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onewilyfool

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I haven't written about my gigs for a while, but I'm now playing about 3 times a week, for 1 1/2 hours at a pop, so, pretty regular. I can't get over how my playing and singing have improved over time. Nothing fancy, just steadier playing and more feeling with my singing. I think the practice of doing it in front of others has just been great. For example, when I practice singing at home I really don't put much volume or feeling into the practice, just repetition, singing in front of others I bring the volume and feeling each time. One thing I've noticed, as the muscle memory of the playing and singing gets more established, I don't really do the song the same way twice. I guess, each day, I allow the song to unfold as it unfolds, if you know what I mean. Before, I was slaved to one way to play and one way to sing, and, if I made the tiniest mistake I would tend to "freeze" and it would be hard to get back into the song. It is MUCH more relaxing to feel practiced enough to just relax into the song and let it happen. I've also learned to "relax" my voice in singing, and being able to slow down the pace when I feel the song speeding up too much. I'm thinking that these two things are a great way to practice, too. Relaxing the tension in my voice has given me a completely different voice, and I'm not so tired at the end of the session. Other things that have become much more relaxed for me is:

1. Eye contact with thwe audience, always made me think I would forget the words or chords....lol.

2. Singing and playing without watching my chording hand....lol...while I still glance down from time to time, especially when I move up the neck....but befor I had my eyes GLUED to the fret board, again, out of fear of making mistakes...lol

3. Sitting up straight and not collapsing my diaphram, and learning how to breathe deeply, and have enough breath to sing a long verse. Running out of breath for the last few words of a stanza is not a powerful way to sing...lol.

4. I was VERY shy when people would lay some "tips" on me, but now I'm seeing it as just a flow of gratitude. They are grateful for the music, I am grateful for being able to offer the music, a little dance of gratitude...it's all good

 

Look, I've really appreciated the forum support and advice I've received when I've posted these "gig" threads....so, thanks again

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As I have said before O Wily one You have more bottle than United Dairies!

 

More power to your elbow mate keep on giving the folk what they want

 

American Idle beckons

 

 

 

 

( spelling mistake entirely intentional.... ):)

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Running out of breath for the last few words of a stanza is not a powerful way to sing...

 

 

Haha - might have a point : 2 riders were approching - the wind began to h o w l. . .

 

I've seen some of your stuff – Nobody Loves You a J. Joplin tune amongst others.You are on the bike and goin'. Don't forget to remember this over all fact : Having a troubadour like you sitting in the sofa of a bar, would be regarded as an exotic pearl by most grooving guests. And though not everyone listens closely all the time, it creates an ambiance and vibe that reverberates out in the room and general situation. If somebody wants peace to debate, let them find their own corner. A low discrete live sound is better than most radios, , , anyway for the hour or 2 it takes place.

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Haha - might have a point : 2 riders were approching - the wind began to h o w l. . .

 

I've seen some of your stuff – Nobody Loves You a J. Joplin tune amongst others.You are on the bike and goin'. Don't forget to remember this over all fact : Having a troubadour like you sitting in the sofa of a bar, would be regarded as an exotic pearl by most grooving guests. And though not everyone listens closely all the time, it creates an ambiance and vibe that reverberates out in the room and general situation. If somebody wants peace to debate, let them find their own corner. A low discrete live sound is better than most radios, , , anyway for the hour or 2 it takes place.

I hear you E minor....that's what I get too....just adds a ambiance that can be enjoyed by one and all....even me!!!

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Just as an aside.....Saturday, I got a $5 tip which was over the top I thought....lol....and when my wife arrived she came up grabbed the five and bought a coffee and pastry....so, easy come, easy go...lol...by the way you coffee house players, do you put out a hat or tip jar???....What is proper etiquette???? I'm still shy about it all......lol

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tip jars should be approved by the venue. if the venue is not paying you to play, and there is no cover charge for the audience, then a tip jar is generally standard and venues should have no problem with it. For quieter gigs, I think mentioning that you have a tip jar to the audience is sufficient. For the rowdy bar shows passing the tip jar is necessary, but I find passing the tip jar at quiet shows makes the audience feel uncomfortable. If someone does pass the tip jar for you, you should make sure that they are kind-hearted and respectful. They should move quickly. I have seen some pretty aggressive tip jar passers in Nashville....

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I always put out a tip jar, if they approve. It's a big plastic goblet I got at Wal Mart for $5 or so. I have a sign on it that reads "Alms for the Poor." Got to keep it lighthearted and easy-going. I learned long ago that I don't have the stage presence of Cash.......Congrats on your playing. The more you play the more relaxed you get. Don't sweat making a mistake now-and-then. When I forget a lyric I just work "and I don't remember the words" into the melody. People laugh and sometimes give me the line I've forgotten.......Sounds like you are making good contact with the crowd. The main thing is to have fun.

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I bring my wife to my live gigs and just look at her when I forget a lyric and she mouths the words for me. Like my own personal teleprompter/groupie. [biggrin]

 

That's a great list OWF. I agree with all of it. I would add to the gratitude part by saying, I had to learn to take praise. People would praise me after I had done what I thought was a lousy job. In my mind I had screwed up a verse and hit a wrong note and I'd respond that I wasn't very good. But the praise is from their perspective and should be acknowleged as such or you belittle their appreciation. So I've learned to smile and say thank you. It is a little thing, like eye contact with your audience (even when you can't see them), but it means a lot to your performance and your confidence.

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I got quite chuckle on that one. B)

I did too....My wife can't carry a tune in her purse, so no support there. I like that "I forgot the words" bit...I think I will use that one....lol....gotta keep it light or it ain't worth it...thanks for the kind advice guys!!

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