Category Archives: News

girl playing guitar and sing in a dimly lit room - side hustles for singers

Great Side Jobs For Singers

As you pursue your career in the music industry, you may find that it’s not quite paying the bills yet. While this does not mean you don’t have a promising future as a singer, you may need to get a side job to help cover your expenses. So, what are some side jobs that are perfect for singers looking to make some extra money? Continue reading to learn more about some side hustles for singers.

Side Hustles For Singers

Theme Park

Working at a theme park as a performer or even as a backup singer can give you great experience performing in front of crowds. This is even more beneficial if you are still new to the music industry and are looking to improve on performing live. If you do well and are noticed by one of your supervisors, you could be put on for your own show in the theme park. This can further increase your publicity while giving you a more steady source of income. The average salary of an amusement entertainer is $35,130.

Voice Over

Becoming a voice-over artist, or voice actor is another one of the side hustles for singers. What these people do is record themselves reading a certain phrase, and are then paid for companies using your voice. This can be done in a studio environment, but it can also be done from the comfort of your home with the proper equipment. You can do voice-overs for commercials, tv shows, or even just by reading a book out loud into a microphone. Depending on the job, voice actors could make $250 for a small one-minute commercial. If you have the time to read on, making an audiobook could get you around $3000 depending on the size of the book. Check out this article for some Tips for Recording in Your Home.

Cruise Ships

Becoming a performer for a cruise ship will most likely require you to do the same thing as someone working as an amusement park entertainer. Most times, you will sign a contract to work for one show, or even for six months of performing. Depending on the contract, and cruise liner you are working with, the pay can vary. However many cruise ship performers make between $1,600 to $4,000 each month. In addition to that, you’d be getting paid to travel the world!

Singing Teacher

If you are a good singer and want to share your talent with someone else, you could consider becoming a singing teacher on the side. That way you can still practice your singing whilst also making some extra money. Before you take on any clients, you are going to want to take a course to learn how to teach singing so you can become qualified. This is not required, however, it will give you insights as to what to teach about as there may be some things that are second nature to you, but are not to your clients. It is important to recognize these so you can better help them. Many times, voice lessons cost around $10 – $35 each hour, but professional-level classes will cost around $100 – $200 each hour.

Music Store Salesperson

If you choose to become a music store salesperson you will most likely use the knowledge you have to sell music albums to people or music equipment to someone looking to start their career in the music industry. One of the best perks of a job like this is that it is part-time and you could work with the store owners to get time off to go on tour, or if you need a night off to perform. Due to it being a part-time job you may only be making the minimum wage in your state, but there is still room for you to make more.

Event Singer

Event singers will perform at parties, weddings, and other events. Regardless of whether you are in a band or by yourself, or whatever kind of music you specialize in, you can find an event near you to perform at. You can charge whatever you like to these events and what’s best about them is that you can work at the music store mentioned above and take time off to perform at these events, thus increasing the money you are making.

Conclusion

There are many different side hustles for singers that still involve the music industry in some small way. There are also side hustles that do not necessarily involve the music industry such as becoming an Uber or Lyft driver. Regardless of what you do, you can still pursue your career as a musician.

Sources

https://www.salary.com/research/salary/benchmark/amusement-entertainer-salary
https://www.voices.com/help/beginners-guide-to-voice-acting/making-money-doing-voice-overs
https://www.jobmonkey.com/cruise/entertainers/
https://activities.costhelper.com/singing-voice-lesson.html

featured image for how location affects your voice

How Location Affects Your Voice

For performers, keeping your voice clear and moist is of the utmost importance. Whether you are a singer, a speaker, or an announcer, you need your voice to be as healthy as possible. Nothing is worse than a dry and scratchy throat. There are a lot of things that can affect your voice and one of them is location. Learning more about how location affects your voice can help you know how to best take care of it.

Humidity

Humidity is the amount of water vapor in the air. Depending on where you are in the world, the levels of humidity in the air vary. Places like Hawaii and Florida have very high humidity. The air feels wet and sticky. Even after drying off from a shower or swimming in a pool it may feel like you still have not dried off all the way. While high levels of humidity can be miserable, so can a level of humidity that is too low. Some of the areas with the lowest amounts of humidity include Nevada, Arizona, and Utah. Levels of humidity that are too low can cause health issues like dry skin, infection, dry eyes, and dry throats. For performers, dry throats are an issue. The throat can dry out during a performance, leaving the voice susceptible to going dry and cracking.

How to Help Your Voice

Dry air is a menace, but there are ways to fight it if you need to. One of the most important things you can do is to drink a lot of water. Even if you are not thirsty, drink water. By the time you feel thirsty, you are most likely already dehydrated. If you are indoors, you can fight the dry air using a humidifier or a vaporizer. Humidifiers are a safe way to increase the humidity in a room by turning water into vapor. They are especially great to turn on before going to bed. This is a great way to avoid waking up with a dry and scratchy throat before a performance. However, it is important to make sure the filters are cleaned often.

Vaporizers, on the other hand, use heat to turn water into steam. They are cleaner but can be dangerous if touched since they burn skin. Using a spray, like Clear Voice Vocal Spray, is also a great way to keep your voice moist. This is a great option if you do not have a humidifier with you and water just isn’t cutting it. Vocal sprays are easy to carry around and can help with just a quick spray. Do not let the climate get to your vocal health. Learn how location affects your voice specifically and figure out the best way to care for it.

Sources

https://www.city-data.com/top2/c486.html

http://www.sensorpush.com/articles/the-effects-of-low-humidity-on-your-health-and-comfort

tissue box and crumple tissues on a desk with a mug and glasses - how sickness affects the voice

How An Illness Can Effect Your Voice

It is inevitable that you will get sick at some point in your life. However, if your line of work requires the frequent use of your voice, it can have negative effects beyond just feeling crummy. So, how do different illnesses affect the voice, and what can you do when you are sick with a hoarse voice? Continue reading to learn about how sickness affects the voice.

How Sickness Affects The Voice

Cold

The first kind of illness that you may come across is the common cold. Many people have had a cold and chances are you’ll experience this too, multiple times. According to the Mayo Clinic, some symptoms of the common cold include a runny or stuffy nose, sneezing, fever, body aches, and mild headache. In addition to that, your voice may be affected too. It can be affected by a cough and even a sore throat. This is only a minor effect on the voice, however it is still important to be cautious as it can lead to more serious problems. Another thing to remember about a cold is to not push through it and use your voice because you can cause further damage that can stay even after the sickness goes away.

Flu

The flu is similar to the cold, however, when you catch a cold, the symptoms will come on gradually while the flu symptoms will sometimes seem to appear out of thin air. Some flu symptoms are fever, fatigue, runny or stuffy nose, and body aches. In addition to this, the flu can also cause a sore throat and a cough. One thing that the flu can do is cause you to want to clear your throat more often than is actually needed. This can lead to the vocal cords becoming irritated and this, in turn, can lead to injury. The flu can also leave the person feeling weaker which can inhibit them to work with their voice even after symptoms improve. It is important to take care of yourself if you have the flu, as it can lead to something more serious such as laryngitis.

Laryngitis

The Mayo Clinic defines laryngitis as “an inflammation of your voice box (larynx) from overuse, irritation or infection.” In most cases, the symptoms of laryngitis will last for a couple of weeks and are caused by something like the cold or flu being left untreated. However, there is also chronic laryngitis which lasts for longer than 3 weeks. This is usually caused by the body being exposed to irritants over time and can cause vocal strain and injury to the vocal cords. These can be caused by, inhaling fumes, allergens or smoke, acid reflux, excessive alcohol use, vocal overuse, and smoking.

Symptoms of laryngitis include sore throat, low-grade fever, hoarse voice, difficulty speaking, cough, constant clearing of the throat, and in some cases swollen glands. If you have trouble breathing, cough up blood, or have a fever that won’t go away, the Mayo Clinic recommends that you seek medical attention immediately.

What To Do When You Get Sick

When you get sick and your voice or larynx has been affected, it is important that you get the rest that your body needs. If you overuse and misuse your voice, it will be hard for your body to recover fully and you will be sick or in pain for longer amounts of time. This is the best way to treat any sickness that is inhibiting your voice and ability to use it. However, there are some home remedies that are widely used to help ease the throat and speed up the recovery process.

Even though it may be painful at first, drinking plenty of fluids can help you feel better in the long run. It is tempting to avoid swallowing, but this will only make you worse by adding dehydration to the mix. Make sure you are not drinking alcohol or caffeine. Another thing to do is use a humidifier in the room you are resting in or visit a steam room. This is one way you can get some moisture to your throat without needing to swallow.

If the condition lasts for longer than a few weeks, you may want to consider visiting with your doctor to get a proper diagnosis and they will likely recommend a treatment plan for you.

Can You Avoid These Illnesses?

There are many different ways to avoid the illnesses that were mentioned above. To start with the cold, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend that you;

  • Wash hands often with soap and water
  • Avoid touching eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands
  • Stay away from people who are sick

To avoid the flu virus, the same things can be used to keep you healthy, however, you can better protect yourself making sure you and your family get a yearly flu shot.

If you want to prevent laryngitis, you’ll want to follow the advice given above for the less serious illnesses. In addition, excessive drinking and smoking can lead to chronic laryngitis so it is best to avoid both of those, as well as keeping yourself healthy.

Conclusion

When it comes to how sickness affects the voice there is a lot to know. One main thing is that many illnesses cause the same damage to the voice, however, if you just leave them and continue to use your voice, you are at risk for later health complications down the road. Be sure to check out one of our previous articles to learn about some Natural Remedies For A Sore Throat.

Sources

https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/common-cold/symptoms-causes/syc-20351605
https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/laryngitis/symptoms-causes/syc-20374262
https://www.cdc.gov/features/rhinoviruses/index.html
https://healthcare.utah.edu/healthfeed/postings/2013/04/041713vocalhealth.php

featured image for singing with your diaphragm

Singing with Your Diaphragm

The diaphragm is such a vital part of our bodies. It is a parachute-like muscle that is attached to the bottom of our ribcage. When we inhale, the muscle expands or contracts and helps suck air into our lungs. Our diaphragm also works together with our abdominals. The diaphragm expands while inhaling, and the abdominals contract when we exhale. When we sing, we are exhaling, not inhaling. For years, vocal coaches have been instructing their students to sing with their diaphragm. The goal was to prevent singers from tightening their vocal cords, causing a breathy sound. However, many students have no clue what that means. “Singing with your diaphragm” has been a mystery for many singers.

Can you sing with your diaphragm?

Controlling your diaphragm while singing is not possible. Your diaphragm is an involuntary muscle and works on its own when you breathe. Singing with your diaphragm is one of the myths of the music industry. So, what do these vocal coaches mean? While we cannot control our diaphragm, there are still methods to sing properly. We need to instead focus on how to strengthen our voices using what we can.

What should you do then?

Imagining ourselves using our diaphragm while we sing can still be beneficial. It helps us focus on singing without our throats, which can strengthen our voices. To sing properly, we should not focus so much on our breathing. Instead, we should focus more on our posture and relaxing our bodies. Sit up straight with your shoulders back and relaxed. Relax your voice as well and let your throat loosen. Doing so will help strengthen your voice and prevent breathy singing. When you do take a breath, breath in deep and allow the lower part of your rib cage to expand.

Some singers even place a hand or book under their ribs to practice proper breathing. If your hand or the book moves up and down then you are breathing properly. Vocal coaches have taught that your singing voice should come out as naturally as your speaking voice. For more tips, read our article, “Singing Tips from Professionals”.

Singing with your diaphragm may not be possible since our diaphragms are always working. However, there is still a method behind the phrase that many professional singers have learned. For more vocal myths, check out our article here. Don’t forget to also check out our Clear Voice Vocal Spray that is used by professional singers everywhere.

Sources

https://www.healthline.com/human-body-maps/diaphragm#anatomy-and-function

https://mollysmusic.org/blog/should-you-really-sing-from-your-diaphragm/

https://www.sagemusic.co/breathing-muscles-and-singing/

cell phone with instagram pulled up - Instagram for singers

Using Instagram As A Musician

Instagram has become more and more popular each year. There are around 1 billion active users each month, with around half of these people being active each day. If done correctly, you can grow a fanbase through Instagram. Continue reading to learn more about Instagram for singers.

Instagram For Singers

Setting Up Account

When you set up an Instagram account for singers, there are some things to do. If you are making a new account, set it up normally. If you have done this, or already have an account, go into the settings and switch to a business account. To do this you will need to link it to a Facebook page. The main reason that you want to do this is it functions like a normal account, but it also has extra features like analytics, insights, and the ability to run ads.

Instagram Bio

When you write the Instagram bio for your account, make sure that it represents who you are. Make sure it cooperates with your image or brand. The best bios explain who they are and what they do with as few words as possible. One thing to have in your bio is to links to your YouTube, Facebook, and maybe a merch store. However, you are only allowed one link in the bio. This is where services like Linktree step in. They allow you to compile all of your links into one so when someone clicks, they are taken to a page with all of your links. The best part about Linktree is that it is free. However, they do have a Pro version for $6 each month with more features.

Profile Picture

As with the bio, your profile picture should represent who you are. If you have never taken professional photos, you may want to consider getting some as they can also be used on other social media platforms. If you do not have the resources for this, many smartphones are now capable of taking high-quality photos. Either way, make sure that the image is formatted properly to look good when it is shrunken down to the profile picture.

Posting As A Musician

When To Post?

Before you consistently post to your social media page to grow your audience, it is important to figure out when you should be posting. When you first start out, it will be hard to determine when you should post, so it is important to experiment with your posting times to see which ones perform better than others. What you want to look for in posts is how much engagement they are getting.

phone with analytics pulled up - Instagram for singers

However, when you have gained more followers, used relevant hashtags, and interacted with people you will be able to get valuable data from the built-in analytics. You want to use your analytics from the business profile to find the best times to be posting. If you find that your audience is mainly millennials who are active early in the morning, around lunch, and after 5 pm then post in those times. Not only that, but these analytics can also help you determine what type of content is the best for your audience. The key is to find the perfect time to post for the best engagement rate possible so more people can see your posts.

Socialmediaweek.org states “Analytics tools are really helpful in monitoring the levels of engagement on social media, websites, and more.” One analytics tool, Hootsuite is a great choice because it offers many other things besides analytics. However, you can still use any other tool you find, and can still stick to the one built into Instagram.

What To Post?

Now that you have found your audience and have determined the best times to post you need to figure out what to post during these times. This could be the type and look of the content you are putting out. This includes a theme, color scheme or look, and being consistent with it.

Photos

When you post an image to Instagram, you want to share things that provide your followers with value, while letting your page grow. Some good image ideas are photos from a tour or performance, new merch designs, or even some new lyrics you may be working on. You can also share photos of the tools you use to perform. If these posts do well, companies may come to you or your band for sponsorships or endorsements.

Videos

Instagram allows you to post videos that can be up to a minute long. Take advantage of this by posting clips from your latest show or a small video showing your fans how to play a part of one of your songs. Another option is to post a video explaining the meaning behind the lyrics of your latest song. One thing that can drive the engagement rate of your videos up is adding captions. This is because many people are scrolling through Instagram without their sound on. This can cause them to skip your video if there are no captions for them to follow along with.

Live Videos

Live videos are almost the same as the videos themselves, but they differ because it allows for you to interact my directly and in the moment with your followers. This can allow you to better engage with your most active fans who tune into them. Some ideas for a live stream are a backstage tour, a look at the show for those who couldn’t attend, or a stream of you practicing. You can also do a Q&A to answer their questions right there.

Stories

Stories allow you to post an image or a video that stays on your page for 24 hours. These don’t necessarily have to be as visually appealing or brand consistent because they are not permanent. When they run out, you can add them to a highlight reel on your page for people to look at after the 24 hours. Stories can be any image you want to post, a short update video, or even a clip from a live stream. If you are verified on a personal account or have 10,000 followers on your business account, you can add a swipe up to your story. This adds a link to the bottom which, when swiped, will take the user to a different website. You can use this to include your merch, tickets to a performance, or to your YouTube, Spotify or SoundCloud. Try to find a way to incorporate this into every story to maximize its benefits. However, if you are a small musician or band without 10k followers, you can mimic this by putting a link in bio sticker when promoting your merch. That way, someone can go from your story to your profile, and then to your Linktree link to buy merch or check out your other social media pages.

Instagram TV

The last use of Instagram for singers is Instagram TV. Instagram TV is very similar to the normal videos that you post. It is also similar to going live. Instagram TV (IGTV) is used to share videos that are longer than one minute. It gets its tv portion of its name due to these videos being up to 10 minutes long, with ceratin accounts being able to go up to one hour in length. If you use this like you would any other video, you can grow your fanbase and get them hooked on a series you create.

Conclusion

When it comes to Instagram for singers, there is a lot to know. It is important to remember that is you use Instagram correctly, you can grow your fanbase and your followers. Two things to take away is to optimize your page and post when your audience is active. Be sure to check out one of our previous articles to learn about some Tips to Sing Louder Without Damaging Your Voice.

Sources

https://newsfeed.org/facebook-and-instagram-introduce-6-new-music-related-tools
http://www.telltaleweekly.org/gramblast-buy-likes-on-instagram-music-promotion-through-instagram
https://wolfglobal.org/blog/instagram-bio-writing-to-attract-followers-tips/
https://newartistmodel.com/instagram-for-musicians-5-tips/
https://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2017/10/10-tips-increasing-social-media-engagement/

winter vocal tips - woman sitting on couch with mug

Looking After Your Voice During The Winter

With the temperature dropping and days getting shorter, your voice will need extra care and precaution if you want to keep it at peak condition. So, how do you care for your voice during the cold winter months? Continue reading to learn more about winter vocal care and what you can do to keep your voice in shape.

General Vocal Care

If you want to keep your voice healthy and in shape year-round, there are a few things that you are going to need to do. These being to eat well, drink water, exercise, and get enough sleep. If you do all of these you can, for the most part, keep your voice in shape.

Eat Well

What you eat for your meals plays an important role in your voice. For example, if you have a sore throat, honey can help by soothing it. However, not all foods are good for your voice. Check out one of our previous articles to learn more about some Foods For Your Voice: 4 Good and 4 Bad.

Drink Water

Water is important for your voice year-round as it moisturizes your vocal cords. However, during the winter, it is especially important as the cold air is usually dry and you will most likely need more water. Another thing to remember is that if you drink coffee, tea, alcohol, or any drink with caffeine, you will need to drink even more water to balance it out.

Exercise

Exercising can benefit almost all aspects of your overall health. It can also be beneficial for your voice. While it may not be directly affecting it, one way is that exercising can reduce your stress levels. This can be very beneficial if you have an audition or big performance coming up.

Sleep

As with exercise, getting enough sleep at night is important for almost all aspects of your health. Sleep allows you to rest your voice after a long day. It can also help prevent your voice from being fatigued. The experts at UT Southwestern Medical Center state that “Lack of sleep and fatigue reduces our breath support and negatively affects the mechanics of voice production, which causes our muscles to work harder than they need to when vocalizing.” Check out this article to learn more about Why Sleep Is Important For Your Vocal Health.”

Winter Vocal Care

If you want to best take care of your voice during the winter, you are going to want to continue to practice the general vocal care tips mentioned above, along with some winter vocal care tips too. If you do all of them, you can better ensure that your voice stays healthy.

Breathing

During the winter, if you do not already, you should get into the habit of breathing nasally. This means breathing in through your nose. This can not only filter out germs and bacteria, but it can also help protect your vocal cords from the cold, dry, winter air. If you are inside, you should be fine to breathe through your mouth as the air is not as cold and dry as it is outside.

Steam

Steam can rehydrate your vocal cords faster than drinking water would. When you drink a glass of water, it needs to travel through your system before it reaches your larynx. This can take around eight hours, however, if you inhale steam from a steamer, humidifier, or steam room you can rehydrate your vocal cords immediately. The experts at Mount Sinai Health System recommend using a humidifier at home to help prevent winter laryngitis.

Warm Drinks

Warm drinks like herbal teas can be very beneficial if you have a sore throat. They can help soothe it while also cutting down any mucus that has built up. some things to add to your favorite tea are licorice, ginger, and honey. It is also important to remember that you should avoid any drinks with caffeine as it can dry out your throat even further and if you do, drink more water.

Conclusion

There are many ways to keep your voice in shape this winter season. If you continue to practice the general vocal care tips, and combine them with the special winter vocal care tips, you can further protect your voice from the cold weather.

Sources:

https://utswmed.org/medblog/vocal-cords-care-qa/
https://www.nawbo.org/resources/nawbo-one/2016/january/winter-voice-care

featured image for pursuing a career as a play-by-play announcer

Pursuing a Career as a Play-By-Play Announcer

Many sports fans dream of becoming a play-by-play announcer. It is a chance to be front and center at games and analyze every play. They are the voice of the game. However, there is a lot more to play-by-play commentating than others realize. It is a skill and not something that can be picked up overnight. Here are what others need to know about pursuing a career as a play-by-play announcer.

Education

Every play-by-play announcer has earned at least a Bachelors’s degree. They have majored in subjects like Communications, Broadcasting, Speech, etc. It is important to learn how to speak effectively and clearly and education can help. Some colleges claim they specialize in sports broadcasting. However, the top play-by-play announcers did not attend any of these universities. It is still possible to become a sport’s announcer if you do not get into a specific university.

Gain Experience

Just like with any career, you are going to have to start from the bottom. It is important to gain as much experience as possible to help you climb the ladder. Get your foot in the door with any job announcing sports. This could be a sports team for any college game or even a high school football game. Many people have even had to volunteer until finding a paid job as a play-by-play announcer. Practice often and record yourself. When listening to yourself, make notes on how you can improve.

Learn from Professionals

view from a play-by-play announcer's seat at a baseball game

As a play-by-play announcer, there is always more to learn and always room for improvement. That is why learning from anyone with more experience is so important. Nowadays, internships are available and usually required to help beginners gain experience and learn from others. An internship is also a great place to network and meet others in the field. The more you put yourself out there, the more likely you are to land a paying job.

If this sounds like the career for you then get started right away. While pursuing a career as a play-by-play announcer is possible, it will be tough. There is a lot of competition out there. However, practice and experience will help you land the job of your dreams. To help keep your voice clear while announcing for a game, try our vocal spray. Clear Voice Spray is formulated to soothe your voice and prevent irritation while speaking or singing for long periods.

Sources

tips to sing louder

Tips To Sing Louder Without Damaging Your Voice

Many people struggle with the volume of their voices when they sing. To fix this, they turn to quick fixes that allow them to sing louder. However, these can be harmful to your voice and in some cases cause damage to it. So, how do you sing louder without hurting your voice? Continue reading to learn about our tips to sing louder.

How To Sing Louder

Vocal Exercises

The first of our tips to help you sing louder is to warm up your voice and practice with vocal exercises. These can allow you to make sure that you are ready to sing loud without straining your voice. The reason that you want to do these is that your vocal folds are muscles and need a warm-up before a work out just like other muscles.

Runners need to practice and warm-up their muscles before running a marathon. If they don’t, they won’t make it far, and if they do, they will be sore and tired. Just like them, you need to warm-up your muscles before you use them. That way, you can sing louder without the risk of straining your voice.

Stay Hydrated

Even though this tip might seem like an obvious one, many people tend to overlook the importance of it. This is due to water being able to protect your vocal cords from damage. This is why it is important to not only stay hydrated before you perform but take small sips of water throughout it too.

When drinking water, another important thing to note is to drink room temperature water. As tempting as a glass of ice-cold water can be after a performance, it can cause harm to your voice. It does this by making your vocal cords cold. As previously mentioned, your vocal cords are muscles. When muscles get cold, they contract and tense up.

Posture

Having good posture when you sing in important to sing in general. If you have good posture, you can also sing louder and project your voice further. This is because when you sing, you need to use your whole body so you can sing louder without putting any strain on your voice.

To make sure that you have the perfect posture when you perform, practice like you are performing. Good singing posture includes standing tall, feet shoulder-width apart, chest high and in an open position and loose position. Another thing to do is to make sure that you are opening your mouth all the way. That way you do not sound muffled when you sing. Most importantly, make sure that your singing posture is comfortable for you. That way you can focus on what you are singing instead of the position that you are standing in.

Stop When Your Voice Hurts

When you practice singing louder so you can project your voice further, you may feel some strain on your voice. If you start to feel like your voice is getting tired, stop singing and take a break. Use this time to rest and get something to eat or drink. Try to only drink water, and eat foods like honey to soothe your throat. Be sure to check out this article to learn about some Foods For Your Voice: 4 Good and 4 Bad.

Breath Support

Breath support is controlling the breath during singing. When you breathe normally, a breath cycle takes around 4 seconds for you to breath in and exhale. However, when you are singing, you will need a much longer time for the breath cycle to complete. Even though it takes longer, you want to make sure that you are not breathing out too much. Voicesinc.org, an online music instructor states “We want to use your breath to the best advantage, letting out just enough air to create a good sound through your vocal folds.” If you use too much of your breath you will run out of the air which can lower the volume of your voice. That is why breath control is important in order to sing louder.

Progress Will Take Time

One thing to know about these tips to help you sing louder is to remember that it is going to take time for your vocal cords to get used to it. This is why you don’t want to push yourself beyond your limits and stop when your voice hurts. Another reason to expect it to take time is if you progress gradually, the chances of you damaging your voice will be lowered.

Runners do not expect to show up on race day and run a marathon without proper practice and training. You should be the same as the way you approach singing. Take the time to prepare yourself and train so you do not damage your voice.

Amplification Tools

Using things such as a microphone with a sound system can improve how loud your voice projects in an instant without any of the other tips mentioned in this article. However, a sound system might not be available each time you sing, so it is important to understand how to sing louder without one.

Conclusion

There are many tips to sing louder. You can use these, but it is important to note that any and all of these tips will take some time for you to get the best results. Another key takeaway is to make sure that you stop to take breaks whenever you feel like your voice is becoming strained.

To help your voice get through your performance, try a vocal spray like the ones here at Clear Voice.

Sources:

https://www.voicesinc.org/how-to-sing-louder/
https://mollysmusic.org/blog/how-to-sing-loud-without-hurting-your-voice/
https://performancehigh.net/how-to-sing-louder-right-now/

featured image for one-hit wonders of the music industry

One-Hit Wonders of the Music Industry

There is a lot of music out there, good and bad. These singers were all lucky enough to have a great hit. A minute in the spotlight. Unfortunately, their music careers did not go very far. Here are some of the one-hit wonders of the music industry.

Vanilla Ice

This artist is known for his song, “Ice, Ice, Baby” and maybe his hair, but that is about it. Not too many people have heard any of his other music, but almost everyone has heard “Ice, Ice, Baby”. Bonus points if you know all the words!

Los Del Rio

Their song has a fun dance almost everyone knows! They are known for their song, “Macarena”.

Carl Douglas

This Jamaican artist sang one of the most exciting and catchy disco songs out there. His song, “Kung Foo Fighting” is still sung by many today. The song has appeared in many movies, including the popular kids’ movie, Kung Foo Panda.

The Surfaris

Another popular song used in movies is the song “Wipe Out” by the Surfaris. Other than the Beach Boys, this song is used for beach scenes in many movies.

Bobby McFerrin

One of the happiest songs out there, Bobby wrote the song, “Don’t Worry, Be Happy”. This upbeat acapella song was instantly a hit. This song is perfect for when you are feeling down a need a little pick me up.

Tal Bachman

His popular song “She’s So High” become a number one hit when it was released. It has appeared in movies and almost everyone knows the song. However, it was the only song that the artist had any success with. He did release another single a few years later, but it never gained any attention.

Cupid

This singer’s top hit also has a fun dance. The “Cupid Shuffle” is played at almost any event with a dance floor. Best of all, the dance is one of the easiest line dances to learn. Unfortunately for Cupid, his music career did not go anywhere after the success of “Cupid Shuffle”. He even auditioned for The Voice, but never actually made it onto the show.

The music industry is very competitive. However, these one-hit wonders of the music industry managed to get their music out there. Creating a top hit is still quite the accomplishment, even if their careers did not go far. Releasing a top hit is something any music artist dreams of. The luck of a singer can change almost overnight. Check out these singers who were discovered on YouTube and are still famous today. Don’t forget to also check out our Clear Voice Spray to help keep your voice healthy and clear for performances.

Sources

https://www.insider.com/best-one-hit-wonders-2018-5#to-be-with-you-by-mr-big-1991-29

how to learn lines

Tips For Learning Lines

Once you landed the audition you have been practicing hours for, you will be handed a script and are expected to learn your lines. However, many people tend to struggle with this and can get discouraged. So, what can you do to memorize the script? Continue reading to find out how to learn lines.

How To Learn Lines

Study

While this may seem obvious, some people tend to overlook the importance of this. Just simply reading the scripts in your head a few times can help it stick. To further this, you can read them out loud so you are able to hear for yourself what they sound like.

Write It Out

Writing your lines out can help you memorize long scenes or speeches. The New York Film Academy states “Writing your lines out by hand forces your mind to connect to the action of writing the lines down and seeing the lines.” Be sure to only write out your lines so you do not get confused or distracted by anyone else lines. Another thing to note is that you should not type them out as it does not work the same as writing them out with pen and paper.

Practice With Someone

After you have gone over your lines with yourself and written them out, you can practice with a friend. If available, make sure that this friend is also an actor and preferably in the same show that you are in.

If you run your lines with another actor, they can coach you on what you need to work on and give direction as to what to do. You can then repay the favor to them by helping them with their lines.

Use An App

If you do not have someone available to run your lines with, you can download an app on your phone to help you learn lines. The New York Film Academy recommends the Rehearsal 2 app. While it is quite pricy at $19.99 they state that, “It allows you to highlight lines in the app, record other characters’ lines, and use it as a teleprompter.” Other apps that you can use to learn your lines are ones like Rehearsal Pro or Line Learner. Social Media Week has a list of more apps that are made for actors that you can see here.

Learn Cue Lines

Cue lines are the lines spoken by a different character that leads into the lines that you say. If you get into the habit of learning and memorizing these lines, you can get your brain to remember your lines once these are said. If you learn these lines, you can deliver yours in a timely manner.

Quiz Yourself

After you have done the other things on the list, and you think that you know your lines pretty well, you can quiz yourself on your lines. There are many ways to do this, with the easiest being to cover up a page and recite your lines without taking a peek.

Another way to do this is to have a friend read your cue lines and then you recite it. If you keep practicing and are able to go through the whole page, you can move on to the next one until you work up to being able to recite your lines from the entire show.

Take A Break

Taking a break from practicing can help you do many things. It can allow you to rest and relax your mind. While you rest, your brain can process the information it just acquired. You can do this by taking a nice, quiet walk through a park or by going for a drive around town. Just try not to get any road rage, as it can distract you from rest.

The last way to take a break is to take a short nap. All you need is a 20-30 minute power nap to get your brain to process it. If you want to improve your nap, listen to a recording of the show or just your lines to better remember them.

Conclusion

Memorizing what you need to say is not as hard as it may seem if you know how to learn lines. One thing to remember is that it will take time and practice in order to get it right. If it is available, try not to cram in all of the memorizing all at once. If you have the time, take the opportunity to slow down so you can better remember when it comes time to perform. Be sure to also check out one of our previous articles to learn How To Prepare For An Audition.

Sources:

https://www.nyfa.edu/student-resources/6-simple-tips-for-memorizing-lines/
https://dramatics.org/making-it-stick/
https://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2015/06/8-awesome-apps-actors/

featured image for best Christmas songs of 2019

Best Christmas Songs of 2019

Christmas is the most wonderful time of the year. The decorations, the parties, the lights, and best of all – the music. Christmas music fills our homes, our car rides, and even the stores. It is the soundtrack of December. New Christmas music is coming out each year. Here are some of the best Christmas songs of 2019. With all the classic Christmas music, it can be hard for new music to compete. These songs, however, shined the brightest.

Jonas Brothers – Like It’s Christmas

The Jonas Brothers recently made a comeback and have been releasing some great music. On their list of new music this year is this Christmas song that was instantly a hit. This is one of the top Christmas songs of 2019 and for good reason. It’s both catchy and festive! The perfect recipe for a Christmas hit.

Alessia Cara – Make It To Christmas

Although more of a love song, this has been one of the most popular Christmas songs of 2019. While it may not be your ideal Christmas song, it is still a great one to add to your holiday playlist.

Phil Wickham – This Year for Christmas

This song is great for reminding you of the true meaning of Christmas. It is not about gifts or decorations. It is about giving, being grateful for what we have, and loving those around us. Sometimes it takes the magic of Christmas to remind us that.

Jack Johnson – New Axe

Jack Johnson never fails to disappoint with his music. His music is a great soundtrack to any coastal gathering.

Los Lobos – It’s Christmastime in Texas

This one is extra festive! This song has a quick beat and the accordion adds a fun sound. While there aren’t too many lyrics, it is still a great song to get you moving and excited about the holidays.

Phil Wickham – The Face of God

Phil is on a roll this year with his new Christmas album. Once again, he focuses on why we celebrate Christmas and what started it all.

Ingrid Michaelson & Jason Mraz – Christmas Valentine

One of the best music duos released this new Christmas song this year with the cutest music video to go along.

Lea Michele – Christmas in New York

This upbeat song will no doubt get you in the holiday spirit.

There is so much great music out there. These are just the best Christmas songs of 2019, and new music is coming out each year. Don’t forget to check out our Clear Voice Spray formulated to protect the voices of singers and other vocalists.

Thanksgiving foods and your voice

How Thanksgiving Food Affects Your Voice

Thanksgiving is a time where friends, family, and loved ones come together to enjoy each other’s company and celebrate with a large meal. However, if you are a singer or someone who uses their voice every day for work, you are going to want to make sure that your voice stays in peak condition. Continue reading to learn more about Thanksgiving foods and your voice.

Thanksgiving Foods And Your Voice

Turkey

If you are someone who uses their voice a lot you will want to get protein into your diet. This is because it gives you the energy that you need to perform or use your voice for a long period of time. Turkey is a great source of protein and it is also a lean protein.

The Mayo Clinic states that “The leanest meat is white meat from the breast with no skin. If you prefer dark meat, be sure to remove the skin before eating.” This Thanksgiving, try to avoid the skin of the turkey because it contains excess fat that you do not need.

Stuffing

Stuffing is one of the most well-known side dishes at thanksgiving. However, you should try to limit it to a minimum. This is due to various reasons. The first one being that it could have been improperly cooked. Even though the name is stuffing, stuffing it inside of the turkey will not allow it to cook thoroughly and can cause bacteria to spread because it does not get hot enough.

The second reason to why you should limit your stuffing intake on Thanksgiving is because of all the fat in it. Stuffing contains a lot of butter which can be unhealthy for you and your voice. One study published in the National Institutes of Health shows that body weight and body fat volume appears to influence measures of voice quality, vocal aerodynamics, and range performance.

Potatoes

Potatoes are another staple food of any Thanksgiving dinner. However, there are some things that you should know before you eat too much of them. Mashed potatoes contain many other ingredients besides the potato. Most recipes call for added butter, which mentioned above, can affect your voice.

In addition to that, many recipes also call for milk or other dairy products. These can also affect you and your voice. The Voice Care Network, an educational, non-profit corporation that teaches healthy and expressive voice skills states that “Eating dairy products often causes increased throat mucus for many.” If this happens to you, you may want to consider laying off on the potatoes, especially if you have a performance after Thanksgiving dinner.

Drinks

There are many different drinks that are found at thanksgiving. The most common being cider, soda, water, and alcoholic beverages like wine. If you want to look after your voice in the best way possible, you need to watch what you drink, along with what you eat.

To best care for your voice at Thanksgiving, you should stick to drinking room-temperature water. It is recommended that you drink 64 ounces of water each day. In a Q&A at UT Southwestern Medicine, one health professional stated that “If you enjoy a caffeinated or alcoholic drink, you need to add more water to your daily consumption.” If you have a 12-ounce soda can, you will need to add 12 more ounces of water.

Vegetables

Vegetables are very healthy and important for all aspects of your health. One nutrient to look for in your veggies is vitamin A. This is because vitamin A helps keep your mucous membranes healthy. You can find vitamin A in many vegetables like:

  • Sweet Potatoes
  • Squash
  • Spinach
  • Kale

Dessert

Dessert is arguably the best part of Thanksgiving dinner. However, it may also be the worst for your voice so it is wise to limit the dessert that you eat on Thanksgiving. Pumpkin pie is most likely the best as long as you avoid whipped cream due to the dairy. If you have a performance around thanksgiving, it would be smart to save the pie for afterward.

Conclusion

When it comes to Thanksgiving foods and your voice, There are many different ways that they can affect your voice. It is vital to remember to limit certain foods and to get more of others. It is also important to know that most of these effects are only temporary, so if you do not have a performance coming up you should be able to enjoy Thanksgiving and treat yourself along with everyone else. Be sure to check out this article for more Foods For You Voice.

From everyone here at Clear Voice, have a Happy Thanksgiving!

Sources:

https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/nutrition-and-healthy-eating/in-depth/food-and-nutrition/art-20048095
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24408481
http://www.voicecarenetwork.org/article.cfm?PID=104&ID=94
https://utswmed.org/medblog/vocal-cords-care-qa/

featured image for most awarded singers of all time

Most Awarded Singers of All Time

Earning an award in the singing industry is a big deal. Only the most beloved singers and performers are even nominated. Here are some of the most awarded singers of all time. These are people that help shape our culture and inspire other musicians to chase their dreams of being able to perform for others.

Taylor Swift

Just this year, Taylor Swift broke the record for the most awarded AMA artist. The last time this record was broken was by Michael Jackson in 2009. She now holds 29 AMA’s, which is a big deal. The singer is still young and could very likely earn many more in the years to come. Not only that, but she also holds the most Billboard music awards, an event that has been held annually since 1990. She has also won 10 Grammy awards, which have been taking place since 1959.

Michael Jackson

After being surpassed by Taylor Swift, the king of pop, Michael Jackson, now sits as the second singer with the most AMA awards. He has won a total of 26 AMA’s, which is still very impressive. He held his position for ten years after passing away in 2009. Not only that, but he also has 13 Grammy awards.

Justin Bieber

Although he only has 1 Grammy award, the singer has won 20 Billboard Music Awards and 15 AMA’s. He has been winning awards since his bowl haircut and is one of the most awarded singers of all time.

Garth Brooks

With 2 Grammy awards, 17 AMA’s, and 16 Billboard Music Awards. On top of that, this country singer has also won 15 Country Music Awards. This leaves him as the most awarded country singer of all time.

Whitney Houston

This music legend, who passed away in 2012, has an impressive 7 Grammy awards. She has also won 20 AMA’s and 6 Billboard Music Awards.

Quincy Jones

His music may not be popular nowadays, but this singer has won more Grammy’s than any other singer in history. He has a total of 28 Grammy awards. The only person who has won more Grammy’s than him is the music conductor, Georg Solti.

Beyonce

This iconic star is the highest awarded female singer of the Grammy’s. She has an impressive 22 awards! She has also won 9 AMA’s and 13 Billboard Music Awards.

Adele

gold trophy for an award

This powerhouse has 15 Grammy’s awards. She is even one of two women to win the album of the year twice.

Not only does music help shape our culture, but it inspires. It inspires the way people think, act, dress, and create. It also inspires other singers and music writers. The music awards were created to award singers for their hard work and to also inspire people to make their own musical goals come true. Clear Voice is also here to help you achieve your goals as a singer. Our vocal sprays are used by many professional singers to keep their voices clear and healthy. To learn more, follow the link here.

Sources

https://www.grammy.com/

featured image for what you need to know about vocal cord paralysis

What You Need to Know About Vocal Cord Paralysis

Have you ever thought about what it would be like to not be able to speak or even swallow food properly? This is the life of someone with vocal cord paralysis. It is a common issue that, unfortunately, affects many people. It is every singer or speaker’s worst nightmare. Here is what you need to know about vocal cord paralysis.

What is vocal cord paralysis?

Vocal cord paralysis happens when the vocal folds in the throat do not function properly. This can happen to just one vocal fold, or worse, both. When people speak or sing, the vocal folds open and close. However, with vocal cord paralysis, they stop opening and closing the way they should. Vocal paralysis in one vocal fold is not dangerous. However, having it in both can be life-threatening. The vocal folds need to be able to close when we swallow things like food and water. If both vocal folds are open, our lungs could be in danger.

What causes vocal cord paralysis?

There are a few different ways people can get vocal cord paralysis. The most common cause is nerve damage that occurs during surgery. Injuries to the head, neck or chest, cancer, and infections are common culprits. Neurological conditions or having a stroke can also cause vocal cord paralysis.

Signs to look out for

There are a few different signs of vocal cord paralysis to look out for. Some of these signs include:

  • Loud breathing
  • Hoarseness
  • Breathy speaking voice
  • Choking and coughing when eating, drinking, or swallowing
  • Unable to hit certain vocal pitches
  • Out of breath when speaking
  • Unable to speak loudly
  • No gag reflexes
  • Unable to clear throat by coughing
  • Constantly trying to clear throat

Treatment for vocal cord paralysis

doctor talking to a patient about their vocal cords

Although not easy, there are ways to treat this condition. For less severe conditions of vocal cord paralysis, treatment consists of therapy. During therapy, the patient will have to do different exercises to strengthen the vocal cords. If the condition is more severe, surgery may be required. There is a lot more to what you need to know about vocal cord paralysis and surgery. There are different types of surgery depending on the severity of the paralysis. Only a doctor can decide what is necessary.

While vocal cord paralysis is not always preventable, it is still important to take care of your voice. If your career relies on your voice, avoid activities that may potentially cause injury to your head, neck, or chest. For more on voice conditions, read our article, “Vocal Nodules and Your Voice”. Taking care of your voice is vital for those who use it in their career daily. Keep your voice healthy with our Clear Voice Spray. Check out the different flavors we offer and pick some out for yourself today.

Sources

https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/vocal-cord-paralysis/symptoms-causes/syc-20378873

https://www.nidcd.nih.gov/health/vocal-fold-paralysis

sleep affects your voice

Why Sleep Is Important For Your Vocal Health

Getting enough sleep at night is important for all aspects of your health. Your voice is included in this too. But how exactly is your voice affected by sleep or a lack of it? Continue reading to learn more about how sleep affects your voice.

What Is Sleep Deprivation?

Sleep deprivation, otherwise known as insufficient sleep or even sleeplessness, is a condition where someone is not getting enough sleep at night. It can either be chronic sleep deprivation, meaning it has happened for a long time or acute sleep deprivation where it is more infrequent.

Sleep deprivation can lead to many harmful consequences to your physical and mental health. Some examples of this are fatigue, daytime sleepiness, clumsiness and increased appetite that can eventually lead to weight gain. In addition to all of these, sleep deprivation can also have harmful consequences for your voice.

Sleep Deprivation And Your Voice

Rest

When it comes to how sleep deprivation affects your voice, there are many different things to know. For starters, it is important to remember that to produce your voice, you use muscles called your vocal folds. As with any other muscle in your body, you need to rest it after you use it to allow it to grow stronger. The best way to rest your voice is to get enough sleep. Sleep.org states that “During sleep, the muscles relax, which can help relieve tension and reduce symptoms of chronic pain.”

Fatigue

Another way that sleep deprivation can affect your voice is by it becoming fatigued and weak. This comes when you do not rest your voice as previously mentioned above. In a Q&A held back in 2016, the experts at UT Southwestern Medical Center stated that ” Lack of sleep and fatigue reduces our breath support and negatively affects the mechanics of voice production, which causes our muscles to work harder than they need to when vocalizing.”

Hoarseness

If you ever wake up extremely tired and find that your voice sounds raspy or strained, you might be showing signs of hoarseness. Opera Carolina, an opera company that has been around since 1948 states that “If your voice is regularly hoarse, it is a sign that your vocal cords are being overworked.” This shows that you might not be resting your voice enough whether that be talking too much throughout the day or not getting enough sleep at night. It is important to remember that some hoarseness is normal, but should go away after a glass of water. To combat hoarseness of any kind however, you can use a vocal spray such as Clear Voice.

How To Avoid Sleep Deprivation

Avoiding sleep deprivation is not as hard as it may seem. All you need to do is make sure that you are getting enough sleep at night. The National Sleep Foundation says that the amount of sleep you need is dependent on your age. Here is how much sleep each age should get:

  • Newborns (0-3 Months): 14-17 hours each day
  • Infants (4-11 Months): 12-15 hours each day
  • Toddlers (1-2 Years): 11-14 hours each day
  • Children (3-5 Years): 10-13 hours each day
  • Children (6-13 Years): 9-11 hours each day
  • Teenagers: (14-17):8-10 hours each day
  • Young Adults (18-25): 7-9 hours each day
  • Adults (26-64): 7-9 hours each day
  • Elderly (65+): 7-8 hours each day

Tips For Getting A Better Nights Sleep

There are many great ways that you can get a better night’s sleep. All of these will require you to put in some effort and it is important to know that you might not see any changes immediately so it is important to not get discouraged or abandon these tips.

Eat Right

There are many foods that can help you fall asleep better. Some examples are bananas, almonds, tea, cherries, kiwis, and many more. There are also many different foods that can affect your voice whether they be for good reasons or for bad. Check out this article to learn more about some Foods For Your Voice: 4 Good and 4 Bad.

Electronic Devices

Another way to fall asleep faster to and to get a better night’s sleep is to stay off of any electronic devices at least 2 hours before you fall asleep. As hard as it might seem, this includes the TV.

Set A Bedtime

Setting a bedtime, and sticking to it can help you get better sleep at night. It does this by setting your internal clock. You can do this by setting an alarm on to your phone to remind you to wind down and prep for bed.

Another thing that can help you get adequate sleep and help make that sleep quality is to wake up at the same time. Doing both of these gets your body into a habit of sleeping at the same time and waking up at the same time.

Conclusion

There are many ways that sleep affects your voice. It is important to remember that your vocal cords are muscles and that they need to rest in order to stay healthy and in shape. Another way to help keep your voice healthy is to use a vocal spray such as the ones here at Clear Voice.

Sources:

https://utswmed.org/medblog/vocal-cords-care-qa/
https://operacarolina.org/news/how-does-sleep-affect-my-voice/
https://www.sleepfoundation.org/press-release/national-sleep-foundation-recommends-new-sleep-times
https://www.sleep.org/articles/how-sleep-adds-muscle/

featured image for tips for public speaking

Tips for Public Speaking

Speaking in front of a crowd is one of the most terrifying situations for many people. Few people are great at it. It can be difficult to captivate an audience while also trying to combat nerves. Almost everyone must do it at some point. Luckily, the more you do it, the easier it gets. Here are some tips for public speaking. These tips are proven to be effective in helping people become better public speakers.

Know Your Audience

Before writing out your speech or presentation, figure out who your audience is. Not everyone may appreciate your opening joke. To avoid the blank stares and crickets, learn more about who you are dealing with. This will help you craft a unique message specifically for them that they will enjoy and appreciate.

Prepare Every Detail

There is nothing worse than standing up in front of a crowd and not having a clue what you are going to say. Doing so leads to rambling no one cares about or jumping all over the place so no one can follow. Almost anyone can tell the difference between someone who has prepared and someone who is winging it. Preparing everything beforehand will help your speech have a better flow. It may even help you feel a little less nervous knowing not much can go wrong.

Practice Over and Over

Once everything is prepared, practice! Practice your speech in front of a mirror, a camera, your family, or even your pet. It doesn’t matter – just practice. The more you practice the more comfortable you will feel with your speech. The best speakers memorize their content and only need an outline.

Be Open to Feedback

Listen to feedback from anyone who listens to your speech and adapt. If no one thinks your opening joke is funny, get rid of it or find a better one. This is easier for people who routinely speak in front of an audience. For those who do not, get feedback from anyone you practice in front of.

Add Personality

No one wants to listen to a robot staring down at a paper. It makes every word feel impersonal. Make it a goal to look up from your script as much as possible or even the entire time. Include stories or humor in your speech. This helps the audience connect with you. Try smiling or using hand gestures. Showing any kind of personality will make your speech a little more interesting.

Things to Avoid

One of the biggest mistakes people make when speaking in front of a crowd is nervous ticks. This could include the words, “umm”, “like”, “so”, etc. The speaker may not notice them, but the audience does. They can become a distraction for the audience and can result in you losing their focus on your message. Be aware of what your nervous ticks are and be present enough to avoid them. Another thing to avoid is a boring opening. One of the most common openings is, “Today I’m going to speak about…” This is the quickest way to lose your audience. Instead, start with an interesting story or fact.

Do not feel overwhelmed or defeated by any of these tips for public speaking. It is known to be one of the most difficult tasks for many people and takes time to master. Just keep practicing eventually it will come naturally. Don’t forget to check out our article, “Preparing Your Voice for a Speech”, for more helpful tips. Our Clear Voice Spray also comes in handy for speakers, singers, and announcers who need to soothe a dry throat for performances.

Sources

https://www.inc.com/brent-gleeson/20-tips-for-mastering-art-of-public-speaking.html

https://www.extension.harvard.edu/professional-development/blog/10-tips-improving-your-public-speaking-skills

overcoming stage fright

Tips To Overcome Your Stage Fright

Stage fright is a fear that almost everyone in the world will experience at some point in their life. It affects people who are nervous due to various reasons and can cause doubts about performance. However, what exactly is stage fright and how can you push through it and face your fear? Continue reading to learn more about overcoming your stage fright.

What Is Stage Fright?

Stage fright, also known as performance anxiety is any nervousness before or during an appearance before an audience. If you have stage fright you may be experiencing many things such as:

  • Rapidly breathing
  • Dry mouth
  • Sweaty hands
  • Nausea
  • Vision changes
  • Racing pulse

Most people actually experience stage fright whenever they give a performance, presentation or are publicly speaking. Even professional actors occasionally have stage fright.

Overcoming Your Stage Fright

Know The Material

Whether you are presenting a PowerPoint to a small group or class, giving a speech in front of hundreds of people, or even performing in front of thousands of people, knowing the material can help you overcome your stage fright. This is either knowing the topic of your presentation or speech well enough to answer questions or it could be memorizing the lyrics to the songs you will perform.

Prepare For Your Performance

Practicing and preparing yourself, physically and mentally is another great tip to overcome your stage fright. This differs from simply knowing the material due to the fact that knowing the lyrics will do you no good if you have never practiced them before.

Speeches are similar, as reading your speech out loud in the mirror or to a friend can help you find any mistakes that you did not notice before. Lifehack.org recommends that you take this one step further by dressing up when you rehearse. Check out one of our previous articles to learn more about Preparing Your Voice For A Speech.

Relax

Now that you are out there and on stage the most important thing that you can do to overcome your stage fright is to relax. When nervous, people tend to breath a lot faster and this can throw you off. Just take a deep breath and clear your mind of any negative thoughts that you may have. This is a great way to calm your nerves and allow you to continue.

Harvard Business School showed a way to cope with the jitters that can come with stage fright. They say that you should pretend to be excited about what you are doing. The researchers believe that this may be more effective than simply taking a deep breath and telling yourself to calm down.

Picture The Best Outcome

The Anxiety And Depression Association Of America (ADAA) states to “visualize your success.” You can do this by “focusing on your strengths and ability to handle challenging situations.” Picturing the best outcome can also give you a positive outlook on things.

The reason why you want to try and keep the negative thoughts out is if you are constantly picturing the worst outcome, chances are you will be too focused on it and it might end up coming true. If things do go wrong, such as a failing microphone, try and make up for it by projecting your voice.

Don’t Rush

As much as you think that rushing through your speech or hurrying off-stage after your final song will be the best, it may not be. Take the time, start slow and give yourself time to get comfortable. You should also give the audience time to understand what you are saying if you are giving a speech or presentation.

Celebrate Afterwards

One way to overcome your stage fright, while also having a positive lookout is to plan something fun for after your presentation, speech or performance. This could be hanging out with friends, watching your favorite movie, or even going to an after-party and having fun.

Conclusion

Overcoming your stage fright is not as bad as it may seem. Stage fright affects just about everyone. This makes it okay if you need to take time to take care of it as there is a chance that your audience will be understanding.

Check out our website to learn more about Clear Voice Vocal Spray.

Sources:

https://www.lifehack.org/articles/communication/six-steps-help-you-conquer-stage-fright.html
https://hbsp.harvard.edu/product/N0408C-PDF-ENG?itemFindingMethod=Search
https://adaa.org/understanding-anxiety/social-anxiety-disorder/treatment/conquering-stage-fright

https://www.danceadvantage.net/overcoming-stage-fright/

featured image for vocal nodules and you voice

Vocal Nodules and Your Voice

Vocal nodules are a common condition caused by non-cancerous growths on the vocal cords. They cause the voice to sound raspy, hoarse, or even nasal. Some other common conditions are polyps and cysts. We will go over vocal nodules and your voice, so you can learn how to protect your voice from the damage they can cause.

Causes of Nodules

As a singer, announcer, speaker, or another type of vocalist, you are more at risk. One of the most common causes of nodules is voice overuse. Voice overuse can occur when you sing or talk for long periods or too loudly. Some people this could affect are performers, lawyers, sports announcers, teachers, etc. Some other causes of nodules are repetitive coughing, acid reflux, allergies, and smoking.

Signs to Look Out For

If you are constantly using your voice or commonly experience one or more of the following causes, it is important to look out for any signs of nodules. The signs may not always be noticeable, so talk to your doctor if you have any concerns. Some signs to look for are:

  • Neck pain
  • A raspy or scratchy voice
  • Hoarseness
  • Breathiness
  • Feeling like a lump is stuck in the throat

Prevention and Treatment

man speaking into a megaphone to avoid overuse

There are many ways to help prevent and treat vocal nodules. If you do have nodules, treatment can include either voice therapy or surgery and voice therapy. Either way, lifestyle changes will need to be made. Here are some ways to help prevent vocal nodules:

  • Stop smoking
  • Avoid second-hand smoke
  • Limit alcohol & caffeine intake
  • Drink more water
  • Use a microphone rather than raising your voice
  • Keep a humidifier in your home
  • Get plenty of sleep
  • Warm-up your voice before performances or speeches
  • Give your voice the rest it needs
  • Wash your hands often
  • Avoid stress
  • Avoid using your voice when sick

Learning about vocal nodules and your voice can help you avoid these problems. It is so important to make the changes necessary if nodules are something you do not want to risk. To learn more about vocal strain, check out our article, “Vocal Abuse and Misuse“. Our Clear Voice Spray is also a great way to prevent throat irritation.

Sources

https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/diseases/15424-vocal-cord-lesions-nodules-polyps-and-cysts/prevention

https://utswmed.org/conditions-treatments/vocal-cord-nodules-polyps-and-cysts/

https://www.dukehealth.org/treatments/voice-disorders/vocal-nodules

singers who were discovered on YouTube

7 Singers Who Were Discovered On YouTube

There are many different famous singers on the internet today. Although, not everyone who uploads their videos to YouTube makes it big. In fact, around half of the millions of videos uploaded to the site get only 100 views in the first month. However, there are still people who make it big and rack up millions of views. Continue reading to learn more about some singers who were discovered on YouTube.

Singers Who Were Discovered On YouTube

Justin Bieber

Before he was the internet sensation that is today, Justin Bieber was a 12-year-old who uploaded his homemade performance videos to YouTube. Scooter Braun, a record executive stumbled upon a video of Justin singing in one of these videos. It wasn’t long after that Justin signed to a deal with Island Def Jam, an American record label group formed in 1998. He now has over 47 million subscribers on YouTube with many songs that have come out. Here is the video that got Justin Bieber his start towards fame.

Carly Rae Jepsen

Carly Rae Jepsen was popular in her native country of Canada before her fame in the United States. In fact, she finished third on Canadian Idol. It wasn’t until December of 2011 when Justin Bieber tweeted that her song Call Me Maybe “Is possibly the catchiest song I’ve ever heard.” That tweet led Justin’s manager Scooter Braun to YouTube where he watched the video and ultimately he signed her to a deal with Schoolboy Records. She now has almost 3 million subscribers on YouTube. Here is her hit song.

Shawn Mendes

Shawn Mendes started out by competing in singing contests on YouTube. He also was posting six-second Vine clips of him singing in his bedroom. One of these clips consisted of him singing Justin Bieber’s As Long as You Love Me. This Vine went viral almost overnight, and Mendes’s internet presence grew from there with him gaining many followers. He soon caught the attention of Island Records, who signed him back in 2014. Today he has over 24 million subscribers on YouTube. Here is one of his music contest entries.

Charlie Puth

Back in September of 2009, Charlie Puth started a YouTube channel named Charlies Vlogs where he posted comedy videos and acoustic covers for songs. In 2011 he won Perez Hilton’s Can You Sing? by performing a version of Adele’s Someone Like You along with Emily Luther. Later that year, Ellen DeGeneres signed the two of them to her label eleveneleven after viewing their performance. This lead him to the career that he has today with 15.8 million subscribers on YouTube. Here is the winning performance that landed him a record with Ellen.

5 Seconds of Summer

5 Seconds of Summer originally started their following on Facebook and Twitter. They were occasionally uploading covers of their favorite songs to YouTube which is what led them to their success. It was not until Louis Tomlinson, a member of the British boy band One Direction tweeted about them saying, “Been a fan of this band for a while, everyone gets behind them.” 5 Seconds of Summer then signed with Capitol Records in 2013. They then went on to create their own songs and currently have 6.5 million subscribers. Here is one of their covers from December of 2011.

Cody Simpson

The next pick of our singers who were discovered on YouTube is Cody Simpson. He started out by posting videos of himself covering songs by Justin Timberlake and other popular singers back in July of 2010. His work was discovered by Shawn Campbell, a music producer. In addition to singing, he has also appeared as a guest actor for several TV shows. He has almost 1 million subscribers on his YouTube channel. Here is one of his covers of  Señorita by Justin Timberlake.

Tori Kelly

Tori Kelley started her music career by trying out for American Idol. This, unfortunately, did not work out for her, however, she kept her head up and did her own thing. She started by making covers for songs in her bedroom. These videos caught the eye of Scooter Braun, the manager of Justin Bieber. She now has 2.7 million subscribers on YouTube. Here is her acoustic cover of Suit & Tie by Justin Timberlake

Conclusion

Even though only a small percent of people who upload videos to YouTube make it and go on to be the next big thing, there is no harm in trying for yourself. You can also use other social media platforms to help build yourself a following such as Instagram or Twitter. Who knows maybe you will make it big, or it could lead you to other ways to Make Money With Your Voice.

Be sure to also check out Clear Voice Vocal Spray by visiting our website here!

featured image for learn how to sing in tune

Learn How to Sing in Tune

Most people struggle when it comes to singing. They believe that they just were not given the gift to sing and give up. However, what a lot of people do not realize is that anyone can sing. Some people may have been given a natural-born talent, but it is a skill that anyone can acquire. The first step to singing is being able to learn how to sing in tune.

Make Sure You Are Not Tone Deaf

Practicing will be more difficult for those who are tone-deaf. However, this condition is extremely rare. Those who believe they are tone deaf may not be and just need more practice and control over their voices. Tests are available online to find out if you are tone-deaf. The test listed here is one of the most effective for finding out if you are tone-deaf. If so, learning to sing in tune will be more complicated and may require a professional vocal coach.

Stay in Your Vocal Range

Everyone has a vocal range. Trying to sing outside of this range will make it difficult to sing in tune and will most likely strain your voice. There are ways to expand your singing range, but that is a task to save for professional singers. Sticking to your range will make it easier to master your voice.

Try Exercises for Practicing Pitch

person using a music app on their phone

There are a lot of ways to practice your pitch. One of the most common ways to practice pitch is to sing scales. This is done by singing an octave of notes, A to G. Many people also practice pitch using a digital tuner. There are even apps you can download on your phone or tablet for a tuner. Many people use these to tune their instruments, but they are great for tuning your voice as well. Some great apps include:

Keep Practicing

Most importantly, just keep practicing! Professional singers practice over and over to get their notes right. Remember that it is a skill and all skills need practice. For more tips on singing, check out our article, Singing Tips from Professionals.

Sources

https://www.musical-u.com/learn/how-to-learn-to-sing-in-tune/#

https://www.musical-u.com/learn/3-singing-exercises-to-improve-your-vocal-pitching/

making money with your voice

How To Make Money With Your Voice

Most people use their voices to do their job every day. However, what if you could turn your voice into your job all from the comfort of your home? Continue reading to learn more about making money with your voice.

Making Money With Your Voice

Entertaining

If you choose to make money with your voice by entertaining others there are a few paths you can take. These are singing, podcasting and comedy. Each of these has its own requirements.

Singing: Singers need to be able to perform long shows and keep their voices in shape. When starting out, you will be able to work from home or get a few gigs at restaurants. However, as you continue to grow you might want to consider getting a studio so you can expand your business.

Podcasting: Podcasters are able to work comfortably at home or in the office. Before you start you need to make sure that you have all the equipment that you will need like a microphone and soundproof walls. It will also take time for your podcast to pick up and for you to become successful.

Comedy: Stand up comedians need to do a lot of work if they want to succeed. They need to write their own jokes or be able to come up with them on the spot. They also need to book a gig at a restaurant/bar or find one with an open mic night.

Voice Overs

Voice over artists is also commonly called voice actors. They record themselves saying certain things and are paid for these recordings. Some people record in a studio while others find that they can do it at home. Here are some examples of voice over jobs that you can do.

Commercials

Many companies are always looking for someone to voice their commercials. This is where you step in and record yourself reading the script. If you have done this before, consider compiling all of your previous commercials into a portfolio to give out as a demo to future clients. Each commercial you voice over can make you around $250 for a small minute-long commercial.

Media

The next voice acting job you can get is through media. This could be voicing a character in a new tv show. It could also be voicing a character in one of the latest video games too. Voice actors for these jobs are usually paid per job and these jobs can range from $20 to hundreds of dollars for an hour of work. On average these actors make $17.50 per hour.

Audio Books

Audiobooks are becoming more and more popular each day. This is because people are able to listen to them whether they are folding laundry, driving in the car, or even at work. With this demand, many authors and audiobook publishing companies are looking for voice actors. These jobs can make you quite a sum of money. You could end up making over $3000 for one book. It all depends on the size of the book too.

Getting Started

There are many different ways to get started with voice over career. One of the best ways is to sign up for a website like Fiverr. Fiverr is a website that allows you to sell your voice over services to people around the world. The base amount for a service is $5 and you can include add-ons to up the price too. To record you are going to want to get a good microphone a find a quiet sound-proof area in your home. Some people start out in their closet, if it is big enough, and then move to a different location when they have it soundproofed.

Conclusion

Making money with your voice is not hard if you put in the time and maybe a little bit of money. To recap you can voice act in games or tv shows, voice-over a commercial or audiobook, and even entertain people online.

Be sure to check out one of our previous articles to learn more about some Tips For Recording In Your Home.

For more information about Clear Voice Vocal Spray, please visit our website here to learn more.

featured image for how to market yourself as a singer

How to Market Yourself as a Singer

As a singer or musician, one of the most important things you can do for your career is to market yourself. Without any marketing, you will go nowhere. This may seem like a daunting task, but do not worry. It is a lot simpler than it sounds! It takes a lot of work, but it is possible. Here is how to market yourself as a singer.

Figure Out Your Goals and Audience

It is important to have solid goals for where you want your music career to end up. Having solid goals will help point you in the right direction. Your goals can be as big as you like, but to prevent things from becoming overwhelming, it is important to break them down into smaller short-term goals. Once you have your goals figured out, find your target audience. Who does your music connect with? Find out and focus on reaching and connecting with them.

Marketing on Social Media

man looking at Instagram page for a singer

Being a talented singer is great. However, talent is not enough. For your career to go anywhere, people need to hear your music and know who you are. You must convince people they need to give your music a listen. One way to do this is by creating social media pages for your music. People will not find you right away, but the more effort you put into it, the more people will find you. On Instagram, many people use hashtags to guide users to their pages. Instagram and Facebook also offer paid ads for businesses to create and share with their target audiences. YouTube is especially great for singers and musicians since people are already there to watch and listen to videos.

Communicate with Fans

Once your fanbase starts growing, it is important to respond to and communicate with them. Give them a reason to stay interested in you and your music. They are, after all, what will make or break your career. Communicating with and getting to your fans will help them feel like they know you and will help them stick around longer.

Entering the music industry is no easy feat. However, once you learn how to market yourself as a singer, you will have more success. For more tips on becoming a better singer and captivating your audience, read our article, Singing Tips from Professionals.

Sources

http://www.musicthinktank.com/blog/7-music-marketing-truths-all-musicians-should-know.html

self-care for entertainers

Taking Care of Yourself as an Entertainer

No matter what your occupation, there is one thing that everyone needs to take time to do. This is taking care of themselves. Entertainers are no different, and they might need it more often than other people do. Continue reading to learn more about self-care for entertainers.

Self-Care For Entertainers

Get A Good Night’s Rest

Making sure that you get a good night’s sleep is crucial for day-to-day functions. It can allow you to rest and relax while also getting your body ready for the next day. The human body needs between 7 to 9 hours of sleep each night. However what can you do to make sure that you are getting adequate amounts of sleep?

  • Nightly Routine: Having a nightly routine can help you fall asleep quicker. If you already have one, consider evaluating it to see if it can be improved.
  • Bedroom: Make sure that your bedroom is the ideal temperature, darkness and is free from any distractions like a cellphone.
  • Food: Stay clear of caffeine and sugar in the later hours of the day. These are stimulants and can keep you awake.

Food

What you eat plays an important role in your mood and many aspects of your life. As much as you might want to eat nothing but pizza, you need to overcome those urges as you could become lethargic. Eating healthy can not only improve your mood, but it can also help your voice. Check out one of our previous articles to learn about some Foods For Your Voice.

Exercise

Daily exercise can be beneficial for your health, not only physically, but mentally as well. It can boost your mood and help reduce any stress or anxiety that comes with being an entertainer. These benefits are amazing, however, you are going to have to make an effort to work out every day to receive the benefits. Even walking for 10 minutes can allow for these benefits. However, it is better if you increase the time spent exercising.

Take Breaks

As much as you want to keep working to pursue your career, it is important to take a break once in a while. Being an entertainer can be stressful and it can become hard to stay focused when stressed. Allow yourself to have time off with friends or family each week or take a vacation every once in a while. Either way, it is important that you take breaks so you can clear your mind.

Keep Your Voice Healthy

If you are an entertainer, chances are that you use your voice on a daily basis. It is important to keep it healthy so you can perform at your best no matter what you are doing. One way that you can help keep your voice healthy is to avoid abusing or misusing your voice.

Another thing that can help keep your voice performing at it’s best is a vocal spray. Vocal sprays such as the ones here at Clear Voice.

Conclusion

There are many different tips about self-care for entertainers. However, it is up to you whether or not you use them. It is always crucial to remember that besides getting a good night’s rest, these tips cannot make a change overnight.

To learn more about Clear Voice Vocal Spray, please visit our website for more information such as flavors and pricing.

featured image for protecting your voice during cold and flue season

Protecting Your Voice During Cold and Flu Season

Cold and flu season comes around every year without fail. The weather gets colder and the germs spread. While your body may get over it, your voice could be damaged. It is important to take care of your voice when you rely on it for your career. Here are some tips for protecting your voice during cold and flu season.

Avoid Straining Your Voice

It is important to always avoid straining your voice. However, when you are sick it is a lot easier to do this. Make sure to give your voice a break when you are sick. Avoid singing and talking for extended periods. Be sure to also talk at a normal volume. This is one of the easiest ways you can protect your voice when you are sick. Try to also avoid loud settings. Many people strain their voices trying to talk over loud cars or people without realizing it and cause damage.

Eat Healthy and Exercise

Many people do not exercise or eat healthy as often when the weather gets colder and during the holidays. It is important to stay on top of your physical health. Staying fit will give your body and your voice a better chance of avoiding sickness.

Drink Plenty of Water

water bottle in protecting your voice during cold and flu season

One of the best ways to keep sickness out of your body is to drink plenty of water. If you do happen to get sick, drinking water will help prevent your throat from getting dry. It is important to also remember to stay away from ice-cold water, caffeine, and alcohol. Ice cold water will not be as soothing for your throat. Caffeine and alcohol are even worse. They will dry your throat out and cause other problems that may affect your voice as well. Another way to soothe your voice is with steam. Many people keep humidifiers in their rooms when they are sick to prevent a scratchy throat. Our Clear Voice Spray is also a great way to keep your voice lubricated when it is feeling dry.

Make Sure to Rest

Getting enough sleep is vital for staying healthy. Your body needs sleep to have enough energy to function properly. Make time to rest after a busy day and unwind before going to bed. Be sure to also rest your voice often. Especially when you are sick.

Protecting your voice during cold and flu season is no easy task. However, it is possible. If you want to keep your voice healthy and avoid damage it is important to take care of yourself.

Sources

https://utswmed.org/medblog/cold-flu-allergy-hurt-your-voice/

https://www.backstage.com/magazine/article/ways-keep-voice-healthy-cold-season-5189/

https://www.berklee.edu/bt/123/winter.html

remedies for a sore throat, garlic

Natural Remedies For A Sore Throat

A sore throat is something that everyone hates getting. That is because it causes pain and other undesirable side effects. However, if you do end up getting one, what can you do to relieve the pain? Continue reading to learn more about some of our natural remedies for a sore throat.

What is a Sore Throat?

A sore throat is any pain, irritation, or scratchiness of the throat. Oftentimes this pain worsens when you swallow. Other symptoms include:

  • Difficulty Swallowing
  • Swollen Tonsils
  • Hoarse or Muffled Voice
  • Swollen Glands in Neck

A sore throat is commonly caused by a viral infection such as a cold or the flu. If it is caused by a viral infection, a sore throat can resolve on its own. However, there are some things that you can do to help relieve your symptoms while you wait for it to resolve.

Remedies For A Sore Throat

Honey

This is one of the more common household remedies for a sore throat. This is because of all of the studies that have shown the benefits of honey. One study showed that honey is an effective wound healer. This could explain why people choose honey to aid their sore throats. Not to mention, it has a great taste too. Try mixing it into a tea or just simply taking it on its own to see some positive results.

Salt Water

Another way to soothe your sore throat is by gargling saltwater. This not only helps soothe the throat, but it can also help kill any harmful bacteria that might be in your throat. You can make a solution to gargle by mixing a half-teaspoon of salt in a full glass of warm water. To get the best results, you should do this every three hours.

Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple cider vinegar is known to have many uses. Most commonly is its antibacterial uses. One study showed how it fights infections with its antimicrobial effects. It has an acidic nature, which makes it effective at helping break down mucus and stopping bacteria from spreading.

Garlic

As with apple cider vinegar, garlic has natural antibacterial properties. There have been studies that have shown the effects of garlic. One such study showed that taking a garlic supplement on a regular basis can help prevent the cold virus. Getting garlic is easy because it is common in many recipes and is found in grocery stores.

Spicy Foods

Spicy foods like cayenne pepper or hot sauce are sometimes used as a pain reliever. This is because they contain capsaicin (what makes it spicy), a compound that blocks pain receptors. This can be beneficial if you have a sore throat. However, if you have open sores in your mouth you should avoid cayenne or hot sauce. If you do not, you can start with a few drops of your favorite hot sauce.

Conclusion

There are many ways that you can take care of your sore throat form the comfort of your home. However, if it is getting out of hand, you should schedule an appointment with your doctor and follow the advice they give you.

To learn about Clear Voice Vocal Spray, please visit our website for more information. be sure to check out one of our previous posts to learn about some Myths About Your Voice.