Level 2 - Becoming sturdy on the basics

OK, I’ve kind of got my 1234. Now let’s do 3/4, and 6/8, and syncopation! I’m ready to begin that. I’ve kind of got my do re mi, but hey, help me get solid on the pentatonic and some of the more interesting intervals around the major and the minor scales. I can do pretty basic harmony, like a 3rd harmony. Now let me begin to get more comfortable and fluent with a range of harmonic possibilities.

My voice… I still want my voice to be able to really keep up with my musical imagination… reaching a wider range of intervals more easily, with more vocal fitness, agility, precision and ease – and maintaining my quality of tone as my voice jumps in an increasingly agile way around melody.

Wild Voice, Solid Roots Level 2 | Year-long Course Content

Rhythm

  • Getting really solid with keeping a beat, not speeding up, sharing a beat with your collaborators, being so clear where the 1 is; gaining control of where your melodies and patterns land in the bar; being more skilled to start things on different beats of the bar (not always the 1)

  • Using syncopation (the up beat) and building interesting interlocking sound patterns.

  • Getting super clear on the rhythms landing in the body; feet, heartbeat, somatic grounding of rhythmic steadiness.

  • We stick with 4/4 and 3/4 and 6/8 time signatures until these are so embodied.

  • Different rhythmic phrases and patterns: learning and getting your mouth, hands and body around them. Producing increasingly sophisticated rhythms consciously – i.e. when you’re trying to – and in surrender – i.e., when you’re just letting yourself sing.

  • Getting to know rhythmic notation.

  • Improvising while playing an instrument; piano, drum, shaker, guitar, mbira; using rhythmic routes into being able to improvise with increasing freedom in the voice while you keep your rhythm steady on your instrument.

Harmony

  • Becoming able to skilfully improvise with others harmonically.

  • Improving the ability to hear and understand harmony. Ear training; hearing 2, 3 notes, identifying their interval; recognising major and minor triads and singing the 1, 3, 5 positions in them.

  • Harmonic ear training; recognising and improvising through I IV V VI chords, and beginning to know the II and III chords. So, improving your ability to sing over chord changes and, as a harmonic improviser, to sing in and create chord progressions.

  • Harmonic transcriptions (listening to a song and identifying what the chords are); being able to understand your harmonic instincts (“I want to go to the V!”)

  • Learning and analysing songs by chord progression

  • Improvising harmonic underpinnings behind a solo

  • Self recording; layering different harmonic progressions under your melody

  • Following others’ melodies as a harmonic voice

  • Joining the chords below as a harmonic voice.

Tone, Agility, Melody, Mode

  • Becoming more precise, clear and calm when your voice hits this and that note. Being able to land clearly and increasingly quickly onto notes across a range of intervals (i.e. small jumps, big jumps).

  • Building a really clear “scale ladder” in your mind; always being able to feel where the home note is, becoming always able to know where you are on the scale. It’s like going from walking in the dark to walking with the lights on in terrain where you clearly know what’s where and where you are. It becomes a different quality of orientation; through which more and more exciting choices open up of where to go and what to do; the result is that your melodies get more interesting!

  • Scales. O yes, scales. (They’re so good for us!)

  • Learning to sing the first page of Bach’s prelude in C. It is So Good for vocal agility!

Voice, Creativity and Integration

  • Coming fully into the resonant body; setting your voice free; clear, strong, healthy, and beautifully your own.

  • Through collaborative and solo improvisation, gradually dropping fear and restrictions, and allowing the creative river to flow.

  • Improvising with words.

  • Integrated Expressive Practice – using sound, movement and language to express profound truths in creative and resonant ways.

  • Integrating the conscious study of rhythm, harmony and melody into free flowing musicianship.

  • Sound healing with collaborative vocal improvisation.