According to Ingo Titze, director of the National Center for Voice and Speech at the University of Utah, it would be nearly impossible to create an instrument that could elongate and vibrate exactly the way human vocal cords do.
– 19th April 2019
Breathing is real. We can literally do it anywhere, anyway and every minute of the day. Everyone breathes.
The art of Breathing is that it gives the body energy and releases toxins (Carbon Dioxide) and when you inhale gives you mother Oxygen the goddess of our life. The fabric of existence.
Now, we all know how to breath (or you wouldn’t be sat here reading this blog)! But the question we could ask ourselves is …Are we breathing enough?
There are many different ways and techniques to breathing. For example – Rib-stretch breathing, numbered breathing, Lions breath, Alternate nostril breathing, Buteyko breathing method and many more! Which over time I will blog deeper into.
‘Diaphragmatic breathing’ is used mostly for singers in respect of its technique and design inflow and outflow of air. The diaphragm is a large, dome-shaped muscle located at the base of the lungs. It is the pump, that fills your lungs with air, and creates pressure necessary for speaking and singing.
Thoughtful diaphragmatic breathing can help you use the diaphragm and other muscles correctly, especially when singing. And the trick is…. Breathe to expand — not to raise.
How to breathe from your Diaphragm- give it a try!
Relax your shoulders.
Put one hand on your chest and one hand on your stomach.
Breathe in through your nose for about two/three seconds. You should experience the air moving through your nostrils into your abdomen, into your feet making your stomach expand.
*During this, make sure your stomach is moving outward while your chest remains relatively still.
Purse your lips (as if you’re about to sing through a straw), press gently on your stomach, and exhale slowly bringing the belly back to its natural state.
*TIP: I also recommend to my students to put one hand on their rib cage in a fisted position. This makes the student aware of the 360 motion of the body and breath. Experiencing the feeling of their cage expanding with the belly doing the same movement.
AND… It may take TIME to get good at this technique, so don’t be ‘mount doomed’ if you can’t get it straight away.
See it as a RITUAL and practice it. Being mindful of your breath whilst walking, dancing, doing yoga, meditating, smelling fresh flowers, cooking are great ways to reap the benefits it will give you!
Breathing properly empowers your voice and makes it stronger and fuller- easier to get around. There are also beautiful body and soul benefits of deep breathing
Lowers stress and harmful effects of stress hormone cortisol in the body
Helps the body cope better with anxiety
Natural pain killer
Increases energy level
Improves blood flow + helps to lower your blood pressure
It improves your core muscle stability
If we can remind our mind and body to become more aware and balanced with our breath. We can consciously learn to breathe properly and naturally for singing.
Try it for yourself beautiful ones x
– 30th May 2020
I have been consuming these beauties for over 10 years! & man they are good!
These are the closest to natural I have found that benefit me the most. Containing three main ingredients;
All ingredients holding such powerful healing properties for our Voice and throat. & they contain NO Benzocaine – which in the long run can do you more damage (and in most throat sweets)!
I have found in the summer season, there are more allergy’s flairing up within my students and maybe more ice-cream and dairy products consumed 😁🌞🍦 – So Vocalzone are the perfect answer for clearing the folds from mucus before a lesson or just throughout the day!
I recommend all my students get to a local pharmacy and buy yourself some Vocalzone and keep that voice relieved and clear 🖤
+ they are Vegan! ❤️
– 29th May 2020
Buy for yourself or a friend! Perfect gift for someone who isn’t feeling their best 💜
፧ Have you ‘over done it’ Vocally?
፧ Is your vocal schedule full on and you are in need of some soothing natural remedies?
፧ Suffering from a sore throat?
፧ Bacterial infection?
፧ Dry cough?
Vocals with Gia has the perfect ‘takeaway box’ of NATURAL & ORGANIC products, tools and recipes to help with soothing, cleaning and healing for a more comfortable Voice now and in the future… No hassle & delivered to you!
Inside the Magic Box ✨
🌬 Steam Inhaler
🧘🏻♂️ 1 box of Yogi Tea “Throat Comfort”
🍵 200g Spriulina Powder
🐝 Jar of Organic Honey
🍯 Wooden Honey Dipper
🍋 1 x fresh or juiced Lemon
🦊 1 x Organic Ginger or powdered Ginger
🦁 100g Turmeric Powder
🌊 Pouch of Sea Salt
💼 FairTrade printed ‘Vocals with Gia’ tote cotton bag
🗣 Paper Straws (for light vocal healing warmups)
📖 Recipes using these main ingredients
🌍 Worldwide delivery
🛍 Sold at St Helier Studio
– 22nd May 2020
In truth – Foods containing large amounts of water are excellent hydration-conscious snacks and food for your voice!
So really whatever you have in the vegetable basket at the time works, as longs as it is a fresh and edible!
✨Certain spices help with vocal health… one of them being Turmeric!!! This godly spice contains anti inflammatory as well as antibacterial properties and therefore keeps your throat clear of any nasty bacteria.
🍋 Lemons and limes are great natural cleansers of excess mucus and help get rid of that nasty gooey stuff, if you have over indulged in dairy over the weekend!
🌱Spirulina is fantastic, but not always in everyones kitchen cupboards!
This vibrant algae, is a powerful antioxidant and holds anti-anflammatory properties also.
Spirulina is known to improve symptoms of allergic rhinitis which is very difficult to deal with when a runny or stuffy nose, sneezing, red, itchy, and watery eyes, and swelling around the eyes gets in the way of being vocal or your singing lesson!
🗣 RECIPE 🗣
🥬2 handfuls of Spinach
🍏half an Apple
🍐half a Pear
🦊lots of Ginger
🔥1 tsp Turmeric
🍋half a Lemon/Lime
🌱1-2 tsp Spirulina Powder (if you have)
& BLEND!! The great thing about smoothies and health bowls is that you can take things out or add things in!
Even, double or triple the recipe, freeze and keep for the next day 🙌🏼
Being healthy is sO important, if you want clarity within your voice. Start your vocal healing ritual today!
– 13th May 2020
The truth is, it may not feel as though you are vocally ‘going for it’ but scientifically your chords are still working just as hard!
Humming at low volumes is a smoother more relaxing way to warm up one could say. Especially if you have a full-on vocal schedule. This way putting less strain on the vocals folds!
Humming involves the mouth remaining closed, so therefore using less of your anatomy to produce sound and resonance, but still putting the larynx and vocal folds to work.
One of the great things about humming is that the tongue and other vowel/consonant articulators are resting, or should be. You can focus entirely on the buzz sensation and on the relaxation of any unnecessary tensions.
Another benefit is for example, if you are ever struggling on a certain part of a song, and have found your voice getting very tired whilst practising…
Swap the lyrics to a ‘Humm’ keep the same melody and pitch and do this in your warmup!
Repetition is good for muscle memory and if you do not want to strain your voice whilst practicing, this may be the perfect tool for you for getting that perfect lick or trill you were after!
A few TIPS and advice to remember whilst using this warm up method –
🗣Do not force or push air out too much
🗣Gentle chewing while humming – as if you have gum in your mouth, can be useful for loosening up any tensions
🗣Try not to hum always on lower pitches than your natural voice, as this may cause strain
🗣Keep the back of the neck long and the space in the back of the mouth wide
🗣Relax the jaw, face and lips
🗣Keep the tongue forward and down, the soft palate lifted, the throat wide and the sound moving forward
Practice Humming on short scales, slides up and down or whatever suits you at the time. Feel that buzzing feeling, your voice will be very thankful!
– 12th May 2020
Get yourself a cup of tea, your tablet, phone or laptop and have a read of this thread on helpful tips for finding a whole different realm, for new music. Automatically fishing creative tasty albums and songs, that heal your divine soul ✨
There are many different platforms out there for listening to music. Spotify, youtube, amazon music, iTunes etc.
For me I am a lover of Youtube as I like to see the visuals too!
Here are some juicy tips I made today, for YOUTUBE in particular;
Use this! What a fantastic way to find new music, being recommended bands and artists that sound a-like to the people who already inspire you!
For those rainy days, look up your favourite album on youtube and see what recommendations you get from it, you may be very surprised!
Now you have a little more time on your hands. Make some playlists! I have many titled playlists like – car, Sunday, roots, cleaning, Jazz hop, garden swing, dancing, wooden chill, sing to soul, nature sounds, samples etc..
All of which I use like a library or filing cabernet. Sectioning my music into different environments for my chosen ‘mood’ for listening.
Making playlists becomes very organised and is a nice way of keeping your taste and genres colourful.
AUTO PLAY – Turn auto- play ON!
This also works with your recommendations and especially when driving for example, a great way to avoid empty spaces if you are not listening from a playlist. Also automatically works with your listening algorithm.
LIVE STUDIO SESSIONS
KEXP, SOFA SOUNDS, NPR TINY DESK to name a few. Beautiful live performances overflowing with inspiring sounds.
Live radio is also a favourite of mine. Youtube caterers for all different tastes when it comes to radio so have some fun with finding a live station and genre that suits you.
SUBSCRIBING OR FOLLOWING
When listening to your favourite music check out the channel of the video and see what they have to offer! Subscribing and following the record Label is another way of widening your scope.
Enjoy the Journey ✌🏼💚
– 5th May 2020
Get active!! Running, cycling and especially walking (personally for me) has significantly widened my music taste!
Solo activity with music puts your mind in a different place and becomes a matter of songs, not miles or minutes.
The Centre of Research states that “The lyrics or catchy rhythm of motivational music inspires you to exercise longer or work harder during your exercise routine “.
And that is totally true for me, at times I do not want my 5 mile walk to end, and find myself with sore feet when I get home having walked for much longer than expected!
The conscious feeling of strolling alone with headphones on has made me appreciate music and the pleasure it can gift us. There is a massive wide range of eclectic sounds available for us on the magic web..
Recently, with lots more time on my hands during isolation – time for healing and walking bare foot on soil and sand.
New music has magically flown into my ears and blown me off my feet! I have smiled, cried, danced, slowed down and taken a big breath. Sometimes not believing what I was hearing!
Each journey often having found awesome new music that I can do nothing more than repeat repeat repeat, and sing to!
By exploring music on a running platform not just in your music library – you are opening your ears to delightful opportunities for your heart and soul.
– 2nd May 2020
All three have really helped me over the last couple of weeks. It is wonderful to have more time to do such deep amazing healing work with my voice!
I have fund myself singing more with Nature. Especially when in the woods every morning, less people more space to breath on my own. Harmonising my sound with the birds, trees and occasionally with the dog 😂
It is also great practicing singing/breath work with a mask on I have found 😷 Facial masks allow one to become mindful of air flow and breath as it is very obvious when breathing in and out! Tap in and feel your breath next time you are wearing one! Can you notice any habits and how are you controlling it?
During this epidemic it is important for us to keep hydrated with hot drinks. My favourite is the one I used on this post. Honey, lemon, ginger, orange peel & fennel (if you wish). Green tea is nice to add too!
*Quick tip, always use a straw (sustainable metal or bamboo, even better!) when drinking Lemon, as very acidic for your teeth.
Of course there are lots of other ways to care for our voice, but these definitely can be used for everyday use!
– 14th April 2020
I have been busy with online Lessons & it has been awesome!!
I am feeling very thankful for our easy access to WiFi to resume working in these hard times..
On this current journey we are adapting to change and making the most of what the digital world can offer us.
We all need change, to grow and appreciate what we can and can’t do so easily ✨
Most of all, it’s a great feeling to connect with you all from afar, expressing ourselves through our Voice.
SINGING is healing!
– 28th March 2020
– 1st April 2020
Thank you Alastair for joining me (and singing in a room full of people for the first time again, since primary school)!
You were so brave and I believe the fear has softened 🙌🏻 Now to focus on more live performances!
Practice makes perfect they say.. ✨
Singing rids stagnant energy and ultimately provides pain relief, stress relief and improves several biological markers. It is a cathartic activity that triggers our internal endocrine system
Over time I have really witnessed how Singing is a mood lifter & anti depressant with no side effects!
I love the study led by Tom Shakespeare, a professor of disability studies at the University of East Anglia.
It began in a psychiatric hospital, but was then moved into the community. At the time of the study in 2015, about 120 people were participating in four different 90-minute singing workshops each week.
The workshops were free, and anybody can join.
During the study, about two thirds of the participants were being treated for a mental health problem.
Shakespeare’s outcome of the experiment was…
“The combination of singing and social engagement produced a feeling of belonging and wellbeing that often lasted for more than a day and, as a weekly engagement, gave ongoing structure, support and contact that keep (the participants) at a higher level of functionality and their moods better than they would be without.
More specifically, participants explained that singing was, for instance, a form of communication that was safe, that it enabled them to express emotions in a supported environment and communicate in a socially unthreatening way. For many who had a history of social anxiety, this was highly valued and the majority of interviewees reported a significant improvement in social skills and confidence.”
☝️And it is not news to health professionals that mental & physical health are intimately linked.
– 12th March 2020
According to research conducted at the University of Frankfurt, singing boosts the immune system.
The study included testing professional choir members’ blood before and after a hour-long rehearsal singing Mozart’s “Requiem”. 💉
The researchers noticed that in most cases, the amount of proteins in the immune system that function as antibodies, known as Immunoglobulin A, were significantly higher immediately after the rehearsal!
The same increases were not observed after the choir members passively listened to music…
Your passion for singing could lead you to incredible benefits in your physical, emotional, and social health! 🤲🏻
Tried and tested by myself and many other researches and singers 🙌🏻
– 5th March 2020
– 1st March 2020
If you want inspiration as a young flowering vocalist, regardless of your genre, you must feast yours eyes on the West End. It will teach you that anything is possible!
If you are interested in learning vocals contact me for more information.. 🗣
Being musically vocal is nourishing, creative and a remedy for the Soul 🙌🏻
When teaching I concentrate on good vocal technique and additionally incorporate techniques that benefit each students individual need to release, mend and heal blockages in the throat.
Singing is vulnerable! Past trauma, confidence issues and swallowed emotions can be stored in our voice box. In some cases I have helped release trauma from students that has taken over 40+ years to unchain. The relief and emotion that is discharged from these awakenings are powerful and truly liberating ✨
Singing and music allows one to uproot and detach tension and pain from our body’s. Over time harmonizing and balancing vibrations that feed our muscle memory and energetic effectiveness.
Stimulating beneficial changes in brain waves 🧠〰️
Tears, cheers, screams, yelps, crying, cackles, belly laughs – you name it, we journey through it all.
Singing IS Medicine 🎶
Start your Journey today… ✨
– 27th February 2020
8 years ago I ditched sugar and swapped it for Honey! Now I use the amazing natural phenomenon in my Tea, porridge, home cooked dinners and of course on pancakes!
Refined sugars are not as benefitting and don’t taste as good!
The benefits for YOU & your Voice are;
– anti inflammatory
– anti bacterial/fungal/viral
– reduces dry cough & throat infections
– relives asthma symptons
– smoothens vocal pressure on chords
– gives you energy, lessening vocal fatigue
– natural probiotic gel coats vocal folds giving much needed everyday moisture!
Vocalists don’t forget to indulge yourself with a daily treat of good quality organic nectar! Whether it be in your morning breakfast tea or a spoonful of love in the day! Keeping your voice clean, well conditioned and healthful is the positive way forward ✨
– 25th February 2020
The Sun is shining for us all
Don’t forget the perfect gift to you is YOU!
Singing is empowering and the process allows are body and minds to let go of everything and concentrate on the present moment.
Nourishing for the Soul, balances Anxieties and establishes your confidence to take you forward to greater fulfilment.
Slots available during the week for Singing lessons, get in touch today x
– 14th February 2020
– 10th February 2020
Leo moon also referred to by some, the ‘Storm Moon’.. Beautiful how mother nature and father sky work in unison so beautifully together.
Now at waning gibbous phase for the next several days, rejoice in the energetic crazy passionate weather storm and keep smiling at the Moon 💛
It is so Important to stretch and relax the muscles before we sing. As you would before a run or lifting weights..
Solo voice care is essential for all flowering vocalists, as well as your weekly lessons.
And can be easily practiced anywhere!
The benefits are endless…
🗣removes excess mucus
🗣reduces risks of injury
🗣widens your range
🗣smoothens your passagio
🗣develops your mix
🗣fuels your muscle memory
🗣strengthens transitions throughout your range.
Singing is good for the soul, start your journey today
– 28th Jan 2020