Voice Age

Posted by on 18 Aug 2016 | Tagged as: blog

A voice over job became available today:
Today we start castings for 11 voice over positions…
Type: TV / WEB / RADIO commercial

Category: International car company

Required: We are looking for a male and female voice over actors for one of Europe’s largest car companies new TV/ WEB/ Radio commercial. Language: English (US). Voice age : 18-24(2 positions) and 30-45(3 positions)
Spanish(1 position), Italian ( 2 positions) , Russian (3 position)

Payment: Paid job

Expiring: 28th of September, 2016

This was what was requested:
“English (US). Voice age : 18-24(2 positions) and 30-45(3 positions)

About the age of voices.
When I was about 14 yrs old my voice changed from a fine boy soprano to a very deep bass.
At age 16, I began work as an announcer-DJ at the local radio station.
This June, just past, I turned 66 years old.
From 14 to now, my voice has sounded virtually the same unless I try to sound younger or older.

Physical age doesn’t change voice quality or sound necessarily.
Some very old women that I know have very child like voices.
One is a voice talent who does children voices exclusively.

Walter Brennan never sounded young after an accident changed his voice timber.
“Throughout his career, Brennan was frequently called upon to play characters considerably older than he was in real life.
The loss of many teeth in a 1932 accident, rapidly thinning hair, thin build, and unusual vocal intonations all made him seem older than he really was.   He used these features to great effect. In many of his film roles, Brennan wore dentures…”

Age of a voice?
That’s why they call them voice talents. At least those who can do different sounding voices.
But trying to make a voice sound what is perceived as a certain age of an adult, say over 16, is stupid.
I sound the same now as I did at age 16.
My point is, “Physical age doesn’t determine the sound of a voice.”


My Song Story

Posted by on 18 Mar 2016 | Tagged as: blog

My Song Story

Brendon Burchard, the Experts Academy guy says that a person’s story is very important in creating trust.

Okay, so then here is my singing story.

I was born in Santa Clara, Utah in 1950.
My parents both sang.
My father would soothe the cows temperament so that he could milk them.
(the cows took exception to my singing attempts while milking.)
My mother sang to entertain herself while working.
I Listened and learned.
We had an RCA Victrola in the living room with 78 and 45 rpm records and a radio.
I used it a lot and listened to the radio too.
The town I lived in had elementary school 1 through 6 grades.
With three teachers, 1 & 2, 3 & 4, and 5&6.
The 5th and 6th teacher was a man and the principle.
When I got to those grades it was taught by Arlo Hafen.
He said what one lacked in ability, one could compensate for with volume and gusto.
Everyone seemed to be musical.
His wife Ramona was my piano teacher.
We learned songs and sang for every occasion.
Church was one ward of the LDS faith.
We sang in Primary, Sunday School, Sacrament meeting, and other meetings.
Wednesday night was Mutual Improvement and the opening exercises always included song and song instruction and
plays with song were presented.
Every class group sang at Christmas, Easter, and on other occasions.
As a teenager, I even did a solo one evening of “Brother Can You Spare a Dime.”

I was a boy soprano.
And very good I think because people would turn around in church to listen to me and then tell me I was.
Once in a boys chorus, one of Arlo’s nephews (from a very musical family) said I was the best in the group.
He had a brother who had made a record with a group he was in.
And another brother with Downs Syndrome
He is the reason I don’t lead or direct music.
At 12, I was asked to direct the song in a meeting. Afterwards, this brother
informed me that I couldn’t lead. He was right. I couldn’t stay on the beat.
This boy was no dunce when it came to music.
Later in his life he attended the state school for the mentally challenged. While there he started a band.
He taught the other students to play the instruments and he lead them in some wonderful performances.

When I was 12 or 13, I was involved in a stake (a church term for a group of several wards-local units).
We were to perform in the St. George Pioneer Tabernacle at a stake conference.
(The Tabernacle had hosted the first Catholic Mass in St. George sung by the LDS ward choir under the direction of John Menzies MacFarlane, author of Far, Far Away On Judea’s Plains.)
Boys and girls from all the wards in the stake participated.
The director was a lady from the Gunlock Ward.
We had sung the song we were to perform through once and the director said someone sounded off.
We would sing it through again and she would listen and determine who was off.
We sang it again.
When done, all the boys around me pointed to me and said, “It’s Him! He’s off!”
The director said, “No, Jay was right on just two octaves below everybody else.”

And I had become a bass forever more.

St. George Tabernacle in the 1950s -1960s

Cultivating a good singing voice.

Posted by on 25 Apr 2013 | Tagged as: blog

 When I was growing up I heard my mother singing around the house and as she worked and she taught her children many songs that way and a love for singing. All four of us love to sing and two of us have been paid to sing. When she was young, she’d write the words to songs she liked in a notebook as there was no money for sheet music. Her younger brother and sisters were able to get some sheet music and even one brother, Jerome, had a one man band. I’ll talk more about him another time. Her mother played the organ and she had a professional cowboy singer cousin. But she said she couldn’t sing. However, last year shortly before she died at age 96, she would sing the songs she remembered to the nurses and all who visited her home.  Once I couldn’t remember the third or fourth line of a 1940s song so I asked her. “Get me started” she said and after I sang the first line she continued the song to the end for me thus helping me to learn the words.  There were times she’d sing me songs I’d never heard before that she remembered from her childhood.

Now my father used to whistle and sing while he worked and while he milked the cows. They were very calm and gentle listening to his voice. That didn’t work for me.

And the town I grew up in was a very musical bunch of people back to Swiss immigrant days when there was the Staheli Brass Band.  We sang in school, the principle teaching us songs, and each grade teacher too, but he said,  “What one lacks in quality, they can compensate for with gusto and volume.”  Many in my town played different instruments or sang. And in church, every age group would sing in groups or choirs.  Several young men even produced a LP record.

As a boy in the age group I was in , I sang soprano of course then. Once we sang “My Mother’s Prayer”.  My voice was golden and all around me said so.  Later after my voice changed, my first solo was “Brother Can You Spare a Dime.”  Then I went to high school and in English, the 10th, 11th, and 12th grades were combined and studied a different aspect of English in a different room each quarter. In my 11th grade, the last quarter was about poetry and verse, lyric poems and the like.  When we came to the section on writing ballads, the group I was assigned to wrote our ballad and had to sing it.  The guy who knew how to play the guitar was a senior and he suggested we sing it to the music of the Beetles song “Yellow Submarine”.  I’d never heard the song before, even though I worked at a radio station, so I didn’t sing with the group to well and with the pitch being so much higher than my bass voice, I sounded bad.  One of the guys listening said, “Beacham, you can’t sing.”

So when I enrolled at the junior college (Dixie) a year later, I signed up for voice lessons from one of the teachers, a lady named Roene DiFoire. She taught music theory and a fun class called Program Bureau. The Program Bureau went to schools and civic events to do programs and to high schools in several states as a recruiting tool for interesting future students in Dixie.  Mrs.D., as she was affectionately called, found talent and cultivated it among all the students she came in contact with. She loved the element of surprise and had me do my first solo for the group at a performance at a local elementary school.  She had me sing “Asleep in the Deep”. It is a deep bass song that her father used to sing. Another one was the “Big Bass Viol”. When I had my first big sing, it was for the “Utah State Fireman’s Association” convention at the Dixie High School Auditorium before a packed crowd. I was an instant hit.  You know, I don’t know if that boy from high school who’d said I couldn’t sing, ever heard me or not. But I guess that doesn’t matter much.  I just opened an email from someone wanting to buy one of my singing cds.  Mrs. D. died a few years back and now there is a center for the arts called the DiFiore Center named in her honor.

I also sang with the Acappella Choir at that college.

When at Brigham Young University, I sang in the Oakland Temple Pageant Chorus in Salt Lake City, duets with a fellow male student, in musical plays, and in the Opera Workshop, singing in two casts of Madame Butterfly and as a king in Amahl and the Night Visitors, and solos.

Have sung for years in church choirs.

Have sung at county fairs and the National Anthem at boxing matches.

I sang with my wife. I sang lead and she sang harmony. It sounded super.  I never got a recording of it.

Then I sang in a men’s chorus for 16 years after my wife died. One of the members, though now dead too, always said, “It hard to be sad when you are singing.”

Even Neil Diamond’s “Song Sung Blue” expresses this thought.

Have sung with a singer song writer and in chorus of musical plays.

Sung as a shepherd in Amahl and The Night Visitors in a community theater and in regional choirs and with other choirs and barbershop groups and quartets.

And have sung solo gigs around town.

And at reunions, family, college, singing groups.

The article talks about Karaoke and it’s value to cultivating a singing voice.  Amen. That’s right. I’ve done online Karaoke  for 6 or so years and have seen improvement in me and many others because its singing in a safe environment. And it’s fun.

I bought a singing course once called “Anyone Can Sing”. i haven’t looked at the book in years but may incorporate it in a course i might do someday.

A friend who used to sing Opera and with the Mormon Tabernacle Chior, said I perhaps ought to take more voice lessons. I can’t afford to. But I don’t think one really needs those to learn to sing well. More on that at a later date.

Well, my arms are tired from typing so I’m done for tonight. I’ll catch you another day.

(I was commenting on an article about voice instruction when I told my story here.  To read the article go to:  http://singingasong.net/?p=47

wordpress visitor