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Singing: The Tonic of Life
Most people these days would associate singing with the popular music they see and hear on the radio and tv. This can make you feel like its beyond you, like it's some form of high skill that you need to be born with. A natural talent if you like. In fact singing is much more a part of our everyday lives than you might realize, and it can be a tonic for an improved state of mind and recipe for stress reduction and better health.
The best example of this is, think about the songs that when you hear them on the radio make you remember something wonderful in your past. The song that reminds you of your first kiss or when you proposed to your partner, or perhaps just some good times with friends at school or work. You can be sitting all alone feeling sorry for yourself about the way life has treated you and a song comes on the radio that reminds you of a great time in your life.
I'm sure you have songs that do this to you. Songs that you sing along to in the car at the top of your voice, ignoring the strange looks from other drivers at the lights. It can be a form of instant atitude adjustment and will often completely erase the effects of a bad day.This effect is multiplied ten fold if you can sing along with a favorite song. For the moments when you sing along you get to journey through a personal fantasy, a kind of mental movie of events that you recall related to that song. When you sing along to a CD in the car you get to momentarily exit this reality and visit another which is tailor made by you.
There is even a flip side to it. I still find it hard to listen to a particular Lead Zeppelen song which I associate with breaking up with my first wife. However, when I do hear it I feel like singing along because it makes me remember how much better things are now than when I was with her. Funny how that works.
If you are the sort of person who has a lot of emotional ups and downs in your life then you could try this little trick for a kind of instant pick me up. Make a CD up of about 10 of your favorite songs and keep it with you at all times. Make sure these songs are related to great times in your life. When you are annoyed or upset, or just need a bit of a boost put the CD on and play one song at random. Do not play more than one song and resist the urge to play the same song each time. Playing the same song will reprogram you to associate it with your current situation and it will loose it's effect. Then sing your head off! Make sure you are alone and sing from the heart. Don't spare the horses - just go for it. Make sure you take a good deep breath to start and concentrate on the sound of your own voice, not the voice of the singer in the song. This will help you pitch correctly and make you feel like you are a real singer on a stage.
Many people simply ignore music in their environment. They regard it as background noise like traffic or the murmur of people talking in a cafe. The truth is music is like a custom built emotional trigger. We all react to it in different ways. How many times have you found a piece of music totally distracting when you are trying to concentrate on something? This is because music is created specifically to evoke a response, it is looking to push your buttons, to make you participate. The next time you see some motor racing on the tv check out the sort of music they put behind it. It won't be Beethoven or Mozart, it will be high speed aggressive guitar music. How does it make you feel? This music is chosen to evoke an adrenelin response, to get you excited and feel like you are part of the action. Conversely, you are unlikely to hear thrashing guitars used behind a documentary about gorillas in Kenya, you will hear thoughtful music that is designed to create empathy and wonderment.
All this means that you should take more notice of the music around you and try to participate whenever you can. Above all, try to listen to music that allows you to sing and express your emotions, let it all hang out and don't give a damn about what other people think.The next step is to get better control of your singing voice. Try getting some kakaoke tracks and sing to those regularly. From there you might consider some actual singing lessons. The benefits are huge in terms of improving your sense of wellbeing and confidence. Finally, pay a visit to The Explore Your Voice Show Podcast. It's a half hour downloadable mp3 audio show on the net where we talk about all aspects of singing, performing, and getting your voice into shape.
Michael Oliphant is a musician, producer, songwriter co-inventor of Explore Your Voice Singing Lessons and co-hosts a regular free show on singing and performing called The Explore Your Voice Show Podcast
Review: Medications - All Your Favorite People In One Place
One of the most intriguing aspects of music is how easily it can transform one's mood. The right notes, at the right tempo, and all of a sudden, BAM! You're in a good mood. This 3 piece from Washington, DC knows exactly how to pull this off. Consisting of members of the now defunct band "Faraquet", Medications oddly enough, sounds a lot like Faraquet. It's peculiar how a band consisting of the same musicians can sound very similar. After the Faraquet breakup 2 of the founding members created Medications and while the sound is very similar, the new third wheel does add some new elements into the mix. A mere 6 months since the release of their Medications EP, they have returned with their first full length Your favorite people all in one place available now on Dischord.
Memorizing Music - How Is It Best Achieved?
When memorizing music there are several things you can do that will make your job that much easier. Memorizing music is important as most people know you play better when having the music in your head rather than having your head in the music. So where to start when memorizing music effectively?
How To Overcome The Lyric Writing Hurdles That Are Keeping You Behind
The lyric writing side of songwriting is known to create an enormous number of problems for some folks. No matter how hard they try, they are unable to write a single line that they can be pleased with.
Learning to Play the Piano with Chords Part 2
Do you want to learn how to play chords on the piano? Can you already read sheet music or basic notes on the treble and or bass clef?
?Who Else Wants to Get Screwed When Signing a Recording or Songwriting Deal?!?!?
You've got your recording (or songwriting) contract in hand and everything's coming up roses, right? You get your check, finally, but it's not quite what you expected. If you sign not knowing what's owed you then you might be shorted some well-deserved income. So make sure that anything you sign contains a statement to the following areas (preferably in your favor):
The Life and Music of Beatle George Harrison
Propelled into fame as one of the Beatles, along with Paul McCartney, John Lennon, and Ringo Starr, George Harrison was known as the "quiet one" of the group, and also as the "spiritual one." He was the lead guitarist.
Dance Musics Most Popular and Enduring Theme: The Declaration of Independence
It all started with Gloria Gaynor's "I Will Survive" in 1979, perhaps the biggest fluke in popular music history. To follow up her hit "Never Can Say Goodbye", Gloria's label issued a song called "Substitute". The track bombed. Everyone hated it, including the radio DJs and the public. Then DJs started to play the B-Side track "I Will Survive" and the rest is history.
Free, Legal Music Online
Almost everyone has heard about the massive crack down on Internet music piracy that has been occurring over the past few years. Napster was taken down (although it has now returned as a pay service), other file sharing programs now require users to pay for a license and the RIAA and other similar organizations are doing their best to hunt down copyright offenders and put an end to their crime sprees. The consumers on the other hand argue that their actions hurt nobody, that there is no damage done to anyone by their not buying an album. Furthermore, they claim, MP3s allow them to sample a CD before purchasing it, thus actually helping sales.
Radio - What?s Happened To It?
Remember when radio stations played great music?
Where To Download Music On The Internet
Virtually all of you have probably heard of the RIAA's quest to crush online music piracy. The illegal sharing of copyrighted songs via the MP3 format on top the Internet costs the music industry billions of dollars. This is conventionally done applying illegal file sharing programs like KaZaa and iMesh. This article explores the legal ways to download and enjoy music from the Internet.
Writing Hit Songs
There are a lot of factors to writing a hit song. First, you should focus on writing a good song. Once you've done that, you are not far away from writing a hit.Like most other things in life, it takes persistence, patience, drive, knowledge, belief and maybe some luck.Stop and think about your favorite songs. Really analyze them and figure out what it is that you like about those songs.Different factors may come to play here. Maybe it is the good beat, lyrics that hit home, a beautiful melody, something spiritual or patriotic, or maybe even that it is humorous.If you include one of these elements in your songwriting you are well on your way. If you combine two or more of these elements, you may have yourself a hit.A Good BeatRhythm is important in music. I have to laugh and think of Jerry Van Dyke on "The Dick Van Dyke Show" years ago trying to play the banjo and sing, "I've got rhy-rhy-thm, I've got mah-mah-music..."But, unless you are very funny like Jerry Van Dyke, your audience is not very likely to stay with you. Your music not only needs to have a good beat, but must fit the genre of music you are trying to write. A Metallica beat in a George Strait type song may not get you very far. A song with a good enough beat might be a hit even with no melody and no lyrics. Remember "Green Onions?"Along with the beat is the tempo. Country music is easy to write (I did not say it is easy to write well) because it is about people's lives and everyday experiences. However, too often people write slow songs for country music, when in fact the industry is starving for upbeat country material like "Country Roads" and "Rocky Top." It is much harder to write a good up-tempo country song than it is a tear jerker.Lyrics in popular music can range from broken relationships to political issues, and just about any point in between. Those that tend to be the most popular are about situations you and I may encounter in our everyday lives; "Workin' 9 To 5," "I Just Called To Say I Love You," "Your Cheatin' Heart," "God Bless The USA" (which ingeniously incorporates spiritual, political and patriotic views).A beautiful or interesting melody can get you into the ranks of hit songwriter with no lyrics required. Going back in time to prove a point about beautiful melodies, you might consider songs like "Last Date" and "Sleepwalk."Songs with great melody lines are very easy to be found in many hit TV show themes like "Peter Gunn," "Hawaii 5-0," along with many of the 60's surfer songs like "Wipe Out."Well done humorous songs usually find an audience, such as Ray Stevens "The Streak," and Jerry Reeds "She Got The Goldmine, I Got The Shaft." If you have a knack for both humor and music, you might make a fortune.Spiritual and patriotic songs, if they are well done and come out at the right time, are easy hits. Every time the U.S. gets involved in any type of world conflict, the songwriters get their pens out.Keep your ears and eyes open, and keep a shoe box to put your ideas for songs in. Every time you think of an idea for a song or a song title, write it down and drop it in the box. It could be your first, or your next, big hit.
Music and Emotion
The Age-old Puzzle of Human Response
Legal Music Downloads
On July 28, 2004, French Internet access providers and music copyright owners signed a joint national charter aimed at cracking down on illegal downloads and expanding the amount of legal music tracks available online (AFP). This is the latest in a series of moves taken across the world to combat music piracy as production labels see more and more of their profits being lost to illegal downloads of music files.
Top 7 Donts for Successful Improvisation
1. Don't try and make something happen. Trying blocks the creative flow and will result in blocks.
5 Sure Fire Ways to Get Radio Play for Your ?Independent? Music!
You have to find radio airplay time if you're going to be heard and we're not just talking the local college campus. The trick is called promotion. Now that doesn't mean you just put your press kit in an envelope with a demo and hope they take pity on you. Perhaps you call a station and they give you the standard pitch of, "Send it and if we like it we'll put you in rotation." After a few months of never hearing your music, you automatically think you're not worthy.
How I Learned How To Play The Guitar After Giving Up In Disgust
I was 17 at the time (the Beatles era), and it was considered cool to play the guitar. I had a little training in music in elementary school where I had learned how to play the trumpet. I remember that the only reason I started the trumpet was because my daddy had run across an old beat up horn that a woman was selling for $10.
Bang on Your Drum All Day Long - Without Annoying Your Neighbors!
Bang! Bam! Bang! Have you always wanted to play the drums, but are afraid your neighbors would call the police on you?
Guitar Practicing or Guitar Playing?
Just because you're holding your guitar doesn't mean that you're playing it, and just because you're playing your guitar doesn't mean that you're practicing. There is a real difference and it needs to be acknowledged if you want to improve your level of playing skill. Some people say they have spent the entire day practicing their guitar when in reality, all they've done was sit in front of the TV all day eating cheesy poofs. The sad thing is that they really do believe it was practicing since they had their guitar on their lap next to their cheesy poofs all day. Most of us know someone who does this and we may even be guilty ourselves.
Guitar Buying - The Pros and Cons of Vintage vs. Reissue
To most people, owning the "genuine article" is the only thing that will suffice. As a guitar player, and one who appreciates classic "vintage" instruments, I can fully understand this point of view. I can't think of a single guitarist who wouldn't absolutely adore playing a real 50's Les Paul or Stratocaster. However, becoming the proud owner of a true vintage instrument does have its drawbacks.
Hip Hop Clothing
Celebrities now such as Outkast, a fashion wear can be a must have. Likewise gainful for celebrities included within the clothing lines world, which is how come we are in possession of these most up to date hip hop clothing lines on the market like, FuBu. With very good class hoodies & great urban clothing show rooms such jewelery will not be declined! Ecko set the standard in the hiphop world, with a imaginative collective of urban designers unendingly working on offering its customers the best in the modern urban trends. These Johnny Blaze list of hoodies, will be advertized towards boys as well as men from ages 12-40. Because of the Wu Tang Clan launch, the make has revelled critical and commercial victory. Sean John has speedily aged from an urban label towards an global brand name. GGG Unit Sneakers are sneakers contrived and commercialised by the famous Reebok Kicks Company. Famously it was a trainer conceded to rap artist 50 Cent fallowing 50cents clique G Unit brought out their debut album Beg For Mercy. These sneakers are one of the most fashionable rap marks and projected for comport.
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