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Singing on a song I wrote

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I like some of the rhythmic flow. It's a bit rappish without directly being rap. Your vocal attitude is a bit punk rock in that it sounds defiant and I generally like defiant things. The lyrics would be offensive to some, but I'm not easily offended.

Some of the looping of the vocal rhythms in the opening section section could be tightened a bit Guitar composition has a bit of a Franz Ferdinand or the like: choppy, rudimentary rhythmic drive.

For my tastes I prefer a bit more harmony on average in music, but this is definitely a matter of tastes. If the White Stripes can get by with 2 people jamming, you can certainly go in a really stripped down direction.

Overall, I'd say it sounds like you have a compositional style that is poised to evolve naturally as you gain more experience. It's not overly similar to my style so, I'm no in the best position to evolve it. I think it's really primarily up to you to put in the sheer work it will take to be everything you can be as an artist and songwriter.

Vocally, from a technical standpoint, it's raw, dirty, and just gets the job done. But the song is raw and dirty. If you got Celine Dion to sing it, people would be baffled. It is extremely possible to use traditional vocal training techniques to make a more polished vocal. For my tastes, I think you have room to grow this way without sounding stereotypical or sounding overly polished, but whatever you change is going to affect your baseline rawness on some level.

It is probably most important to ask yourself, what direction you're going in? What means something to you? People can probably better help you, as there are as many directions as there are people, right? What kind of voice are you looking for?

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For harmony you might want to experiment with intervals. These are the space between notes. Listen to the sound when they occur together. Each combination will have a unique 'tension' or release which can add character to a composition. Some combinations are darker (or even unpleasant), some are lighter and can convey different things.

You have a guitar player in your band, or you are a guitar player, right? So you can cross reference with a guitar player and sing along to a guitar when composing. Like a G Major chord would have:

G root note

B 4 notes up or 8 notes down (creates a major harmony)

D 7 notes up or 5 notes down (creates a fifth harmony, used in power chords, the rocker interval on guitar)

G often an Octave (12 notes up or 12 notes down, is the same note, higher or lower)

A G minor chord is similar but but would have an A# instead of of a B, which often sounds darker than major chords. There are thousands of chords, too many possible chords to mention but each combination of notes has a unique personality, some of which the majority of people find unbearable and others which the majority of people find upbeat or 'happier.'

Any knowledge you have will likely have some impact on your sound, which isn't really good or bad, it just makes things 'different.' It's like the difference between primitive outsider art, versus college educated artists.If you want to retain a rawness, I'd focus more on sound than on the intellectual concepts though. I'd try to use the intellectual concepts to steer you towards really listening to and conveying sounds you believe in, rather than a 'rule set' that you 'follow.'

Common ways of doing harmony is singing major or minor intervals, 5th, or octave intervals, but any interval can be done. It just might sound terrible.

As for singing, it's extremely subjective. My favorite 'raw defiance' type of singer is Joe Strummer. He was pretty aggressive and I doubt he was highly trained in any way, but he sang from the gut with a tone like no other, and supported his tone well enough diaphragm he got away with it.

For singing technique I do believe even if going for a raw approach, you should still focus on the basics, the breath support, and finding a comfortable position for your vocal tract to get the sounds you're looking for. If you're going hoarse or having pain, it's not a good sign and you should rest and rethink things. I'd still play around a lot with vowels and 'sounds' in general. Any singing concepts you encounter, twang, sob, vibrato, if the sound and character feels like something you can get behind, you can use them.

Lessons are good especially if you find someone who is interested in helping you develop your sound. But if you're looking for harsher vocals, you should probably look into a teacher who is comfortable with them. As a good deal of teachers don't do that.

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