Superior Singing Method – Super 8-week singing course!

Would you like to sing better?

The voice has been one of my main tools for going on twenty years now. Since I found the Superior Singing Method, I am finally using specific tools to make my voice more stable, more robust and more reliable.

I always loved to sing. But, I was shy, and very soft-spoken. When I was about 23 years old, I had a major realisation: Whenever I tried to make my voice more emphatic, I ended up sounding angry. Also, if I was stressed, I would notice a whirring or ringing in my ears.

This is major, people! In order to move in this world, you have to make yourself heard and also listen to others.

A little music a lot of the time

My steps into music have been small but steady. Although I picked up the bass and played in an Ottawa band called PLANK, I knew that I didn’t want to be a professional musician (even if I had the talent snort!) Having watched a few friends “make it”, I saw the entertainment business as a stressful, uncertain place where drug and alcohol misuse was rife and from which artists could be spit out, broke and broken, at any time. No, I knew myself even then that I do NOT have the character for that sort of thing. I am way too sensitive. I used my brains, studied at Uni, kept my nose to the grindstone…but still managed a massive social life and huge enjoyment of music.

When I was in London, I got into electronic music, specifically hard house and late-90’s trance. I helped out on two promotions (Trinity at the Chunnel Club and Fahrenhite at The Soundshaft behind Heaven) doing the VIP list, taking people’s cash, helping the dj’s get into a packed club at 4AM…it was super fun, I didn’t sleep a Saturday night in over a year.

Singing and strumming

When I decided to stop all that nonsense, (haha), I bought an acoustic guitar and started doing open mics. My first forays into recording were weird, to say the least. Hearing your own voice recorded is extremely strange and basically incredibly HUMBLING. You realise that you don’t sound that good at all. OOOOOOOOOHHHHHHHH SHIT. How I wish that I had found the Superior Singing Method back then!

When I was in NYC in about 2001, I got this tattoo on my finger. Like that string you tie around your finger to remind you of something? This was to remind me to heal my voice.

Well, I kept bumbling along. During my yoga teacher training, I studied and practised mantra. I sought a singing teacher. But, it’s hard to find a singing teacher when you’re no longer in a place like London where modern music is celebrated.

Finally, I found the Superior Singing Method. From the first week I started to see improvements. This course is amazing. It is not expensive, you can do it from home at a convenient time and the teacher, Aaron Anastasi, is a great motivator. (He is also a life coach).

Invest in your voice, invest in yourself

A calm, beautiful, stable voice is a gift to yourself and to others. Here is my speaking voice. I also do some voiceover work 😉

My home music studio.

My home music studio is where I make music, mix music, study UX, write, create and surf. I use Ableton for production and Traktor for mixing. I was dj-ing last week, with the black lights on, and thought it worthy of a photo.

an image of a home recording studio.

A clever Facebook friend pointed on that dodgy D key on the synth. Actually, the keyboard is fine, there was just a power cable hanging down. The synth in my home music studio, btw, is an AKAI MINIAK Virtual Analog Synth. I bought it second-hand this summer. I don’t adore the presets, but I like to play with a hardware synth when I get tired of looking at the screen.

The MIDI controller (below the iMac) is an Arturia MINILAB. I really love Arturia products for the home recording studio! So much so that my soundcard is also Arturia (the AudioFuse) and I have their software synths Pigments and Analog Lab.

A long trip through home recording

I have been playing around with production for a long time now. My first foray into Digital Audio Workstations (DAW) was on a course at Morley College in London. That was back in 1998! We used Cubase on Atari, in a dusty basement. Both the course and the concept were cool enough to invest in a big tower computer with a built-in sound card that occupied two slots of the motherboard BUS. I bought Cubase and tried to produce, but alas, I was always more drawn to composition on a guitar. My musicality and my songwriting developed nicely by learning guitar and training my voice. I never fully stopped playing with production, but nor did I ever fully embrace it.

Apple products called me back in 2001, and I invested in Logic on a PowerBook. Again, I tried, and made some productions, but was never fully invested. I still loved playing the guitar, doing gigs and open mics, meeting musicians. Truly, the solitude of the production studio goes against my grain. I am a very sociable person and my dearest wish is to find a production partner! Alas, so far this escapes me.

Ableton Live

I started using Ableton Live in 2009. The prevalent advice is “don’t change DAW”, so I stick with Ableton even though I hate most of the presets! I did a mixing course with Miguel Alsem at the Universidad de Alicante. This helped me a little, and having a producer boyfriend for a few months did too. So, I have lots of little things recorded (and taking up disc space!), but tend to “release” very little.

But, I keep on playing! My early Christmas gift to myself was an upgrade to Ableton 11 and the aforementioned Pigments software synth. Maybe I will finally pull all of this together and make those guitar tracks translate into the DAW and come alive!

u-he Diva software synth on sale

That’s the reddit post I found, and here is the link itself: https://www.native-instruments.com/en/specials/komplete/u-he-offer-2020/diva-pricing/

I had been trialling the DIVA synth since I read about on another Reddit thread. The demo version has all the sounds, but it gives some random crackle every now and then.

With the Arturia MiniLAB already onboard, and the Ableton native sounds, the bass sounds I wanted were still proving elusive. For my yoga and meditation music, I want warm, organic, non-intrusive sounds.

The native Ableton stuff is all way to techno for what I am after. Arturia has some great sounds, but my CPU maxes out if I put more than one Arturia VST on a track. So, I was getting stuck.

Always thinking of the yogi trying to chill the heck out, I decided to invest in the Diva.. Music production for yoga had to be very sensitive as you must understand the relaxation process in itself, how the brain calms down, how the breathing rate slows, how the heart beat becomes less variable, and compose accordingly.

Anyway, I am super happy to have the Diva on board now. Back to the DAW. Bye!

Rachel