Why are we drawn to certain types of music? Why do some notes or chords calm our thoughts while others touch a nerve? Most of us can agree music can be very powerful and change the energy that surrounds us. It’s a form of expression whether it is background music or the focal point on a stage.
As I continue to develop my musical technique, one challenge I face as a vocalist is the pressure to “change my style.” I have been told by a vocal coach and audience members I should “blues it up a bit,” “open my eyes more,” “sing something more modern,” and, my personal favorite, “sing out and let it go.” While I welcome coaching and suggestions, and I understand what they are trying to say, what they don’t realize is the music I’m creating is speaking to my needs. The songs, the lyrics, and the tempos I choose all feed the desires within myself. By approaching music from within rather than performing the way others think I should, I have found I can almost always find someone in the audience who has similar needs and will connect with my sound.
It’s been 10 years since that teacher suggested to “change my style” and I’m so glad I didn’t take her advice. I have tried few different vocal techniques, I throw in a few blues tunes every now and then, but I keep coming back to method that continues to speak to me. And as I keep on creating music – art – that feeds my needs, hopefully I will continue to “enrich humanity with the profound expression of these feelings.” Thanks for the reminder Mr. Joel.
What sort of music speaks to you? Is it a specific genre or does it vary? A song? A tempo?
My personal favorite genre is from the Golden Era of Jazz, the 1920s. If you enjoy this style of music please join me, Casey MacGill, and Rick Leppenen at Seattle’s Sorrento Hotel on Saturday, Nov. 23rd, from 7:30 – 9:30pm.follow me on: facebook | youtube | vimeo image created for leah natale by sparrow soirees