Middle Earth Karaoke

So, at voice lessons the past couple weeks I’ve been working on Into the West, the song at the end of Return of the King. Today I put on the soundtrack and, with the sheet music in front of me, belted the song out.

It felt very much like Middle Earth karaoke. Singing alongside someone else’s much better voice, at volume, drowning out all the flaws in your own. 🙂

My voice instructor is also a writer, so we talk sometimes about how the processes behind writing and music are similar. Like how you try and try to “get” something, and then all at once, when you’re not paying attention to it, you do get it, without being quite sure how or why.

Or how you think you’ve gotten it, but then you lose it, and get it again, and lose it again, until slowly it sets more firmly into place and becomes something you just do. There’s a technical aspect of my singing (which I’m not sure I have the technical vocabulary for) which I’m in the middle of this process with right now. It’s happened over and over again with my writing–that gift story where everything just falls into place, and I think I know how to write like that now, only the next story is hard again, yet over many more hard stories somehow I find myself moving toward the level of the gift story consistently after all.

This morning I was thinking about how one practices the technical details of singing over and over, so that one gains enough skill that one can put one’s intuition into actual use. Though it works the other way, too–sometimes it takes intuition to figure out how to get the technical details down.

And there’s range. In writing and singing, range slowly increases, and one finds oneself able to attempt and consider attempting more and more, until one begins to actually have choices, in what one tackles, and something resembling a voice begins to emerge.

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