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Top 3 Remedies for a Dry Throat When Singing


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Summer is almost upon us. It's getting hot and dry out there, and so is your throat when inhaling between phrases during singing. Though counterintuitive, avoid drinking any water, tea, or alcoholic beverages.

Here are the top three things to really help you out (in this order):

1. Pineapple juice (one glass alone carries you through a whole set)

2. Strawberry juice

3. Honey (raw, not mixed in tea or something)

 

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I make a real strong tea out of grated ginger and water, that’s all. Bring to a boil, strain and refrigerate. It works great to clear throat and vocal cords.

I also use honey as a gargle.  Buckwheat honey is the best.  

Pineapple juice sounds like a good suggestion too  

cheers 

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Curious as to  the source of these "top three remedies"? Also curious as to why you shouldn't drink water? I worked for a major opera company for 18 years (in charge of the technical areas) and can assure you that the singers drank huge amounts of water. One of the assistant stage managers' jobs was always keeping a large supply of bottled water available for them during rehearsals and performances. These singers have to compete with a full orchestra and fill a 3000 seat theatre with their voice without amplification. I don't know... perhaps that makes it different?

Edited by Boyd
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19 minutes ago, Boyd said:

Curious as to  the source of these "top three remedies"? Also curious as to why you shouldn't drink water? I worked for a major opera company for 18 years (in charge of the technical areas) and can assure you that the singers drank huge amounts of water. One of the assistant stage managers' jobs was always keeping a large supply of bottled water available for them during rehearsals and performances. These singers have to compete with a full orchestra and fill a 3000 seat theatre with their voice and no amplification. I don't know... perhaps that makes it different?

On a related note, I was wondering what Pavarotti used? I recall him have big battles with the chords. it seemed to always make the music news when he had to cancel shows.

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Don't know, but I have a related funny story.... I was the Director of Design and Technology for the Opera Company of Philadelphia which was known as "Pavarotti's Company" for many years since they hosted his vocal competition and featured him in their shows. A coupl years after my boss (Robert Driver) became the new General Manager of the company, Pavarotti cancelled his appearance in "La Boheme" at the last minute, citing health issues and the need to go to a "fat farm" (seriously). This was a financial disaster for the company, with everyone cancelling their tickets without him. In reaction, Robert cancelled the whole Pavarotti competition, citing the huge costs involved in catering to his whims. This was very well-received by the business community, since the company was on the brink of bankruptcy. The Philadelphia Inquirer actually ran a front page headline that said "Chow, Baby" with an un-flattering picture of the overweight Pavarotti. This was in 1992, just before I was hired to take over the technical departments (which were all way over budget) with a mandate for "technical reform". The whole transition was a huge success and we had many good years after (although there were understandably some sour grapes and related lawsuits).

OK, sorry for the off-topic diversion. I never worked with Pavarotti myself, but heard all the stories, some are quite outrageous. 😂

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22 hours ago, Boyd said:

Don't know, but I have a related funny story.... I was the Director of Design and Technology for the Opera Company of Philadelphia which was known as "Pavarotti's Company" for many years since they hosted his vocal competition and featured him in their shows. A coupl years after my boss (Robert Driver) became the new General Manager of the company, Pavarotti cancelled his appearance in "La Boheme" at the last minute, citing health issues and the need to go to a "fat farm" (seriously). This was a financial disaster for the company, with everyone cancelling their tickets without him. In reaction, Robert cancelled the whole Pavarotti competition, citing the huge costs involved in catering to his whims. This was very well-received by the business community, since the company was on the brink of bankruptcy. The Philadelphia Inquirer actually ran a front page headline that said "Chow, Baby" with an un-flattering picture of the overweight Pavarotti. This was in 1992, just before I was hired to take over the technical departments (which were all way over budget) with a mandate for "technical reform". The whole transition was a huge success and we had many good years after (although there were understandably some sour grapes and related lawsuits).

OK, sorry for the off-topic diversion. I never worked with Pavarotti myself, but heard all the stories, some are quite outrageous. 😂

I had a funny thought just a few minutes ago. I watched the movie Crazy Heart a few minutes ago. Jeff Bridges playing a washed up drunk ex-Country Rocker type playing in dives and bowling alleys. The thought of your man having to go through that sort of tour struck me as amusing.

4 minutes ago, fortyearspickn said:

Hot tea with honey.  

This reminded me of an odd one-off product that seemed to help me in the past. With my vocals, I should have never stopped. Just sort of forgot about it. There was this one tea - "Throat Coat" by a company calling themselves Traditional Medicinals. It's lead flavor bar on the package says "LEMON ECHINACLEA". It's got this creepy coating sensation and does seems to work, especially with added honey. I'd much rather drink a standard issue tea, though. That said, I should try it again.

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Crazy Heart ...   you don't want to confuse the half filled plastic milk container with the yellowish liquid for your  bourbon bottle while driving your Suburban through the desert South West. 

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I used to sing my lead vocals in a song-booth with a lit candle (so that the reduced oxygen would leave me a tooth dizzy and of course for the atmosphere).

1 strong beer to take the top of the excitement

a cup of coffee with milk to keep the vocal-cords warm

and a burning cigarette for the groove and to create a little haziness around the situation. . 

Nowadays only the coffee/milk is left, but I never really warm up like the 20 minutes of singing cover-songs when younger. 

Live I kind warmed up too - had a throat-exercise or three.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Could be here-and-there-problems if the gig the day before had been too wild - and that high A just had to be reached about 5 times during the sets. 

                                                                                Thanx for good advice - lots of tricks out there. Guess one can't know too many. Anyone heard of raw eggs btw. . 

Edited by E-minor7
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Since I posted a few days ago that I used to drink coffee during outdoor or indoor gigs, but switched some years back to water…I have reassessed what I wrote.  Maybe because this posting string put the subject in my mind and because in Chicagoland this past week it’s been exceptionally humid besides being it’s normal warm for this time of year.  Because of the excessive humidity during my outdoor gigs this past week, I at times switched back to coffee as  coffee is known in a pinch to open up one’s airways a bit.  And, with the excessive humidity, and little or no wind, coffee served the purpose of helping me to better breathe by its ability to open my airways a bit more in the heat and humidity.  So, though I’ll continue for the most part and stick to water, depending if there is a very high humidity and heat factor with little wind during my outdoor summer gigging , I’ll probably at times switch to coffee to help open my airways a bit when needed from  high humidity.

QM aka “Jazzman” Jeff

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