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Two Breath Support Myths Dispelled with a Before & After Video

Dispelling myths about breath support is like taking a sledgehammer to a cracked foundation.  I think most architects would agree that when it comes to building a house, getting the foundation right is the most important part. Without it, the building will not stand (at least not for long!). In the very same way, our breath support is the foundation of our singing. It is from this support that our sound maintains stability. Yet it seems for SO many singers (even those who have had tons of training) a truly solid understanding of this foundation remains elusive. Unfortunately there’s a lot of misleading and contradictory information out there which only serves to confuse more. So in this blog post, I’m going to try to address what I find to be the two most common myths about breath support.   Myth #1 – You should breathe into your belly. Noooooooo! When I see these words on paper this technique looks even more ridiculous. Breathe into my belly? I’m pretty sure I don’t have lungs in my belly. If you’ve heard this, it’s because someone has noticed you are taking shallow breaths which pull your chest and shoulders up. The things is,

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The Mind/Body Effect On Singing Technique – Before & After

Let’s be honest. . . . if there were a pill that could magically improve your singing, I’m pretty sure all of us would take it. Who wouldn’t want to skip the periods of self doubt and angst we go through as we struggle to improve our singing? But what if I told you that it doesn’t have to be such a struggle. The more time I spend working with the mind/body effect on singing technique, the more I am convinced of this: The “magical pill” to unlocking the consistency and growth we all want in our singing is in understanding how to use Present Moment Awareness to step out of the old story of what’s wrong and into what’s possible for your voice. Watch this “Before and After” video to see how Present Moment Awareness works in action with my student Carly. The difference in her sound, in how she is able to use her technique and in the way she feels when singing this way is truly wonderful.     There’s a quote that I love: “Yesterday is history. Tomorrow is a mystery. But today is a gift, that’s why it’s called the present”. We singers are SO very good

Arden Kaywin, Voice Teacher Los Angeles, Eliminate Vocal Fatigue

Top 10 Causes of Vocal Fatigue

If you experience vocal fatigue from singing, there are several very common reasons why. When singers experience vocal fatigue from singing it is usually the result of improper and/or inefficient breath support. If a singer does not have stable and consistent support for their sound, then the body will adapt by using other less efficient and often damaging ways of getting the sound out. If you are singing correctly the voice should not tire with a normal amount of use. Singing should feel good. If it does not, then your body is giving you a signal that something is not right with the way you are producing the sound. If you feel that your technique is solid but you are are still experiencing vocal fatigue, check the list below for other possible culprits.   Top 10 Most Common Causes Of Vocal Fatigue: 10.  Unsupported Belting (which I define primarily as tensing and pushing too much chest voice too high up in your range) 9.  Smoking and/or drinking alcoholic beverages 8.  Periods of excessive and unsupported loud talking (for example spending time at a loud party trying to have a conversation over the DJ) 7.  Singing with a high larynx (which

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Should You Sing When You’re Sick?

What to do when you’re sick and you have to sing a big show that night? We have all been there. Do you call in the understudy, do you go on and sing? It’s never an easy decision. Here are some questions to ask yourself before making the call. 1) Are my vocal chords sick? By this I mean, do you have laryngitis, strep throat, or some other illness residing in your throat that directly effects the health of your vocal chords and/or laryngeal area? If the answer is “yes”, then it is better not to perform then to sing on sick, swollen chords and risk doing further damage. 2)  Do I have a fever? If the answer is “yes”, stay home, don’t perform. 3) Do I have bronchitis or a virus that’s giving me a bad cough? If the answer is “yes”, then even though your chords are not sick themselves, you are likely hoarse because the constant coughing has caused your chords to be swollen so they don’t come together seamlessly when they vibrate. In this case, it is usually better not to perform then to sing on swollen, irritated chords and risk doing further damage. 4) Do I have