Along with Kurt Cobain, Adam Duritz of Counting Crows will go down as one of rock's most recognizable voices of the '90s. Breathtaking in its range, his voice is more notable for its ability to convey nearly the entire spectrum of human emotion -- from elation to desolation. Eschewing fashion and production wizardry, the band's debut, August and Everything After, concentrated on powerful, intensely honest songwriting and timeless roots rock. It made a considerable impact on those within blasting radius of 20- and 30-somethings -- things just got a little more real. Duritz employs a dramatist's approach to songwriting -- in his work he takes on the personas of the damaged and the damned: the addicted, the lovelorn, the depressed. Remarkably, Duritz manages to handle his subjects with a compassion free of condescension; he makes their stories, as harrowing as they sometimes are, entertaining and inspiring.