Are You Afraid To Ask These 5 Questions About Singing?
There’s all manner of singing advice out there and tips and tricks to help you sing better, but what about the questions you might be too afraid to ask about your voice? Sometimes the simplest answer is the best, but sometimes those simple questions are often the hardest to ask.
Are you afraid to ask these 5 questions about singing? You might be holding yourself back from achieving the voice of your dreams.
#1 – Am I Just A Bad Singer?
Singing is ultimately an act of coordination and balance. Sure, there are those out there who possess a natural aptitude for the coordination required to sing well, at least at an intermediate or beginner level, but what about the rest of us who aren’t naturally good singers – do we just suck?
Absolutely not. A good singer has developed control and balance in their singing voice and is able to work many aspects of the voice in a consistent and coordinated way, from their registers, to breathing and onsets, to resonance, vowels, singing is an act of balance, not one of muscular force, and not one that requires a secret talent or special abilities.
This does mean that the learning curve may differ wildly between two singers, but the end game and end result is actually the same – a balanced, confident and consistent singing voice. You’re not a bad singer, you simply lack balance. A great place to start while splitting that hefty learning curve in half is the free foundations short courses I’ve set up for you here at Bohemian Vocal Studio, which will show you the best way to build a strong foundation or posture, breathing and placement so you can put yourself ahead of the curve.
#2 – Does my voice type limit my range?
Technically, yes, but not the way you’d think. Your vocal range is a balance between vocal fold weight and vocal fold tension, which is then allowed to resonate by the way you shape your vocal tract. Having a low voice really doesn’t effect your ability to balance your registers or alter your resonant space, so it’s likely you have WAY more range than you will ever know what to do with, but you simply haven’t developed the right balance and control yet. On the flipside, vocal fold weight IS a finite thing dictated by your physiology, and while you can likely gain a few lower notes, than you currently have access to, a Tenor isn’t going to sing a Johnny Cash song any time soon. So in terms of high range, your voice really isn’t limited in any way (a great example is Chris Cornell as a Baritone singing well beyond the range of a natural tenor) other than the technique and finesse you have for balancing your registers, but your low range MAY be somewhat limited by a higher voice type.
#3 – Are professional singers special or do they have different voices to normal people?
Absolutely not. Remember how we just learned that the voice is a function of balance and control, not of muscular strength or ‘god given talent’? Professional singers have worked hard to develop control and consistency in their voices, plus, their singing is always presented to you in a ‘perfect’ manner on records that took months to make, cost thousands of dollars and ultimately were edited and perfect before release, and a one hour concert with a professional sound crew is always going to sound out of this world compared to the way you yourself likely sounds when you sing in the shower.
Professional singers aren’t special, and they don’t have special voices, they just have great control and technique, and a great team behind them making them look and sound perfect even when they are not.
#4 – Which is the right way to sing/the right course/the right method?
There are tons of different vocal programs out there, and you know what? They’re all good. If you invest any time in your voice, you will see results and improvement. Sure, a Rock Singer really won’t achieve their goals with Speech Level Singing, but someone looking to sing Katy Perry songs likely won’t meet their own goals by using a more open and resonant form of singing – find a coach that you connect with, and can help you sing better in a practical and open way, and you will make much more progress than if you choose a coach with shiny, impressive recording studio videos, but ultimately doesn’t actually show you anything about singing.
I recently discussed 5 questions you need to ask before hiring a vocal coach – are you making wise choices with your voice?
#5 – Is there a secret to singing/what about special techniques like Appoggio?
Appoggio isn’t a special or secret technique, although it is often made out to be so by classical singers who fiercely guard the true secret to singing – that singing is actually easy, and there is no magical trick to achieving the voice you desire. Appoggio is an Italian word that simply means lean/support, and is used in singing to describe the balance between air pressure and air flow, in essence relying (leaning) on your breath to sing high notes and sustain a phrase. Classical techniques like Appoggio and Open Throat are often made out to be way more mystical than they truly are, made even more so by the fact they are often coined in Italian rather than simple and practical English for us English speakers.
There is absolutely no secret to singing, not vowel modification, not Appoggio, not vibrato, not placement – sure, these aspects of a great singing technique WILL make you sing better and in a more controlled way, but in and of their own are only one piece of the puzzle. Remember, singing is an act of balance, not one of muscular force or genetic gifts.
If you’re ready to take your voice to the next level, or you have any other pressing questions about your voice you’d like to discuss, you can book a Skype Session and we’ll get started extending your range and developing the voice of your dreams.
If you have any questions about learning how to sing, feel free to leave any feedback or questions below!