The Liberated Voice

Revolutionizing vocal technique with timeless wisdom

Waiting for Maitreya

The Liberated Voice
Waiting for Maitreya
Welcome, and thank you for listening.
Yesterday I saw a social media post describing how members of different spiritual and religious lineages have been waiting for their version of a Messiah to arrive, sometimes for thousands of years.
It concluded with the comment that, "Most religions adopt the idea of a 'savior' and state that the world will remain filled with evil until this savior comes and fills it with goodness and righteousness. Maybe our problem on this planet is that people expect someone else to come solve their problems instead of doing it themselves."
While I agree that it is vital that each of us be as proactive as we can about creating the world we wish to be a part of, I also feel that vision and ethical leadership plays a vital role in systems change. But that is not why I brought up this idea today. The reason that this post caught my attention is that the spiritual lineages mentioned included Buddhism, pointing out that "Buddhists have been...
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What Is Willpower?

willpower, n.
The power of a person’s will; control exerted to do something demanding or to restrain one’s impulses.
—Oxford English Dictionary


Happy New Year, readers!

This morning I kicked off 2023 with an hour or so of stretching and self-myofascial release. As I focused my awareness on where I was feeling tight and considered how it might feel good to move, I began to feel deeply grateful—not only for the fitness and anatomy background that enables me to care for myself in this particular way, but also for the fact that I genuinely want to. Exercise isn’t something I have to make myself do—it’s a luxury that has become a daily indulgence.

It wasn’t always like this for me. Growing up, gym class was an ongoing source of trauma, compounded by the bullying I endured for being “chubby” and uncoordinated. By my mid teens I decided I’d had enough. I started living on iceberg lettuce and cottage cheese and...

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What Did You Learn In School Today?

Pete Seeger wants to know

Singers, what did you learn in your most recent voice lesson? Teachers, what have you successfully imparted to your students so far this week?
I’m inviting you to reflect on these questions because the greater our clarity about what is successfully imparted and actually learned, the more valuable the lesson and the more likely the learning will be retained.
There is certainly an ineffable, je ne sais quoi component to the way artistic growth occurs, and good communication between teacher and student often seems to happen as much via osmosis as it does through any method.
However, learning to sing does involve the development and integration of codifiable skills, including breathing, phonation, registration, resonance, diction, and flexibility, as well as the ability to apply those skills to dramatic and musical interpretation of repertoire.
So, aside from the je ne sais quoi, what did you learn in school?
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Why You Hate Exercise

fitness practice wellness Jul 03, 2022

This blog post is dedicated to all of you who think you should be exercising more than you do. Or believe you should be enjoying it more than you do, or wish you were getting better results.

All of you are officially off the hook. I’ve been a certified fitness trainer for some twenty years, and I am here to tell you that we’ve all been duped.

 Fitness culture, at least here in the US, is largely premised on several fallacies:

  • Fallacy #1: The fitness and nutrition strategies developed for elite athletes are also the best strategies for average, comparatively sedentary people
  • Fallacy #2: Visible muscle definition indicates strength and wellness
  • Fallacy #3: Exercise requires discipline and sustained willpower, i.e. “no pain, no gain.”
  • Fallacy #4: There is one ideal set of health parameters that is relevant for bodies of all ages, ethnicities, and backgrounds, including (or especially) how much you weigh.

To be clear, I’m not saying...

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How to Enjoy Practicing More Than You Currently Do

I have always loved to practice music. I have been obsessed with practicing from the moment Mrs. Pickens, my next-door neighbor, put an alto recorder in my hands. I was six years old.

It was the beginning of a lifelong passion. I had so much fun playing around with the instrument, figuring out the fingering, learning to navigate the register breaks, playing scales in different keys, and best of all, teaching myself to play songs I heard on the radio. I spent hours learning Simon & Garfunkel and Jim Croce songs by ear.

When my neighbor invited me to play in her [otherwise adult] recorder ensemble, I had to learn to read music. It was confusing and challenging, but it was also really fun. I enjoyed the problem-solving aspect of interpreting rhythm and pitch notation, and I really loved figuring out how the part I was playing fit into the overall musical design.

When I was eleven, I took up the clarinet and started playing in wind ensembles and orchestras. The clarinet opened up a...

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