Best vocal advice I ever received.
From a golfer. A mortgage broker. My Dad.
I was 16 and was practicing the Czardas from Fledermaus, and was screaming the high notes, getting more frustrated as I went along.
My Dad came into the living room and observed me for a few minutes. He then said “You know, when I really want a shot to go in the hole, I tense up and inevitably the ball flies in the weeds, in the lake, or misses the tee. Maybe if you don’t want it so much it will start working better. You’re holding on so tight, you’re choking it.”
Then he went into the kitchen, carrying on with life, but these words stuck with me.
The idea of release, once all the building blocks are in play, is essential to vocal mastery. It is in the letting go of control that you gain ultimate control. That is the hard part... knowing when you're ready to let go. My advice is you're always ready to let go. . .
Mastery will come, but you will not ever achieve it by clutching for control. In the moment, the control may feel stable, good, even correct, but it inhibits your full sound. Each day, each practice session, you can practice letting go. Practice trusting your instrument to do what you have trained it to do.
There is a time and a place to manage, and there is a time and a place to release. Your job is to develop a sense of which is needed.
Not only in vocal things, but in life, too. By wanting something so much, your fear of not getting it actually prevents you from receiving. You must practice trust. That the foundations of good work and good thought will do their job.
Can you relate? Can you let go of the need to control your voice?
What can you stop gripping at in your life?