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  • Maire Clement

The Myth of Being Tone Deaf


Were you ever told you couldn't sing or that you have an annoying voice? Have you been told to "Leave the singing to the professionals?" Do you struggle carrying a tune?

I believe that everyone can sing. I believe that it is an innate part of being human.

I remember when I first learned the phrase "tone deaf." I used it to describe a classmate of mine in elementary school. I told my piano teacher and she told me that she didn't believe there was such a thing as being tone deaf. She spoke of students she had taught who were considered "tone deaf," and how she simply had to teach them how to listen. This sentiment stuck with me. I have had more than one voice student over the years who may have been classified as "tone deaf." Inspired by my piano teacher, I was very honest with them when they were singing the "wrong" pitches, and then we would stop and focus. While singing together, we would find a unison pitch, and then I would have my student find that same pitch while singing with the piano. Eventually these students understood and heard for themselves when they were singing the "right" pitches.

If there is no such thing as being tone deaf, what other excuses can we come up with to hide our voices? We, as a society, have created all of these competitions and TV sensations about singing with arbitrary judges who have no idea how the voice works--their rubrics are based solely on opinion...

So, we begin to think we can only sing if someone tells us we are good enough.

What a load of crap.

Everyone sings in the car, or in the shower...or when they are alone in their apartments when they think no one is listening. If their voice is good enough for that, then surely it is good enough to share with the world.

But--singing is scary because we live in an inauthentic world based on appearance and money.

What would happen if we were vulnerable and authentic and went against this grain of constant arbitrary judgement?

I have come to believe that I was put on this earth to help people find their voice. Currently, I am studying as an Apprentice of Transformational Voice. Combining this with my previous trainings of singing and yoga, I love helping singers find their voice, hone their technique and honor their truth.

I love what I do.

I vow to have patience, dedication, love and compassion during this vocal journey.

Namaste.


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© Maire Clement 2019

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