As some of you know, I have been taking singing lessons for a while now. Almost a year. And it has been one of the most difficult things I have ever done. When I started, I expected to be belting out karaoke by June. Not so much.
Mostly, I have to train my ear. Growing up, I never sang as a child. No one in my family did. And the neighborhood was probably better off for it. So I started lessons knowing 2 notes and both of them were flat.
Every time I think I'm finally making great progress, I stumble and get all frustrated again. One time, I told my teacher I tried to sing a song with my sister-in-law. My niece who was listening said I was singing harmony. I sang the song for him and he said, "No, you were just singing the wrong notes." I know, learning is never linear. I'm using muscles I never knew that I owned and they don't like being discovered.
It's not to say that I have not made progress, I have. I used to need my teacher to play the notes of the song very loudly on the piano for me to follow along. Now, I can follow an accompaniment (with the vocal notes of course) on my MP3 player. And yes, I wander around the house belting out tunes pretending I'm in a smokey jazz club (oh, and I have fantastic hair by the way).
But I'm still having trouble hitting the notes without help. Especially "A." For some reason this note gives me the most trouble and when I don't hit it right, all the following notes just suck (there is no better term for it). Turns out, that is the note where I change from my lower/chest voice to my head voice. Whatever, I just hate that note. What have I ever done to it that it gives me such trouble?
Oh, and, because I never really sang before, I have a really weak, airy voice so I have to learn "how to sing." This means singing with my throat open and my tongue on the bottom of the mouth and not blocking my throat and all this technical stuff designed to give my voice more power. I made the mistake of asking my teacher about the people who naturally have a good voice. He told me that those people already do all that technical stuff instinctively. Man, I hate them. They probably have no problem with the A note.
Despite how excruciatingly frustrating it is, I stick with it. I really want to learn and I know I'm making progress, even if it is at a snail's pace. But I know, someday, somehow, right here on this blog, I'll post about going out in public and doing karaoke or even an open mic night. I may even post a recording of myself singing. You never know so stay tuned. Oh, and I'll have fantastic hair!