Now that NYC is coming back to life I am back to work singing in the Piano Bars and Nightclubs. My shifts are 5 – 6 hours long and that is an enormous amount of singing. It never ends. These are not 40 minute sets with breaks every hour these are Marathons that keep the music and the money flowing 😉 ! So, the rules are a little different than a 60 minute concert or making a recording.
The key I would sing something in for a concert or recording may not be the key I chose to sing it in for a 5 hour shift. Not all G#’s are created equal as I’m sure you’ve figured out by now. Certain songs present a muscularity that makes the high notes much more difficult. If for example there are ten G#’s in the tune that’s a lot different than one big one at the end. Some songs are what I call ‘relentless’ in the registration and therefore should be adjusted accordingly. It’s not just the high notes that can cause problems. I added a song last week that’s pretty uneventful as far as money notes or drama, and yet the key was just wrong. One half step down made everything smooth and easy. Don’t be afraid to try a few different keys both higher and lower. You’d be surprised how it can change the laryngeal position and create either comfort or resistance. A key thats a little too low can create its own problems.
Most importantly- WARM UP YOUR VOICE !! It’s a nice idea to think I will just warm up as I go, but it’s mostly a fantasy. Yes, pacing is also a key to a successful evening but you must be warmed up before you start.
Gotta Get Warmed Up. …. get it today!!!