“Hey guys, Ken Tamplin here from Ken Tamplin Vocal Academy.
I’d like to talk to you about a subject that keeps coming up over and over again and this subject is: can anyone sing? Can anyone be a singer? Or can anyone be a music artist? I’m actually here to tell you that singers are only singers because they have the guts to be one.
You heard me right, singers are only singers because they have the guts to be one.
“Well, what about natural talent? I was told that, you know, once born a singer, always a singer. If you weren’t born with it you don’t have the natural ability.”
It’s just not true. Not only is it not true… I would like to share some things with you – I started out as a guitar player, I was never a singer.
In fact, the only reason why I sang was to have something to get me in between my guitar solos! I actually didn’t even take my voice seriously until I was nineteen years old, and my highest note was an “F” sharp. I was known to sing an occasional “A”, but you know – A was the highest note I could sing.
Well, today because I’ve learned so much about the voice and I’ve studied from some of the greatest vocal teachers this world has to offer, I can identify what a “true” person’s vocal range is.
I was told My range was a baritone and I should never try and sing beyond an “F” sharp or a “G” below middle “C”. If I had believed that, I wouldn’t be here, where I am today. I wouldn’t be here with the range I have here today if I believed what people told me about my voice. True story.
So, was I born with a natural talent?
‘Sure Ken, it’s easy for you, you were just born with a natural gift.’ I was born with some gift. Just like you, you were born with some gift.
Some people might think ‘I just couldn’t sing to save my life.’ Well, there are those people out there, and they can sing too if they really wanna put their minds to it. But, let me say this – we talked about great singers and can anyone be a singer… I didn’t say anyone could be Mariah Carey, or anyone can be Whitney Houston, or anyone can be Aretha Franklin, or Christina Aguilera, or Etta James, or whomever.
(and by the way, how many Aretha Franklin’s and Christina Aguilera’s and Etta James’ are there in the world, right? They’re in the top ten, right?) So below that, do you have the ability to apply yourself with the passion and the discipline of what it takes to be a singer or a
music artist. And the answer would be yes! If you really wanna set your mind to it, you can do it. I would like to talk about a couple of
some of the greatest artists of all time. In fact, I’d like to start off talking a little bit about a guy named Bob Dylan. Bob Dylan probably has influenced more lives, more artists, than any artist alive. I kid you not. If you google his name and say ‘Who has covered songs by Bob Dylan,” it’s gonna blow your mind. Now Bob Dylan has got this real froggy little voice, right? But do you have any idea the kind of impact Bob Dylan has made as an artist and on artists around the world?
People have covered his songs, like, Adele, she covered ‘Make you feel my love.’ Guns ‘n’ Roses covered ‘Knock, knock, knockin’ on Heaven’s door.’ You’ve got The Chemical Brothers, Ozzy Osbourne, Kelly Clarkson, Green Day, Jimmy Hendrix, Jack Johnson, Nora Jones, Johnny Cash, I could go on and on and on and on, but from every walk of life, not just from one genre or style of music like R&B or Rock, every walk of life has done a Bob Dylan, right? It didn’t stop him.
Let’s take another guy – Louis Armstrong. Louis Armstrong’s dad told him ‘Ya know Louis, give it up, you’ve got the froggiest voice in the world. You’re a great trumpet player, go back to playing trumpet, stay on the trumpet, don’t sing. You’re embarrassing yourself,’ And what does he do – he goes on to write ‘What a wonderful world’! That song’s, I think, in the top ten most requested movie soundtrack songs of all time, and look who’s covered his music. Cold Play, Sara Brightman, Michael Boublay, Ministry- a metal band, Rod Stewart, right? And look who he’s influenced- guys like Andrae’ Crouch who also has a very froggy voice, who’s arguably one of the greatest, if not THE greatest Gospel artists of all time. He helped do the backgrounds to the Lion King and things like that.
Now, let’s talk about Randy Newman- ‘You got a friend in me, you got a friend in me’- Toy Story one, two, and three. He also did Monster’s Inc., Bug’s Life, Sea Biscuit, Leather Heads, I could go on and on about the Grammy’s and the things he’s won.
Then you have David Bowie. He was a STREET MIME! Then you have guys like Neil Young. He’s a terrible singer from a “technical” standpoint.
Even guys like Simon Le Bon from Duran Duran. Really listen to how pitchy his voice is. He got a little better later but certainly nothing to jump up and down about.
I say that guys, because, the idea that it’s given over to an elite group of people and only these guys are allowed to these singer guys over there are the only ones that are allowed to do it. I’m here to tell you, it’s just not true.
You, if you wanna apply yourself, you can be and do anything you wanna be, in fact, like I said, most of the guitar players that I teach right now are fronting all the wrong bands and we’re always subject to the singer. It was always ‘Oh, I’m gonna let the singer do it’ because they never saw themselves as the singer. And now, they’re fronting their own groups and they’re kicking major butt. So, I would just encourage you, man, if you wanna learn how to sing and you wanna do it, here at Ken Tamplin Vocal Academy, if you like the way I sing, I’ll show you how I do it.
The proof is in the singing.
A singer is only a singer because he’s got the guts to be one.
Thank you for listening.