Good Thursday Vocalists!
Have you ever thought about how people who like to sing fall into two categories,.. those who can sing and those who have to work at it? The truth is, even those who can sing need guidance. Singing / vocal lessons are for anyone who wants to sing well.
Even the most gifted singers take lessons. Take Michael Jackson for instance. He worked as hard at improving and maintaing his voice as he did at making great quality productions. He had a super talent even as a child. If you listen to his earliest childhood recordings you can identify some great singing but also some technique that needed improving and he did just that and took his voice to the highest level he was capable of. He improved his range to about 4 octaves and sang effortlessly from F1 to C6.
I’ve often referred to the following “rare audio. In a hotel room in ’94.” The recording was taken during a vocal session by phone with renowned Speech Level Singing creator, Seth Riggs. Yes, even Michael Jackson appreciated the benefits of vocal lessons.
So remember, if you want to sing as good as your favorite singer, they took lessons to get that great voice.
“Coordination of the vocal cords takes a sense of awareness of how your voice works, vocal mechanics, and an ability to identify, isolate and control vocal function. Most singers have no idea what their voices are doing apart from training and would benefit from a few good lessons to help them on their way.
Blending in with other vocalists is a balance of lyric, tonal quality, timing, dynamic and sensitivity. Not only does a vocalist need to be flexible vocally but they must be flexible when it comes to following and mimicking genre and stylistics. Each group or band has their own style that is developed through the preferences and style of the leader or type of group such as a classical choir, barbershop singers or rock band as well as all that the individuals bring to the group as a whole. Learning to sing in a number of styles makes the backup vocalist a valuable part of the team. Any backup vocalist should know it’s important to be aware of their strengths and weaknesses and be willing to devote themselves to always be improving their talent so they can be the best fit in any situation. Good luck, God bless and Sing On!”
(reposted by Cosima on an earlier post)
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How do you handle interruptions like ringing cellphones or chatty people at a gig or concert? And, when is a good time to let your audience know you care about delivering the best “show” possible? How about this…?
“At a concert in Gothenburg Concert Hall October 23, 2013, Christian Zacharias stopped playing in the middle of Haydn’s Piano Concerto, interrupted by a cell phone ringing for the second time the same concert. He also shares his views on disturbed concerts.”
The whole concert will be published at http://www.gsoplay.com in November 2013.
So proud to sing along side these two beautiful voices this morning. This was their first opportunity to sing together and they did great! Their blend is a bit uncanny and I can see some good stuff happening with the three of us.
I’ve enjoyed teaching Mary (center) and Suzette (far left) and being part of their vocal journey. It brings great pleasure to watch your students grow their gifts and use them for others.
There are some real opportunities to use your singing talent in more ways than recitals and karaoke!… And if you aren’t the “put on a show” type and you are part of a church perhaps singing as a worship vocalist is where your voice belongs. The value of this kind of singing may far exceed your expectations! And, if you aren’t sure your voice is “ready” then there’s not better time than now to begin your own vocal journey. Who knows where your talent will take you. Sing On!
Good Monday, Singers! It’s good to be back after a road trip to northern cali, a funeral and a wedding I’m ready to dig in and get some singing on with all you great singers. Here’s today’s singing tip to get things started:
Not only is your voice your instrument but you are a vocal athlete too. Every athlete follows a training regime to strengthen, grow and perfect their technique. Training includes not only the muscles but the whole body and mind through exercises and other factors such as diet, hydration and rest.
It’s important to consider what goes into your body uninvited. Smoke, fumes, smog and allergens all can have an negative effect on your instrument.
Having a healthy lifestyle and using wisdom and caution regarding your environment can be helpful in the improvement and safety of your voice. It’s all a matter of being a conscious singer. Be conscious of your surroundings, your diet, sleep patterns, and other good health factors and you’ll improve your options to Sing On! for years to come.
Every body can sing!
Every human body has the same anatomy and we all can develop our voices to sing well. That doesn’t mean that everyone’s voice is going to be as awesome as their favorite singer, but it does mean that with proper technique everybody can produce a healthy, free, resonant sound. That means YOU!!
In singing, relaxation is key. Learn to observe and feel your body and understand its behaviors; it will always tell you what’s going on, but most of the time we don’t pay attention. People have various tensions and it takes time and patience to retrain how your body behaves – but it’s totally doable! And a relaxed voice is the foundation for good singing.
So, first things first… for the next 24 hours (any date after reading this post) see if you can practice a relaxed posture in your body and voice during singing. Set aside several 5 minute spots in your day to purposefully sing with a mindset to focus on removing tension when you sing. Don’t allow yourself to indulge in your regular singing habits any time during the 24 hour period. Don’t worry about whether your voice sounds good just make sure you have released all tension in your jaw, tongue, throat, vocal apparatus, face, shoulders and body. Think about freeing up your voice. Your voice shouldn’t feel trapped in your throat or sound muddy. A breathy sound is ok, but it should feel free of all tension.
Repeat several times over the next 24 hours remembering to avoid any other kind of singing. Allow what you’ve learned from the experience to get you in touch with your voice. Then come on back to this post and share your comments. Let me know how it went. Ask questions and share some feedback. Let’s get talking!!
One of my vocal students tweeted the following complaint in regards to singing, to which a short conversation got me involved on facebook. Check out the conversation and add your comments or questions. Let’s see if anyone else out there has similar singing challenges!
uggghhh…why must Hillsong songs be so vocally challenging for me…well except for Mighty To Save. but I will press on #challengeaccepted
Why is “mighty to save” not challenging to sing?? I would always choose that song before my vocal lessons because it didn’t seem hard… Maybe Cosima can tell us why?
Cosima ~From TheVoiceBox:
Ahhh that’s easy! First off, Mighty To Save only has one octave in it. That’s a very small range so if you sing it in a key you are comfortable in there’s no challenge at all. You could, in fact, sing the whole song in your chest voice thereby avoiding singing into your head voice.
Essentially, that’s like using only the speaking range of your voice and I don’t know anyone who has trouble speaking unless they have an impairment.
Secondly, the melody is highly repetitive and is uncomplicated melodically as well as lyrically making it a no brainer. So… you can sing the whole song in your speaking range, and you don’t have to concentrate too hard.
Finally, the song starts at the low end of the scale and slowly makes it’s way up to the octave during the bridge, giving your voice time to set up for the “high” note. What could be easier?
BTW, this would make a nice lesson in good songwriting for worship.
(My response assumes that Cherry had transposed the song into a key she was comfortable in.)