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 ARCHIVED TOPIC: Bluegrass Singing Help


Please note this is an archived topic, so it is locked and unable to be replied to. You may, however, start a new topic and refer to this topic with a link: http://www.banjohangout.org/archive/296386

danbrun - Posted - 12/20/2014:  09:19:36


I'm looking for an instructor who can help me sing better bluegrass, and work on that "high lonesome" Bill Monroe sound. If you know of a good instructor please let me know. Or, maybe there's a website which has helped you out along the way.



Anything you can offer to help my vocal technique would be great.



Edited by - Lynne on 12/20/2014 10:34:48

drbluegrass - Posted - 12/20/2014:  09:24:39


Great post. Been wondering the same thing.

eagleisland - Posted - 12/20/2014:  09:51:04


Dan, you'd probably get better results if you mentioned where you're looking for a voice help.



Realistically, singing starts with breathing - learning how to do that properly is essential. There are also exercises that help develop range and precision. Realistically, you don't necessarily need a bluegrass singer to teach you those things - any good vocal coach can help you develop those skills, and from there it's a matter of timing and inflection (which you can learn by listening to the greats).



So I'd just be looking in your area for a good voice teacher, style unimportant. Hint: if there are no vocal coaches easy to find in your area, you might try looking at the choir directors at local churches. Those folks almost invariably know how to get people to sing better.



 



BTW - don't be surprised to see this topic moved to another forum.


Buzzbomb - Posted - 12/20/2014:  13:42:02


There's  a DVD "Lead Singing & Rhythmn Guitar" by Peter Rowan on Homespun which you might find useful


pickn5 - Posted - 12/21/2014:  05:52:53


Check with your local music store, they might know of someone or have a bulletin board up with adds posted. Check with your local school system music department also.

leadbelly - Posted - 12/21/2014:  12:18:40


If you want to sing just like Bill, attach a small clamp to your danglies.  I guarantee that "High Lonesome Sound".


Fathand - Posted - 12/22/2014:  17:36:13


Listen to lots of bluegrass and don't fall into the trap that you are expected to sing with a southern drawl unless you talk that way. Pete Wernick's Banjo Songbook has lots of singing tips in it. 


250gibson - Posted - 12/23/2014:  08:31:30


Also, not everyone can sing as high as Bill no matter how much instruction they have. 


Tom Berghan - Posted - 12/23/2014:  18:36:42


quote:


Originally posted by danbrun

I'm looking for an instructor who can help me sing better bluegrass, and work on that "high lonesome" Bill Monroe sound. If you know of a good instructor please let me know. Or, maybe there's a website which has helped you out along the way.



Anything you can offer to help my vocal technique would be great.







To sing "High Lonesome" requires two things.  



1) It requires that you have a specific vocal range and that range is "Tenor."  Most males are not able to sing tenor . . . the majority of males are "Baritones."  Some can sing in the bass range.  And, a very few males can sing in the "counter-tenor" range (above the male tenor . . . refer to the contra-alto range in the chart below).  Bill Monroe could hit a few notes in the counter tenor range . . . but he could not go all the way in that range naturally.  He was however very skilled at smoothly changing to what is called "head tone" and he would break into falsetto.  (like the famous Frankie Valli, or the famous Smokey Robinson)



2) It requires that one be extremely familiar with the genre (the style) . . . and extremely few teachers could help you in this regard.  Bill of course created his own particular style.  If you have the natural ability to sing in Bill Monroe's range then you need to listen to his recordings for hours each day. Listen to them constantly and sing along with him.  To sing like Bill is no easy thing - otherwise more people would be doing it.  But . . . it is certainly not impossible!  If you have the range, and you have the soul, then you can do it!




Rawhide Creek - Posted - 12/23/2014:  19:15:07


Rarer still is the man who can sing bargain counter tenor, a range for which only one written work is known to exist, fortuitously composed by P. D. Q. Bach (1742-1807):



Diverse Ayres on Sundrie Notions [Schickele No. 99-44/100] for Bargain Counter Tenor, Worm/snake, Violin, Viola, Violoncello, and Harpsichord.  



Edited by - Rawhide Creek on 12/23/2014 19:26:05

Tom Berghan - Posted - 12/23/2014:  19:21:52


"Bargain Counter Tenor".



LOL!!! ;-)  you've been firing on all cylinders Russ. Good one!



 


Rawhide Creek - Posted - 12/24/2014:  08:45:40


Well, truth be told, the range isn't that difficult, since it's always marked down . . .


Tom Berghan - Posted - 12/24/2014:  10:33:26


quote:

Originally posted by RawhideCreek

Well, truth be told, the range isn't that difficult, since it's always marked down . . .







He is ON FIRE!!!  I can't compete with that!  (I LOL'ed!)


Debs - Posted - 12/24/2014:  13:55:17


quote:

Originally posted by Buzzbomb

There's  a DVD "Lead Singing & Rhythmn Guitar" by Peter Rowan on Homespun which you might find useful







I think this is the DVD that  Buzzbomb  mentioned - not sure if it's any good , but might be worth a look:



homespuntapes.com/Instructors/...hm-guitar


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