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Kicking the idea of singing around....

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by Tim Cole, Oct 26, 2003.


  1. Tim Cole

    Tim Cole

    Jun 12, 2002
    Findlay, Ohio
    As long as I have been playing, I have never sang a single note in any of the bands I have been in. I am in a trio now, and while the vocals are good, I would like to contribute to them when it is needed. The problem is, I have a very limited range, which is very low.....I could sing about any bassline you can think of. The biggest problem here is, I have zero confidence in my singing since I have never done any, and not sure really where to start.

    Any advice, links, or help on what I need to do would be greatly appreciated.....I am tired of being the only guy with no mic!
     
  2. P. Aaron

    P. Aaron Supporting Member

    Just sing along with tunes, or the parts of tunes you like in the car, or at home...alone. When you can belt it out, and no one can hear.

    Or take vocal lessons, and do the best you can.

    Country Music is a good reference for harmonic vocalizing, and backing vocals.

    Also, vocal teams like Jagger/Richards and Tyler/Perry.
     
  3. ldiezman

    ldiezman

    Jul 11, 2001
    Nashville
    If you have a limited vocal range is simply from inexperience.. It is quite possible to increase you range another octave at least...
     
  4. Tim Cole

    Tim Cole

    Jun 12, 2002
    Findlay, Ohio
    Thanks for the replies guys, I personally think my biggest problem with it is confidence, and not knowing where to even start.
     
  5. In the last six months, I've started singing while playing too. I have a deep bass voice, but can cover over four octaves, so range has not been a problem, although the bass part is definetely my comfort zone. I, too, started with a confidence problem. In my case, I think the lack of confidence comes primarily from many years of getting the feeling from others that my voice was an oddity and didn't blend well with anyone else, even though I knew I could sing rather well, alone. I'm now with a group that seems to really like my deep voice and the dimension that it brings to the group. I've received a great deal of encouragemnet from them and they have been quite patient with me as I have been developing my level of confidence. Initially, I just vocally followed the root notes of my bass lines, which has been fairly easy. Recently, I have gradually been incorporating more complex vocal lines. A curious observation I've made is that the songs that I learned before I started singing have been more difficult to simultaneously sing and play than the more recent ones we've done. Many of the new pieces I just start in singing, no problem. Some of the old ones I just can't quite get it together yet. Seems counter to the suggestion of learning the bass lines down pat first before adding the vocal (???).
     
  6. Boplicity

    Boplicity Supporting Member

    What will build confidence is knowledge about singing. There are some pretty decent books on singing. Better yet would be a session or two with a vocal coach who can evaluate your present status as a singer and show you how to increase your range, your phrasing and your intonation.

    If you don't want to buy a book or spend hard earned cash on a vocal coach, you could record yourself singing and then listen to how you sound. We don't really sound exactly like we think we do because we don't hear ourselves the way others do who are in front of us and further away from us. You might be surprised how you sound on a tape. You might even sound BETTER than you imagine.

    Another confidence builder would be to do what many vocal coaches will have you do anyway, sing scales preferably along with a keyboard if you have one or along with your bass, at the upper register preferably. Start with C major and sing "ah" going up the scale and back down. Then go to G major and do the same thing. See how far you can go up in register and see how far you can go down in register before your voice starts to strain. You may have more range than you now believe.

    Sing out loud along to CDs. Get used to singing. It takes some practice to build up vocal stamina and endurance. You might find your voice is a little scratchy the next day at first.

    Here's a funny piece of advice I once heard a vocal coach give. "If you can't sing well, at least sing loud." That was my strength. I can belt out a song, but I have a horrible, raspy voice. But I agree with that coach, that even if you don't sing well, your voice will sound better if you have the courage to really belt out your song, not sound timid or lacking in confidence and sound as if you believe in yourself.

    One way to do that is really pay attention to the meaning in the lyrics. Try to sing with feeling and make those lyrics live for your audience. By "living the lyrics" you will forget yourself and sound more confident.

    Good luck and let us know how your experience as a vocalist goes.
     
  7. Boplicity

    Boplicity Supporting Member

    Having given more thought to your concerns about confidence, I feel the SINGLE most important thing you can do for your situation is start singing in front of people. Start with just one or two, your wife or dad or neighbor or colleague at work or even your dog or cat for starters.

    What you need to do is get over the self consciousness of performing in front of real live folks. You play bass in front of an audience. Singing is just one more step in that process. So gather up a little group of people you know and start singing entire songs for them. Give it all you've got. Pretend you are singing at the Grammies Awards.

    The best practice for singing for an audience is just that...singing for an audience. SO get started with just one person or two or three and work your way up to a bigger group. Soon you'll be a confident seasoned pro.
     
  8. tplyons

    tplyons

    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    I was in the same boat, but I sung backup with the mic turned low. I only sang lead for the first time out of dire need, my singer was sick and this was our first show in a long time and had a huge turnout. Without sending our crowd home without a good show, I played mostly roots for the night while singing horribly, but the crowd loved it. No reason to be afraid...
     
  9. cheezewiz

    cheezewiz

    Mar 27, 2002
    Ohio
    TIM! That sig is killin me!!!!:D

    Im in the same boat as you. I have no confidence and no ability to sing, so I dont. Ive always thought about doing something about it, but never have....
     
  10. tplyons

    tplyons

    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    What? The new "King of Muff?" :D
     
  11. P. Aaron

    P. Aaron Supporting Member

    More to stuff in the bag with Boplicity's comments. Something anecdotal.

    I sang to the harmony parts with records for years. But would only sing in front of people while playing guitar at drunken Rolling Stones sing alongs.

    I sing/sang harmony in the band I am in. But not right away. The thought of me(?) singing scared the fecal matter out of me. Until one night...me being slightly drunk, and the guitar player starts doing...Rolling Stones tunes. It got instinctive really quick. And, it has become necessary or the song doesn't sound right.

    Last year we got a singer to take some of the vocal duties off the guitar player/singer. The new guy starts stealing the harmonies I had worked out for the songs we did prior to him joining.:rolleyes:
     
  12. cheezewiz

    cheezewiz

    Mar 27, 2002
    Ohio
    Actually tplyons..Tim Cole's sig. Its kind of a running joke between us.
     
  13. Tim Cole

    Tim Cole

    Jun 12, 2002
    Findlay, Ohio
    COME ON MADISON STREET!!!!!!!!!


    I'm tellin' ya, get a big oversized sledge hammer.
     
  14. Victor Wooten98

    Victor Wooten98 Guest

    Jul 31, 2003
    South of Heaven...
    Just belt it out man, You arent going to get anybetter if you dont try right? I had MAJOR confidence problem's like, I needed to see a Psyc about it, But anyways, Just sing, you probably have a large or at least Larger range than you think, People with Big, deep or 'heavy' voices usually sing out of key and dont notice it, I myself dont have a deep voice, but I can sing really high, to 'kind-of low'.

    Screw your 'fight or flight' response, in your mind I bet you are like "I can do this, I just got to let it flow" and your stomach is like "*** are you doing? Run you fool" my advice to hell with your stomach, Next time you are playing with your band, You sing, just for fun try it out, if they laugh at you GOOD, that gets you WAY calmer.

    I have been singing for awhile and if you ever have any questions, feel free to PM me, I will be more than happy to help you out :cool:
     
  15. Tim Cole

    Tim Cole

    Jun 12, 2002
    Findlay, Ohio
    No, I really do suck. I have one of those big, low, deep voices you speak of as well.
     
  16. Victor Wooten98

    Victor Wooten98 Guest

    Jul 31, 2003
    South of Heaven...
    Nah, you just need practice, you couldnt believe the voices I've heard and how they have matured... Think of this...

    Basic Voice...

    Beginning Opera (...Ugh... headaches)

    Beginning Jazz (...Ditto...)

    Beginning 'scatting' (...worse...)

    Opera in different languages (Hand hits forehead)

    I had the drop the class with diff. Languages, too hard + people too crapy to hear.

    Singing does need practice, it is important, I can Cover 5 Octave’s at first I could cover only 3... it takes time + effort.
     
  17. Tim Cole

    Tim Cole

    Jun 12, 2002
    Findlay, Ohio
    impossible

    JWC?
     
  18. Victor Wooten98

    Victor Wooten98 Guest

    Jul 31, 2003
    South of Heaven...
    Ohh, and the first thing I was told by my teacher's was "No" and "I cant" arent Acceptable answers.

    All of those classes werent actual classes, they were just 'lessons' I got for free from my teacher with like 3-5 other students at a time.

    But the Beginning Voice was a class, We did an Opera song, an 'arts' song, a Folk song and a choice song (we chose what kind) so we sang 3 totally different styles. I am good at the 'arts' songs (Shows like the Music Man, you know plays)
     
  19. Geez, 4 octaves? I thought its already a good thing to be able to cover 2 octaves...
    :eek:
     

  20. Well, I can hit the notes but don't think I routinely sing all four. Deep bass and baritone are comfortable. Anything above that takes much greater effort and tires me fast.