Thursday, January 22, 2009

Immortal Invisible Parody

(To Hymn Tune: Immortal, Invisible...)

Immoral, impossible, God only knows
How tenors and basses, sopranos, altos
At service on Sunday are rarely the same
As those who on Thursday to choir practice came.

Unready, unable to sight-read the notes,
Not counting, not blending, they tighten their throats.
A descant so piercing is soaring above
A melody only a mother could love.

They have a director, but one wonders why
No one in the choir deigns to turn him an eye.
It's clear by his flailing, he wants them to look
But each singer slouches with nose in the book.

Despite the offenses, the music rings out.
The folks in the pews are enraptured, no doubt.
Their faces are blissful, their thoughts appear deep.
But it is no wonder, for they are asleep.

(Ah, the joys of random e-mail contacts)

Yours, Gary Shannon

I teach online voice lessons!
My passion: Your art.

( 8-{D} Balding, bespectacled, mustachioed, happy, bearded guy, usually open mouthed.

Friday, January 9, 2009

Singing Low Notes

Today's question:
Dear Voice-Mentor,
I'm having trouble making my low notes more powerful and "open". Do u have any pointers?
Dear xoox,

This I can answer! If your air is flowing gently and throat is relaxed, this exercise will extend the vocal range:

~ First, find SOME notes that sound exactly like you want, in your case, powerful and open.
~ Next, sing those notes, really getting the feel of them, until they sound just right to you.
~ Then, and only then, you start to slide that sound down

Adding notes to your range IS muscle training: you get gains by exercising those muscles, not thinking about it. It takes some time to build muscle and flexibility.

~ Take a breath, sing your good note, and slide it a little lower in pitch..
~ KEEP THE SOUND GOOD - don't go so low that the sound and feeling worsen.
~ If the good sound worsens, back up and sing a higher note that you can do well.
~ Be careful on going down. Do it SLOWLY. KEEP THE SOUND GOOD.

If your good sound does not go as low as you want it to go, have patience, it will come with time.
If your sound suddenly goes weak or choked, you've gone too low for now.


This stresses and trains the the muscles some, but it keeps your technique good. Five to ten minutes on this exercise at a time is plenty. When you get tired doing this, when even your good notes start to soudn worse, take a break, do something else.

~ After a while of singing your lowest good note, and slide it down a little and back up.
~ Very soon, the next lower note starts to sound good, too.
~ Congratulations, you are closer to your goal ~ that new note is your new "lowest note"!

Depending on how far along you are, this whole drill may take only seconds or it might be weeks before your next note appears. If you can't take the good sound lower, then don't. Go back and stick to the higher pitch for now.

~ Practice that new low note a lot.
~ Try sliding into and out of the next lower note from time to time.
~ When the next lower note comes in beautifully, now sing that.
~ Keep adding notes this way until you have all the notes you need.

It's easy to try to go too far too fast, but then you get nowhere. The real, real secret is to make the good sound color you want, THEN stretch farther, but not too far or too fast.

I'm glad you asked that question. I've been meaning to post the answer on this blog. Now, here it is!

Yours, Gary

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

The Harmonics Demo script

the Harmonics Demo Tape Script, Draft One:

Purpose: show fantastic vocalizing, song selection and presence in a short clip -
Capture interest and direct potential buyers to next contact
Caveat: We're limited to snippets of tunes unless we pay mechanical repro rights.
Request: comments, please. Recording is slated Jan 11

------BEGIN Script-------

Voice Over - (slate or movie bass sound)
"The Harmonics. dot com. demo track. Take One"

Group - (Get Ready, bridge)
"Whoa, I'm bringing you a love that's true. Get ready, Get ready.
I'm gonna try to make you love me too. get ready, get ready
Get ready 'cause here I come." ---
Get ready 'cause here I come!"

VO "
"The Harmonics. Dot com. Vocal Acapella. 2009. Not 1909

Group - (Romance[If I can get it], verse 4)
"Romance, I know it sounds old-fashioned, But the fashion is a passion with me
By chance of falling in love, I love the feeling passionately...
I'll take romance if I can get it, give me just one night, you won't regret it.."

"The Harmonics. Dot com. Corporate friendly. Family friendly. just. friendly.

Group (Kiss the Girl, verse 5)
"Sing wit' me now... Sha-la-la-la-la-la Don’t be scared
You got the mood prepared, Go on and kiss the girl
Sha-la-la-la-la-la Don’t stop now
Don’t try to hide it how, You wanna kiss the girl,
go now kiss the girl ..."

"The Harmonics. Dot Com. Four voices. Maybe microphones. Fits anywhere.

Group. (A Wink and A Smile, bridge 2)
"and now, Now my heart is music, such a simple song
sing it again, the notes never end. This is where I belong, belong
Just the sound of your voice the light in your eyes,
we're so far away from yesterday...

"from Portland Oregon. Hal, T.J. Gary and Tom. For rent.

Group (And So It Goes, verse 3)
"so I would share this room with you, that's if the choice were mine to make,
but you can make decisions, too, and you can have this heart to break"

"the Harmonics."

Group (Get Ready, tag)
"You know I never met a girl that makes me feel the way that you do.
Whoa, you're all right"

(long pause) dot com.

----End script-----

Yours, Gary Shannon
I teach online voice lessons! My passion: Your art.
4022 SE 100th Ave. Portland OR 97266 503-761-1837
( 8-{D} Balding, bespectacled, mustachioed, happy, bearded guy, usually open mouthed.