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How To Let Go Of The Baggage Holding You Back From Singing Your Best

There is something I’ve been meaning to tell you. It’s something you may not tell yourself very often so I’m going to say it to you now. You are a wonderful singer. Truly. May I ask you a question? When you read my compliment just now, did any part of you flinch? Were you able to soak it in or did your inner critic chime in with doubt that the compliment was really meant for you, and go on to remind you of the ways it thinks your singing isn’t really that wonderful? I believe that at its core, singing is an exchange of energy. We use our bodies to create a sound – a form of energy unique to us – which we put out there to be absorbed by those who can hear it. That energy affects those listening and in doing so, their energy transforms in relation to it. For many of you, years spent internalizing the sentiments of your inner critic has created limiting beliefs. And when you have limiting beliefs about your voice and your talent, it negatively effects your ability to fully engage in the energetic exchange of sound in powerful ways. Most fundamentally, limiting beliefs

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Up-Level Your Singing Technique Using Sensory Awareness In Your Body

Having a present moment sensory awareness of your body while you sing is a MAJOR key ingredient to your ability to take your singing to that next level.   One thing I know for sure: you can not change what you are not aware of.    So an essential component of singing to your potential, and the thing that has the biggest effect on how successful you are in doing so, is your ability to be present to ALL the sensations of your singing in your body in the moment (both the efficient and the inefficient).   Rather then writing a lengthy blog, today I’m pulling back the curtain and taking you inside my studio to be a fly on the wall as I work with one of my students on this very thing – returning to the present moment sensory awareness of her body while singing.    In today’s video you will learn one of the exact step-by-step methods I use (that you can use too!) linking present moment sensory awareness to your vocal technique.   Spoiler alert! This video isn’t filled with sexy high notes, power belting or fast  passage work designed to impress you. Nope. This is the nitty-gritty work. It ain’t

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What we all do that is the absolute definition of insane. . . .

  A little bit of business first: TOMORROW (Thurs 1/31) I will be LIVE ON FACEBOOK at 11am PST / 2pm EST / 7pm GMT for the very first time!  Click HERE to watch live or view the saved video later.  Episode 1 Topic: The #1 thing that will up-level your understanding of breath support for singing.    This is the MOST fundamental and FIRST thing I teach all of the singers who come to work with me privately, regardless if they’re an advanced singer or relatively new to technique. In my opinion, it’s the foundation that all other good singing technique is built on and I’ve got a whole new perspective on it for you LIVE TOMORROW.    If you’ve been coasting along with the same understanding of support for a while, wondering if there’s another layer of ease and consistency in your singing, I hope you will watch.   Now, enough business. Getting back to my subject for today. . . . . . My favorite mindfulness teacher posted something on his Instagram a few days ago that I really want to share with you.   I always say that when you change your thinking, you change your singing – and this post really made me

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My Best Advice For Singers

Every so often I am asked what my best advice for singers is, and I always find the answer hard to articulate  – as if one sentiment could possibly encapsulate all that I want to say! The question came up again recently and has been on my mind.  And then it came to me. . . . . The best advice for singers I can possibly give is SO macro. It’s not about the specifics of breath support or finding resonance. It’s not about learning the right repertoire or understanding your voice type. It has to do with perseverance and dedication. The art and craft of singing, whether you are doing it at the professional level or as a passionate recreational singer, is a process that is and will always be evolving within you. To be a great singer and a great artist is to embrace that process. Become a lifelong learner of your craft.  That, my lovelies, is my best advice for singers. So as summer comes to an end and we’re all back from our lazy summer days (hopefully a little rejuvenated from any travel or vacation time we took), it’s the PERFECT time to get rededicated and

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How To Sing Without Tension & Why “Why” Matters

Have you ever noticed that so many of the tools and ideas I give you to help you sing without tension have a component of mindfulness in them?  I realized recently that I don’t always explain why I do that, or why mindfulness plays such a big part in reducing tension and the way that I teach. So today I really want to circle back to the “why” of it all and also give you an exercise for how to sing without tension in your own practice. So why is mindfulness so important to help you sing without tension so you can sound better and feel better singing? As singers, our body is our instrument. You’ve heard me say that about a million times, right? And just like a trombone player or a cello player makes sure that their instrument is in good working order, we too need to make sure our instrument (our body) is set up to work our technique as efficiently as possible. For singers, the main thing that compromises our instrument and our technique is tension. I know so many of you deal first hand with the discomforts of tension in your singing and would do

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The Secret To Great Singing – An Interview

Do you ever notice how easy it is to get caught up in the minutia of your singing technique? We spend so much time and energy perfecting and polishing every little thing, seeking out technique tips and testing out performance hacks in hopes of finding the secret to great singing. But in doing so, we can so easily loose sight of what the purpose of it all is. Above all else, we are artists. We are creators seeking to share our experience of the world with others through our voice. “To be an artist is to witness the world. Open your ears, open your eyes. Notice the gifts around you.” That’s a wonderful quote from bestselling author, Dani Shapiro on maximizing the creative process. When we become so consumed with the physical practice of our technique, it can be like walking through a landscape with blinders on. We only see the 10% of the landscape we are focused on, and we miss everything else around us that could be informing our journey. When we take in the world and witness it with an open heart, we reconnect with the creative artists that we are. In doing so, we are much more

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How To Get Unstuck & Stop Struggling

Is your inner voice really harsh? Does it LOVE to criticize you? Does it constantly tell you how much your are lacking, remind you of all the ways it thinks you are bad or wrong, berate you for doing too little or too much. . . . .is it ever satisfied??? A few weeks ago I wrote to you about a question I am often asked: What keeps talented singers stuck and struggling? Today I have another actionable tool for you as we continue that conversation. This tool will help you get out of your head and move past the struggle by changing the way you relate to your inner voice. You see, when you hear that critical voice, it’s not you. It is not the voice of your true self. It’s the voice of your ego, otherwise known as your “inner-critic”. The voice of the true self so often gets drowned out by the ego/inner-critic that at times the inner-critic is the only voice we hear. But it’s not the only voice that’s there. Learning how to detach from your inner-critic and connect to the voice of your true self can be game changing for improving your singing and getting you “un-stuck”. I know, you’re thinking “Oh

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StarWars & Singing: How To Sing Without Tension

One of the things many singers struggle with is how to sing without tension. If you know me, then you can guess my response for how to sing without tension has something to do with the mind/body effect on your singing technique. There’s a quote in Star Wars that I love. When Yoda is instructing Luke Skywalker, he says: “Do. Or do not. There is no try.” Singers, this is your mantra!!! It applies to you in the same way it applies to Luke when he’s stuck in the swamp. When we try, we tend to force, manipulate, over-think and overdo which all causes physical tension. We tense because we don’t inherently trust ourselves to make the sound we want without any excess “trying”. Luke tries to force a solution in the swamp and nothing is working. But when he heeds Yoda’s words, stops trying so hard and trusts his training and abilities, he is able to channel the Force to get the ship out of the swamp. When we are in “try” mode, like Luke, we don’t believe we can get what we want unless we try really hard. And just like Luke, all that trying gets in the

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One Mistake That Keeps Talented Singers Stuck And Struggling

There’s one question I am asked all the time: What’s the secret to great singing? Now, I totally get it. Who doesn’t want in on the secret to greatness? The thing is, there’s no useful, practical answer to this question. While these kinds of broad inspirational secrets are easy to soak in, they are hard to execute. They’re designed to address an insecurity with instant encouragement, without providing any real strategies or substance. As such, they are rarely actionable. Since I’m all about taking action and digging down to guide you in the real work that will facilitate lasting change in your voice so you sing with your full potential, naturally such a question pushes my buttons. There’s a better question though – One I wish more singers would ask me. Here it is… What specific mistakes keep talented singers stuck and struggling? Now THAT’s a question ripe for an in-depth, tactical and actionable answer. Like most things worth learning, the answer can’t be summed up in a sound bite. Perhaps this is the beginning of a book I should write! But for now, we can start the conversation by discussing something talented singers can do to move the needle in

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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