Articles

Voice Teacher Reacts to Tool Sober Live at Reading Festival 1993


Hi, my name is Sam Johnson, and I am a voice teacher I’m going to be reacting to and analyzing tool performing sober at Reading Festival in 1993 I’m gonna do that with my hair probably next week He’s so good that was up to an a and the B flat and it had the exact same sound that his voice had for his lower notes It’s just pitched up a little bit higher just like how with the piano there are different sizes of strings But the overall sound is that of the same piano the same thing is happening with Maynard where his high notes He’s not overly thinning them out He’s just keeping the same amount of resistance and pretty similar amount of thickness to his chords And then he’s also keeping his vowels really the same from what his lower notes are so the result is that he’s singing this note that usually sounds like really really hard but it just sounds easy for him and then someone goes to sing along with it and you’re like Oh, no, this is actually hard because he makes it look so effortless He’s also a really good example of someone who I’ve heard that he had really bad stage fright and that it was just like really bad anxiety every time he’d go to perform where he had to even face away from the Audience and that’s really hard but through practice. I mean he’s at least able to do it and not let it affect his voice I don’t know what strategies he’s adopted But usually with just time if it’s something that you love if performing is something that you love and singing is something that you love You’re kind of able to get through that kind of stuff I don’t know if he’s had outside help with it or therapy or if any medications or anything but It’s really cool to see that someone who I’m pretty sure had really bad Anxiety and stage fright is able to do it and perform in front of thousands of people He also just looks so relaxed right now I know he’s like kind of hunched over and people are always about with noble posture when they’re singing and stuff You don’t have to and you see really great opera singers who move around and they’re singing these incredible things While they’re moving and they’re not always in this perfect position. You see him. He’s right like this You see other great singers who are able to dance it’s just finding a place of balance and usually people are able to feel what good singing feels like if You’re lined up a little bit better But once you know what it feels like it’s just holding on to that feeling Sure If he was having any troubles or something that might be something to look at but it’s totally possible to sing while you’re in different Positions and he’s proving it And it’s still such a narrow vowel at the top something about that rather than sound thing out And that’s one of the reasons that he’s able to keep it sounding like His low voice even though it’s up at that A or the B flat It’s it’s incredible and he has a ton of power with it, but it’s not from pulling up chest voice It’s by letting the feeling move up a little bit but not letting go so that’s the thing That’s kind of confusing for a lot of people is Letting the feeling move up into your head so that it is head voice because you’re feeling it up in your head But you’re not letting go that’s the thing that kind of gets coupled together a lot of times when people are learning to sing is as you go to high notes, it flips it goes like [sings] ahhhh, and then the high notes they all sound a little bit different But what he’s doing is allowing his vocal cords to stay together as he goes to those higher notes So there’s not that moment where it flips the sensation still has to move up because there’s a change in Dominance of which muscle is being used the most and the resulting feeling is just that it’s gonna move up a little bit But there’s still a sense of connection a sense of holding on And then he’s starting to add in some distortion He’s just kind of going into overdrive with everything But his mouth is actually the same you can see there is a little bit of extra tension But that’s what he’s doing to create this sound. It’s not going to be a perfectly balanced looking Exhibit of how to sing it’s there’s gonna be some weird stuff going on sometimes and that’s what he’s doing with that But he’s not throwing out all of his vocal techniques to go get that sound. He’s just getting really intense with it So he’s still connected to what it feels like to sing good Such an interesting performer [Maynard sings: I am just a worthless liar, I am just an imbecile] [I will only complicate you] [Trust in me and fall as well] [I will find a center in you] [I will chew it up and leave] [Trust me , trust me, trust me] I really loved that last part because it kind of drops out all of the instruments where he’s singing some of it acapella or with Just a little bit of guitar a little bit of drums, but he’s maintaining this pulse He’s staying right in this rhythmic pocket The entire song is able to still feel like it’s moving because if you fall out of rhythm it Everything gets messy and that’s the thing that a lot of singers neglect is rhythm So I think it’s super valuable for people who are wanting to be better singers to go pick up some other instruments learn guitar Learn how to play rhythm guitar because then you can accompany yourself learn piano learn drums Like all of those things will just help increase your musical ability in ways that you can’t get by just practicing voice well You can get it but learning instruments like that really makes you focus on rhythm a lot more than pretty much anyone teaches with voice and I think that that’s super important because it allows you to keep the integrity of a song moving when things like this happen A little bit of distortion on it even though it’s a lower note a Lot of the times you hear him go to the distorted sound when he goes to some of those higher notes It’s just a little bit easier to add in a Fry scream rather than having to growl with it At least that’s how I’ve felt it with my own voice But it’s kind of cool that he was singing this lower note and he still added a little bit of that distorted sound on top Of it And it’s interesting A lot of people have been commenting Asking if I have perfect pitch if I can hear a note and just know exactly where it is And I do not and he’s kind of throwing me off like crazy with it because even though I’ve listened to him a lot It’s still he sounds so similar through his range and most of the time what I listen to is like people sound different as they go to or tie notes or when they go to low notes or There are places in the voice where people tend to sound a certain way with him. He’s kind of breaking those It’s like there’s he’s singing so well that I am having a hard time placing where he is Like what notes he’s singing and I’m just jumping all over the place with it because he’s not letting the pitch that he’s choosing Influence the tone that he’s choosing He’s having what tone that he wants come first and then that tone just gets applied to whatever pitch he’s singing whatever he wrote for the song That’s a cool performance I’ve never seen them live and I would love to he’s such an interesting Performer and just an interesting guy and he it shows through in the music that they write. It’s really complex Instrumentally, and it’s complex lyrically There’s just so much complexity and I think that it stems from their ability to be honest as musicians because they’re not trying to be something that they’re not they just found how they can let this genre, tell the stories that they’re wanting to tell and Express themselves in the way that they’re expressing But it’s super authentic And I think that Maynard is just one of the best singers in this genre where he just sounds like himself No matter what note he’s singing He has unbelievable breath control with his distortion and with everything He’s just really good at that and very in control of his instrument and I think that maybe that kind of control and knowing exactly what’s gonna happen and then just repetitions through it is probably how he was able to start getting more comfortable in front of crowds because if you’re feeling a little bit nervous about going in front of crowds That’s the benefit of a good technical Background because you know what You can trust and what you can’t trust and then you can make decisions Towards those things that you can trust and when you go into a performance Knowing that you can trust certain things that you’re gonna do. It’s no longer scary And so having that kind of repetitive background is really good, and I don’t know if he’s taken lessons But it sounds like he just has such facility over his instrument and I think it’s awesome. Thank you for watching Please like and subscribe go check out my description below where there’s a link to my patreon To my Instagram and if you’re interested in signing up for voice lessons over skype or facetime go check out my website vocalease.net. Thank you

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *