Jump to content

My Results from Gino Vannelli Master Class

Rate this topic


gno
 Share

Recommended Posts

I attended a voice class put on by Gino Vannelli last month. The class had a maximum of 5 students so that he could devote enough time to coach and record each singer. I brought in "Dust In The Wind". He didn't like my backing tracks, so he created some tracks himself on the spot. He took me in a totally different direction, as you'll hear. He pushed me out of my comfort zone. The key is lower and there are no high notes. He really concentrated on phrasing. It was terrifying and really fun at the same time.

Here's MY version:

http://soundclick.com/share.cfm?id=9375888

Here's the Gino Vannelli version of me (Gino on piano, bass, choir pad):

http://soundclick.com/share.cfm?id=11793785

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Your voice is awesome! I wish I had half the talent.

I preferred your version. The only thing that I personaly didn't like about the second version was the pause after Dust. But that is only my opinion. Some people may like the second one better because of that pause. I would love to hear the total song with that version.

But still both versions were AWESOME!

Thank you for sharing those. I was hoping you would.

Were there any words of wisdom from Gino that you could share with us?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks MDEW and Daniel for the positive feedback.

The pause after "dust", and also after "I close.." was Gino's coaching. The rest of the new licks in Gino's version were my improvisations, but those two were Gino's. He was playing "producer" so I wasn't going to argue. And I felt honored that he created a special arrangement for me so I just went with whatever he told me to do.

Gino is a stickler for detail. He is a big fan of Sinatra. There were a lot of things I learned. A couple things he really concentrated on:

1) at the end of a phrase on the tail end of a held note (with vibrato) - there is a natural tendency to go ever so slightly flat. This is due to giving up on support toward the end of the note. Sinatra would go slightly sharp, which sounds much better on a recording. He taught us to really watch the end of these notes and if anything - go sharp. Through his software he could show us if we went flat.

2) On long straight notes (no vibrato) - it is critical not to go flat - if anything make sure your are on the plus side of the pitch. And he's talking about just a few cents either way - not enought to sound flat or sharp - it is still "in tune" but the feeling you get when you hear a note that is slightly low or high is remarkable. He showed us through the software.

3) Vibrato: He said - "you need to control your vibrato - instead of letting your vibrato control you". He gave us a vibrato exercise. His software would analyze vibrato and he would show the student if there were wider undulations, or skips in your vibrato. I was lucky not to have issues with my vibrato that week.

There was no warming up - I was in the song writing class in the morning, so it had been several hours since I warmed up. So when it was your turn to record you just did it. That was nerve wracking. You were singing into a $10,000 Sony mic and into some very expensive equipment - having Gino coaching you, and the rest of the class staring at you. It was like you were on the "hot seat" when it was your turn. You didn't want to screw up a take, but we all screwed up plenty of takes. A lot of pressure but a lot of fun.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Great stuff Geno. The first version is really good. But it is, due to the original backing track, pretty much like the original. Although you do an excellent job on this....well...it has been done before. Right? Well, at least that is what I always say or think. Now....the second version shows artistic ability and what "you" can do with the song. That is what I prefer. Very very good :)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I liked both versions.

The second version would be good for a theatrical production, a la "Rock of Ages" with a softer side. I certainly believe in a making a song your own. And this was unique in how it differed from the original arrangement yet still conveyed the same message as the original.

The first one is how Steve sings it live. And I am a hardcore Kansas fan from way back and this arrangement and style will always be my favorite. And not because of the high notes.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Tommy - Thank you! You're right - the second version is kindof R&B? or Jazzy? Not sure how to classify it. Of course Gino's music is very hard to classify so maybe that's why I can't put my finger on it. I just went with it and added my own licks that fit the style he was going for. He certainly got me out of my comfort zone - and I will for sure start adding these other dimensions to new songs I learn.

Olem - thank you.

Ron - I'm with you on Kansas - Their arrangements always take a special place in my heart - maybe because it brings me back to my youth. Back in the day Steve had the coolest style.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...