The book for Learning how to use your voice
Since 2009 the book "Libera la tua voce" is available in all bookstores in Italy.
As you can see from the above image, it includes an instructional CD.
The book has already reached a third reprinting, which is a testament to its success in Italy!
To give you an idea regarding what the book its about, here is the translation of my preface that you will find inside the book:
During my professional journey I have had the pleasure of meeting many people with the same vision of voice and teaching. As I have traveled almost all the countries in the world, I realized how different they are between each other. I prefer defining myself as a "Vocal Coach", which means much more than a voice teacher or a singing teacher. In fact, the voice is a singular instrument, hence it is not possible to think about correcting singing without also influencing speaking, and vice versa. The profound significance of this concept is that, to sing well, one must learn how to use the voice. It is wrong to think that you can learn to sing only by singing in front of a teacher.
Many people come to me to learn to sing and complain that they do not recognize themselves in the voice which someone has taught them to use while singing, while in reality they don't realize that they make the same errors also while speaking. Every vocal teaching is always reflected in speaking. It is incomprehensible that people, who tell me they have paid to take a singing course, then complain to have lost their voices by just speaking during their job. Obviously there is something that is not right!
Notwithstanding the secular tradition of Italian singing, I often realize more and more how much vocal instruction in that country is adrift. Young people are surrounded by misinformation and poor examples to follow to the point at which they aren't able to discern what can help them and what will cause them to just lose time and money. Unfortunately, even those with talent are led astray by erroneous advices.
In Italy we have a strong tradition of classical singing and too often I meet people who have received, against their will, a vocal setting that was not the one they were searching for. Even if it is true that the vocal setting should be the same, this adaptation is often distorted and unskilled. And yet Italy, a country of poets and singers, has taught the whole world how to sing and speak in public. Still to this day the terminology related to singing is still in the Italian language for all the countries.
Many people think that singing out of tune is the result of a defect in the voice, but in reality it is an auditory problem. The ear is incapable of controlling the correct intonation while singing, which is what is responsible for mirroring best the reality of things. The voice, like music, is born from the ear. No one inherently sings out of tune, rather there are just people who are in need of training their musical ear. The expression "tone deaf" should be clear at this point. Only very few people truly have problems that get in the way of their ability to sing correctly, and yet they still have the possibility to reach the excellence.
This first publishing collaboration offers a book that is in the position to gives the possibility to anyone to gain a foundation in correct vocal technique on their own, and to discern what teachers can truly help them. In fact, my method of teaching how to use the voice has been developed with considerable success, but it is important to be clear about the difference between method and technique. There can exist hundreds of different methods, all of which can teach the only technique possible, which is the correct one - but it is not always this way. Even the first section of the book is enough to make you realize your situation and to help you start journey towards improvement.
This book shows readers how a class on how to use the voice should be organized in order for it to achieve its ture purpose: to communicate. The book gives clear evidence about the origin of the voice itself, the breath, and shows how any of us, once having learned the proper vocal technique, have available to us a way to express ourselves and a vocal extension that can reach beyond three octaves. Imagine now when the vocal technique is correct, there is no difference between speaking and singing. All of the problems from speaking or singing are related to incorrect vocal or breathing habits acquired over the years. This is enough to pause and think how we learned how to use our voice. We learned by ourselves, self-taught, simply repeating sounds that we heard from our parents and the surrounding environment. Once learned, it all became unconscious and no one stopped to think further about how to articulate a word, a bit like driving a car. After many years, it is not necessary to think anymore about what to do, you carry out each action automatically.
The book also highlights three vocal registers. Many voice teachers ignore the existence of a mixed register, like those who focus on teaching singing with just one vocal register (i.e. the head voice). In the book you have explanations for understanding how to manage the head voice in order to have a vocal extension capable of allowing it to sing that which it likes the most. The actual tendency is to put all off the attention on the much feared vocal "extension," with an eye on reaching the high notes, as if they were the most flashy. In reality the most beautiful colors of the human voice, and its greatest expressiveness comes from the chest register, in the lower notes.
Any musician knows well that a musical score contains much more than just the melodic notes. Music is also a rhythm, music is an emotion, music is a means of communication. I want you to think for a moment about a pianist. If music was only a collection of notes separated by time, why do we continue to applaud? Why can't we be substituted by simple robots? Evidently music becomes always interpreted, even when it is played by a musical instrument external to the body.
Is an old saying that says "Those who know, do. Those who don't, teach." I would say that in the vocal world, we find a high percentage of people who view the instruction of technical singing like a karaoke. They teach all their students the same identical things, creating voices that are all replicas of one another, without giving space for them to express their own personalities. They don't ever stop to focus on the technical aspects of singing, they only just allude to it. Many of their students speak only abstractly about breathing from the diaphragm and of interpretation, without understanding what it is really about, as if it was almost another thing separate from the use of the voice. In the book you will find the demonstration that a correct vocal technique intrinsically in itself has also the expressiveness of one's own personality and essence.
Why do people speak? To communicate a message to others. This same motivation forms the basis of singing. Words memorized without expression are of interest to no one, especially in a song already heard many times. To communicate, you must really have something to say. Reciting a poem or singing a song, you must express something about yourself, not something from other people. The same poetry read from ten great actors communicates ten different emotions - their own. The same is true of a song sung by 10 great artists. If you learn to sing or to speak without being able to express yourselves, you will never be able to communicate the most of your potential.
The best advice I can give you is to find a "Vocal Coach" and to evaluate the expressive capacity of the person whom you are putting your trust in. When they speak with you, look at their vital energy, if they are communicating with their emotions and a love of their work. If you feel you are in front of someone who is apathetic, inexpressive, or even worse - with clear vocal defects, maybe that is not the right person for you. Don't be afraid to change teachers. Don't forget that the voice is an instrument and as such, before it can be utilized in a most effective way it needs to be tuned. This tuning is the work of the "Vocal Coach" who listens to every training with an attentive ear and then proposes what corrections to make. The work of first tuning, the first vocal teachings, are the most important, because if there is an inappropriate vocal formation, it will be even more difficult later to turn back to the correct way. More than anything the human being doesn't have changeable parts, in the case of a vocal cord problem it is not possible to change them as you would do with a guitar.
The book shows how an expert "Vocal Coach" needs only a few minutes to resolve specific problems, but it can't be forgotten that this occurs only if one has a solid foundation upon which the coach can intervene. This requires significant dedication, effort and especially time to dedicate to oneself and one's voice. How much time is required? Based on my experience and my approach I can say that in two years of sufficient effort it is possible to achieve a solid foundation. However with sufficient determination the time can be shortened a lot. It takes the same to learn how to drive a car in a way that is natural and unconscious. If you drive every day you are able to do it in little time, but if you drive only on the weekend not much will happen.
A voice teacher can only transmit a part of his or her knowledge to the student, no one can ever train a student to a level higher than their own. This is why it is important to require a certain standard. Only with an optimum teacher can you achieve an optimum result. With a sufficient teacher you can only aspire to sufficiency. The base is fundamental, it is your point of departure and you need to decide in what direction to progress, even for those who see singing as only a form of entertainment or diversion. I hope that this book helps especially the people who want to learn to use their voice, to speak or sing, and who are not able for whatever reason to reach a good "Vocal Coach".
In the case that you want to follow vocal lessons anyway, find the type of person that makes you say, "She is so good and enthusiastic that I understand everything she teaches without even opening a book." They may be few, but they exist. What you will learn from them will always remain imprinted in your memory for the rest of your life.
Have a nice journey into the marvelous and fantastic world of YOUR voice!