I’ve learnt to breathe properly and how to practice, how to sound vowels to sound nicest, how to interpret words in different ways, how to sing high, and how to sing long…
I’m going to keep having lessons, but I’m going to think more carefully about what I want to sing – I want to add some songs to my repertoire for performance on guitar and piano.
Curse him and his catchy tunes that are so useful for singing practice but so cheesy and dull!
I didn’t intend singing classical music, but this has got under my skin. Here is a version of the song, ‘Caro Mio Ben’, sung by Cecilia Bartoli, with every drop of emotion wrung out of it:
Pretty amazing, huh?
Or at least, an arietta? Not sure if this gets me any closer to rocking out on stage, but good technique is good technique. I guess. It’s a beautiful one – when she sings it anyway!
Breathing – we did an exercise where I breathed into my ribs, shoulders down, then breathed out whilst holding my ribs in the breathed in position. She showed me with her ribs and (freakily) she could push them in or out without breathing in or out. So I have some muscle work to do.
Then we went through a song and at a particularly high note she got me to bend over sharply to help me hit it. And it worked! Something to do with distracting the mind so the throat doesn’t tense up. Awesome. I can’t do that on stage though, unless I sing in a circus.
I’m realising I don’t practice much yet at home. We live in a shoebox and I’m very aware of the noises I make on the neighbours and the rest of the family. I really need to get over that if I’m to make more progress on this.
Is just ace – in the first lesson we quickly covered all the ground I’d covered on other courses and I (for the first time) sang from music as she played the piano. And to top it all off she showed me the chords on the left hand so I can play as I practice it for next time. Very pleased with that!
And I am officially a tenor :-) though she doesn’t know my voice can go down as well… that’s the training I did at the start of the year with the other teacher.
I’m seeing the benefits of multiple teachers and multiple approaches.
I’ve found someone close to where I work that I can go to on my lunch hour – for the same price as my train ticket to the group class! She is a performing soprano who has been teaching for many years. I haven’t had one-on-one time with a teacher/mentor since… well, my psychotherapist, if I’m honest. So, lots of emotions floating around. But I’m very excited about it!
She also teaches piano… I’m going to have half an hour of each next week and then decide if I want to replace one/both of my group classes.
There is one more before Xmas. I’m contemplating stopping – I have so much going on, and its miles away. I’m going to enjoy the Xmas break and make a decision in the New Year. I have succeeded in this goal already, but I want to leave it on for now.
I’m like an eager puppy each week. I can’t wait to get up and belt out a song – I’m rapidly losing my inhibitions. Which is exactly what I wanted from the course. There’s a pianist coming in next week to accompany us on a Xmas carol for a mini-concert the week after. We’ll be arranging jazz or soul versions of traditional carols – ace!
I Feel the Earth Move, Carole King :-) I wonder how my voice will be after two weeks off?