Twenty-Four Non-Italian Songs and Non-Arias
January 25, 2012 7:55 AM   Subscribe

What do non-classically trained singers do for vocal warm-ups and conditioning? Looking for information on how untrained pop, rock, and jazz singers practice and keep their voices in good shape.

I have some background in classical singing, and almost all my training has been in the realm of quite formal lessons... but that's not really the type of music I truly want to sing. Of course, I know I won't be changing instruments if I go from singing an Italian art song to a jazz song, and learning to play my instrument well should transcend genres -- I believe that's true to an extent, but at the same time, I heard my voice teacher (who is incredibly skilled at and knowledgeable about classical/operatic singing, has a DMA, etc) perform jazz one time and it was really not great, I thought. She sounded like an opera singer singing jazz, if that makes sense.

I'm sure there is overlap with classical-style singing, but also I feel like there must be things skilled non-classically trained singers do to warm up and work out the voice to keep it healthy and sounding great. What are they?

Any resources you can share along the lines of books/websites/etc with specific information would be great. For example, this master class at NYPL with Barbara Cook has really interesting concepts and information in it. Very technical/specific is encouraged. Thanks guys.
posted by pupstocks to Media & Arts (5 answers total) 18 users marked this as a favorite
I'm classically trained too so I'm not much help, but here's a bit of insight as to how one metal singer warms up his voice.
posted by lovedbymarylane at 9:37 AM on January 25, 2012

I've been doing the first dozen exercises from Jeffrey Allen's Secrets of Singing regularly for a while now and they've done a good job strengthening my voice and keeping my pitch under control.
posted by ChuqD at 10:15 AM on January 25, 2012

Check out Melissa Cross.
posted by umbĂș at 10:48 AM on January 25, 2012

I'm in the same boat -- classical singer who wants to have the chops for singing more contemporary stuff. I got this book but haven't actually used it. Still, it looks good -- lots of little exercises to work on specifics, good foundation in proper technique, etc.
posted by Madamina at 11:03 AM on January 25, 2012

I used to do light opera (I'm a female tenor - probably because I spent years singing along to deep-voiced pop singers like Damon Albarn and Morrissey) and there were three exercises we did regularly:

1) mobility exercises like singing 'many men, many men, many men men men' and other phrases that loosened up the voice
2) Singing 'I like the flowers' to piano (during show week, the lyrics, um, changed somewhat)
3) Singing something like the chorus to Over The Rainbow whilst going up and down the scales on the piano (ie. someone hits a note, we sing to match it).

Some of us were trained singers but the majority were not.
posted by mippy at 3:39 PM on January 25, 2012

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