Ep. 32 Sheila Jordan (Charlie Parker, Blue Note Records, George Russell)

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On today’s brand new episode of The Working Singer podcast guest Sheila Jordan discusses keeping jazz music alive, her friendship with Charlie Parker, and being the first singer ever to be signed to the legendary Blue Note Records. At the age of ninety, Sheila has seen it all and with a full schedule of performing and teaching, is still one of the busiest jazz singers around. 

MENTIONS:

SINGING LESSONS:

  1. You must learn the original melody of the tune before you can even think of doing anything with it. 
  2. Don’t force improv. Just let it happen. 
  3. You’ll never get lost if you learn the original melody.
  4. (On soloing/scatting) If you can’t say it in two choruses you’ll never say it. 
  5. Don’t give up.
  6. Learn the music.
  7. You don’t have to scat to be a jazz singer. 
  8. Tell your story.
  9. Only sing songs that you really like, that touch your heart, that you really can get into lyrically and otherwise. 

Thanks for listening!

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Special thanks to Sheila for joining us this week!

Ep. 31 Dave Ruch (Performer & Educational Artist)

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I am so excited for you to hear today’s brand new episode of The Working Singer podcast with Dave Ruch (Performer & Teaching Artist).

A true Working singer in every sense of the word, for twenty plus years, Dave has carved out a full time career for himself creating relevant, educational shows for children and adults. Hailing from Buffalo, New York Dave has engaged audiences at schools, museums, performing arts centers, libraries, historical societies, and cultural and civic events. We talk about how to specialize the music you perform, how to transition out of low paying gigs, how to develop an engaging show, and how to keep a full calendar.

MENTIONS:

SINGING LESSONS:

  1. Treating it like a full time job can get you out of a lot of ruts. 
  2. Put together a themed show. Take the material you love to do and figure out an umbrella that you could put it under. Sell the theme to venues instead of yourself. 
  3. There’s an unstated value in putting a good value on yourself and sticking to it.

Thanks for listening!

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Special thanks to Dave for joining us this week!

Ep. 28 Josie Aiello (Quincy Jones, Kenny Loggins, Jazz in Pink)

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Josie Aiello is recognized internationally as an award-winning singer, BMI songwriter, performer, vocal arranger, and worship leader with four album releases under her belt. Josie began singing at the age of nine at her parents’ Sicilian restaurant in Chicago, and soon developed a reputation for her powerful vocals and ability to command an audience. After relocating to L.A, she quickly became highly sought after for session work by some of the top hit music producers, including the late Phil Ramone. 

Eventually, her hard work and tenacity paid off when she captured the attention of Quincy Jones, who personally signed Josie to his Record and Publishing label with Warner Bros. Since then, Josie’s been called to record for J Lo, Cher, Jessie J, Enrique Iglesias, Andra Day, Kenny Loggins, Brenda Russell, Placido Domingo, and Bebe Winans just to name a few. She’s featured on major soundtracks such as That Thing You Do, The Out Of Towners, South Park, Dinosaur, The Guardian, and Hairspray. National TV commercials (McDonalds, Big Lots and Eckrich) love her voice as well. Josie has toured with Don Henley, Kenny Loggins and currently touring as a featured artist with the world renowned, all female, all-star jazz and R&B band “Jazz in Pink”.

MENTIONS:

SINGING LESSONS:

  1. It’s really important to keep good, strong relationships. It’s everything. 
  2. Stay inspired. Don’t just put something out because you haven’t put anything out in a couple of months. Quality over quantity. 
  3. There really is no formula to getting work. It’s about relationships.
  4. The secret to joy is gratefulness.  

Thanks for listening!

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Special thanks to Josie for joining us this week!

Bonus Episode! – Jamie Chamberlin – Recovery from Vocal Trauma

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Opera singer Jamie Chamberlin returns to The Working Singer podcast to open up about her vocal trauma and recovery.

Opera singer Jamie Chamberlin returns to The Working Singer podcast to discuss vocal trauma caused by an abusive relationship, the things that helped her to recover, and her thoughts what artists needs to do to care for their minds and voices. 

A million thanks to Jamie for being so vulnerable with us and sharing her story. 

MENTIONS:

Thanks for listening!

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Special thanks to Jamie for joining us this week!

Ep. 25 Jamila Ford (Melody Gardot, Spiritualized, Seal)

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The podcast is hijacked by a special guest host today! On this episode of The Working Singer podcast the tables are turned and I’m the one being interviewed by my good friend and guest from episode one Celia Chavez. We talk about the connection between being a regular “human” and performer, why I started the podcast, and how we “gracefully” handle unsolicited advice. This is a fun show you don’t want to miss!

MENTIONS:

SINGING LESSONS:

  1. The best teacher you will have will always remain a student themselves.
  2. Have interests outside of singing. See art, read books, get outdoors, absorb other experiences, just ingest it to feed your voice’s story. Absorb it all and let it come out in song.  
  3. Singing isn’t all we do, and any skills, especially people skills, can apply to any area of our lives and expand our voices and expression. 
  4. Detach your self-worth from your work. Find value that is separate from the gigs you’re getting. 
  5. Learn to take your lows and use them to help other people. Create value in any pain or discomfort that you are experiencing! Realize that you can receive criticism (especially fan criticism) in one of two ways: one way will connect you; the other will shut you down. Follow the path to connection! If they’re right about what they’re critiquing let them help you. 
  6. Release your ego and be vulnerable to your audience. They’re there to be healed and transported by you. Let your guard down and connect with them; it might be healing and transporting for you as well!

Thanks for listening!

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Special thanks to Celia for guest hosting this week!

Ep. 23 Tim Davis (Glee, Lady Gaga, Barbara Streisand)

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How does someone go from having no intention of becoming a singer to being one of the top session singers and vocal contractors in Los Angeles? Find out on today’s episode as Tim Davis (Glee, Barbara Streisand, Lady Gaga) chats about being a session singer in Nashville, how he became the vocal contractor for the hit TV show Glee, and how his foundation of faith, skill and self awareness helped him carve out his life.

MENTIONS:

SINGING LESSONS:

  1. Don’t let anyone tell you that you can’t pursue the greatest things that you dream about.
  2. Looking for ways to serve and lift other people up is always the right way.
  3. The best way to get out of your own way is to be the most skilled person at what you do in your lane.
  4. Be easy to be around.
  5. Keep your hands open. Don’t feel like you’ve got to have a death grip on your career or your position.

Get your “singing lessons” pdf here!

Thanks for listening!

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Special thanks to Tim for joining us this week!

Bonus Episode! – Veronica Puleo: How To Level Up As Singers

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Veronica Puleo from the Replicas Music Agency returns to talk to singers about how we can level up as professionals. I spoke with Veronica on episode 16 and a few days after the interview she sent me this really great email with some more specific advice to singers on being super pro in the corporate/wedding/cover band world. I just thought why not just do a bonus episode and talk about this? So you guys can have the benefit of this information first hand from someone who is a singer and hires singers on a regular basis!

MENTIONS:

Thanks for listening!

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Special thanks to Veronica for joining us this week!

Ep. 20 Ken Stacey (Michael Jackson, Elton John, Bobby Caldwell)

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Vocal coach and session singer Ken Stacey has toured with Bobby Caldwell, Elton John, has worked with Michael Jackson and currently tours with Ambrosia. He chats about leaving behind law school to pursue singing full time, becoming a talent scout/first line judge on American Idol, and how vulnerability and authenticity helps performers to stand out. He also goes into detail about his “Ready 4 the World” masterclass.

MENTIONS:

SINGING LESSONS:

  1. Talent is not enough. It’s your human vulnerability and authenticity. It’s how you’re going to be your best self and it’s how people are going to get to know you.
  2. It is not about being the best. You will not be able to outsing the world. You will not be able to out attractive the world. At the end of the day, if you cannot connect with people, you will not build the kind of audience and industry support that is going to be necessary to carry you through a life long, long term career.
  3. It’s important as singers and performers that we find a sense of purpose beneath all of it.
  4. Strive for excellence not perfection. Perfection does not exist.
  5. Your notes don’t always have to be perfect.
  6. Practice and perform with intention.
  7. At any stage in your career, It is the core of vulnerability and authenticity that is going to lead you to the next path and make you stand out.

Join the email list and get your “singing lessons” freebie here!

Thanks for listening!

Subscribe & review on Apple Podcasts, join the Facebook community, and follow us on Twitter and Instagram.

Special thanks to Ken for joining us this week!

Ep. 19 Raffia Ford Thomas (Tito Jackson, Christina Aguilera, Toni Braxton)

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Raffia Ford chats about her experience touring as a backup singer for Tito Jackson, competing on P Diddy’s “making his band,” how to ask for what you want, negotiating for yourself as an artist/singer, and her time studying music education at Berklee College of Music, and what lead to her opening her own music school.

MENTIONS:

SINGING LESSONS:

  1. Treat people how you want to be treated.
  2. Do what you can to make people feel good especially when they’re working on your behalf.
  3. If you’re going to open a school, it’s important to have capital.
  4. It’s a great idea to find a facility that is already built out.
  5. Have multiple streams of income to fund your business.
  6. Delegate when you can.

Join the email list and get your “singing lessons” freebie here!

Thanks for listening!

Subscribe & review on Apple Podcasts, join the Facebook community, and follow us on Twitter and Instagram.

Special thanks to Raffia for joining us this week!

Ep. 18 Tamara Bubble (Singer/Rapper/Music Licensing)

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A true “working” sniger in every sense of the word. Singer/rapper and CPA Tamara Bubble is killing it in the music licensing game. We chat about her journey into music, what making it means to her, and how her day job helps her focus on her music. Tamara and I met in Cathy Heller’s Access Music Licensing Course and in less than a year Tamara was already speaking on music supervisor panels, had seven of her song licensed on BET’s Hustle in Brooklyn, and synced a song on the trailer for the HULU original “Shrill.” If you want to get your music licensed in music and television, you need to hear this interview.

MENTIONS:

SINGING LESSONS:

  1. There are so many ways to get to that music to a supervisor.
  2. There is enough room for everybody. There’s no need to compete.
  3. You will know that you’re networking when you can get someone to open the email, add you to a brief or talk to you about stuff outside of their work.
  4. Even if you have the right song you still have to build genuinely with the people and that’s as unique as the music you make.
  5. Make it your business to be helpful before others need you.
  6. Have a day job that will afford you the chance to invest time and money in your music.
  7. With rejection you start to find who needs what you have.
  8. Come out of the gate showing that you know the business.
  9. You have to be unique and professional.

Get your “singing lessons” freebie here!

Thanks for listening!

Subscribe & review on Apple Podcasts, join the Facebook community, and follow us on Twitter and Instagram.

Special thanks to Tamara Bubble for joining us this week!