A Life Singer at Your Event Can Make It Spectacular

Music is the heart and soul of just about any gathering. Why not make yours spectacular with a singer for hire? You can find someone with a lovely voice, plenty of material they offer, and a great price. This makes it ideal for dancing to be part of the event. You can hire someone who sings their own songs or covers from other bands.

Experience and Talent

Spend some time online finding out about the potential candidates. They should have both experience and talent. Watch videos and read their biography. Don’t dive in to getting a singer for hire or you may regret it. You want someone who is friendly and eager to place. They may allow you to customise the playlist.

This is done by giving you a list of the songs they can sing. Then you can go through it and decide what you would like them to play for the period of time they are going to be at your event. Ask them to sing for you as an audition too so you can hear how they sound now. Some of the recordings may be several years old.

Estimated Costs

Typically, a singer for hire is going to charge you by the hour for the event. They may offer packages for partial or full days. They may ask you to include feeding them or other perks in the event if they will be there for a long time. Some of them will do autograph and photo sessions. Others plan only to come in and sing for you.

Know what those estimated costs are going to include before you reach out to offer them the job. If it is more than your budget for the event in the area of a signer for hire, let them know. Tell them you would love to hire them but you can only pay a certain amount. They may accept it and you can move forward with the plans.

There may be some variables in the cost that they can’t control. However, they should explain to them in the contract what those are and why they can’t be controlled. If you don’t agree with this, you need to speak up and not sign. You don’t want the final cost to be such a difference from the estimate that you can’t afford all of it.

Put it in Writing

Only work with a singer for hire who can prove a solid background and reputation of being on time. You don’t want your event to be ruined because they were late or they didn’t show up at all. Put all of the details in writing so they are bound legally to show up and execute them. Without such information, you may be putting it all on the line.

The internet is a great place to look for referrals. These are people who can tell you how terrible or how great the event was. It can open your eyes if you are moving in the wrong direction with someone. It can also help you to feel confident about whom you will hire due to their strong work ethic.

The contract should state what the overall cost will be for the singer for hire. If there is a portion of it due at the time to book, make sure that is noted. This is a deposit and you often won’t get it back should you cancel your event. If you have any other stipulations you would like them to uphold, make sure they are in the contract and all parties sign it. This will give you peace of mind with any singer for hire.

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Jazz and Blues – An Overview

Let’s take a closer look at what blues and jazz are and how they differ in musical style.

What is Jazz?

Jazz and blues are two distinct musical genres. They are American musical traditions that have roots that go back hundreds of years. Jazz for instance, was developed in New Orleans and was originally known as “jass” but later evolved into jazz by dropping the “ss” and replacing it with “zz” which basically translates into “cool”. It wasn’t until the 19th century that jazz began to take on brass instruments, prior to which instruments like the saxophone, cornet, and trombone were primarily used. As those instruments were infused into the genre, it evolved to create a much larger base.

What is Blues?

Blues, unlike jazz, originated in the southern part of Mississippi, and was first recorded in the 1920s. During that time, it was typically played solo, which is different from the ensemble like nature of jazz we see today. The first ever blues solo player simply used a slide guitar as his primary musical instrument. Today, it enlists the help of many artists and includes blues bands to create its distinct sound.

How They’re Similar

Jazz Blues is a genre all its own, but typically refers to a blues artist who uses more complex harmonies or rhythms and breaks away from traditional blues patterns, or a jazz artist who keeps his harmonies simple. The result is a mix match combination of musical patterns and jazz blues songs that music lovers can treasure. Some people even refer to jazz blues songs as “R&B” although that wouldn’t be completely accurate.

The truth is, many people equate jazz and blues to the same genre simply because they originated in the American South. Discerning the two distinct genres can be confusing, simply because many artists do crossovers, going from jazz to blues and the reverse. While that does make them ‘siblings’ they certainly aren’t identical. The jazz blues genre may refer to is simply a combination of both styles or a little of one taken from another to create a mashup.

Conclusion

Whether you prefer jazz music, blues, or like jazz blues songs, there are countless reasons to listen to this distinctly American genre of music. Attractive harmonies, unique rhythms and generations old music styles are the foundations of jazz and blues. One thing is for sure, we can all agree that jazz and blues are fun, easy genres to listen to.

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On the Record

Have you ever wondered where the records you loved were recorded? Today great sound can be recorded on to the hard- disk of a computer or hand- held device, but most professionals still use a purpose- built recording studio with expensive high- tech recording equipment. Before tape recording technology, recordings went straight to disc. When magnetic tape recording was introduced, recordings went to tape before being transferred to a master disc for copying. The trouble with tape was hiss, which could be heard on quite passages. Engineers developed systems to cut this down. Later, Ray Dolby brought out his system of noise reduction, that dramatically improved recordings and was and still is used worldwide.

Hiss would be more noticeable if a copy of the original tape was used, making it second generation. In professional recording studios the equipment employed would usually run the tape at fifteen inches per second (ips) to achieve a good frequency response. Some machines recorded at seven and a half ips and thirty ips.

Originally, recordings were mono (single track). In the 1950s stereo came on board, but was mainly used for classical music. At that time singles were only released in mono, and most were recorded in mono. Later, two- track, four- track, eight- track, sixteen and twenty-four track recording came along. Sometimes two twenty-four track machines were linked, giving the engineer a massive forty-eight tracks to play with. This allowed instruments to have their own track. The singer was usually put in a booth on his/her own with a pair of headphones to listen to the accompaniment live in the studio, or playback that had been recorded earlier. The artiste then sang to the music. One of the advantages of the singer recording on a track that didn’t contain the backing, was that later, other tracks could be added and mixed for stereo.

A lot of the British output was recorded in London studios, with some recorded in the states and other places. Electrical Musical Industries (EMI) in Abbey Road, St John’s Wood, London was where a lot of British hits were made. There are three large studio areas; number one being the largest. The Beatles, Cliff Richard, Cilla Black and many many others recorded there. EMI ran several labels, including Columbia, Parlophone and HMV. Labels had their own colour until the mid sixties, when they became all black. Columbia was green, Parlophone red and HMV blue. EMI had a pressing plant in Hayes, Middlesex. HMVs trademark, Nipper the dog, listening to a gramophone was on the roof.

Decca was another label that had its fair share of hits. Their recording facility was in Broadhurst Gardens, Hampstead. Another hit making establishment was the PYE recording studios, which was at Cumberland Place, Marble Arch in London. This was originally going to be ATV television studios but became a place where hits were made by many, including sixties chart toppers the Searchers.

Philips had a studio in the area and recording supremo Joe Meek, who had a hit with his composition Telstar had a studio in his flat in Holloway Road. Meek was ahead of his time, creating sounds in a way that hadn’t been tried until then. There was and still are many studios in London and across the UK catering for the talent of today. The Decca studios at Broadhurst Gardens and PYE are no more, but the wonderful sounds created in them live on.

Today, we have high- tech digital recording, but the analogue studios of yesteryear, on both sides of the Atlantic and the rest of the world, produced some unforgettable sounds that will forever have a place in the history of music and memory.

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Importance of Jazz Theory to Jazz Musicians

Before we answer that question, let’s take a closer look at what jazz theory is.

What is Jazz Guitar Theory?

Jazzy theory isn’t the easiest thing to narrow down. It is many different things to different people. To some people it’s confusing, overbearing, and virtually useless. To other’s it’s the catalyst for their ability to play jazz guitar and remains a very important part of their musical career.

Jazz theory in its most basic form, however, is simply a method of speaking about the sound of music. It’s a way to narrow down the construction of the rhythms, melodies and tunes that we hear every single day.

Instead of wondering how a certain sound was made with an instrument, you simply have to read the notes from the musician to know how the sound was made. Every theory you learn is unified by real sound.

Essentially, jazz guitar theory becomes most important when you understand how it relates to the tunes that resonate with you. But it takes more than a few weeks to learn how sounds are made and how you can create your own compositions.

Basics of Jazz Guitar Theory

Jazz theory can be summed up in three simple terms. Those terms are 12 keys, 4 main types of chords, and common chord progressions. You’ll see these three terms rehearsed over and over again when you’re learning jazz theory.

Sure, in some cases a twist will be thrown into the mix to confuse you, but essentially these three rules define the whole of jazz theory. To be a successful soloist, you need to understand these three rules. Without a basic understanding of them you’ll be left struggling to figure out how a sound was created.

Don’t believe me? Well, let me know where you stand after spending years studying music theory and tell me if I’m wrong. I think you’ll find that these common themes are the most important aspects of jazz guitar theory, no matter how you slice it.

Improvisational Jazz

When it comes to improvisational jazz, jazz theory becomes a bit more important. A deep understanding of jazz theory is important if you want to write your own music. If you intend for others to read and replay your compositions, it is all the more important to have a good grasp of jazz theory-otherwise you’ll just spread bad music around.

However, I’d argue that jazz guitar theory isn’t the most important skill to master in regards to jazz improvisation. Countless jazz legends never learned to read music, including Wes Montgomery and Erroll Garner. If they didn’t need to understand jazz guitar theory, there’s a good chance you don’t either. The ability to play by ear continues to be the defining factor for many jazz musicians.

Summary

In the end, you don’t have to have 10 years of jazz theory study under your belt to be a successful jazz musician. However, learning the basic elements that make up jazz music composition will go a long way towards improving your improvisation. Either route you choose, more knowledge can never hurt.

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