A voice that calls a sporting event, reports the news, speaks over an advertisement, or proclaims the gospel — and does so with the kind of depth and resonance that makes you want to hear it again and again and again.
Usually that kind of voice is deep. Frequently it is melodic. And without exception, the voices that makes you sit up and take notice have great variety in pitch, pacing, and tone.
And so who are those men (yes, it’s the guys today) whose voices create that kind of reaction in my listening ear? The kind of voices where even if you disagree with everything they say you still love how they say it?
Here they are. My top five voices for the spoken word.
5. Charlton Heston. It’s too bad that a series of cheesy movies obscured the depth and conviction of his intonation.
4. Charlie Jones. Nothing like hearing Charlie Jones announce an old AFL game between the Kansas City Chiefs and the Oakland Raiders.
3. John Facenda, NFL Films. Made the term “the frozen tundra of Lambeau Field” synonymous with pro football. Here’s a mini-documentary featuring his work.
2. James Earl Jones. Baseball. Enough said.
1. Chuck Swindoll. OK, my choice is more than a little colored by his content. Yet I loved few things more in the mid-90s than listening to a Chuck Swindoll sermon on the radio. Oddly, the first time I actually saw him preach — at a massive Promise Keepers rally in 1996 — I found the visual of his delivery didn’t quite match its sound. So I ended up just closing my eyes and soaking it all in.