Week 1: Back in the Chair Why to Take Singing Lessons
It’s been a while, Zukoids! And I’m not just talking about the last time I posted anything. I’m talking about how long it’s been since I was back in… the chair. If you’re a Zuke student, you know exactly which bright, mustard-colored egg chair I’m talking about. The intimidating, yet oddly comfortable, spot in front of the keyboard is a spot most students know too well.
If you didn’t already know, before I was helping Zuke with blogs and editing interviews with good-looking alt. punk musicians, I used to be a student! This was about 6 years ago when I was a sophomore in high school. When I left for college in 2010, I stopped taking lessons. Four years and a B.A. later, I’m back.
When I originally told Zuke I wanted to come back, her first reaction was, of course: “Sure!” And when I showed up to my first lesson, she asked: “Why did you want to come back?” I didn’t really think much about that question before, but after some thought, I found I had no real reason other than because I wanted to.
Let me explain that further. I have just graduated, and there’s a certain life-transition stage that’s happening right now. It’s intimidating, because there are a lot of different directions to choose from. Was I going straight for the full time career? Was I going back to graduate school? Was I going to drop off the face of the earth and move to Alaska to live in a VW in the middle of the wilderness? And the honest answer to that question is: I have no idea. It’s not even like I’m planning to become a famous super-star singer, or join a punk-rock band with some friends right now. But while I’m trying to figure it all out, I want to explore more of what interests me. Singing, and music, is at the top of the list.
That’s the simple part
Most people take voice lessons to learn how to sing because they have some sort of musical goal in their future. When I started taking lessons all those years ago, I’m sure I had that same dream of becoming a star as many of you might have now. But what I didn’t realize then was how unrealistic a dream that big was for me, and how I have grown from then to change my mind. Now I know that having big dreams and goals isn’t at all a negative or bad thing, but as I leave myself open to other possibilities, I let myself find even better goals.
I’ll tell you a story
When I was younger, I wanted to be a famous actress. I saw myself acting besides those kids on “All That” and imagined myself being interviewed on the early morning News to promote my new movie with Leonardo DiCaprio. (I’m a 90’s kid, what can I say.) I took an acting class and my parents even brought me into the city for those scam “audition calls” because I wanted so badly to make that dream happen. A few years later in high school, I would watch extras from box set DVD’s like Supernatural and One Tree Hill and all of those typical teen drama TV shows filled with hunky men to obsess over. By watching the behind the scenes features, I could live vicariously in that world and pretend to be a part of the process while at the same time imagining I could one day be on the show. Well, that look inside the process of making a television series was so intriguing to me that I decided to take a “TV Science” class in high school to see what else I could learn. That same year, I also decided to take film studies and creative writing courses. The combination of those classes opened up an entirely new creative side of me that I had not yet found. And I found that I didn’t want to be an actress, I wanted to create. I even decided to go to school for it, and at the end of it all, I had done remarkably well and felt like I graduated with fulfillment.
One thing always leads to another. And as you leave yourself open to learning and exploring more possibilities for yourself, decisions are easier to make and possibilities are easier to find. So while you’re taking voice lessons and think you’ve got one set goal for yourself or if you’re thinking about why you should even bother with taking lessons, remember not to close yourself off from any possibility. Have dreams, set goals, be realistic, be open, and let yourself work toward finding the right fit for you. You have time.
As student, do you have a reason why you want to take lessons with Zuke? It’s all right to do some self-exploration, because then you just might find something great for you.