We all had (or still have) those friends.
You know, the ones we hang out with who usually run us down a path that we don’t want to go, or in that moment of clarity, we know we shouldn’t (but sometimes follow anyway).
As a singer there are several “friends” I learned that I just didn’t need to get involved with, and some took a little longer to warm up to (but I’m glad I did).
I’ve been blessed with a pretty decent vocal range and really great endurance and strength. But that comes with sacrifice sometimes, and a lot of….choosing the right “friends” who make you feel good and empower you, and by staying away from those who…well …aren’t that cool, even though they think they are, like:
Smokey, Hootie, Snorty, Poppy, and Boozy the Clown.
This group, I avoid entirely. (However, Boozy and I like to share margaritas when I’m on holiday and the odd wine cooler a few times a year.)
Every one of these guys give a false sense of security, and wreak havoc on the vocal cords. Personally, I just choose to not hang with them due to the damage they cause; both short and long term.
Not only are they bad for overall health, they damage (Hootie too, sorry) and zap all the moisture out of the chords, inviting the Dry Vocal Cords who are the worst kind of friends to have. They impair your range, your flexibility and will cause long term damage due to inflammation, which causes loss of range, broken blood vessels, nodules and death…of a great voice.
Now before you get your panties in a knot, I’m not holier than thou. Yep, even I have gone on stage with Boozy; not only do I not remember the show (another reason I rarely drink, but that’s another blog), but the next night my singing performance suffered tremendously due to dehydration.
Yes, we all hear the stories of incredible voices like Pink and Michael Bublé being smokers (they may have quit by now), but if they don’t quit, they’re going to pay for it. Remember Whitney Houston and her friend Snorty?
And really, no one wants to see an impaired person do a shitty performance on stage.
The Evil Twins: Bad Diet and Shitty Eating Habits.
These little buggers with their seductive comfort when you’re tired or starving cause you had no time to eat all day, are sometimes just unavoidable when you’re on the road or in the studio…unfortunately, they like to bring trouble with them, all contributing to many different things; The Sodas and The Sports Drinks dry out your cords with their caffeine, asparatame and bubbles. Large meals, fried or fatty foods contribute to low energy, low immunity and sometimes reflux, which inflame the cords.
Sometimes these “friends” are like those peripheral friends of friends who hang out because they have no other friends, and no one really likes them anyway, cause they’re assholes…you get my drift; they’re always there, ready to party…move along Twins.
No, not Kid Rock’s sidekick. I’m talking about the world’s addiction. Full name: Joseph Dark Roast Coffee. Joe and I are tight. I love him so much.
He makes me feel good, but I compensate for that pleasure by drinking lots, and lots of water. Fortunately, he knows when he’s worn out his welcome and doesn’t get too offended on recording days, and live performance days when I allow myself only 1 cup, chased by plenty of water to replenish the cords.
I, on the other hand, have a really, really big separation anxiety.
This bitch is no joke. She likes to ride on my back like a monkey and whisper bad things in my ear.
She has her place, don’t get me wrong, but I prefer her little sister Pre-Show Jitters, who usually takes off once the guitars start.
Anne is tougher…more insidious, and we kind of have a love/hate relationship.
But when it comes to singing, she’s mean and unrelenting and she can cause all kinds of physical vocal issues, such as tight neck and shoulder muscles, clenched jaw and tight tongue, not to mention the mental tricks she loooves to play.
She and I are currently working things out, however.
I’ll keep you posted.
So fortunately, for the most part, I can choose who I hang with, and there are a lot of cool, more positive and uplifting “friends” I have that I’ll introduce you to in my next blog.
The moral: If you want to put on an awesome performance, these guys may be fun, but you should really ditch them if you want to be the best singer you can be.
For more RB http://robinbrock.com