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Hey guys, it's been a while since i have posted anything on this forum. I wrote a song yesterday, very simple off the top of my head. I've never properly sung before and this is my first recording. Can you tell me if i can sing or not? Honest honest opinion, i don't mind if you say my voice isn't good because im a pianist :)

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Hi Johnathan. In my opinion, you are a not a natural born singer. People can always get singing lessons though. You could probably improve because it is mainly a tone thing, you hit the notes alright. In any case, I am not a singer singer, nor are most of the people on here I would guess because this is a composer's forum. You might want to try asking elsewhere.

Mr White? I was going to start out by saying "well... this guy can play piano pretty well". Then i saw your only 15. For bein 15, your a really good piano player!!! The piano playing sounds good. There... are a couple different types of singing... there's the kind of singer that gets up on a stage, and sings. he might play piano, or have a band behind him... but he's a singer. Now,l that is one type of singer.

There's another type of singer... the guy that sings only in the capacity to see that his lyrics are working wth the music he is writing. he doesn't truly care that he couldn't or shouldn't get up on the stage, he only cares to use it in the contet of songwriting. For right NOW, you are that type of singer, but thats in my honest opinion... and I am no expert. I suspect that others better than me might share this opinion, but...

keep this in mind: "singers" (the type that get up ona stage at the bar and sing...) typically (not always, but typically...) were in chorus for several years in high school... when they get out of high school chorus... they sing a lot, for a couple years... so that they can try to start being the "get up on the stage" singers... you know, cover a few songs for a local kids band and all that...

NOW... let me tell you another story... one totally unrelated to singing...

I used to be a fighter. I'm 42 now... I'm getting a little long in the tooth, LMAO... as far as fighters go... If I was "MILK", someone would have poured me down the drain, eh? When i was YOUR AGE, I used to get picked on. My head dunked in the toilet,, all that jazz. Anyways... when I got to college, I had been lifting weights for a few years. I was hitting a heavy bag a lot, using a speed bag. I always HAD been a long diatance runner,so I had the WIND. ALl I wanted in the world, was to be a tough guy... a real fighter.

I tended to my studies at college, but my hobby was lifting weights, hitting the heavy bag, and using the speed bag. Any time I met a "real fighter" I talked with him about it. Finally... someone told me if I was serious... I couold come out to "the barn" and see what ws going on... and these were real fighters. I went. I got knocked out. I got UP, and I continued, LMAO

One man there, a coach of some kind... after a while, he took me aside. He figured out wjat the problem was. I have really shoort arms. No matter what I do, i cant grow longer arms. Any "real" boxer who knows what he is doing? He can EXPLOIT my short arms... and exploit it RUTHLESSLY. A real boxer can stay JUST out of my "range" and tag me at WILL in my face, and there isnt much i can do about it...

This man taught me to GRAPPLE, which is dirty wrestling tricks. i cant BOX, but... i cal close the distance quickly, and I can GRAB my opponent... and all of a sudden? The boxer gets scared... i learned to trap his arms up... choke the boxer... lock his arm and leg... make him tap out and quit...

Yet... other grappler... with good reach (longer arms)? They can exploit the same weakness on me. I'm just not genetically gifted for fighting. OH... I WORKED at it though... for years. It was a passion of mine. i didnt care that i wasnt that good at it... I learned all SORTS of "tricks" o that... well... I could fight "pretty good". Hard work and passion pays off... a little bit. Every now and then... I was able to win my fair share of matches... yeah, if a boxer thought he was cool because he was a big, strong guy? And didnt work on his skills? Didnt really know what he was doing? I could exploit that... get him down, choke him out, make him look bad and win.

If a guy doesnt know what he is doing grappling... I mean REALLY know what he is doing... I have ways i can wear him out, and roll him over, and choke him out... BUT... I know, in my heart of hearts, I'm just not cut out for it.

I'm not sad about it... What did i i GET out of all this? Well... I'll tell you this... I dont feel intimidated. Anywhere I go... even at my age now, out of shape, gettign older... I an STILL choke out a guy twice my size that does not expect a guy that looks like me to know what he is doing... I have surprised a LOT of guys twice my size, and made them look very bad... LMAO... but a young guy? In shape? and that knows what he i doing? I'M DEAD MEAT, hee he. *shrugs* i dont really care though...

Now, sure... I've grabbed up some young kids at work that THOUGHT they were tough, because I know things they dont know... and I can look cool doing it... but a "real" fighter that knows what he's doing? I'm old, I'm out of shape, and I was never genetically gifted at it in the first place...

NOW... whats the GOOD news? If you sing along to youir favorite songs for years... and you learn to MIX, and use a pitch bender... and you realize you have to use a lot of chorus and reverb on your voice... and you only work on YOUR songs that you are working on as a songwriter? You can do it morethan good enough to write the songs, and make a rough demo tape that proves the sonhg "works". Here's the dirty little secret... the songwriter doesnt have to BE a good singer... he just has to carry the tune in a bucket...

Here's another secret... ANYone can sing... and, ANYone can fight... you just have to realize, you might have to watch other people get good at it while your struggling, just like I did learning to fight. You might not be a "natural" at it.... but you CAN learn to do it, well enough you can be a songwriter. (just maybe not front a band?)

I will even give you the SONG you shoudl work on, to get better.... patrick Swayze singing "shes like the wind". PatrickSwayze is not a good singer... but, you'd never know it to listen to that song on the radio... unless, your a good singer yourself, then you sould tear him a new @$$hole on that song.

but... if you can HEAR the real singer in your head... and you practice enough... you CAN get good enough that you can one day get up at a karaoke bar, and make it SOUND good, for one of yoru favorit songs... just like i can coach fighters, and i can "tune up" a guy that doesnt know what hes doing, and make it look good...

I got money that says though... you might be one HELL of a good songWRITER though... and I ain't kidding...

If you dont believe me? When I get my old music computer files transferred to DVD... i can let you hear me singing... I AINT NO GOOD... but, you can hear me doing, like, 3 lines working on a siong, just to hear the "chorus working" so I can get thru it as much as I need to...

you were trying to sing a ballad... (just like patrick swayze singing "shes like the wind" ?) when you PRACTICE singing ballads... there's a trick to it... go up and down in pitch... and when you "hit it" briefly... you can FEEL it in your cheekbones. AND... when you "hit it" and hold a note singing along with the radio... for a brief instant, you cant really her yourself singing, and yhou cant really hear the radio singing... (it will surprise you the first time you hit a note in pitch and see what I mean)

every time you get in the shower, from now until yhr day you die... sing along with BALLAD SONGS. The shower has a lot of natural reverb, which thin voice needs. Movbe pitch up and down, and when you MEET the radio voice, you will not hear yourself sing, or the radio... and you will feel a "fuzziness" in your cheekbones (sinuses)

when you hit a key on your piano? Its "on pitch"... hitting a note sionging is nto so straighjtforward... I used to PRACTICE FIGHTING like you would not believe, for YEARS... just to be half decent... YOU can sing, everyone can... yet, I think you can be one of the best songWRITERS...

You might just have short arms to be a real "front man" for a band...

eh? WRESTLE instead of BOX, eh?
As a pianist you know how much practice that goes into learning a difficult piece, the same goes with singing. Our voice is the most expressive instrument and I there therefore believe it is also one of the most difficult to really master.

I believe that everyone can learn to sing, there are however some who have a voice that naturally just sounds better. But this does not change the fact the all of the great singers out there have speed loads of time practicing their craft.

Do you need to practice to become a great singer? Yes like everyone else

When they were younger, artists that are great singers today was told that they could not sing, they just choose NOT to believe what they were told. My point is: "Never let anyone tell you that you can't do"

Not that you should run around with your eyes closed thinking you are a great musician if everything around you, tells you otherwise. We should look upon our selves from a realistic point of view .

Does singing make you happy, then spend as much time doing it as possible - and playing the piano as well ;-) This is the most important part - if it makes you happy, it does not matter what other people think.

So my answer to your question is: yes you can sing.
Thank you very much

Tombo Rombo said:
Hi Johnathan. In my opinion, you are a not a natural born singer. People can always get singing lessons though. You could probably improve because it is mainly a tone thing, you hit the notes alright. In any case, I am not a singer singer, nor are most of the people on here I would guess because this is a composer's forum. You might want to try asking elsewhere.

You left the chat right before I started listening, so I'll leave a comment here.

Yes you can sing. My own singing is far from sounding good, but I had the pleasure of helping some of my friends make use of their voice, and it does work. A little bit of serious practice will certainly make you a good singer, methinks.

About the song: it can be heard very well that you're a pianist, the accompaniment feels just... natural. However, I noticed that you're doubling the leading melody on the piano - don't know if it's to help you sing in pitch or what, but such thing always sounds awkward to me.
I liked the song, but I couldn't capture a lot of lyrics, you should position your mic better next time :)
At the risk of sounding a bit arrogant: I suppose I would be more experienced than most here since I view myself as a singer who composes, not a composer who sings haha (My mom is a voice teacher and choral director, I am a vocal performance major in college and have been singing in front of people all my life). I am not bullshiting you here, you do have a fair amount of potential. The only way though for that potential to be truly realized is proper instruction and practice (just like anything else).

First of all you are very very young by singing standards, your voice has indeed changed but it will continue to change and grow probably until you are 25 or so (I am 20 and am still considered young by singing standards. My range fluctuates sometimes as much as a major third up or down depending on sleep, diet, weather, etc.). Singing is all about consistency, and getting good tone consistently takes a) a lot of figuring out and experimentation so as to know what it feels like to sound good because our own ears lie to us and b) a lot of practice to gain the muscle memory and physical control needed to be graceful.

What I heard from the recording you made was that you have a good ear and that you have good forward placement in your sound. When you went sharp or flat it seemed to be a function of creating overtones with your mouth over vowels (thats something that all singers do and is why diction and tongue placement are very important aspects of singing), you are far from being tone-deaf. What I mean by foreward placement is that you bring the sound up into your head so that the sound is more natural, almost as if your singing is just an extension of your speaking voice. This is a very good natural inclination. Many people when they start out singing (myself included here) really strain their throats and get a more constipated sound.

You are pretty much at the perfect age to begin taking voice lessons, a year or two younger and I would have maybe suggested waiting a bit. Your voice right now sounds rough and unrefined, but you do have enough talent to polish it up and at the VERY least sound presentable. You definitely would not be the type of student a voice teacher hates to have, there is enough in your voice to work with. I don't hear you being the next Fredy Mercury or Pavarotti or whatever, but neither am I or most people who decide to make singing their life...If you are serious about singing in ANY capacity you do need lessons though. I know a lot of people aren't interested in singing classical music or rather maybe are uninterested in singing in a classical style. Keep in mind that through lessons what you are doing is figuring out how to make your voice sound 1 specific way. There is a lot of trial and error so in figuring out this 1 way of singing you by default figure out a bunch of different ways of singing. The control you gain from making your voice fit into the "classical sound" category of singing will translate into any other genre, then its just a question of application and nuance that you get from listening to said genre.

Also you sound to me like you are a baritone and I would be wary of anyone telling you that you are a bass, that happens more than you would think and it can actually be damaging to the voice to try and shift your tessitura (natural comfortable singing range). If you are not interested in lessons but still want to get better, message me and I'll give you some simple vocal and breathing exercises you can do. Really from what I heard, I guess you should be asking yourself do you want to be a singer rather than asking us if you are a have the foundation layed, whether you leave it bare or build a two-flat or erect a skyscraper is up to you.

Good piece by the way, well done
I know absolutely nothing about singing, obviously. Small wonder... i've heard the thing about it depending on genetic gifts to begin with enough times to think it was true...

Christ, I'm glad this chap knows enough to ignore me...

Matt? is there a quick easy way of explaining to me... about people that sound like they already sing, with no training? i was always told thats where you had to begin... I'm obviously mistaken...
It has to do with your ear and just luck I think. Some people are gonna be naturally better than others. Glenn Gould said that he felt practicing at the piano hindered him and he prepared better by reading his music like a book with minimal physical practice (or something along those lines). I just watched Amadeus again the other day and call to mind Salieri's blue-collar outlook as opposed to Mozart's seemingly innate abilities (Salieri still somehow managed to be court composer though, despite not being as naturally talented as Mozart) . As you say a lot of it falls to genetics and chance (an absolute necessity for the very high end of the spectrum...I would KILL for Dmitri Hvorostovsky's or Placido Domingo's DNA), but for the rest of us destined to be forgotten by history I see it as a function hard work/ experience AND proper education. A GREAT teacher could make a good singer from a piece of crap whereas a poor teacher could make a piece of crap from a good singer. That said a great teacher can't sing for you, the work ethic has to be there.

Basically, unless you are on the curve approaching helen keller, you can make something of your voice. The level of talent you are born with decides how fast you can possibly make progress. Hypothetically now, if you are not that talented it might take you 10 years to accomplish what someone who is extremely talented could accomplish in 1, but you can still get there (again providing for work ethic). Basically my point is that there isn't just those who got it and those that don't...there's those that got it, those that don't, and EVERYONE ELSE in the middle. If you are musically inclined (if you are here you probably are), than you're probably at least somewhere in the middle. This I think kind of gets into how singing hinges on confidence as well. If you don't think you can sing, you're gonna suck (especially in a performance environment). Hesitance can MANY TIMES be misheard as lack of talent and vice versa...lack of embarrassment can sometimes be misheard as talent (I cite britney spears, cisco, avril lavigne, nickelback etc). The key is being realistic and finding the middle ground. Notice the title of this discussion: Honest Opinion, I'm Not a Singer. This coupled with his almost expectancy that if someone said he was all right, they would be lying to him more than begins to explain to some of the uncertainty or shakiness in Jonathan's tone. That's something that can be very easily remedied through practice based on the simple fact that with practice he will improve, and when he hears himself improve he will grow more confident, thus allowing for more improvement and practice etc. etc. The more confident you are the more fun it becomes in general. That said it takes time, you can't be impatient and get fed up with yourself. Thats where the "I can't sing" attitude comes from. Typically what I've found in my limited experience is that (within the realm of moderately musically talented people) its the attention whores who sound like they can already sing as you say because they have no shame and it doesn't occur to them that they couldn't sing. Its the thoughtful self conscious ones that get down on themselves and create self fulfilling prophecies.

The voice is an instrument just like any other. Some voices happen to sound more beautiful than others. Some people struggle with understanding how to use the voice more than others. The piano is an instrument just like any other. Some pianos happen to sound more beautiful than others. Some people struggle with understanding how to use the piano more than others. Could you tell me if I am I piano player or not? The only experience I have is playing by ear very infrequently when no one else is around. There are tons of jazz pianists that taught themselves and they are way better than I am, I must not be a piano player.

The thing that makes us so self conscious about our voices is that they are ours. We can't change them. If you buy a crappy piano and it sounds/ feels like a toy, you can save up and buy a concert steinway. People are afraid that others are gonna say that your voice isn't a steinway...but that doesn't mean that its a piece of crap toy (unfortunately that's what we tend to hear). There are plenty of reliable old yamahas out there that more than get the job done.

I don't even know if I really answered your question, and sorry if that seemed almost angry. Didn't seem short either haha. I'm quitting cigarettes and am straight up jonesin for a smoke haha. I've noticed I go into intense rant mode much easier now cus I'm just that much more on edge.

Sean E Duvall said:
I know absolutely nothing about singing, obviously. Small wonder... i've heard the thing about it depending on genetic gifts to begin with enough times to think it was true...

Christ, I'm glad this chap knows enough to ignore me...

Matt? is there a quick easy way of explaining to me... about people that sound like they already sing, with no training? i was always told thats where you had to begin... I'm obviously mistaken...
no, that makes sense. I hadnt thought about the confidence angle... its good to hear from someone who knows about the teaching end of it...

You hear people say they play guitar or sing or play piano, you hear peopel say they teach guitar or piano... but I cant recall the last time I heard someone say "I teach singing". Well, other than on here, of course.

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