Saturday, January 28, 2012

"Vocal Plagiarism" - What's That?
Can We Finally Change the "Vocal Recipe" Which Became too Familiar to our Music Taste?

Working with the producers for over three decades, and especially for the last several years, never ceases to amaze me.

First of all, being a vocal consultant, especially for my clients, and in-studio vocal producer, I'm unable to explain to them that they don't need to autotune or melodine every vocal line, because I am present in the studio for the very reason to pull out from the artist an authentic and the best performance.

Moreover, some of them are playing the role of a song writer or co-writer with the artist and myself.

By the end of the session, I'm beginning to hear a similar tune and/or style, which is already familiar to my ear.

Verbalizing my concern with various producers, I came to the conclusion that music and "vocal plagiarism" is very much so in fashion.  Their belief is that if the certain sound and style is "hot" right now and selling like "hot cakes", why not write and produce something similar, and that also will perhaps be a hot sale...?

I see some trace of logic in it, but where is the originality, the uniqueness and versatility of the music, music style and vocal performance?

No wonder nowadays all the songs are sounding the same and all the artists are sounding very similar. Sometimes you cannot even make a distinction between the songs they're singing and the artists themselves.

In my opinion, it's as good as "treading the water in the toilet bowl and forever not flushing it".

I'm still anxiously awaiting to hear something new, fresh and original and not simulating the same heavy duty, thick and stuttering sound.

However, on a positive note, the artist Adele is definitely standing out from the crowd. She does have an original sound to her voice, as well as undeniable emotion to her performance.

Whichever producers were working on her albums, are absolutely brilliant. The albums are commercially sound, versatile, emotional and original. The only problem is - the cost to Adele's voice.

The outcome of this we already know. But if Adele possessed the right technical merits to her vocal performance, married to the evidently brilliant music and vocal productions, the whole equation would be priceless and very commendable, and to some degree, worth it to be copied.

Let's hope that Adele will have a speedy recovery and will return on stage in a short order to spice up the rest of the vocal performances, and finally bring us to some originality and differentiation between one "vocal recipe" from another.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Vocally Speaking... Vocal Implant/Human body rejection...?

I have been working with beginners and professionals for over 37 years now. Strangely enough, I find that to work with the beginners is much easier than to work with people who had some vocal experience or a lot of it.
The beginners do not know any better or any worse for that matter, and it is easier to put them on the "right track", as they don't have any pre-conceived ideas. 

They also don't have the bad habits instilled in them either by themselves or by incompetent instructors, whereas those people with so called "experience" consciously or primarily sub-consciously are rejecting 'so to speak' the new modality of a "new behaviour", I could compare it with patients who receive new organs via medical transplant. Sometimes, the human body rejects something foreign, in spite that it could be a live saviour for the patient. 

I also have older clients, and with them, there is another problem. They are very conservative, and they are not accepting something new very easily, as well as they are not releasing their habits that easily either. I call it "teaching an old dog new tricks".
So, each category of clients is different in its nature, but ultimately, I have to solve their (in a manner of speaking) "vocal headaches" with whichever means which will work for their specific case.

In all cases, though, I need to remove "the virus" from their human computers and instill in their psyche my own "software"-"Vocal science". And then, I have to assure that they would press the "right button" to achieve and acquire the right "vocal print-out/outcome” first with my help, and then on their own.

In the final analysis, they and I will ultimately be praying for "no rejection at all" in the best understanding of that word.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

"Hurricane Diana" Coming Through Britain and Across the Atlantic
Still Calm, But Definitely Before the Perfect Storm...

Last night, I finally (however delayed for the good reasons) returned from my recent UK trip.

What was different this time was that not only did I bring my own artist for recordings and what not, but also attempted to work with the local artists or artists to be, via two Vocal Interactive Workshops and some voice repair private sessions.

I've been doing all of this starting from Russia in 1975-76 and for the last 32 years, in Canada to date. Was I ever shocked when I embarked on what I thought was very familiar to me, with the British audience?

Within the first five minutes I understood that I appeared to them as a complete "hurricane" on a bright sunny day (to put it mildly). They were sitting still and almost shockingly staring at me, however, with surprise and fascination in their eyes.

I meanwhile, did not feel at ease at all. I felt like Maria from Sound of Music, but not coming out of the convent to meet a future husband, but rather coming in...? In my opinion, this workshop could pass for the Sound of Music II... London style!

I felt like Mother Teresa and seemed to be, just was missing the cross and a prayer.

I actually had a nagging desire to say a prayer, before, during and after the workshop.

Here in Canada, I've been pretty free with respect of my references, which at times have funny sexual and other colloquial content. I had to watch every word I was saying, as I didn't feel the opening for the British audience to receive me in the right context.

In Canada, I also worked a lot with churches and their performers, the Christian artists and female Barbershop choirs and quartets.

I was aware that they were not exactly the rock singers, but I also never felt as Whoopi Goldberg's character from the Sister's Act movie.

I guess we're talking about cultural differences, and to their credit I have to say that they were by far more academically sound than Canadians or Americans have ever been.

But their artistic demeanour was hardly present, even with a couple of professional singers in the group. They looked extremely modest and not open to anything outrageous at all.

It definitely was very foreign to me.

I felt like I was participating in "Nuns-R-Us" productions (lol).

I was extremely tired by restricting myself for four hours of my natural behaviour. In the morning after, I had a hysterical laughter reviewing my previous day of teaching.

On the second day, I had a much more open minded and souled audience. So, the content of my workshop was the same, but not as restricted, which was by far more pleasurable and enjoyable by me and, as it appeared to be, by the participants.

That leaves me hope that I could still find the artists across of the Atlantic Ocean, who would need my services and will appreciate my freedom of word and unique instructions.

I still intend to take Great Britain by storm!

It is still somewhat calm in the British neck of the woods, but evidently, they need a good "hurricane" to "wake up" and so to speak "smell the coffee" and thus, be more open for something unique, revolutionary and yes, outrageous!

Afterall, it will be for their own good, as they definitely need the... PERFECT STORM.