Jeff Buckley was the last of an endangered species. He was the one of the most gifted male vocalists of all time, with a range beyond that of most mortals. He was a talented guitarist and a songwriter with a singular style. He was one of the first people to cover “Hallelujah”(AKA “that song from Shrek”), and his version is easily the best: it’s restrained, stark, raw, tasteful, and deeply haunting (especially when compared to the garbage that has been piled onto that song in recent years).
Buckley only left us one completed studio album, the superb “Grace”. Here’s the title track, from the “Live in Chicago” video. Check out the vocal pyrotechnics, so typical of Jeff Buckley:
And here is my favourite Buckley track, the amazingly titled “The Sky is a Landfill”, from the posthumous “Sketches for My Sweetheart the Drunk” (which is the album he was working on at the time of his death):
He died 15 years ago today in Memphis, drowning after taking a fully clothed swim in the Wolf Harbour River. He was 30 years old. RIP Buckley.