What You Focus On Grows...
Written by Karen Barrow on Feb. 3rd 2021

Singers... You know how it is, when you first fall in love with someone and all you see is their good bits and how wonderful they are?

Of course no one is perfect but at the beginning of a relationship, our partner's good points take up all of our focus, so we don't even notice their faults.

Unfortunately, this doesn't usually last...

As time passes, those cute little habits and quirks that were 'oh so adorable' in the beginning start to become irritating and before you know it, your partner's good bits are no longer your main focus. Even if they're AMAZING 80% of the time, if the 20% not so good times are what you spend most of your time thinking and complaining about, the 20% becomes the 80%...

Why am I telling you this?

Because, the same is true for your singing...

If you spend all of your time focusing on what you hate about your voice, telling yourself how rubbish you are and complaining about your lack of ability, you'll never improve...

...In fact, I'll bet your technique deteriorates as your confidence plummets.

No, I'm not suggesting that you're unrealistic about your voice or ability, telling yourself you're amazing when your audience is covering their ears but what I am suggesting you do is learn to listen to yourself objectively!

The best way to do this is to get used to hearing and watching yourself...

...For most people, the idea of watching themselves singing or listening back to a recording of themselves feels torturous but it's vital to improving as a singer.

Imagine a dancer improving or performing to the best of their ability without ever using a mirror to practice?

How then do you expect yourself to improve and sing to your full potential if you never watch or listen back to yourself singing?

There is no magic quick fix, the key is to just take the plunge and hit record... Yep, right now on your 'phone/iPad or any other device you choose to use!  

The more you hear your voice and watch yourself, the more you WILL get used to it.

Once you get past the initial crippling and agonising feeling of 'this is horrendous', grab a pen and paper and as you listen, write down what you don't like about your voice...

...The key is to be SPECIFIC.

This Is Not To Be Skipped...
Written by Karen Barrow on Jan. 15th 2021

Singers... You'll often hear people talk about the importance of mastering your breathing for awesome singing but in my opinion, it's just as important to master excellent posture/body alignment when you're singing.

In short, if your body isn’t aligned properly your singing will suffer...

...When your skeleton is out of alignment, muscles normally required for movement are required to support & stabilise the skeletal system. This in turn can cause tension where we don’t want tension & can restrict our lung capacity.  

You need to have your weight evenly distributed over these 5 Key points in the body to achieve correct body alignment:

📌 Head - For optimal singing, you want to tilt your head down slightly like you’re reading a book this will help free the infrastructure of your larynx.

📌 Shoulders - Check in with your shoulders give them a roll, don’t pull them back too far (this will curve your spine) & don’t allow them to roll forward in a slouch.

📌 Pelvis - We want a straight back with our pelvis aligned underneath our hips (don’t stick your bum out or forward). Roll your pelvis back & forward to find neutral. This will enable our abdominal & back muscles to move freely when we inhale. Stand against a wall & try tipping your pelvis forward so that there are no gaps between your back & the wall.
Don’t allow your rib cage to expand & collapse as you breathe in & out.  

📌 Knees - You want loose knees, they don't have to be bent, just not locked back.

📌 Feet - Your feet want to be about shoulder width apart, wiggle your toes, take your weight forward & back then come to the middle & ground yourself by imagining roots growing from your feet deep into the Earth.

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About Karen
Two-time Billboard Chart-topping singer-songwriter and musician Scarlette has twice been BBC Radio 2 Playlisted and has toured some of the best venues across the UK and USA, including The Royal Albert Hall, Manchester Arena, Hammersmith Apollo, Hard Rock Café Hollywood, The Viper Room and the iconic Bluebird Café in Nashville.


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