Singing is an expression of self. When you speak, it may carry a message and it may be a useful and helpful message. When you sing, you are giving your audience art. Art comes in many forms, but it is universally a way of sharing messages in a beautiful way. There is no defense against beauty. It breaks down barriers. It promotes understanding and even empathy. We all seem to have beauty within us, especially because of the sympathetic vibration set up when we see or hear something beautiful. It strikes a chord in your soul. When you sing, you are offering others a peak, a glimpse or a complete view into the essence of yourself. Some would have us think that we are “bad”, but if we are created in the image of God, as I once read, I would tend to think that this would include beauty and the spirit of creating. This isn’t about religion as much as it is about the human spirit and I cannot think of any sane person who is not uplifted by the experience of beauty.
Singing is a very individualistic activity. No one on earth has your voice. No one on earth has your experience. Granted, there are similarities but there are also vast differences. You are also without an anatomical copy. It is possible to mimic singers as you start out and it may even be beneficial. As time goes on, you will have your own style and copying others will feel boring at best. You do have your own sound, just as you have your own fingerprints. It is even scientifically measurable with voiceprints.
Singing is a way of sharing emotions with others. When you sing a song, you take your listener on a ride, a trip, a vacation, or you tell a story. You may romance someone with a song or sing about romance, or lost romance, or the hope for romance. Most songs seem to be about love, whether it is past love, present love, or future love. Think about it. If you are singing for the fun of it for yourself and others, you can get others to feel things that are fun, scary, upsetting, wonderful, awful…there is a whole huge range of emotions that you have as a singer, much as a painter has almost infinite varieties of color from which to choose.
Singing is a part of life, a part of most religious services, a part of many important activities. Turn on the radio or television and surf a little. Go online and surf a little. Singing is everywhere. Even the whales sing. Don’t laugh, they might think our songs sound sillier than theirs do to us. A whale’s brain is bigger than ours and I would take a wild guess that it isn’t all head padding. Most football games have someone singing the national anthem. That is a very tough song if you have a break in your voice, by the way. Drive around religious places on Saturdays or Sundays and you will hear people singing.
Singing can be a way a poet can get others to pay close attention to the poem. We call those types of poets lyricists. If they also write the music, they are songwriters. I think that singers should try songwriting for a variety of reasons. You learn about yourself, you learn more about music, you can share your experience with others and in doing so, everyone who hears your song can gain something from it. Writing a good song forces you to be a good writer. Writing a good song forces you to use music as a tool to get your song to work well. Writing a good song is as individual an experience as is singing but it offers something even beyond that. When you write a good song, you appreciate and understand more about the writers whose songs you sing.