The method of voice production taught within the Singing Lessons offered at The JAM Singing School, is so natural and flexible in its basis, that it can be used for any style of music including rock, pop, opera, jazz, blues, r&b, soul, classical, musical theatre and more. The singing technique is based on the Bel Canto approach which originated in Italy centuries ago. The voices that are developed with this technique have an individuality that sets them apart from many of the ‘stereotyped’ voices that one might hear in all the musical genres that are out there today. We are used to hearing the ‘pop’ voice and the ‘rock’ voice and the ‘operatic’ voice and so on and so forth. This is because many Singing Schools encourage their students to ‘imitate’ the voices of other singers within their favourite style of music, but this is unnatural and results in voices that sound boring and predictable, and also somewhat limited. While some singers can get away with ‘copying’ others, many can not, and this can lead to problems with the voice as it is being used in an unnatural way. Some of these problems can include nodules, tightness and pain in the throat, lack of power and volume, limited range and flexibility, hoarseness and breathiness. With the method that is taught in our Singing Lessons at The JAM Singing School, there is no ‘pop’ voice or ‘rock’ voice, and no ‘operatic’ voice, there is just…the voice!
While each voice that uses this technique sounds unique, there are also many similarities amongst the voices that use this method, such as a particular clarity, freedom, naturalness, open throated-ness and beauty. There are numerous examples within almost any musical genre of legendary singers that sing with a technique that is similar or the same to the one taught at The JAM Singing School, such as Luciano Pavarotti in opera, Freddie Mercury in rock and pop, Frank Sinatra, Ella Fitzgerald and Michael Buble in jazz and swing music. Some people might point out that Pavarotti has a much bigger voice than Freddie Mercury and so must be singing with a different ‘operatic’ technique, but for those of you who are not familiar with Pavarotti’s voice, he does not sound anything like the majority of opera singers we are used to hearing today, many of which have very throaty voices. (A lot of them sound like a cross between ‘Mr. Bean’ and ‘Kermit the Frog.’) Pavarotti’s voice is certainly bigger than Freddie Mercury’s, but this is because each voice is unique and some voices are bigger in size than others; it has nothing to do with technique. While different in size and individual tonal colour, both Freddie Mercury and Pavarotti’s voices share a similar clarity, freedom, naturalness, open-ness and beauty, whilst singing completely different styles of music.
Students at The JAM Singing School are taught to sing with their most natural voice possible which is always based on their speaking voice. As many people have an incorrectly produced speaking voice, this may need to be addressed too. Each voice is developed in a way that it is able to sing any style of music, without any artificial manipulation of the throat.
Within our Singing Classes students are taught:
- how and where to place their voice
- the most effective way of breathing
- correct diction
- the most natural mouth and lip formation for all vowels and consonants.
- the most natural tongue position for all vowels and consonants.
The JAM Singing School’s Singing Lessons aim to develop numerous qualities within the voice such as:
- freedom and flexibility of the larynx, jaw and tongue.
- a large vocal range
- easily produced power and strength
- precise tuning
- a natural, easy and attractive sound.
Once the student has grasped the fundamentals of the vocal technique, they are taught the various aspects of musicality and interpretation within their Singing Lessons, including:
- rhythms and tempi
- stylistic characteristics of different genres
- dynamics (soft and loud singing)
- legato and line
- rubati, portamenti, messe di voce and other musical effects
The last stage of a singer’s developmental journey lies with their emotional and spiritual connection to the music, everything else becomes just a vehicle for the delivery of their spiritual message. This is absolutely crucial to the singer having a convincing and powerful impact upon their audience. Obviously this is not so much taught to the student as it is awoken within them. But the Singing Lessons taught at The JAM Singing School are specifically designed to encourage and bring about this awakening as much as possible.
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