As in any career, the pressure to stand out and be recognized among the stars is common among singers. However, this does not mean you should allow yourself to get worked up about it. The key to success is the pursuit of excellence, and this is especially true for any singer.

The Ground Rules

There are many things you could do as a singer to give yourself an advantage in your career. However, the basic rules must be kept as you conquer more territories. Some of the basics you must never forget are described in the following post:

Warm up your voice before presenting. These exercises will do the trick nicely. Try doing them before and after presenting. You’ll look and sound pretty weird, so try to find privacy in a stairwell if you need to soothe your voice during a break in a full day of presenting.

Drink a lot! Try water without ice and herbal tea. Ice will restrict your vocal muscles so stick to cool or warm drinks. Keeping a drink handy is especially important if you get dry mouth from nerves.

Limit your caffeine and alcohol intake before and during your presentation. These drinks are diuretics and will dehydrate you—all of you, including your vocal cords! Via Wavelength

Singer Jörn Schlönvogt Actor Bat Interpreter
Image Courtesy of Free Great Picture

Going Diverse

According to Bob Marks, as a singer, it is important to sing all types of songs as it will allow you connect with a larger audience. This is how he explains it:

Just as you would build a wardrobe, with varied outfits for different occasions and temperatures, your music repertoire book needs to feature a diverse selection of pieces to show you can handle different sorts of singing demands. Via BWW


That’s not the only reason why you are encouraged to diversify your singing potential. He continues to explain that embracing diversity will set you up to discover your own potential.

Not every song can (or should be) a show-stopper, full of dramatic heft and long, sustained high notes at the top of your range. Sometimes, it’s more important to demonstrate naturalness and vulnerability, or show that you understand the needs of a very specific musical style. It’s valuable to have many different kinds of songs in your “toolbox” to exhibit the full scope of your strengths. Via BWW

passionate singing
Image Courtesy of Pixabay

Pushing Your Limits

There is always room to improve your singing skills in many different ways. Additionally, if you want to expand your scope of singing, you need to be progressive. You cannot expect to sing for a full night without prior preparation. The story of Taylor Mac gives insight on how he trained himself for a music marathon.

The Achievement

Taylor Mac was in a concert to bring back the music that made hits from way back. The concert was dubbed “A 24-Decade History of Popular Music” which saw him sing very many songs (246 to be precise), over a span of 24 hours!

Of the many feats he accomplished during the marathon at St. Ann’s Warehouse — queering the American Songbook, pitting Stephen Foster and Walt Whitman in a wrestling match — perhaps the most basic was the most crucial: His voice held up. Via NY Times

The strategy

In an interview to find out how it was even possible to accomplish such a stunning performance without breaking down at the middle or losing his voice, this is what he revealed.

What goes into making a performance like this vocally possible?

The main way was doing it over a five-year period, so it wasn’t like we were trying to cram it into a four-week rehearsal period. We learned how to sing a song multiple times over five years in performance, and then we put it together.  Via NY Times

woman singing at a concert
Image Courtesy of Wikimedia

5-Year Training??!!

A classic case of pursuing excellence and success following. He worked behind the scenes for all those years, each time inching closer to the target. He continues to be interviewed:

How did you organize those years?

We marathon-trained it. So we started off doing 90-minute shows, then we pushed it to three-hour shows, then we did a five-hour show. We did two six-hour shows and then we did a 12-hour show, all over the course of the five years….

After I did the 12-hour show I thought, “I have another three hours in me, easy, and then I really don’t know.” Via NY Times

Maximizing Potential

You would think that he would have stopped at 12 hours, but Taylor went further to ask himself whether there was yet untapped potential. Could he adjust his performance to make it longer and better? He continues to explain:

So then what?

I went back through my list and thought: “Where can I push it? Where do I need to hold back?” We always had an ear to how songs should be in the order to give myself a little break so I wouldn’t have to sing so loud. Via NY Times


Pursue excellence, the rest will come looking for you!

Featured Image: Image Credit

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