So That’s What It’s Called

February 15th, 2012


An early “I” in Whitney Houston’s I Will Always Love You takes nearly six seconds to sing. In those seconds the former gospel singer-turned-pop star packs a series of different notes into the single syllable. The technique is repeated throughout the song, most pronouncedly on every “I” and “you”.

The vocal technique is called melisma, and it has inspired a host of imitators.

This is great; knowing the name of something like this makes it much easier to proclaim how fucking horrible it sounds and to please stop.