whiskey tenor

whiskey tenor

1. slang A husky or guttural voice in the tenor range, as is or could be the result of tobacco, alcohol, or drug abuse. The old man stood up and started singing a beautiful song in a haunting whiskey tenor. He had such a clear, pure voice when he was a young man, but it degraded into a croaky whiskey tenor after so many years of substance abuse.
2. slang Someone who speaks or sings with such a voice. A whiskey tenor like him wouldn't normally make it so far in the competition, but something about his performance has captivated audiences.
See also: whiskey
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

whiskey tenor

n. a strained tenor. Four whiskey tenors do not a barbershop quartet make.
See also: whiskey
McGraw-Hill's Dictionary of American Slang and Colloquial Expressions Copyright © 2006 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All rights reserved.
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References in periodicals archive ?
Still another account says that "Slight of build, she cultivated a squeaky voice to hide her feminine tones, a voice that in later years passed for whiskey tenor.''