Monday, October 18, 2010
I didn't realize I had any particular voice when I preach until I noticed it started to change. I was looking at an old sermon from a few years back and remembered how erudite I used to sound. Over the past few years, however, my focus has changed from trying to sound learned and polished to just helping the good folks stay awake on a Sunday morning. I went from trying to sound like a minister to sounding more like a conversation over coffee in the social hall. Come to think of it, my coffee hour voice has changed too since those first awkward days of my internship: it's a lot more relaxed and, frankly, sometimes downright goofy. So as near as I can tell, finding your voice is some combination of using the hardwear and software that nature and nurture provided, and letting some of your Self leak through the editing mind which protects us all from the worst of bad jokes and rambles.
But, in the words of the immortal Bill Cosby, I told you that story so I could tell you this one. About 2 years ago now I bought myself a mandolin. It had been almost 20 years since I dropped out of music school, and I wanted to see what would happen if I tried to make music again. A singer is so much more independent and useful if she can accompany herself; but sadly the barrier was not simply the mechanical learning curve of training muscles to play a new instrument, but one of voice. It seems the same technique that makes "Quando m'en vo" sound lovely is just plain awkward when put to the task of singing "High Shelf Booze " So here I am, starting from scratch, finding my voice all over again.
Posted by Ginger Root at 3:16 PM