Why Song Choice is the Most Important Part of Voice Lessons
During our voice lessons, everything depends on the clear communication between the student and the teacher.
This communication is not only verbal and it is not only sung. More often, the communication has to do with physical feelings.
What does it feel like to hit that high-C in a perfect mixed voice?
Does it feel like hammering a piece of tin? Does it feel like you’re pressing your thumb down on the end of a hose to increase the pressure? Does it feel like nothing?
Sometimes the answer is not so obvious to either the student or the teacher.
Little by little though, the exercises start to make more sense and the positive feedback you get teaches you you’re doing it right.
Then comes the most important part: The Song.
Now why is the song the most important part?
Obviously, you’re not taking voice lessons to do “Nay Nay Nays” really well at parties. You’re learning these tools to feel what it is to sing.
So when you are demonstrating a song during the lesson, it is truly where the rubber hits the road. Where practice becomes deeper practice.
So, instead of asking, what does it feel like to hit that high-C, I might ask you what does it feel like to hit that high-C in “Somebody that I Used to Know”?
Now that the desired note is on a song, the result of all your hard work is clear. And the motivation to find that feeling isn’t just to please your teacher, it’s in making the song shine by singing it for yourself.
Some basic tips for songs to demonstrate in your lessons:
-Have a song to demo every lesson (I know this sounds obvious, but let’s just get it out of the way)
-Stick to the same sex of the singer (i.e. Don’t bring in a female pop song if you’re a male, at least in the beginning)
-Know the melody
-Know the words
-Make sure the music is readily available (whether on Spotify, your guitar or your phone)
-Choose a song that is a little bit challenging (but not a nightmare)
Put these tips into play during your lessons and see your progress really take off!