Out of Tune?

So yesterday Denis and I were having a conversation and he brought up last week’s church service. “You were really out of tune last week,” he said.

“Me? Or the band?”

“You – you didn’t sound good at all.”

“What do you mean didn’t sound good?”

“You didn’t sing in key – the volume was up really loud on your vocals and you could totally tell you weren’t singing in key.”

Well half of me thought :whatever:, but the other have spent the rest of the day completely obsessing with the idea that I was out of key. Because it’s especially important that I stay in tune because I’m singing the harmonies. If the harmony is off-key a song can sound terrible. :redface:

So this morning I went to Marty, our sound guy. “Hey Marty – Denis told me that last week I was really out of key – was I?”

“Well, I know someone did mention something to Obi about that.”

WHAT? :banghead:

So I went to Obi. “Is it true that I was out of tune last week?”

Obi nodded, saying something like, “Don’t worry, I was out of tune too.”

Yeah right. I know he only said that to try and make me feel better.

So after the band was set up and doing soundchecks I was totally paranoid and did not want to sing, so I really laid off the mike. Just before the service started I was getting a drink at the food table and Dave came up to me.

“Hey Dave,” I said, “can you do me a favor?”

“Sure!”

“Can you listen out for my vocals today and afterwards tell me honestly if I was out of tune. I was told I was out of tune last week.”

He nodded. “A little bit. But I’ll listen out today. You were flat last week, so try and sing above the note and you should end up okay.”

I tried not to laugh at the highschooler telling the 35 year old woman how to sing. But instead I took what he said to heart. The only problem? I can’t sing sharp. Even when I try to do it intentionally to mess around, I can’t go sharp. Flat? Yes in a heartbeat. Sharp? Nope.

So the service begins, and the band starts playing and in my head I’m totally freaking out, wanting to sing above the note but just sucking royally. Part of the problem is that the lead guitar monitor faces right at me, so when the band plays that’s all I hear. Seriously. It’s so loud (and sitting only five feet in front of me) that I can’t even hear the rest of the band except the drummer. So at some point I was just mouthing the words but not really singing them. :wave:

Then it came time for Obi and me to sing the new song for the week – Lifehouse’s “Everything” which is a great song. But the bridge section is really high for my range and during rehearsal on Tuesday I basically end up shout-singing it. So today? Totally paranoid me stays about five inches away from the mike (a no-no) and tries really hard to not go flat.

After the service I didn’t get a chance to talk to Dave, but Denis says I was in tune this week. So apparently being mortified and paranoid helped. :scared: I’ve decided that next week I’m going to plug earphones into the keyboard and have them in one ear so that I can hear what the keyboard is doing. And by plugging one ear I’ll be able to hear myself as well. Hopefully that’ll help. :wide-eyed:

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2 comments

  1. The key to staying in key is to be able to really hear the music as well as yourself. Sounds like your monitor balance was out of whack enough that you weren’t able to hear yourself enough. You should hear yourself in your monitor, too.

  2. Oh, my goodness…I was getting nervous for you, just reading this post. Glad to hear that it turned out okay! 😀

    I love that Lifehouse song…

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