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  #16  
Old 01-13-2019, 05:16 AM
Silly Moustache Silly Moustache is offline
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Firstly - this business about mimicking recordings.

I'm dead against it.

I "can" sound like Willie Nelson and have done as a j9oke, but whilst I sing some of his numbers - I don't.

Whilst very British, most of my influence are American so when singing I do effect a rhotic r and other aspects of American pronunciation, as I started with blues, and then went to bluegrass and worked to effect an accent appropriate to that genre.

You sing in the key that suits your own voice.

When you sing a song written/recorded by someone else - for the 3-4 minutes that you are singing it is "YOUR" story, make it convincing.

When I came back into singing and playing in 1993 after a ten year hiatus. I was fortunate to meet a classically trained teacher from whom I took ,really, just a few lessons, discovered my voice and I was off and running.
This worked fine until 2017 when I had all sorts of treatment for throat/tongue cancer which radically changed my throat and mouth shape and destroyed my saliva glands.

I have had to relearn - after losing my higher range and sometimes failing to hit a note.

My voice sounds completely different to me (they also damaged my hearing) but I'm told that I sound the same as I used to but lower - most songs have had to go a tone lower, but I am fighting that. Every syllable I make singing or talking has to be a conscious effort, and I have no voice until about midday and it "goes off" late at night - so I "wave" goodnight to my wife.

If you have half a voice - USE it whilst you can!
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  #17  
Old 01-13-2019, 05:26 AM
stanron stanron is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Silly Moustache View Post
If you have half a voice - USE it whilst you can!
You know I think I might have, just about, half a voice. Perhaps I will use it.

Keep on keeping on. We do appreciate it.
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  #18  
Old 01-13-2019, 05:38 AM
JonPR JonPR is offline
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Even the original singers change the keys of their songs, for various reasons - either for fun (like Dylan seems to), or because as they age they can no longer hit their high notes (like Neil Young).

That just underlines the idiocy of treating the key of an original recording as sacrosanct.
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  #19  
Old 01-13-2019, 05:40 AM
JonPR JonPR is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Silly Moustache View Post
If you have half a voice - USE it whilst you can!
Agree. I love that line in Leonard Cohen's "Tower of Song":

I was born like this, I had no choice
I was born with the gift of a golden voice

You tell 'em, Len!
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  #20  
Old 01-13-2019, 08:16 AM
RustyAxe RustyAxe is offline
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I fit the key to accommodate my voice AND allow me to use the chord shapes I want. When singing harmony vocals it's important to account for BOTH voices. There are songs my band plays that the lead vocalist calls the key, and because it's too high for any of us to get a third above the melody the song is performed without a harmony part. Bugs me, because all that had to happen was to drop the key a full step. Meh, I'm just the bass player.

And no, I don't try to mimic anyone. When I hear a faux Elvis, Johnny Cash, or heaven help me, John Lennon, I cringe.
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  #21  
Old 01-13-2019, 08:30 AM
Bikewer Bikewer is offline
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I started playing in the mid-70s, and most everyone we knew was in the “folk” crowd, often coming from St. Louis’ “Gaslight Square” era.

Most everyone had (and knew how to use) a capo and adjusting the key to suit a vocalist was just normal practice.

We had a couple of “trained” guitarists who were a bit snarky about this...

Vocalist... “I can’t sing it in that key.”

Guitarist... “Well, it doesn’t sound good in your key.”

Really saying.... I don’t know how to transpose on the fly and using a capo would make me look less professional....

Contrast this with a couple of well-trained keyboard guys we know who can quickly accommodate any vocalist... Even if the vocalist doesn’t know what key they sing in... “Well, sing a few notes...” Bingo... We’ll do it in “A”.
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  #22  
Old 01-13-2019, 09:26 AM
Brent Hahn Brent Hahn is offline
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Recording artists even change the keys of their own songs if it suits them, especially as they age.

After Blue Oyster Cult recorded "Don't Fear the Reaper," they immediately changed the key and have played it live that way ever since.

Paul McCartney recorded "When I'm 64" in a lower key than the key of the finished record (the tape was sped up by a lot), so what's the right key to perform it in? Especially when you haven't been 64 for quite a while?
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  #23  
Old 01-15-2019, 05:20 PM
RustyAxe RustyAxe is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brent Hahn View Post
Recording artists even change the keys of their own songs if it suits them, especially as they age.
In my country band we might change the key from gig to gig ... depends on who is singing lead, what the harmony part might be, and if we even remember what key we played it in last time. Not a problem, cuz every member of the band can transpose on the fly. Which is why we ALWAYS call the KEY along with the name of the song.
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