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Vladim
10-05-2011, 09:02 AM
I mean a really bad voice which, unfortunately, I have by birth.

Every time I listen to Aldrine's sweet singing I'm so full of jealousy (a nice one, of course) that sometimes a wild thought pops up in my mind: maybe my voice isn't hopeless and can be trained by attending vocal lessons or something like that? How bad should be a voice that you still had a chance to become a good singer after some training?

uke4ia
10-05-2011, 09:35 AM
Back in the '80s, a local musician I had a couple of records by was offering voice lessons. So I went for a lesson. He had me do about 45 minutes of warm-up exercises, which he recorded on a cassette tape. He gave me the tape, and told me to do those exercises before singing. I've now converted that tape to digital, but I still use those exercises when I'm going to sing. They help to improve my tone, and my range. But even so, once in a while someone on YouTube will make a very insulting comment about my voice because my voice isn't as smooth as the people they hear on the radio.

Lessons can improve your voice. But for all of us, there will still be a limit to how good we can sound.

ProfChris
10-05-2011, 10:07 AM
Two years ago I couldn't hold a tune reliably. But I couldn't play the uke and not sing, so I had to sing to myself. The improvement, just through singing lots, was quite marked.

What helps is recording yourself, playing it back,and then thinking about how to sing it better. Work on the weak bits.

I'll never be a proper singer, but at least I can sing in public without being booed off.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jl0EjxuNRQA&feature=player_embedded

bazmaz
10-05-2011, 10:31 AM
I genuinely think there is no such thing as a bad voice, only bad technique, knowledge and application.

A good vocal coach can work wonders with breathing, projection, mouth shape and finding your best range. Re the last point, many make the mistake of singing out of their natural range and it sounding off. Everyone has a natural range.

rasputinsghost
10-05-2011, 10:38 AM
Lessons can only help you!

coolkayaker1
10-05-2011, 10:39 AM
Q: Can a bad voice be improved?

A: No, it cannot. I know. I have one.

cantsing
10-05-2011, 12:36 PM
I have trouble carrying a tune, and I have a very narrow range. I have discovered that I sometimes have to transpose a song to several different keys until I find the key that best fits my voice and allows me to somewhat comfortably sing along as I play. Still, it isn't pretty, and I have not yet subjected my friends or family members to a performance, except for my husband (who is stuck with me) and my parents (who think everything I do is wonderful).

If I decided to get serious about playing in front of others, I would take a few voice lessons just to see.

minniethemoocher
10-05-2011, 01:35 PM
I think anybody can sing, just think of Bob Dylan. His voice is not the greatest yet he managed to come up with a style that suits it perfectly. In my opinion voice lessons could definitely help you gain control of your voice and find your range. You will learn simple exercises/scales to enhance any natural ability you may have, and placement is a big thing you will learn, where and how to breath, and to sing in the mask of your face.
Where there's a will, there's a way, I say go for it.

PhilUSAFRet
10-05-2011, 02:14 PM
Funny you should ask. I figure if Kris Kristoferson could make a living singing with his voice, then you can learn to sing well enough to sing and play uke. :)
Did you see there are forums below the uke forms dedicated to singing?

zac987
10-05-2011, 02:20 PM
Sean from my favorite band Andrew Jackson Jihad doesn't have a classically "good" voice. However, his voice is true to his lyrics and his message. He's not faking it, and it's the "realness" factor that makes me love his vox.

As long as you are being true and aren't simply imitating another style, I think you'll be fine. :)

itsme
10-05-2011, 02:48 PM
I think anybody can sing, just think of Bob Dylan. His voice is not the greatest yet he managed to come up with a style that suits it perfectly.
He's a perfect example. Honestly, unless you are completely tone deaf, you can sing.

Not all of us are born with a great singing voice, but with some effort we can become better singers. Your vocal cords are like muscles that can be strengthened with training and regular workouts.

Personally, I'd rather listen to someone with a "so-so" voice that sings sincerely and from the heart than someone with a great set of pipes belting out vocal histrionics. Whitney Houston comes to mind in the latter category. She sure can sing, but I simply can't stand listening to her.

France
10-05-2011, 03:11 PM
I agree with the other comments about 'range'. I know that my voice is not suited to high soprano type songs (love somewhere over the rainbow but by god I could murder that song if I tried to sing it). With that in mind I choose songs that are in my range such as Leonard Cohen, Tom Waits and bluesy sort of stuff. My advice, find your range and then choose songs that you can do justice to. I also think that training can most definitely help. You see those guys on 'idol' and they are raw but with some training they definitely improve over the course of the show.

janeray1940
10-05-2011, 03:43 PM
I'm no singer, not by any means. My natural range is maybe five notes? Something like that. When I was a kid, I liked being in plays and choirs and all of that stuff, but hated that I had no natural ability for it. So, I took voice lessons from maybe age 10 to 17 or so. I was very, very serious about it and practiced constantly. By junior high I was singing solos in all the school concerts. So, yes, this can be learned.

At 17, I stopped, for a very long list of reasons I won't go into. Guess what? I'm back to the five-note natural range. Just putting that out there to say that while it can be learned, it can also be unlearned.

OldePhart
10-05-2011, 04:46 PM
At 17, I stopped, for a very long list of reasons I won't go into. Guess what? I'm back to the five-note natural range. Just putting that out there to say that while it can be learned, it can also be unlearned.

Actually, it's more a case of losing the losing the flexibility in the vocal chords and I suspect you would get it back rather quickly if you started singing regularly again. I'm no great vocalist by any means, but I find that I am passable when I've been singing regularly. I discovered this when I kind of got "tricked" into fronting a gospel trio several years ago and we had to push everything up to C or G for the harp player. Initially I was way out of my comfort range but after a few rehearsals I found that not only had I managed to push my range up there, I sounded better up there. Go for a few months without singing a few hours a week, though, and I pretty much lose my tenor range completely and am back to a rather limited baritone.

janeray1940
10-05-2011, 05:10 PM
Actually, it's more a case of losing the losing the flexibility in the vocal chords and I suspect you would get it back rather quickly if you started singing regularly again.

You're probably right about that - when I first started playing uke I was willing to sing a bit more than I am now, and I did see improvement pretty quickly. Then I started learning to play classical on the uke and that was that - no need to sing :)

Shastastan
10-05-2011, 05:25 PM
Have you heard some of the pop singers of today? Their pitch is lousy and they can't hold it for more than a beat or two. Instead of a single solid note, their voice wanders all over the place. Okay, I admit that I'm an old guy who likes the old singers some of whom can still carry a tune (i.e. Tony Bennett, age 85?). Karen Carpenter will always be one of my favorites. Thankfully, a singer who's actually good pops up once in awhile. So, don't be too hard on yourself. If you're really concerned, you could take a few voice lessons and get some pointers from a pro. FWIW

TCK
10-05-2011, 06:16 PM
There is a LOT of amazing advice herein, and I offer this.
I saw Iris Dement a few weeks ago, and she really wanted the croud to sing with her. If you are familiar- her voice is about as unique as they come. In any event, she prefaced her request with:
"Who cares how you sound when you are singing? You ought to just sing for the sake of doing it- it is silly to care what other people sink"
I think she nailed the entire point of why those of us who are not naturally gifted here want to do so, and I immediately stopped caring

Shastastan
10-06-2011, 06:12 AM
Lot's of people sing in the shower, me included. They don't really think about it beforehand; They just do it because there's a song inside that just has to come out. Just sing!

MS2k
10-09-2011, 06:45 PM
"Say it loud and sing it proud today!"

I know my voice has definitely improved from singing louder and more often, typically in my car on the way to/from work. I pop in one of my favorite CDs and hit what I can, stretch for what's just barely out of reach (and half the time I can get there), and switch to falsetto for the high notes. Just don't look around to see who's watching. :p.

OldePhart
10-10-2011, 11:53 AM
"Say it loud and sing it proud today!"

I know my voice has definitely improved from singing louder and more often, typically in my car on the way to/from work. I pop in one of my favorite CDs and hit what I can, stretch for what's just barely out of reach (and half the time I can get there), and switch to falsetto for the high notes. Just don't look around to see who's watching. :p.

Heh, heh. I used to do that a lot but I don't have a commute any more so usually if I'm in the car someone is in there with me. My wife is vey supportive but the only way I can reach some of the leads on old rock music is to belt it out rather loudly... :)

John

musicstuffsome
10-10-2011, 02:09 PM
Yeah to be fair Im not a brillant singer but I like just twisting and playing around with my voice and making up stuff. I think the biggest thing that nmad me a better singer than I originally was was just to improvise either in the same way as you would when your noodling on a ukelele but humming random stuff and making up a little melody that sounds cool to you or by singing about random things just as you see them
"Am a sittin in my room tappin my foot on a empty box of cereal when I think to my self I can't see the sky,
You know what its dark tommorows today so I guess work starts today oh my oh my,
Tommorow when am sittin on a chair, looking blankly in the glare, I guess Ill just have to run it through,
N watch I dont die"

Annother idea which Ive just done here is to make up something like that just on the spot and write it down and then come back to it in a day or two and just sing what youve written and you might come up with something you werent thinking of the first time when you wrote it.
If am honest with you the biggest thing about singing is just being relaxed, if Im around folk that arent really use to me singing or are like too expectant of me or something or if I havent sang that day, I sound absolutely terrible and tense and shakey. When i was little and (as you do when you are 8 or so )thought I was the best singer in the world I was good at singing stuff, I can still do it but trying to make yourself consistantly belive that your good enough and feel confident is a real struggle. If im reccording something it takes me about half a hour of just singing giberish to get in the mood or if Im preforming to anyone as much as I know its not a good thing one or two beers really help to get a little more relaxed and less conscious of my self. I feel alot better about my singing than I use to say about 6 months ago but got a long way to loosen up more than anything. I think the biggest thing thats made me better is in my new job I just got as a lifegaurd sometimes theres barely any folk in the pool so I just have a wee sing along to my self and then other lifegaurds are like go on then sing us a song and then because your relaxed and your not really thinking about it you just sing goodand there like oh your good at singing, so yeah if you have a lazy job as well like lifegaurding or my mums friend whos a really good singer is a cleaner and she sings about 4 hrs a day while she cleans houses.

Jon Moody
10-12-2011, 12:10 AM
I have had a couple of voice lessons (it helps when your mom is a retired choir director), but the biggest thing I have found is that many people who say they can't sing are the ones that usually just sing at full volume, which usually brings their pitch up. My wife sings fairly well when she's not trying to belt something out like Adele or Christina; they've worked on being able to get that type of volume and control with their voice. Sing at a volume that is comfortable to you and you'll be surprised at how much better it is immediately.


I have trouble carrying a tune, and I have a very narrow range. I have discovered that I sometimes have to transpose a song to several different keys until I find the key that best fits my voice and allows me to somewhat comfortably sing along as I play.

Everyone does this, and you'll be surprised at how many people on the radio have a narrow range. Shania Twain had a great career, and her vocal lines were about 5-6 notes, and usually in the key of C, D and sometimes G.

Shastastan
10-13-2011, 07:44 AM
Here's one thing we just covered at our uke club.

Look at a particular song and determine the chord progression. We make life easy and use a fake book or get a song somewhere that shows the chords. Then it's easy to determine the chord progression for that song. For example, let's say the chord progression is I, VI, IV, V (1,6,4,5) and the song is in the key of C. Next we do the following:

C D E F G A B C D E F G
1 4 5 6

The chord order is C, A, F, G for this progression. However, maybe you want to change the key to something other than C because it's better for you. Let's say you want to change to the key of G. Using the same progression for the song then you would play G(1), E(6), C(4), and D(5). I've ignored 7ths and minors to keep things easy. So, knowing the chord progression pattern, you can just change the key and use the appropriate chords by referring to the notes in the scale you want to use. If you look this up in a theory book, you will find the same info, but it will be a much more complicated explanation. Just another tool available ..............

Sorry, the numbers won't line up in the correct positions under the letters in the "saved" version that shows up in the thread. It shows okay in the edit window so...??????????????

vanflynn
10-13-2011, 08:22 AM
Alcohol alway helps, just go into any Karaoke bar!

Vladim
10-16-2011, 08:18 AM
Can anyone say something about THESININGZONE.COM? The site seems to be promising. Is it worth subscribing?

Dan Uke
10-16-2011, 08:24 AM
Milli Vinilli can do it so can you!!

OldePhart
10-17-2011, 12:07 PM
I've been told that a sandwich improved my voice immeasurably...at least while I was eating it... LOL