Friday, February 10, 2012

Want to Have a Career in Singing?

A career in singing demands fierce and focused dedication from those who dare aspire to succeed. The average person has absolutely no idea how much hard work it takes to build an enduring career as a major artist. Yes, talent and looks are important, but they are only part of the equation. There are singers who have had successful singing careers in spite of modest talent or average looks.

So what does it really take to start a singing career? In the real estate business it is said there are only three important words: Location. Location. Location. In the music business those words are: Preparation. Preparation. Preparation.

First and foremost, you must begin the life-long task of defining yourself, largely through self-exploration. Who are you, really? Who do you want to be? We're talking about branding here: getting your outside persona to match your inside persona. This will be reflected in everything about you, from your haircut to your shoes (or boots).

When it comes to choice of music, don’t try to be everything to everybody. Develop your personal musical/vocal thumb print. If you are lucky enough to find your unique niche in music, cling to it with both hands. Best to be an "inch wide and a mile deep," than an "inch deep and a mile wide."

Then you must prepare your voice. Although popular music -- country, rock, pop and alternative -- does not demand the same kind of vocal mastery required in some other fields of music like opera and classical, you must be able to breathe well and support your voice so that you:

            Sing in tune and in time
            Sing with flexibility and ease
            Sing without damage to your voice
            Sound real and believable

Don't just sling a bunch of loud notes at your audience. Forget about LOUD for a while; concentrate instead on how to make it real. Most popular music is lyric-driven -- especially country music. It must be clear and honest.

That's why I feel vocal technique should be word-based rather than voice-based. Think of singing as speaking on organized, rather than random, pitches. You must speak to your audience from your heart. It's your job to make the audience connect with every word.

When you record in the studio you must be in control of your voice, and able to make immediate adjustments. There’s more than one way to sing a phrase and your producer may have ideas about how to improve your performance that may never have occurred to you. You make their job a pleasure when you are responsive to change. But don't hesitate to take a stand and express your opinions when you need to.

If you're looking for a career in singing you should seek out the counsel of others who have been working successfully in the music business for a long time. That does not mean you need lose your identity or your integrity as a singer; just have an open mind to what others have to say. Ultimately, the decisions you make will define you.

Taylor Swift's former personal manager Rick Barker discusses
career choices and social networking. Grant-Williams, Celebrity Voice
Coach, offers free video lessons at:

Nashville vocal coach Renee Grant-Williams reveals the trade secrets that have already helped hundreds of aspiring singers become celebrities: Tim McGraw, Martina McBride, Dixie Chicks, Miley Cyrus, Huey Lewis, Kenny Chesney, Faith Hill, Jason Aldean, Christina Aguilera...

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