Article by Isabelle Borg in London

Since I was a child, all I wanted to do was sing. That is why, when someone asks me how long I’ve been singing for, they get the standard reply, “Since Forever!”. Apart from singing, the other thing I want to do is leave my imprint, something that says “IzZy was here”.

This is why in November 2011, I made the decision that come what may, the next year I’ll be in London studying Vocals.

It had been some time since I last studied music in depth, having stopped playing the piano and studying theory around 4 years earlier, so I slowly started re-learning stuff which should have been child’s play to me.

I e-mailed a couple of Contemporary music schools in London and booked an audition with Tech Music Schools amongst others.

Under the excellent guidance of my brilliant teacher, Claire McCartin, I continued to work on my voice, making the songs my own and delivering the requested songs to perfection.

On the 28th of February 2012, I travelled from Kent to London, got lost, panicked a bit but managed to get there bang on time. A lecturer took me into one of the practice rooms and asked me to do some vocal exercises to check my range, some reading exercises and aural tests. Then he played some melodies on the piano, sang them and asked me to repeat after him to see how easily I took direction.

After that I performed the requested song, Isn’t she lovely and also a song of my own choice which was We Are by Ana Johnsson.

As we were walking down the stairs, I asked him when I would know if I got through and he replied that I shouldn’t worry because they were going to offer me a place on the course!  It can easily be described as one of the happiest days of my life!

In October 2012 I started a Vocals Diploma in Commercial Music Performance, which consisted of studying theory (starting from the very beginning), Reading, History and Industry, Techniques, Session Styles and Live Music Performance (LPW).

What is interesting about the LPW is that they combine 4 classes together – Vocals, Guitars, Drums and Bass, and we are assigned different songs each week. We started off with Blues, moved on to Rock and in Term 2, we’re doing Jazz. Then on the day, the teachers pick out musicians at random and we play that song together. This prepares you for the eventuality that you’re called in for a gig at the last minute without ever having met the band before.

Other interesting subjects have been Mic Technique, Band Technique (how to communicate with the band), Chest, Mix and Head voice, Anchoring, Resonance, being a DIY musician and all about the industry and how to make money from it.

I would definitely recommend Tech Music Schools to anyone who wants to study music seriously. The course I’m doing will teach you how to become a Session Singer. However, now in the meantime I have decided to do a degree and I have actually applied for a BA in Creative Musicianship rather than continue the course I’m doing at the moment. I believe it will develop me into an individual artist, showing me how to have the full package record labels and publishers are looking for.

Anyone who would like to know more about the school please visit www.techmusicschools.co.uk and if you do fill out an application, please do mention my name (Isabelle Luca Borg) in question 11 which asks how you found out about the school. It would really help me out as well 😉


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Professional Vocalist

Claire McCartin's distinctive blues voice is a much awaited fresh breath among Malta's evergrowing pop and rock scenes. With a voice which hints Eva Cassidy and Nina Simone, she is constantly evolving as an artist, performing regularly in Malta and also beyond our shores, namely in Russia, Austria and the U.S.

For more information, check out her personal site at www.clairemccartin.com/singer.

Contact

Email:
claire.mccartin@gmail.com

Phone:
(+356) 99262511

Address:
Claire McCartin Vocal Studio
3, Triq il-Prinjol
Iklin IKL 1833
Malta