Some months ago, the E&E ran a singing story.
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Having overcome the feedback, about why singing in Exeter is bad for you, we will now launchinto some of the things to do on a Monday before singing for fun with ForeverYoung.
First thing in the morning - check your neck. Can you move your head easilyfrom side to side? If you have a partner are they new 'cause doing this mightfrighten them off? If they are familiar with this activity then they'reprobably still asleep and you may need to consider waking them up if yourthinking about ditching them.
Practice your singing posture - You need to be supported by your legs whileyou sing. (Those of you who like to sit and sing should consider joininganother singing group).Your feet help you feel balanced and support theposition of your legs. Find the right position to stand in. Some like to standwith feet apart, side by side. Other's like to stand with feet apart, but onefoot in front of the other. Still others like to stand with their feettogether, but the heel of one foot touching the arch of the other. Some like totap one foot against the leg of the person next to them as long as it is intime with the music. While others are just happy to be alive.
Make sure your rib cage is lifted slightly to give your lungs plenty of roomto expand. It's best to do this at the last minute as first thing in themorning could ruin that cough you like to have to clear the goosedownaccumulated in your airways from a night of sleeping under the duvet.
Check your chin. Is it raised or lowered? It should be in a center, neutralposition - not lifted or lowered. If you have problems identifying where yourchin ends and your neck begins then joining a gym may be a better option.
Tune your ears, (those of us with tinnitus should have stayed away from thespeakers at concerts and discos), before you begin to sing, hum through thesong in your mind and hear the harmony that accompanies the melody. The betteryour sense of key and harmony, the more on pitch you will sing. If you don'tknow what this means Forever Young is for you.
Stretch your face and jaw muscles. This might sound funny and look evenfunnier although some people I've sung with have obviously overdone thisactivity. Tension in the face and jaw has a real impact on singing because itprevents you from using the muscles correctly. The muscles in the jaw, cheeks,and lips should be free to enable everything to move up and down but alwayslook out for early signs of the 'Jagger', 'Tyler' and 'Iggy Pop' look.
Gargle with salt water. This helps stop your throat from tingling. If yournear the sea … consider a dip, I particularly like cheesy nachos with pea andmint hummus.
My uncle George used to gargle with TCP but he wasn't a singer.
Before you sing, take a deep breath and relax. It'll be soon be over andthat helps you and your voice from cracking. Sing for Fun with Forever Young ischeaper than therapy, more fun and will help with the cracking.
"Cheaper than therapy and more fun" — is a comment from onesatisfied community singer following a Forever Young Sing for Fun session.There are many opportunities to sing in Exeterwith different groups. It may be worth finding out about the Monday sessions,from 7-9pm at St Sidwell's School, where it is said that community singing forfun doesn't get much better than this. Can a community singing group survive ifit does not depend on a leader, is not a choir and does not rehearse, nor givepublic performances or have auditions or have any expectations that you canread music and lets you choose the songs? If, it's proof you require and need more evidence then come along andlisten to - nay, join in – with the other like-minded adults who have regularlygathered, since 2007, on a Monday in a darkened room with the words projectedlarge on the wall and sing to some of the best backing tracks.
If any of the above issues cause you concern then maybe singing for fun isnot for you.