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singing in key of G

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Grubby 29 Nov 99 - 10:04 PM
kendall 29 Nov 99 - 10:14 PM
Mbo 29 Nov 99 - 10:19 PM
DonMeixner 29 Nov 99 - 10:26 PM
Roger in Baltimore 29 Nov 99 - 10:28 PM
sophocleese 29 Nov 99 - 10:56 PM
corrie@itasca.net 30 Nov 99 - 02:35 AM
bseed(charleskratz) 30 Nov 99 - 03:06 AM
DonMeixner 30 Nov 99 - 07:14 AM
Easy Rider 30 Nov 99 - 09:55 AM
Bert 30 Nov 99 - 10:25 AM
M. Ted (inactive) 30 Nov 99 - 12:02 PM
marcelloblues 01 Dec 99 - 06:27 PM
shayes 02 Dec 99 - 03:14 PM
marcelloblues 02 Dec 99 - 05:54 PM
paddymac 03 Dec 99 - 01:36 AM
bseed(charleskratz) 03 Dec 99 - 03:19 AM
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Subject: singing in key of G
From: Grubby
Date: 29 Nov 99 - 10:04 PM

I enjoy songs in G but a bit low for me when trying to sing them. Normally I capo up but would like to train my voice to get down lower so I can stay down the right end of the guitar. Any advice on how to go about it or alternatively suggestions where I could look on the net.

Regards

Grubby


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Subject: RE: singing in key of G
From: kendall
Date: 29 Nov 99 - 10:14 PM

I once said to my friend Gordon Bok, "I would give my front seat in hell to be able to sing down there where you sing." he said "Ha, I'd give MY front seat in hell to sing up there with you!!" well, guess what? he can now sing higher, and, after quitting cigarettes, I sing lower. So, if you smoke..quit. Learn to relax your throat as much as you can, and, as you age, you will be able to sing lower.


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Subject: RE: singing in key of G
From: Mbo
Date: 29 Nov 99 - 10:19 PM

I sing a lot in G now, but I used to sing in D. I just make a lot of weird deep voices noises and sing really low, even if it sounds lousy. Maybe I'm warping my vocal chords, but for me it kind of buildt a tolerance to singing down there. Now I can hit the low note in "Norland Wind" without cracking.

--Mbo


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Subject: RE: singing in key of G
From: DonMeixner
Date: 29 Nov 99 - 10:26 PM

Hi Grubby,

Singing is an individual thing for a lot of people. I sing a lot better than I play anymore and I have asked the same question as you at times. The answer is practice of course. I don't mean singing the right words but practice breathing. The economy of moving air is where the lower keys come from. Think of your voice in terms of whistles. A lung full of air will sound the highest whistle for some considerable time because so little air moves down the pipe because the pipe is small. That same lung full of air is quickly spent on a low tone whistle because the pipe is larger and you loose air more quickly.

For me the key of "G" is transitional. Its either too high or too low for me and usually I don't sing it. I find I am best in keys "C" through "E" . What I did to improve my low range was to take was to take a comfortable song I do in "C" and learn it in "Bb". I practiced the song and pushed the lowest notes as steadily, not hard, as I could until I could sound them firmly. I did this very slowly to become aware of where I had to breathe to sustain the rest of the song. Also be aware that maybe your natural range may not include "G" at the extent you would like. "A" is a fine key and the songs in "A" have many of the same notes you might hear in "G". :-)

In another thread of the last week someone gave an excersize for vocal warm ups that seemed very sensible. You wouldn't take the Tour de Fanceland with out a warm up so don't just launch into Rhe Model of a Modern Major General with out a warmup either.

Best of luck.

Don


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Subject: RE: singing in key of G
From: Roger in Baltimore
Date: 29 Nov 99 - 10:28 PM

Grubby,

You know they make them there capos for a reason. We can't all sing in G, that's why there's all of those other keys.

I suspect you may be rather new to all of this. As you learn guitar, you will find that some songs work best in a specific key. Like you want to do Robert Johnson's "Love in Vain" with chords in a G formation if you want it to sound at all like Robert. But if that is too low, just capo up to where the pitch is comfortable.

As you work your way through transcriptions of the great blues and folk singers you will find that allmost all (I know of no exception) use a capo.

Now, given all that, you may be able to extend your vocal range with muscle relaxation, etc., but the advice of a good vocal teacher would be helpful to you.

Roger in Baltimore


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Subject: RE: singing in key of G
From: sophocleese
Date: 29 Nov 99 - 10:56 PM

Try slowly lowering your range as Don has suggested if it hurts at anytime STOP! Try not to do all of your songs in range that's difficult sing some that are easier to give your voice a rest. As you age your voice will likely get lower anyway and then what will you do when you can't hit the high notes you used to be able to? Generally I'd say its much pleasanter for people to listen to a voice that's expressive and projecting well in its natural range than to listen to one that sounds strained and thin out of its range. But as a singer its nice to be able to able to sing in a wide range around the best sounding place.


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Subject: RE: singing in key of G
From: corrie@itasca.net
Date: 30 Nov 99 - 02:35 AM

In my many years of doing campfire singalongs and RenFest busking, I've come to refer to G as "The People's Key of G." It's a good range for *most* folks, the three-chords-and-a-cloud-of-dust I-IV-V combo of G, C, D (with Em for the bridge) is easy to play for long periods of time without cramping. Beginning players can jam along pretty easily, too, since the chords are different enough looking from each other that you can tell the difference by firelight.


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Subject: RE: singing in key of G
From: bseed(charleskratz)
Date: 30 Nov 99 - 03:06 AM

I sing in a bunch of different keys--it depends on the song: different songs range different distances above and below the tonic--the key note. Some songs are too high for me in G, too low for me in C. just right in D or E. Others are perfect in G and too low or too high in other keys. More songs are comfortable for me in C and D than in G (I'm a baritone unless I have a cold. Then I'm basso profundo--and somehow I find tenor harmony parts easier than bass). Anyway, I don't understand the concept of "the people's key"--there are only the keys appropriate for the song...and the way my voice feels at the time I sing it.

--seed


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Subject: RE: singing in key of G
From: DonMeixner
Date: 30 Nov 99 - 07:14 AM

Which begs the old musical question: If the key of "G" is the people's, what is the key of the Booshwahzee?


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Subject: RE: singing in key of G
From: Easy Rider
Date: 30 Nov 99 - 09:55 AM

It was very common for Blues musicians to tune their guitars to their voices. I noticed that I could play along with the Mississippi John Hurt records, if I capoed up two frets. He had a beautiful tenor voice. I asked him about this, in 1964, and he confirmed that he did tune his guitar up a whole step.

Each key has its own voice, and changing the key of a song will change its tone, sometimes detrimentally. Capoeing up and playing with the same chord shapes changes the key without changing the voicing. I think this is preferable.


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Subject: RE: singing in key of G
From: Bert
Date: 30 Nov 99 - 10:25 AM

I go with seed on this one. It depends on the range of the song. My guitar teacher tells me that you should tune your guitar differently depending on which key you are using but I'm damned if my tin ear can tell the difference (Yet, that is, I am improving with his teaching).

Bert.


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Subject: RE: singing in key of G
From: M. Ted (inactive)
Date: 30 Nov 99 - 12:02 PM

Grubby--

Your voice probably works well in the key of G, but not with the kind of sound you are used to using when you sing--

What do you do about it? Logically, you have to find the voice that works for you in G--and don't assume that you have to go down to G, you may do better in the higher register G--

Sit at a piano, and find the top and bottom notes that you can sing comfortably--this is your range--Go to the G that is closest to the middle of it, and sing it, trying at the same time to relax as much as you can--this is your beginning--The object is to find a way to make those sounds that is comfortable, sounds good, and lets you move upwards about an octave and downwards about a fourth, without having to change the way you are making your sound---

Obviously, this is just a start--and it will take a bit of work and concentration--Guitar players who sing tend to spend hours practicing the guitar, but then just let the voice happen on its own--enough said--


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Subject: RE: singing in key of G
From: marcelloblues
Date: 01 Dec 99 - 06:27 PM

The problem is not to change the key of a song. It depends on the kind of voice you have. Sometimes giving your version in another key, you refresh the tune, but if it doesn't sounds good to you, don't sing it. The best tip is to go to a teacher.

For M.Ted I'm not from Naples, not even Renzo Arbore. For the lyrics of that song I will ask moreinfo. If I am not wrong, it was some kind of easy commercial but very well arranged song. It sounds so happy but doesn't mean anything. Cheers


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Subject: RE: singing in key of G
From: shayes
Date: 02 Dec 99 - 03:14 PM

I'm a banjo picker. Now, let me see if I understand the question -- there's another key besides G?


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Subject: RE: singing in key of G
From: marcelloblues
Date: 02 Dec 99 - 05:54 PM

This is not a joke. Everything in the universe, could be a variation of the one and only Great G Key. A good testimonial for that? Fred G Sanford Cheers


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Subject: RE: singing in key of G
From: paddymac
Date: 03 Dec 99 - 01:36 AM

Gee, Grubby, you threw me off for a minute. I just automatically thought of G as above D. That G is my favorite, but tougher as time goes by. I learned a technique from a long-time barber shop singer years ago the was usually good for 3 or 4 additional notes toward the bottom of a singer's range. Sounds strange, but works. Recognize first that the vocal chords are essentially specialized muscle tissue. Like any other muscle, they respond to regular exercise. In a singer's version of the "no pain, no gain" theory of body-building, the idea is simply to go beyond you comfortable, every-day range and give them a good work-out, regularly. Start with a few days a good old-fashioned shouting, like at an exciting football game (not at your significant other). It's best to do this alone, lest your friends and neighbors think you finally lost it. Keep it up until you reach "nearly hoarse". Be very careful not to push it too far, for you can lose you voice for a while. Work your way out of the "nearly hoarse" condition by maintaining that level of shouting a few days. Then revert to your normal voice and try singing. You should have a bit "more" at the bottom. You can repeat the process, pushing the envelope a bit further next time, until you reach whatever you limit is. Just listen to your body, carefully. Like most other forms of body-building, if you stop exercising you'll revert to where you started.


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Subject: RE: singing in key of G
From: bseed(charleskratz)
Date: 03 Dec 99 - 03:19 AM

Hey, Don: there is no key for the bushwazee: they don't need no stinkin' key--they got people to open the doors for them.

--seed


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