Folks are going bonkers over Adele, and I’ll admit she has a powerful voice. But for pure emotional impact, I’ll still take Joan Armatrading.

“Joan who?” you say. Therein lies the rub. Even back in what would be considered her heyday of the mid 70s through early 80s, Joan never really hit it big. Which is a shame because she’s got a fantastic voice and some great songs. And a great backstory too – here’s an excerpt from her website’s bio:

Born in St Kitts in the West Indies on December 9th 1950 and moving to England when she was seven, she took her first musical steps on her mother’s piano. Although her father had a guitar it was strictly out of bounds so when Joan saw one for £3 in a pawn shop window she pestered her mother to barter two old prams they no longer used. She taught herself to play and began writing songs at the age of 14.
Her debut album, “Whatever’s For Us”, released on Cube Records in1972 and produced by the late great Gus Dudgeon, was critically acclaimed and saw Joan voted as best newcomer. In 1974, Joan signed to A&M world-wide and the career that has followed has witnessed a plethora of classic and memorable songs – “Love and Affection”, “Down To Zero”, “Drop the Pilot”, “Me Myself I”…..

Here’s a lyric video to my favorite Joan Armatrading song, “The Weakness in Me”

And here she is in concert:

Why not spend some time with Joan today on YouTube? You won’t regret it.