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Voice Journal Spring 2017 Jan 24-30

Jan 24 2017

Aaaccck!! ALL the feels. Candle on the Water is playing and I figure it'll take me twenty or thirty times singing before I can do it without crying. This song means so much to me, and I always used to be able to sing in the key of Helen Reddy; she's one of my favorites. I get a phrase now and again right now, but I can't do it without crying, so I'm mostly just listening. Maybe after a while I can hum it.

8 Goals for this semester:

1. Learn to sing through strong emotion.
2. Learn to sing through strong emotion without crying.
3. Develop my voice as a unified sound through chest, head, and both passaggios--because that was just doggoned cool when I realized I wasn't noticing them last semester.
4. Work on a capella pitch because my head voice doesn't stay in tune.
5. Learn some warm-ups well enough that I can warm up at the keyboard.
6. Develop better breath support/control.
7. Continue to develop my range.
8. Sing something so beautifully that everyone else cries.

Jan 25

Sang through Candle on the Water twice today without crying. Had to go half-voice but I even managed to get two octave whole notes, although I preferred seven beats and a rest so I could get a good breath for the next phrase. My voice was real shaky and a couple places were iffy but I managed to focus on the music and keep the tears at bay. Also sang through A Change in Me twice. Cried a little, but nothing like yesterday. Musically, I much prefer Candle on the Water. Interesting that the bridge managed a key change simply by changing chords; I write that way a lot, myself.

Both songs are in my range and work the passaggios. I was surprised to notice that I managed to sing the low notes in head voice with no real effort--just decided "this is how I want to sing it" and then did so. Did my best to remember to sing forward and with resonance.

Jan 26
Tried A Change in Me but just wasn't feeling it. Sang Candle on the Water four times through. Voice still kind of shaky and didn't have the breath support I wanted--maybe because my throat was tense? I'd already done several pages of sight-singing and was tired. Kept massaging my neck and jaw, and worked on getting the melody right and learning the words. I love this song so much!! It sings in my head all the time now.

Jan 27 Piano day, no singing.

Jan 28 Soundcloud intervals only.

Jan 29
Sang the scale degree exercise a couple times through. Started out okay, but G was too high so I moved it down to D. Got fairly tight and tired, so I went to piano practice to let my throat rest before I started the song. Still had trouble with crying while I sang, but the only way through is through, so I kept going. Did a lot of massage between run-throughs. Also discovered that I have to sing in head voice. Started on the C an octave middle C and sang down to the starting note to avoid inadvertently starting in chest voice, because I don't seem to know how to switch out of chest voice if I start there. Used the metronome and was most comfortable at 60 BPM... but sheesh, that makes the end a challenge! Liked the way I sounded; did my best to remember to aim my voice at the most resonant spot. Still needed to play the melody for intonation, but I do know it and  I'm starting to remember more of the words now.

Jan 30
Soundcloud intervals before school. Doing okay in half voice. It seems like these should be a warm up, but by the end I'm tight, not relaxed, so I guess not.
Scale Degree Patterns as a warm-up. Did them in head voice and in C, since that's what I need for Candle on the Water. And ow. Head voice hurts. I did some massage during and after, then did some serious piano practice before I tackled the song. Three times through, all head voice, and didn't lose it until the second verse of the third time through, so that's big progress. No metronome, so I dunno how fast I was going, but the third time was faster than the first two. My voice was shaky. I was too stiff and sore to have good breath support, I think, and so my tone quality varied as did my ability to sustain the notes. I sure do love the A-G pattern though; it reminds me of a bell. Did a lot of massage between takes.

When I stopped Candle on the Water I dropped to chest voice for sight-singing practice and it went much better---but oh holy cow was I worn out by the time I finished.

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