I checked the link to new Dayton musician Jordan Hull upon recommendation from the Dayton site Buddha Den (see links).
At first I wasn't sure what to think of Hull's music. To make clear: I'm a pretty long-term Dylan fan. If someone says their favorite Dylan song is "That everybody must get stoned song," I avoid them immediately. I may hit them with an upper cut to the chin to make my point clear.
So the minute I hear someone that sounds like they may be trying to ape Dylan's voice, I get suspicious. But after checking out all the tunes on Hull's Myspace site, I can see he is pretty unique. His voice does sound a lot like Dylan's (almost to the point of doing an impression) but he also sounds a lot like Leon Redbone too. But it comes off very natural and not so much a posture. Overall the songs are more rooted in traditional folk than Dylan's later work. Hull's more cabaret/parlor folk, than Woody Guthrie.
I get the same feel from Hull's music as I do from another Dayton musician named Wes Tirey. In fact, on stage Tirey looks like the spitting image of Dylan circa-1965. But both are able to create their own unique voices.
I say check them out and form your own opinions.
When it comes down to it, many musicians start out trying to be the next Dylan or the next Jimi Hendrix or the next so and so. Some never make it beyond a simple posture. Remember all those bands sounding like Pearl Jam in the late 1990s? Remember all the lame singers who sounded like Dave Matthews? That was the worst.
The good musicians are able to mix the styles of their heroes with their own unique voice and it can become something interesting. That's what happened to Tom Petty and Bruce Springsteen, isn't it? Ozzy Osbourne wanted to be the next Beatles. Kurt Cobain wanted to be the next Pixies.
It makes me think of other cities in the region and if similar things are going on. Like the obvious love The Lindsay has of Sonic Youth. Or how a ton of bands in the 1990s (especially in Columbus) wanted to be the Afghan Whigs.
I think it's really interesting how Noise Rock can be growing so much in Ohio and yet simple acoustic guitar musicians keep multiplying too...