I love to sing. Psalm 100? Yes.
Alone in the car, or with 2,500 people in an auditorium. I love it. I’m not terrible, but I still shy away from singing in front of people. Not so much in my younger years, but now? Don’t ask. Please. Ok maybe during Karaoke.
This past Sunday? I was distracted while singing during the worship time in church. This is nothing new, nor is it a difficult task.
I get distracted easily.
As I was standing next to this person with an incredible voice singing “It is well with my soul,” I was listening to them sing along with the band. They were harmonizing at key points, and it got me thinking, in my many years of attending a Sunday service, I’ve found I tend to fit into one of these types of singing persona’s in the crowd.
1) Chorus only harmonizer
This is what we all grew up doing once we learned how to harmonize. This is safe, and this is my go-to singing persona.
2) Three by Five
When this person busts into harmony, they ALWAYS hit the 3rd or 5th of the chord because that’s what they know, that’s what they’re comfortable with. They choose to sing above the melody because they have a little more confidence in their range than the average Joe, that is until the chorus. At this point if it gets too high, they may choose to go the Deep South route.
This person has strayed so far away from the melody, they’ve chosen to just harmonize the entire song. I’ve done this on purpose before, just to see if I could. This person, they don’t have a choice. Unless you are in Take 6, you have no right of harmonizing the entire song. Come back to the melody, I beg thee!
4) High Flyin’
This happens generally for women, when a low tenor or baritone is leading worship they have no choice but to sing an octave higher than their comfort zone. As long as they control their volume, it’s all good.
5) Deep South
This happens when a smooth alto or soprano leads, and us tenor/baritones don’t have any other choice other than to sing an entire octave below the melody. Or when the guy just doesn’t realize the melody is high enough for him to get out of the basement. This makes me sad when I have to do this, until I remember I can sing falsetto, but then quick nudge from Kim keeps my volume in check.
7) ICEAPWAUCG: (I can end a phrase with an unresolved chord guy)
I have to admit, I do this for fun but at lower volumes. Basically at the end of a phrase that has a long note, you hit a half or whole step below or above (depending on the chord) only to resolve it right before the next phrase. You have to be sure to sing longer than everybody else so they hear the resolve. This way, they’ll give you a funny look at first only to follow it with a “Oh, THAT’S where he was going with that, I get it.”
8 ) The Not Tyson
This happens when you’re really in it, you start to bite your lower lip. Or at least this happens when you want people to think you’re in it and you’ve forgotten the words. Yeah, I do this often.
This persona has a set of flexible pipes that can put Mariah, Whitney, Luther and Stevie to shame. Doing runs throughout the song like nobody’s business. It’s fun and challenging to match the leader’s run, but it’s embarrassing when they don’t do it the 2nd time around. Sometimes I appreciate subtle ones from my singing neighbor, I think it’s pretty rad.
I have to admit, I’ve become this persona more often than not. When the lyrics get to you, and they touch the depths of your soul, you try to sing the lyrics but you just can’t else you break down. So you hum. This also happens when you forget the words, but remember the tune.
That’s all of them that I could think of, I swear I thought I read something like this on one of the other blogs that I read so if you happen to find this somewhere else, PLEASE let me know so I can at least give credit to the idea.