There are certain things I wish I could imitate about traditional singers. Phil Tanner's breath control would be nice.
I suppose it can be a fine line between "learning from" and "imitating." Walter Pardon's version of "The trees they grow so high" completely changed the way I think about that song (which was one of my favourites already), and when I sing it now, it's definitely in the light of having heard him. I leave it to those unfortunate enough to listen to me to decide whether I've made it my own -- insofar as we can ever make these songs our own. I.e. not much.