The effect of alcohol on singing

The effect of alcohol on singing

How often have you sat in a club and watched the singer down drinks on their set breaks? In certain genres of music it's so common you’d think alcohol was the singer’s drink! Singers who drink and sing usually do it to "take the edge off" or help them through performance anxiety, which is completely understandable. In fact, some vocalists might say that their performance is better, more creative, and more emotionally connected, after a drink or two. However, let's consider the facts, what alcohol really does to your voice, so you can make an informed choice whether or not you want to drink before heading onstage.

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Vocal hygiene is simple, common sense

Vocal hygiene is simple, common sense

Have you heard the term vocal hygiene? It sounds complicated, (and possibly messy?), but it's very simple - vocal hygiene is the care of your voice by being aware and making choices based on how your voice and your health in general are affected by various environmental factors such as foods, drinks, weather, sleep, hormones, stress and other elements. Your vocal mechanism (and your body as a whole) is your instrument. Just like any good guitarist, violinist, or saxophonist knows how to care for his or her instrument (what kinds of temperatures and moisture levels to avoid, how to maintain its level of repair, etc.), a good singer must be diligent when it comes to maintaining his or her own vocal and overall physical health. In some ways, vocalists are lucky that when they travel their instrument is easily transportable, inside their bodies! However, with that convenience comes a price: vocalists must be much more careful about what they put in their bodies and how they take care of their health.

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Is singing a skill you're born with?

Is singing a skill you're born with?

Can anyone learn how to sing well?  Or is the ability to sing something you’re born with? As a professional singer and vocal educator for over fifteen years and counting, this is a question I am frequently asked. Inquirers want to examine the validity of voice training in the first place, to question the commonly held belief that you are either born with the ability to sing or you're not. As an instrumental educator I also get questions about whether people are born with musical ability in general. In my humble opinion the "born with it" theory is primarily an American invention that has grown as technology and popular media culture have advanced. As a student of language and culture who has spent time in 20+ countries,

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