Are "Good Singers" born or made?


How many times did you heard someone singing with easiness, songs that seems impossible or difficult for you? Why their voice sounds great without so much training? Can you learn to do it? or is it a natural gift?






Natural good singers have the same "physiological equipment" as you do. Although there are various differences that make one voice different from another,  it doesn't mean that one voice is "better" than other. The skill to manage your voice is what makes 99% of the difference between a "natural singer" and other humans beings. 

Think about it in this way: imagine a fantastic piano with the best sound in the world, and you seat different people in it. The people that has spent more time and passion playing and practicing in their lives, will sound obviously better or "natural" than the ones that had barely played a piano in their lives. This last group would make that fantastic piano sound like an unpleasant random arrhythmic noise. It has nothing to do with the piano itself, it's just the way you play it, your skill to manage your fingers on the keys.

So, if everybody has about the same quality in their instrument...then, why some people sounds like stars and others can't hit a pitch?

Well, if you want me to put it as short as possible, I would say: relaxed concentration. If fact, this is the only way to learn anything. Why? because it is the only way to rewire the neurons in your brain, paying attention or "enjoying concentration" while doing anything. And this connections in your brain is what controls the muscles that makes the differences in sounds. That is what manages your singing skills!


The amount of cooperative tension each muscle makes at a determinate pitch, with a determinate sound color, and the spaces you allow to resonate in your body, that is what makes the voice sound "better" for the listener. 


So the natural good singers are just common people that allowed their voices to grow without stress. Most because they were young, with a natural connection with their bodies, and they just let it happen like a game. Maybe this person was 8 years old and repeated a song from the radio, maybe his/her mother said: "very good!". And just the excitement motivated the children to keep on playing this love-rewarded game. If you extend that experience for a couple of years (children learn usually faster!), then you have a "talented children/teenager". These people never thought that singing could be something complicated. They don't understand how it happens, they just do it, they don't understand why others can't sing. The more people tell them "what a great voice", or themselves, the more they get excited about singing more and more. They do it quite relaxed, so their skill is developed automatically by their brains.


Now imagine that the same kid, that tries to imitate something in the radio, is beside someone (like his big brother) that tells him "you sound stupid", or laughs. Maybe he was just singing happy birthday, maybe he was a competitive stressed kid that told himself "I'm doing wrong". An experience like that, can be such impressive in the brain of a kid, that he is scared to sing again. He is afraid of his voice. His brain is blocked, his nervous system is like a drunk man trying to walk. The more he tries, the worst it became. Or in the best case, he don't improve. This kid will grow convinced that he has no talent or "gift" for singing! 




Let's take someone like this kid, that had a wrong starting point. If you believe, after years, that you don't have a good voice, it became a truth in your body. If you believe that "you don't have a good voice", your brain rewires in this way, and this is the experience you will have. 


Now, take this person trying to be a singer. He loves music, and decides to start practicing. If he is practicing from the believe that "his voice is not good", he will try hard, and hard. And 90% of the probabilities is that he will just practice "misaligned singing", recording it deeper and deeper in his neuromuscular system, reinforcing the connection of his neurons for "singing bad". He can get trapped in this vicious circle for a long time. Even for a lifetime, if he doesn't find someone that understand it and helps him.


So let me say it again: YOU CAN SING AS GOOD AS YOU WANT! It is just about rewiring your brain with an effective and effortless way of singing. 


It is not even difficult, you just need to know how, and practice only GOOD FEELING SINGING!


Thanks for your attention, and I wish you more success that you can imagine right now!


Ricard
Vocal Coach





How do I know when a teacher is good?

Finding the right voice teacher for you can be tricky. You may have no idea how to select a teacher or what to expect from the lessons itself. You will find many people convinced of very different approaches. Some classical teachers will tell you that to sing modern styles, you need to learn classic style first. Some modern teachers will tell you that classical approach is a waste of time for modern singers. You will be caught and influenced by the beliefs of your teacher. Many teachers will be a waste of time for you, some will be challenging and teachers of "what not to do", and some will help you to accelerate your success,  but how do I choose my voice teacher?



First thing you need to make is to have clear what do you want from your lessons. Improve your technique, sing higher notes, hold out phrases longer, make bigger sounds, run up and down freely...what are you looking for? Do you make it for fun, or you want to become a professional? Depending on that, your homework will be very different.

Knowing that, you can start looking on the internet, or in your local newspapper.

Tips to keep in mind:
  • Avoid teachers that scares you with vocal damage. When someone tells you "if you don't sing this way, you're going to ruin your voice", be sure that this person won't let you explore many things. Check extreme examples of metal singers "screaming" for 30 years (smoking and abusing alcohol), that keep their voices working for a long time, and very well-trained singers that develop nodules. So? Who is right? trust in your intuition, your body gives clear signals when you are overusing it. If you see that your teacher talks frequently about vocal damage...find another teacher soon! Don't let anybody to make a living out of your fears.
  • The main value of a teacher is that he can give you exercises that makes a real change in your singing. So, for example, singing perfectly is someway doing what-you-want, being as relaxed as if you were in your sofa watching TV. A good voice teacher, will find your personal tensions, and will give you the exact tool you need to release your voice. That means, that if in 6 months you can feel a clear difference in your voice, then you are in the wrong teacher. 
  • School of singing. There is classical approach, an italian, a german, a spanish, speech level singing, belting, screaming...and many more. So, which is the right one? What school is better? Ok, first of all, runaway from teachers complaining about others methods. The teacher itself has more value than the method. There are good teachers and bad teachers in every school of singing. So, forget about labels, any good teacher in any school would do the job for some time. In practice, every student is a different method. Be sure that your teacher is applying his method to your needs!
  • Nobody can really teach you anything, but you can learn a lot. This is very important. Don't expect that any teacher will do the job for you. 80% of the job is what you do alone. If you are a bad student, even the best teacher can't do anything to make a real difference in your voice. And, if you are a really good student, you will learn even with a bad teacher. Even without a teacher. A teacher is only someone that helps you to get what you want faster. 
  • A good teacher will make you feel better after the lesson. Maybe the most important factor of a good teacher, is to keep you excited about singing work. Even if you don't understand the strange exercise that gives you, it keeps you always conscious of your amazing potential. When you feel good going home, willing to start to practice...it is working.
  • If you can't find anything interesting in your area, remember that now a days exists internet, and you really can reach any teacher comfortably from home with Skype or similar software. It can really do the job, find an interesting teacher, take a lesson, tell him/her what you want, show him/her what do you have, and ask him why you don't sing as you want. 
  • Money. Just because it is expensive, doesn't mean it's better. Just because it is cheaper doesn't mean that is a good choice. I find it normal, to charge between 30€ to 50€ for about an hour. Between this range, keep in mind that anyone that has made a career as a musician (former bands or productions) will charge you for that "name", but it doesn't mean his is a better teacher. Or maybe, just because he spent a lot in his education, doesn't mean that is a better teacher. Maybe that assure that they are not complete ignorant. But being a teacher is a lot more than "I-have-been-an-almost-famous-star" , or "I-spent-20.000€-in-my-education". Normal range, can have better results in general than something very cheap, or maybe most expensive ranges. It is better to do 2 lessons a month with a good teacher, than 4 a month with a cheap ignorant.
  • Feel free to ask me for advice in your personal singing needs and the teacher that will do the job better!

Why me?





-I compromise with results. It could sound obvious, but the truth is that most teachers don't. I do, because my pedagogy is based on the success of the student, and I don't force any voice to fit in a particular methodology. I'm based on natural training, and that is always personal. I apply the best methods to fit the students voice. In the first meeting, I check the state of the voice and establish the different strategies to get results as fast as possible. After all, we are looking for facts. 

-Almost everybody can achieve a professional level. A voice is something that has to be discovered through constant practice. A bad voice is just the ignorance of one's voice possibilities, and lack of interest practicing. To be off key, struggling while singing, or even an annoying voice... every problem has a solution!

-Singing is magic and it's based on joy. To accomplish this, I will rely on the student's feelings to choose the songs that recalls his highest emotional states. And I will use all the techniques to sing the repertory with easiness, to let the passion appear. Instead of building an artificial voice made of tricks to compensate the lack of feelings.

-I sing along with the student to accelerate the process of learning. It can also sound strange, but almost no teacher sings along with the student, because they simply can't even do what they teach, or they are afraid to lose their voices by overusing it (what simply shows a lack of good technique and some laziness =) )

-I make the practice easy.I also give personalized tracks (audio,mp3) that I record specially for the student, every week. That makes practicing something easy and funny, because you can sing along with the exercises comfortably in your home. There is no extra charge for this. 

-YOUR SUCCESS IS MY SUCCESS. I want to create the best method in the world and give everybody the chance to became the singer that they dream to be. To accomplish that, I base my work on giving only the best service, helping all my students to find their genius potential, step by step, success by success. I'm proud to offer, from my perspective, the best singing training in the world, the one that I would have loved to found, and it's made only with the dreams, practice and success of my students.

-Affordable QUALITY singing training. I had great teachers, and they had charged also great money. But I'm more ambitious than that and I want to create the best singing method. To do that I have to be affordable. I want to select my students, but not by their money, only by their true passion.  To make you an idea of the market prices per hour: pro-level teacher charges above 60€, a good teacher around 40€, and an average teacher around 20€ for a private lesson. And most of them don't compromise with results, so you can study for 2 years and don't even know what are you doing or where are you going.
I'm centered not in the money, only to give the best service, because that is my dream. And to make it a revolutionary method I have to charge as low as possible to have access to the best students. The faster possible changes in a voice training came after 6 months, and as my teaching is only centered in results, the student take the compromise of 6 months, and I take the compromise of real results and the minimum price, that is 20€ per hour. So anyone that earns 800€ is making a 10% investment. That is a really fair price for a top quality voice training. 

Thank you for reading me, and feel free to take a trial lesson without any compromise!

Do you like your own voice?

You have tried to sing or record your own voice, and sometimes you don't like it. Most of the time singing is fighting to make it "better". The voices of your favorite singers sounds great, but yours seems that never will be so great. You came to the conclusion that you don't have a good voice. You stopped singing your favorite songs, and you just sing "what you think your voice can". Good news: you are wrong!



The production of your voice is a fact, something you can study and improve. There are thousands of great books and teachers that could help you to learn aspects of that. It is not magic,but it is really something subtle and difficult to observe, if you don't know where to start. 

It is normal, that you don't like your voice for many reasons. Most people do, but the difference between the great singers and the others is that they don't take it as something bad, but as an opportunity. Everybody's voice sounds different when you hear it from the inside your head, and when you hear it in a recording. 

Here is the important tip: forget about sounds! Singing technique is about sensations, concentration and reprogramming your muscle memory. Never judge your own voice in a negative way, it will only get stuck. Think of it as something undiscovered. Realize that you don't KNOW how far you could get.  At this point, a good teacher is very useful, because he can hear what your voice "could be". 

After many students, I can tell you that you don't know your own voice. No one really does. This is something good, because there is always excitement to bring your voice to the next level. Many people say "my voice is this type or the other", but something I have really learned is not to limit your voice under your prejudices. There are many "how"s, but what is sure is that you will never get better if you think you can't.

If you don't try, you will never know! Find clear aims with your voice work, learn different techniques, spend some time practicing frequently, and sooner or later, you will be there without realizing it!

6 Basic Thinks You Should Know About Singing

Now a days, because of the competitive educational system and culture, many of us make always the same mistake: Jump the basics and try to do difficult things. So my first advise to anyone would be root your voice with easiness mastering the basics. It is a short cut!



When you are trying to sing a song, and doesn't sound so good, or you feel stuck, I bet you that you are forgetting one of this principles:




  1. If you're straining, you're wrong. If you feel fatigue after trying to sing a song, you're wrong. If you're not enjoying it, you're wrong! The easiest way, is the right way. No matter if it's opera or death metal, the easiest way to produce the sound, is the right one! 
  2. Breath Properly: you should never forget that your voice is a wind instrument made 80% of air control, and the day you master breathing for singing, is the day that you became free of singing technique! Of course, even it should sound maybe too simple for many, I would like to add that this is a long term aspect. I recommend you always to start your practice with breathing exercises. For many reasons: 1. There is residual air stuck in your lungs you need to free before singing 2. It relaxes your muscles, and release the speaking tension 3. It stop your mental self-conversation and focus your mind 4. wake up your diaphragm 5. release the tension in the wrong-breathing muscles, like the abs .....etc
  3. Posture: if you are tired, and you are singing seated with your back totally bent, you failed before start singing! A natural standing position would be enough to solve this. 
  4. Vocal range. If you don't know your type of voice, it is very easy to strain and do wrong coordination of muscles, so your voice will feel "unconquerable" and out of context. Neither I recommend to prejudge your vocal range, but pay attention. Your voice needs to make "changes" as you go upwards in pitch, if you don't know where this changes are, you're going to stumble sooner or later. Don't assume your voice type so soon, work on discovering it!
  5. Mental/emotional attitude. If you don't have a strong self esteem, you aren't used to express yourself (whatever others may think), and don't have a strong believe that you can make it,  then not even all the singing techniques together can really help you. 
  6. Practice makes perfection. Working hard from time to time is not the easiest way to learn. Your muscle memory works at its bests, when you practice everyday. It is better to sing 4 days a week 30min, than once a week 2 hours. For your body, it is not the same. Be constant, plan your milestones, and nothing can stop you to succeed!

If you underestimate one of this principles, it's going to make singing harder or impossible for you. The good news is that there is solution for any problem. I wish you the best with your practice!

Ricard

I don’t have a good voice. In fact, most of the people around me told me that I sing pretty bad. Could vocal lessons help me?


Everyone can achieve a professional singing level. Of course it will need some patience, faith and the right exercises. And in more or less time, depending on your habits and experience. 

Most people think that they don't have "the gift", so they never bother learning. But the truth is that learning to sing right it's just a training of muscles like in any sport. Problems like not finding the tuning, straining, breathy sound, or experiencing problems getting a high pitch are easy to solve with some determination and appropriated techniques. Once you learn to sing with easiness and naturality, the rest is just enjoying and having a good time!

Every person evolves in a different and unique way. Many think that if they aren't praised when young, or shown an early "gift", then is better to forget mastering something like singing. History is full of cases of people that start learning above thirties (or even forties) and have become a genius. Even there is cases like mine's that I sang like a cat in my teenages, and now everybody is praising me "what an extraordinary voice!" because they hear me mastering my voice with easiness and control. 


Practice dreaming without limits, and forget other's opinion about what you can or can not do!

 
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