Home Psychology of Singing

I know I can do it, well....I hope I can, well, please God help me sing!

CherieCherie Pro, 2.0 PRO Posts: 122
edited May 2015 in Psychology of Singing
How to be confident and sure of your vocal and performance abilities and untapped potential when it isn't good enough yet? I haven't been singing for years, actually, just about 5 yrs so even though I'm an adult,  I guess, vocally, I am immature. I'm sure not one of those amazing young vocal prodigies who start singing and jaws drop to the floor and everyone raves & compliments and say things like, "Wow! You were born to sing! You are amazing! What great tone! What pipes!  etc! etc!"  Far from it. I'm middle aged. In Hollywood terms, I'm quite, even too late, to start all this. Am I crazy? Delusional? Well, I have these "young" dreams and I want something so much I can taste it. There is a persistent voice inside my soul, I think, that keeps repeating, "just because something is above your current reach or outside of the usual path, does not mean it is impossible. Keep at this and whatever you do, don't give up!"  That is easier said than done sometimes. Keeping a positive attitude is easy when one receives regular compliments and things are falling into place. Try keeping it up in the face of rejection, criticism, disappointments,  missed opportunities and vocal frustration. That's when you wonder if you are truly persistent and focused or just unrealistic and crazy.  The only way I have come up with to deal with all these thoughts and emotions is to decide to take another chance & put my trust, full efforts and sometimes fragile ego into a training program.  I want to sing really well,  lead, in a band, every weekend. It seems like it should be doable.


  • highmtnhighmtn Administrator, Moderator, Enrolled, Pro, 3.0 Streaming Posts: 15,346

    It IS doable.  We all have our limitations, but our limitations with an untrained voice are much more restrictive than with training on vocal techniques.

    I take it that you have at least SOME vocal capabilities, because if memory serves, I believe you have been a backup singer in a band.  That is more advanced than many of the beginners here.  

    We all have to start from where we are now, and learn all that we can.  We have to practice A LOT, in order to see results. 

    Being around negative people that don't really want to see you succeed is a bit of a toxic situation, especially if some of that criticism is coming from a lead singer that doesn't want to share the spotlight.  Someone like that may use belittling to make you want to give up.

    I've been a drummer since I was eleven years old, and been in many bands.  I never sang any lead, and my backup singing was all self-taught.  I had some talent, but I didn't know how to properly use my voice, and I hurt it a lot.  

    I was older than you are when I decided to learn to sing properly.  It took me many years of trying vocal methods that were useless before I found KTVA. 

    KTVA has changed my vocal life.  

    It has taken me a long time to "get it" all.  I work slowly and deliberately.  

    I'm singing lead vocals and also prominent, important backup vocals. 

    I now have people coming up to me in a crowd telling me how much they enjoy listening to my voice.  I hear that all the time now, how I have a wonderful voice, and an incredible range.  I used to hate the sound of my voice, and probably so did most everyone else who heard it before I learned how to really use my voice. 

    You just have to start from where you are now and take the first step, and the one after that, and so on.  You will have to find a way to practice regularly, whatever that takes.
    And you have to hold on to your dream.  Your dream isn't ridiculous.  Being in a band that gets applause and even gets paid money is NOT impossible.  I'm writing this late on a Saturday Night after coming home from a gig, and I have money in my pocket as a result.  People requested special songs from me, and I delivered.  I get a feeling of fulfillment from performing for people and having them show appreciation.  It's not all perfection, but I get a lot of satisfaction from my musical life. 

    You deserve to get that kind of enjoyment from your musical pursuits, as well.  

    I've experienced vocal frustration in the past, but KTVA put it all together for me in a way that none of the other programs that I previously tried did.  I had to put in the time and do my part.  

    There is a supportive community here that will help you to learn the basics.  The basics are needed to build the foundation for your new voice that your detractors don't want you to have, for whatever bummer reasons they have.  

    Focus on a better vocal future.  Don't beat yourself up when you don't get it right the first time or even the thirtieth time.  Just keep doing the exercises and build your voice.  
    Send in demos of you doing the basic scales.  We'll tell you what you need to work on, not because we're mean, but because we all have to learn to get it right, so that our voices will become efficient.  Eventually we work on the beauty... but the foundation comes first.  

    All the Best!

  • CherieCherie Pro, 2.0 PRO Posts: 122
    edited June 2015
    Thanks for that, Bob! Last night, I sang back up (again) with the band that I belong. Don't get me wrong. I actually LOVE this band, along with everyone in it. (there are 9 of us!!!  I've been with them since it's creation and through many changes so I guess I have at least been good enough to be retained through the usual band drama.) I always have so much fun on stage. It is a wonderful feeling I really cannot describe.  I just want a lot more of those types of experiences and I also want to improve and grow.  Last night, we played at a winery and had a screaming crowd of approx. 1400-1500 people! Thank goodness the lead singer was reasonably dialed in by the time we went on.  She is really wonderful.  I was, from my perspective, fairly disappointed at the end of the night,  mainly because of the sound company that the winery used. There was an opening band with a very strong lead singer who has a fabulous voice. I went out front to listen for awhile.  Throughout 95% of the entire first song, her mic was not on. She went to her lead guitarist's mic and the vocals on that mic were turned so far down which really surprised me. They finally got her mic on by song 2.   The next 4 songs sounded like she was singing through a sock. Then by her 4th or 5th song she actually had to stop to ask for her vocals through her in-ears cause nothing was coming through. I thought, I am sure no big time sound engineer but this sure does not seem good at all. Once we went on it seemed better for our lead singer who is very experienced and a really good performer (thank goodness she was dialed up enough). There were times the backup singing was coming through our floor monitors but many times it completely vanished. It made me wonder what was going on throughout the entire performance.  It's awful to worry about what is happening with the sound out front during the entire performance.  I was right up on my mic. I didn't want to try to sing too loud  because it all seemed so inconsistent. I decided, as backup"  that it would probably be better to be "less" than too much. After all the rehearsals and working so hard on the harmonies it is pretty disappointing to essentially be dialed out of the finished performance.  The 1500 screaming slightly to completely intoxicated audience had no idea but it was disappointing to me.  It seems like there would be a much better chance of being heard as a lead singer & as the only vocal than as a back up that could be mistaken for the wind.  I suspect that anyone who has done a lot of this would tell me, "welcome to the world of gigging!" With the little that I have experienced so far I have noticed that a "sound check" may be OK but then the crowd comes in and the show starts and nothing is the same. I guess I just think as a singer, 1. One should be able to hear oneself.  2. the audience should be able to hear the singer (s)  3. Ideally, the lyrics should not be muffled by a sound system.
  • highmtnhighmtn Administrator, Moderator, Enrolled, Pro, 3.0 Streaming Posts: 15,346
    Yes, you had a terrible sound contractor working that show. It's crazy that they actually got paid to do that.  

    Not only did it not sound like it was supposed to onstage, as you said, many of the important elements of the sound were missing out front.
    ...and the sound "engineer" could have probably done just as bad a job driving a train as they did with the audio mix.

    Mixes like that, especially in the monitors, can make singers go hoarse really quickly, and also make a good band sound not so good. 

    You're right.  Welcome to the wonderful world of onstage mixes that turn the gig of your dreams into the gig of your nightmares.  I recently invested in a really good monitoring system, just so that most of the time (any time we're not using a contracted system) the mix will be great (and it IS).  My voice has thanked me for that.  

    You'll just have to shake that experience off, and look forward to the next GREAT experience.  

    Good for you for surviving the roller-coaster ride so far.  It can have its ups and it's downs.  I keep my focus on the next good one.

    : ^)

  • CherieCherie Pro, 2.0 PRO Posts: 122

    Besides first deciding to learn to sing 5 yrs ago I also decided fairly early on that I should also try to learn as much as I can about the equip that goes along with it!  Trying to educate myself about sound and equip has been as difficult as learning about singing. I still consider myself a beginner when it comes to sound but I sure have come a long way from where I started and I still have an ocean of knowledge to learn. 

  • highmtnhighmtn Administrator, Moderator, Enrolled, Pro, 3.0 Streaming Posts: 15,346
    The more self-sufficient you can become, the easier it is when changes come and you have to start over again.

    It's terrible when one member owns the sound system, and then leaves.  Now what?  We can play, but nobody can hear us?  

    Learning how to set up and operate equipment is good, and it's even better if it's your own equipment. That can be hard to come by, but one piece at a time can add up over a period of years.  
  • rcrosierrcrosier Pro Posts: 275
    I remember years ago, my wife and I went to a New Years Eve party at a local place.  We went to see a local band who had a KILLER lead singer.  She was a young lady who could really sing.  They started playing, and the sound guy had all the guitars and drums mic'd so loud that we could barely even hear her sing, and it was terrible.  The band was "run" by one of the guitarists, so I kind of assumed he wanted to be sure his guitar could be heard, but I left SO disappointed in that performance.  SHE was the reason we were there, and I contacted her and told her that we could barely hear her and though what we could hear was great, we both had wished the rest of the band had not been so loud that we could not hear her.

    On the reverse side, I went to hear another friends band, and they sounded GREAT... I mentioned it to bands owner, and she said "Yeah, the place had a great sound guy, we really liked him, and he did a great job with the mix!"  And it was OUTDOORS!

    A good sound person is worth their weight in gold!

  • JoyceJoyce Pro Posts: 131

    Hello!! I am middle age too, it's doable, I can assure. I started KTVA 3 years ago and my voice is constantly changing and growing.

    Don't give up please, we need older singers too, believe me..... they are more appreciated than you think....
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