I had the opportunity to go out in town last night and enjoy one of the many free concerts being held during the summer.
I LOVE hearing live performances – by that I mean people singing live and playing accompanying instruments. The band we saw was great; they performed recent songs from the charts as well as some classics that we all know and love. The group comprised two lead singers – a male and a female, two backing singers and the musicians.
Both singers last night were fabulous; the young girl in particular had a fantastic voice. My heart was in my mouth when they band played the opening bars of “Rolling in the Deep” by Adele. It’s a song people love to sing but usually “murder” when they try to hit the first big note of the chorus. Not so this girl – she was spot on and pitch perfect; I know so because my toes stayed flat in my shoes rather than bunched up (my automatic reflex when someone hits a bum note).
Could her performance have been better? I´ve just said she was pitch perfect so you might surmise I’m intimating the band were perhaps not up to scratch or the backing singers were a weak link. Not so! However, the young girl singer could have taken her performance to a whole new level if her diction had been better.
Anyone can learn the words to a song….eventually. It will take on a whole new meaning though if you pronounce the words correctly. Precise pronunciation will enable you to convey the right emotion and boy; this is a song full of it! Starting with that familiar tub thumping drum beat, the first line of “Rolling in the Deep” is “There’s a fire, starting in my heart, Reaching a fever pitch and it’s bringing me out the dark”. Powerful words that promise a powerful song! Even though this performer could really sing I didn’t catch a single word of those first two lines, so for me the song started with a “fizzle” rather than a “bang”.
Finally, I must say “hats off” to anyone who takes on the challenge of singing a song in foreign language as this girl did. It isn’t easy, however much you know and love a song. My daughter once entered a competition where she had to sing in Spanish and she had to learn “Anything for you” by Gloria Estefan. Translated it’s “No te olivdare” and we literally had to break it down phonetically so she could sing the song and be understood by the audience. Whilst she didn’t win the competition the Spanish judges and Spanish audience appreciated her efforts.
It really is worth working on good pronunciation to enhance your performance – especially if you are talented at what you do! And if you get stuck… I can help you!