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Here’s what T-Pain sounds like without Auto-Tune
There’s a soulful voice under all that sheen.
“People felt like I was using it to sound good,” rap and R&B star T-Pain said of pitch-correcting Auto-Tune software, a staple of some of his biggest hits over the last decade, in a recent interview for All Things Considered. “But I was just using it to sound different.”
If you don’t believe him, here’s the video to prove it: a short and intimate performance staged as part of NPR’s “Tiny Desk Concerts” webseries. “This is weird as hell for me,” T-Pain admits to the crowd before introducing his accompanist and joking that he’s had Auto-Tune “surgically inserted.” Even without it, we’re pleased to report, dude sounds silky smooth.
For comparative study, here are the Auto-Tuned originals:
Miles Klee is a novelist and web culture reporter. The former editor of the Daily Dot’s Unclick section, Klee’s essays, satire, and fiction have appeared in Lapham’s Quarterly, Vanity Fair, 3:AM, Salon, the Awl, the New York Observer, the Millions, and the Village Voice. He's the author of two odd books of fiction, 'Ivyland' and 'True False.'