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Unkink Your Pipe

Consider becoming a card carrying member of the Posture Police –says Kim Chandler

I’ve suffered from the habit of the typical tall person’s ‘slouch’ since I was a gangly teenager.

And if I’m honest, I thought posture was a bit overrated and somewhat irrelevant to pop/rock singers, i.e. more of a classical thing.

How wrong I was!

Not only does a ‘primed-for-action’ posture give a clear visual message of confidence and readiness to perform, it is also a vital ingredient for the efficient functioning of the voice.

As my rather ‘tongue-in-cheek’ title suggests above, singers should give due attention to the posture they adopt when they sing.

Or, in an expression I’ve started adopting of late, addressing postural inefficiencies gets the various ‘kinks’ out of a singer’s ‘pipe’.

A Giraffe Rather than A Turtle

What is particularly important for singing is the head/neck relationship.

The neck should be elongated at the back, the ears being in line with the shoulders (i.e. more like a giraffe than a turtle!)

Don’t lift the chin up too much or tuck it in. The chest cavity should remain open and the torso long.

The knees should be soft and the feet apart because it creates a more balanced position.

Watch Your Performing Position

The performing position should also be flexible and dynamic, not rigid nor static.

Those singers who accompany themselves on the guitar or keyboard need to give particular attention to how playing positions impact upon singing and make sure the mic position is ideal.

When I started to adopt these changes in my own singing and reaped the benefits, I then became a card-carrying member of the ‘posture police’ with my own clients.

I’m still astonished at the immediate improvement it makes.

-Kim Chandler

My Reactions To This Week’s Peer Review Vids

Tara Hoenings – Fallin’ (Cover)

You have a sweet voice and an obvious passion for singing. I encourage you to keep singing and developing your voice, but I feel that pop R&B repertoire isn’t likely to be your natural stylistic ‘habitat’. I imagine you suiting something with a more of a folk influence instead. You sound a little congested & croaky at times in this video, just getting over a cold perhaps? Lastly, please avoid singing “hin and hout” for “in and out”.

Enrico Imbalzano – Bridge over Troubled Water (Cover)

This was a good song choice and key choice for your voice type. The dynamic variation helped express the emotions in this song, particularly in the verses. In my opinion, it would have been better to stand and sing as your access to the support required for the higher, stronger notes would have been easier. Also, the vowel shapes you’re going for aren’t optimal in your belt range. I suggest you work with a coach on this.

If you’re signed up to VoiceCouncil’s Peer-Review, you’ll be receiving unique coaching feedback from Kim for the next 4 weeks. You can sign up here

Kim Chandler is one of the UK’s top contemporary vocal coaches. She has a busy private studio in London and her clients include well-known artists, artists in development, professional singers and other vocal coaches. She is a director of the British Voice Association, and is the creator of the popular “Funky ‘n Fun” vocal training series.

Kim’s Voice Cross Trainer App is available now. It’s based on her popular “Funky ‘n Fun” vocal training series.

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  • Kim Chandler

    I’d like to acknowledge the influence of my friend & colleague Dane Chalfin for encouraging & educating me in the area of beneficial postural alignment in singing. Thanks mate :-)