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What To Do When Your High Notes Go South

Screen Shot 2015-08-07 at 1.00.58 PMLet’s face it. It’s happened to everyone at some point. Even thinking of high notes can sometimes block the best of singers. We won’t even speak of the worst of singers who seem to specialize in “southern” high notes.

Here’s a plot to fix those wayward creatures.

1. Count all the notes in your song. At the very least there will be several hundred.

2. Now count all the high notes. Ah, but before that you will have to determine exactly which notes are the high ones. Once you have found them, mark them in red ink with a big circle.

Screen Shot 2015-08-07 at 1.02.02 PM3. Now hit those notes. Hmmm…that did not work very well did it? But if I practice hitting them enough?……. No?

4. OK.. Try this. Put reminders that the high notes are coming in the next bar.

That will give you fair warning!Screen Shot 2015-08-07 at 1.02.54 PM

Oh No! You did what?! What’s that big black thing in your throat?

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5. It’s better not to anticipate high notes.

By now probably you have realised that high notes are better when they are not singled out for special attention. In most cases they are a small part of the whole song. Your brain follows your instructions and your thoughts very well. Sadly, for obvious reasons, some instructions are better not followed. The brain doesn’t know the difference so be careful what you ask it.

6. Treat all your notes as an integral part of the melody and not as things to be singled out. They are much happier that way. Have you ever heard anyone speak and only practice one word of a sentence more than the others? Doubt it.

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7. High notes love to be part of the team. When you practice/worry/concentrate on what you perceive to be a problem or difficulty, your brain will think you want high notes to be a problem, and it will try to create that for you in the best way it can.  Treat your high notes are part of the team and your brain, voice and performance will be much happier.

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