Archive | VL Blog

Get That Gunk Off of Those Cords!


Get That Gunk Off of Those Cords! Allergies? Still getting over that cold? Ate something last night that didn’t quite agree with you? There are many reasons that people get occasional excess mucus on their vocal folds. For most people, the presence of excess muck on the cords often goes unnoticed, but for singers, it […]

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Support: The Tripod of Singing

Breath Support

Support: The Tripod of Singing Most people when discussing “support” in singing seem to be referring primarily to the breathing mechanism. However, that is just one aspect of what makes up vocal support (or appoggio). If you think of a tripod, it’s very clear that the function of the tripod is to give support to […]

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Singing Dynamically

Have you ever been to a performance and noticed the singer has two volumes: loud and louder? Have you encountered a singer who tends to whisper rather than sing and can’t ever seem to lean in and get some passion going? These are examples of singers who lack the ability to sing with dynamics. Singing […]

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Can ANYONE Learn to Sing?

When I tell a person that I teach singing for a living, invariably the question that gets asked most often is, “Can ANYONE be taught to sing even if they don’t have a lot of talent?” In reality. the only thing that can be taught is skill, not talent. If a person is predisposed to […]

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The Joy of Singing

From my point of view, there is only one reason a person should sing, and that is the pure joy of singing itself. Singing is its own reward. Making music with our voice is a gift that can’t be compared with anything else. Some singers are consumed with the idea of becoming a house-hold name, […]

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A Singer’s True Job

When you hear a great singer, from any genre, you know within the first word or so who is singing. Think of Frank Sinatra, Barbara Streisand, Dolly Parton, Cecilia Bartoli, Richard Tucker, etc. Great singers always sing very honestly. This is the case in popular music as well as in classical. Sometimes when I hear […]

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Musings on Singing Technique

Nature gave us our voices for more than one reason. 1) The first and foremost function of the vocal folds is to protect our lungs from foreign materials. If you have ever done what your mother asked you to not do, and talked while eating, you may have gotten a particle of food trapped in […]

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In Praise of Concone

Many of us who studied classical singing with old-style “bel canto” teachers are familiar with the Concone books of solfeggi, the most famous of which is probably Opus 9: “Fifty Lessons.” With all of the modern “state-of-the-art” vocal training available in this day and age, it is easy to discount the value of this classic […]

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Training to Sing Habitually

I’ve noticed that a little of something every day always provides superior results to a lot of something sporadically. This is obviously true for all musicians, but is especially true for singers. Singing uses the entire autonomic neuro-musculor system. In order for a singer to be any good, they need to get to the point […]

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