The “Does Not Include a Podcast Episode Featuring Shannon Coates” Edition … #yourewelcome
I first saw this unbelievably VOICENERDTASTIC warm up list on Matt Edwards’s blog nearly three years ago (DEAR GREAT GOUDA IN THE SKY: THREE YEARS AGO?!?) and I was all: YAAAASSS. Because: SO FUN to hand it out to my particularly VOICENERDTASTIC clients and just have that succinct yet SUPER-SCIENCEY explanation for WHY we do the things we do in our sessions. (And (not uncoincidentally**), look like a VOICENERDGENIUS to my clients as I explain all the sciencey things. #winning) Well guess what? Someone at Fort Worth ENT took Titze’s original document and GUSSIED IT UP. So now it’s a handy pdf that you can just download and hand out at your leisure. #iknowright? #GIVETHEMARAISE
someone gussied me up. and when i get out of this stupid, pale-pink bucket? i will end them. do not doubt my resolve in this matter, human.
Remember that one time when I commented about how I had “out-hydrated coffee” and a lot of people were all: SILLY SHANNON – DON’T YOU KNOW THAT COFFEE IS NOT DEHYDRATING? BECAUSE: SCIENCE!? Yeah, well. Elizabeth is an actual nutritiony-person so LISTEN TO HER. ahem.
coffee may not be dehydrating, human, but if there’s no cream in it, what’s the point?
3. favourite giftastic site for learning the who/what/where of vocal anatomy: dubdubdub getbodysmart dot com***
I mean, there are about a million and one ANNOYING AS ALL GET OUT ads on this site. And the great gouda above only knows how many cookies the site will embed into your computer’s innards. HowEVER: so. much. #voicenerdtastic goodness.
Sometimes you look for, like, ten minutes for a CAT AND COOKIE picture (that is royalty free, #thankyouverymuch) and then you give up and go with the Hello Kitty cookie picture because: IT’S JUST NOT THAT IMPORTANT SHANNON SO GET OVER IT ALREADY.
WARNING: only read this article if you want to learn things about yourself and about music (eeew: feelings).
are you trying to make me FEEL, human? stop now. before i end you.
Look. We are ALL oversubscribed. (And if you are not, keep it to yourself; I don’t need that kind of freedom and joy in my life 😉 ) But if you can handle having ONE MORE NEWSLETTER dropping in your inbox on a semi-regular basis? THIS IS THE ONE. It’s full of newsy, sciencey, voicey stuff that is super-interesting and will help keep you totes informed about voicenerdtastic things. #pinkyswear
are you SERIOUSLY telling me to VOLUNTARILY sign up to receive MORE emails? #IWILLENDYOU
Get out there and teach your face off,
* Let it be known: I am using the INCORRECT SPELLING of this word UNDER DURESS.
** Let it be known: probably not a word … and YET … I am using it. #breakingALLTHERULEStoday
*** I did not discover this site but I can’t remember who introduced it to me. And now I feel like a DIRTY, STEALING PIRATE for not acknowledging the lovely person who brought this site to my attention. So if that was you? PLEASE LET ME KNOW AND I WILL UPDATE THIS POST ASAP. #pleasedontleavemetofeellikeadirtystealingpirateforever
**** THANK YOU KEN BOZEMAN for the heads up on this article. I lurrve it.
~ Leaving Las Vegas Edition ~
I had SO. MUCH. FUN. hanging with voice teachery peeps at the NATS National Conference in Las Vegas last weekend (at which I may or may not have lead the singing of the Canadian National Anthem at the opening ceremonies. while conducting like a boss. no: literally like a boss. a mafia boss. who has never studied conducting in their life. #THATKINDOFBOSS). So here are some wicked-cool singing teachery things that you can look into and it will feel like you were RIGHT THERE WITH US IN VEGAS (except for the heat. there is nothing that can make you feel like you were right there in that heat. unless you are actually a fire fighter. because I think maybe a fire fighter might understand what it feels like to be right there in that heat. maybe.).
Okay, so … this started out as a talk about my online course, The Vocal Instrument 101 and all the reasons I created it and who it’s for, and all that stuff … and then it turned into SO MUCH FUNNESS that you should just listen even if you couldn’t care less about The Vocal Instrument 101 (although if you couldn’t care less about The Vocal Instrument 101? THEN WHY ARE YOU READING THIS RIGHT NOW? GO AWAY YOU UNCARER, YOU.). Because: JOY! (We recorded it IN LAS VEGAS. Yes. Yes we did.)
JOY? tell me more. or don’t. because i’m actually yawning in this picture and you shouldn’t anthropomorphize it for your own purposes, you sneaky human.
Seriously. IF YOU TEACH YOUNG SINGERS, YOU NEED TO GET THIS BOOK RIGHT THE HECK NOW. GO GO GO. GET IT NOW. It is fun. It is exciting. It is WAAAAY EASY ON THE EYES. And? It is FULL OF ALL OF THE THINGS YOU WISH YOU KNEW BEFORE YOU STARTED TEACHING YOUNG SINGERS. (I held this book in my very hands when I was hanging with Nikki in the Exhibition Hall in Vegas all weekend telling all the singing teachers to get it in person.)
go. go now. even i, disdainful cat of the year, think you should go now and get this thing.
For reals: the kinda-super-secret, definitely-NOT-for-asshats subscription membership for independent voice teachers. It’s real. And it’s fabulous. (And we were pretty-danged well-represented in Vegas this weekend. yes: YES WE WERE.)
check it out, human. what are you waiting for? hmmmm …?
4. favourite singing teachery app: Pano Tuner
I never would have thought of using a tuning app in this way but … this is the app that Mandy Harvey (yeah. THAT Mandy Harvey … she just happened to be a Featured Guest Artist at the NATS Conference) used to build pitch memory. According to her former voice teacher, Cynthia Vaughn (yeah, THAT Cynthia Vaughn … who, just to bring things FULL CIRCLE, just happens to be a member of The SpeakEasy Cooperative), Mandy demonstrated how it works by singing “ooo” and said “this is Db.” The tuner verified that it was Db. “I always start the national anthem on Db so I just practiced repeatedly singing Db, noticing how Db *felt* and testing it with the tuner. Now I can sing Db any time and it’s always right. Then try another note and another. Also find notes by using solfege and intervals. It’s amazing!”
i mean … that’s a lot of awesome to process. i think my brain is exploding. or imploding. it’s hard to tell … what with the brain being so unstable.
You guys, there are SO MANY AMAZING BOOKS OUT THERE THAT I WANT TO READ (#TAKEALLMYMONEY) but I had to choose just one. Because those are the rules. I mean, those are my personal rules. But still: THE RULES.*
yeah. because you’re so good at following the rules. ahem.
So there you have it: Just like being in Vegas, #amiright?
You can teach your face off … I can help.
*Oh, alright. BECAUSE YOU BEGGED. Here are a few other titles on my list:
Sooo … I’m not fully rocking the non-fri-fav-five blogs. Because? THE VOCAL INSTRUMENT 101 IS COMING SOON … SO SO SOON. And it is taking all of my time. And so much of my sleep. Soooo … muuuuch … of myyyy … sleeeeep.*
But not SO much of my sleep that I wasn’t able to narrow down five awesome singing teachery things for your singing teachery pleasure:
You guys. There is SO MUCH information PACKED into this EIGHT-MINUTE video that your brain might explode from the SHEER AWESOMENESS of it. (Also? I am TOTALLY JEALOUS of his diagrams. Seriously: SHEER AWESOMENESS.)
i am the cutest thing you will ever see (SHUT UP. I AM TOO. LOOK AT MY WHISKERS. AND MY CUTE WIDDOW PAWS THAT LOOK LIKE I’M WEARING SOCKS.). and i am here to act as a palate cleanser for your brain to help it return to normal after it EXPLODES FROM THE SHEER AWESOMENESS. #yourewelcome
Friends. This is a FAST read that deserves a SLOW thought.
i’m just going to be here staring lovingly into your eyes while you figure your stuff out. and by “lovingly” i mean “judgingly”. (what? did you forget that i’m a cat?)
About a million people tagged me on this video this week. ABOUT A MILLION. And I’m grateful. (Because: LOOK AT THE MOTION OF THE DIAPHRAGM, YO! LOOK AT IT!)
i don’t care about the motion of the diaphragm. i care about eensy little daisies. and the fact that they might attack me at ANY MOMENT.
I mean, this will take up a little bit of your day. But if you’re in need of some inspiration? Grab a hot beverage and enjoy. It will be totally worth it. #pinkyswear (Ken is introduced at ca. 31 and his talk begins at ca. 40 and is about 45 minutes long.)
is this your tea, human? were you planning to drink it ANY TIME SOON? because it is IN MY SPACE. AND I HATE IT.
I may or may not have a few thousand RubberMaid Buckets full of Lego in my basement. I feel like this is a way I can get some use out of those Legos before I sell them on eBay and make my fortune.*** Or something.
Yes. This is a cat made out of Lego. The Internets is a beautiful thing.
Alright. I am off to lose more sleep and work on The Vocal Instrument 101. Or, more specifically, THE WEBSITE FOR THE VOCAL INSTRUMENT 101. (Because: have you seen that thing? It’s a disgrace.)
As always: You can teach your face off … I can help.
* Which I am totally willing to give up because: SO EXCITED FOR THIS THING TO COME OUT AND FOR YOU TO GET YOUR HANDS ON IT AND FOR ME TO FULFILL MY PROMISES ABOUT HELPING YOU TEACH YOUR FACE OFF AND ALL THAT STUFF.
** Note the spelling of CORDS, my friends. NOTE THAT AND NEVER SPELL IT “CHORDS” AGAIN.
*** That’s a lot of brand names. #justsayin
I’m BAAAAACK! And -WOW- are there ever a lot of singing teachery things that I’m loving this week. But I’m going to choose JUST FIVE. Because that’s my jam / the whole point of these blogs.
I know, I KNOW: SO LAST MONTH. Yeah, well. #MyBlogMyTimeline #sothere
great cheeseballs above, woman: Yanny vs Laurel?! STAY WITH THE TOUR.
You guys. LOOK AT WHERE IN THE BODY THE SPINE IS. (Oh, and at what the spine does when it’s flexed and extended, of course.)
when i flex and extend my face looks weird. happy?
3. favourite quirky teaching tool: Danny Quirk’s art
(See what I did there? #soclever) Just do a little scroll-through of this guy’s art. AND BE AMAZED. AND USE HIS ART TO UNDERSTAND HOW MUSCLES AND BONES LOOK AND WORK IN YOUR BODY.
so clever. i am amazed by you. and your clever clever ways.
Take a minute. Read the stuff. Know what you’re getting yourself into when you wear heels. #yourewelcome
this is a cat paw. it does not have heels on it. because, unlike humans, cats prefer to walk unimpeded.
good work, humans. FOR ONCE.
You can teach your face off … I can help.
ps STAY TUNED: The Vocal Instrument 101 online course is cooooming your way. With special pricing available soooon. #soexcite!
* Thanks to Dann for the heads up on that one. I keep excitedly showing it to my students to help them re-orient where their spine is. They don’t seem as excited as I am. I’m not sure why. Ahem.
the free-airport-wifi edition*
Singers with issues around performance anxiety? (I mean, I don’t know any … do you? ahem.) Take a look. (Plus? Canadian content.)
humans and their performance anxiety issues. it’s like they don’t realize they have opposable thumbs or something. if i had opposable thumbs (and if I cared … which I don’t), I WOULD RULE THE WORLD.
So, this is a video showing how a diseased lung (from smoking, I think) inflates versus how a healthy lung inflates. So, you know, GROSS. However, if you can handle the PSAness, it’s also a fantastic teaching tool. Especially if you keep in mind that the lungs do not inflate on their own (because they’re not a muscle, they’re an organ, #AMIRIGHT?); they inflate because they are attached to the ribs … which open when the intercostal muscles (as in: ‘between the ribs” muscles. #sosciency) engage … which causes the ribs to swing out … and the lungs to open right along with those swinging ribs … because they’re attached to the ribs. (And then the air rushes into the body because there’s this whole pressure vs volume thinggie going on … which has ramifications for inhalations and breathing for singing … which is a WHOLE OTHER POST. DO NOT ENCOURAGE ME TO TALK ABOUT BREATHING FOR SINGING AND HOW TO TEACH IT BECAUSE WE WILL BE HERE FOR HOURS AND NO ONE WANTS THAT. (Also, I’m distilling those hours into a convenient twenty-minute segment in The Vocal Instrument 101 Online Course so there’s that.))
for the LOVE, woman. stay on target.
If you’ve been teaching for any length of time, you’ve definitely encountered singers whose vocal production issues seem to stem from something more than physiology. If you’ve never thought about it before, this is a good starter article (with link to a full-on documentary) about the role that the psyche can play in vocal production. (With thanks to the ever-fabulous Liz Jackson-Hearns for the heads up.)
you? are not a psychologist, woman. so you’d darn-well better refer out when necessary. #justsayin
If you teach operatic tenors? You need to just stop what you’re doing and watch this video. Go on. Do it now. You can thank me later. With (dairy- and nut-free) chocolate.
that’s a lot of bossy right there. #justsayin
It’s nine minutes long. It’s absolutely fascinating. You’re not going to regret it. #pinkyswear
Until next time,
You can teach your face off … I can help.
* You guys, I have been through three time zones (and had two puke/terror-inducing landings to boot) since Friday. This post was started at the Deer Lake Airport (which? might be*** located in one of the most beautiful areas on the planet, which is where I spent a day adjudicating some really lovely young singers (and a guitarist and violinist) with my colleague, Martha) and was finished while visiting family in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia. And it is going to have to tie you the heck over for a few weeks, given that I am on my way to LA next week and in a conference all day Friday (wanna’ come? there’s still room!) so maybe I get a FFF post done and maybe I don’t. It’s MY BLOG so I get to decide these things.
** SHOUT OUT to Stephanie, who brought this blog to my attention … and who may know a thing or two about dealing with performance anxiety. #OneOfTheBravestPerformersIKnow
*** And by “might be”? I mean “TOTALLY, ONE HUNDRED PERCENT IS”. It’s not super-easy to get there but, WOW, is it worth it. GO THERE. (And tell them I sent you. If there’s a critical mass arriving on their doorstep all saying that Shannon sent them, maybe I get a free skiing vacation out of it. (ARE YOU LISTENING NEWFOUNDLAND TOURISM?!?))