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Hopefully these aren't redundant questions but...

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(@steve-0)
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Joined: 20 years ago
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Topic starter  

I'm a newbie to singing, well not really, but seriously PRACTICING singing is new to me (i sing in the car and in my room all the time, but that's anything but organised practice :P ), four of my recent music "projects" have been to learn how to sing, play piano, violin and harmonica, and of course keep up with guitar! Add all that time up with over 20 hours of school a week, it can get kind of overwhelming.

Anyways, i told my violin teacher (who is also teaching me a bit of piano) that i was interested in singing and she said she would tell me what capabilities my voice was at. We played some scales and she said I had a normal male range, and told me that if i needed help with something she'd be willing to teach me. My questions are as follows:

1. I find that sometimes I go out of key when I'm singing, especially really complex singing: should I maybe practice scales more in order to get a more powerful knowledge of what key i'm in, or will i just sort of get better at this the more i practice singing.

2. I find that my voice isn't as strong as I would like it to be, I'm not a fan of opera at all, but that sort of strength in their voice is almost what i would like to have (or if you listen to most of the metallica songs on the black album, it's powerful singing, but it's not screaming like most metal, that would be my goal). I never really payed much attention to breathing techniques, but would practicing breathing correctly help me out?

3. I'm a fan of metallica and alot of other heavier bands (hard rock really, not full blown heavy metal), so distortion and overdrive is pretty much a must. Now, I remember playing with my band a while back and we did a cover of For Whom The Bell Tolls, and everyone liked it but said they couldn't hear my singing. It could've been because of the P.A and room acoustics but what is the best way to sing MELODICALLY (no screaming) and still be heard over a loud band.

Thanks for any replies.

Steve-0


   
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 geoo
(@geoo)
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Joined: 19 years ago
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1. I find that sometimes I go out of key when I'm singing, especially really complex singing: should I maybe practice scales more in order to get a more powerful knowledge of what key i'm in, or will i just sort of get better at this the more i practice singing.

Maybe someone with formal training has some exercises but practice will help alot.
2. I find that my voice isn't as strong as I would like it to be, I'm not a fan of opera at all, but that sort of strength in their voice is almost what i would like to have (or if you listen to most of the metallica songs on the black album, it's powerful singing, but it's not screaming like most metal, that would be my goal). I never really payed much attention to breathing techniques, but would practicing breathing correctly help me out?

Breathing correctly will make your voice stronger, practice will make it more confident (which in turn will make it stronger).
3. I'm a fan of metallica and alot of other heavier bands (hard rock really, not full blown heavy metal), so distortion and overdrive is pretty much a must. Now, I remember playing with my band a while back and we did a cover of For Whom The Bell Tolls, and everyone liked it but said they couldn't hear my singing. It could've been because of the P.A and room acoustics but what is the best way to sing MELODICALLY (no screaming) and still be heard over a loud band.

Usually, depending on what kind of setting I guess, how loud your vocals can be heard has more to do with the volume control on your PA or AMP, and not whether you are screaming or not. If the band is turned up, esp with a reall drummer, then you can scream all you want and you wont be heard over them. From my experiences, its hard to get them to turn it down (esp the drummer) so you just have to have something equipment wise that will get you louder than them.

Hope that helps
Geoo

“The hardest thing in life is to know which bridge to cross and which to burn” - David Russell (Scottish classical Guitarist. b.1942)


   
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(@steve-0)
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Joined: 20 years ago
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Topic starter  

It helps alot, thanks. I guess I'm just going to have to practice alot more, and maybe i'll get my violin teacher to give me some advice on singing.

Steve-0


   
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(@chris-c)
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I agree with Geoo. :)

Professional singers take their voices as seriously as any other instrument (and will often actually talk about the voice as an "instrument"). They work on a wide range of skills and techniques just like we do with guitar.

Singers of opera and the like spend hours a day keeping the voice in trim, just like a guitarist's hands or a sportsman's muscles. We don't need to go that far, but the more seriously we approach the task the better results we'll get.

We all start out thinking we have dreadful voices, but we can all take our rusty vocal chords to the "gym" and start getting them fit. I'd definitely say that it be be worthwhile to get a few suggestions and/or lessons from your teacher. The good thing about singing is you've always got the intrument with you, so you can fit little bits of practice in spots where you can't be doing violin or guitar.

Good luck with your goals. :)


   
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(@dennett340)
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Joined: 18 years ago
Posts: 44
 

no, get a good vocal teacher. Someone who sings in your style. Unless your violin teacher is a vocalist to begin with.
And yes, your voice is just like any other intsrument. You do not know the potential of your voice until you've trained it consistently in a systematic way for years.


   
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(@steve-0)
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Joined: 20 years ago
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Topic starter  

Well I no longer take lessons from that teacher (I don't have the money at the moment), but I think it really comes down to a lack of confidence and the fact that I'm not really a loud speaker in general, so singing loud is even tougher. Thanks for the advice everyone, I'm nowhere near where I'd like to be but maybe I'll get the courage to record myself and post it up so I can get some accurate feedback.

Steve-0


   
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 geoo
(@geoo)
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I'm not really a loud speaker in general,

I'm not either. I'm a very shy individual but when I sing its different and I feel comfortable. But it wasnt always that way. A good vocal coach can help you alot but if you cant afford it, you cant afford it. Can you find someone to sing with or maybe a good kareoke bar? Some of the kareoke places are rought with the customers but some are better about giving you encouragment. I would be careful with that option. Do you go to church? Churches are great places for getting experience singing. It might not even be your preferred style but a choir will get you in front of supportive people which is what it sounds like you need most.

I had forgotten all about this thread

Jim

“The hardest thing in life is to know which bridge to cross and which to burn” - David Russell (Scottish classical Guitarist. b.1942)


   
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