By Arlys Alford
I can’t think of a better way to open dialogue on how procrastination applies to a singer’s career than the callback audition you have for The Voice tomorrow morning. You’ve never had voice lessons and you thought this was a good time to start? Hmm, the idea that you will assimilate years of knowledge in sixty minutes or less makes me have to do my whaaa? face. Don’t make me do it. Instead, let’s understand why procrastinating might be getting in the way of your singing career and come up with a game plan so it doesn’t happen again. Deal?
By Beth Lawrence, co-authored with Phillip Brandvold
One of the most difficult things for many beginning singers to overcome is the tendency to produce a nasal sounding tone. In fact, many singers battle against nasal sounds long into their vocal career. Although, sometimes the nasal voice is exactly what you’re looking for (think Country-Western music). However, good vocalists are able to determine when and how a nasal sound is produced. So how do you avoid creating an unintentional nasal voice?
By Lars Rosager
Performing with sheet music and singing from memory are two very different activities. The former highlights the interactions among the composer, the performer, and the audience, while the latter more intimately joins the performer with the audience. Through memorization, the performer is invited to take greater ownership over the music, and enjoys more expressive freedom. One primary goal of the skilled musician is, as the saying goes, to “bring the music off the page.” Most music is usually open to some degree of interpretation, so the process of committing music to memory allows the performer to contribute a personal touch. In this guide, I offer you advice on how to memorize a piece of vocal music.
By Jayne Carmichael Norrie, co-authored with Phillip Brandvold
You’re on stage- singing a challenging piece that requires you to stretch your range. You’re caught up in the moment, and in order to hit that high note, you end up moving your body into a position that is not conducive to good sound. If this sounds like you, you are not alone. The battle against bad posture is something that most singers struggle with at some point in their lives. Luckily, there is a solution- the Alexander Technique. The Alexander Technique is one way to ward off bad posture, and at the same time, help you be more mindful of your body.
By Donna Flynn, co-authored with Phillip Brandvold
As a singer, we all strive to achieve the ability to retain resonance and clarity in our voice while powering through either end of our vocal range- whether it be high or low. But time after time again, hitting those notes with ease has proven to be a difficult thing to achieve. Often, as a vocalist, you stumble upon songs that are set in a key you are uncomfortable with, and there may be a couple of notes that are either too high or low for you to hit. Your first instinct might be to change the key to something within your comfort range- however, that’s not always possible. Besides, many songs have such a large range that you may find extreme notes to hit no matter what the key. So how can you sing with the same power and clarity on an extreme note as you can with one that falls in the mid-range?
By Molly Rosen