listing 5 successes everyday. Here they be for 1/11/10:

1.) Did P90X this morning.
2.) Had a phone call with a life coach. Feeling more motivated to finish writing my album.
3.) Did my annual dusting.
4.) Cleaned out the car port.
5.) Bought my very first Pro Tools rig!
6.) (Look! I have six!) See, there's this bowl of rotten beans that has been on my back porch for about four months. FOUR MONTHS. I put it there because the beans started to stink in my fridge and I was too busy to take them all the way out to the garbage can. So there they stayed for 1/3 of a year. I finally got rid of the beans.


  1. I'm feeling pretty smug that my bowl of smelly beans/grains has only been outside for two weeks.

  2. Congrats on that annual dusting! Woohoo! I did my annual "help my daughter clean her room" this week.

  3. I think you have a very unique voice, but I love Alison Sudol of A Fine Frenzy and think you might could maybe may be compared to her a bit.

  4. Evolutionarily, you win SERIOUS points for that comment. You chose wisely.

  5. The other day (or week or whatever) one of your songs came up on my iPod and my brother asked, "Is that Norah Jones?" I personally prefer you to Norah, but that's who he thought you sounded like.

    And, by the way, I call myself a Domestic Goddess. Because it's true.

  6. I've always thought that you sounded like Sarah McLachlan, A Fine Frenzy, a bit of Kate Earl, and a dash of Regina Spektor. Mix it all together and you get Mindy Gledhill, singer songwriter:) Mmm...sounds good dosen't it?!

  7. oooh...this one is kind of hard to pin down. But there is something in your voice that is very old school Paula Cole and Tori Amos...before they became too processed. I would also say you have some Alison Sudol and Regina Spektor and Sarah McLachlan.

    I love all of those ladies...and even though I can hear bits of their influence in your voice...your voice is so unique. I love it.

    Of course, I'm a bit of a crazy person as I also think I hear a bit of female coldplay, Mraz and killers :) But that influence might go back to some of your lyric choices and variety rather than vocals.

  8. I think of Anna Nalick, lyrics-wise--lots of great word choices and stories. Your voice is really distinctive, though. Not too many to compare it too!
    And thank you for the beans and dusting. It gives me hope.

  9. love to hear that the annual dusting is out of the way!=) the only voice that comes to mind for me is priscilla ahn. your voice is beautifully unique though.

  10. My first thought was Nora Jones, BUT Norah Jones voice has never brought tears to my eyes because of it's beauty....yours has.

  11. Two Sara(h)s come to mind: McLachlan and Bareilles, and I adore both of them.

  12. You sound like me (just kidding!). I really think you have a voice all your own. You have an etheral quality to it- other worldly in the most beautiful sense. I hate comparing, because I beleive our voices all have unique personalities. Your voice is simple in the nicest way. I do not believe you sound like anyone, but your music genre may be similar to others.... now that is what I think is okay to compare. You are of course you are happy indie, even though some of your songs talk about very sad things. You still end up feeling good after listening to them (unlike quite a few other artists).

  13. I like this question. So, I think your new song has definite Alison Sudol vibe about it. Which is great. I love her.
    Older stuff I have heard glimpses of The Sundays. Maybe even a little Leigh Nash.
    It has been neat to hear your style evolve.
    Glad I have been around for it.

  14. I think you sound like Louis Armstrong or Jimmy Buffett! (We just have to talk to your son to find out that you DON'T sound like Carl Douglas!) ;) Just messin' with ya!

    I personally think you should refrain from comparing your voice to another voice. Maybe say you sound like a mix of some other voices. Tell them, "A hint of this, a pinch of that, but a whole lotta me!" (You'll need to decide on who's name to substitute for "this" and "that".)

    Hopefully when someone hears one of your songs, they'll recognize your voice as yours and not confuse it with anyone else.

    I've only heard the songs from your website, but there's no other singer that comes to mind when I hear your voice. I have thousands of songs spanning music from the 1920s to the present, and I'll keep an ear out in case I spot someone who sounds a bit like you.

  15. Okay, off the top of my head I'm thinking your voice sounds a little like Allison Krauss (but better). And maybe a little like Natalie Grant's later albums (gospel/worship artist). But it's really hard to compare your voice to other artists because it's so much better. So these are the best two I could come up with.

  16. Ingrid Michaelson is who comes to mind.

  17. I'm going to have to third (or fourth) the Alison Sudal and Norah Jones references. My favorite Mindy songs are the ones that have that breathy, quiet quality. I like the songs where you belt it and show some range, but I LOVE the delicate side of your voice especially. Sometimes your voice make me think of the guidance counselor on Glee? (Who isn't a singer, but, you know.)

  18. I worked very hard at deriving my pitch, or my "elevator speech", but I finally arrived and one that makes people both understand and smile at the same time:

    "I make Mormon rock music. It's like Aerosmith meets the missionaries!"