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  • The Modern Southern Singer

    I recently ran across a post from Sirdaddy where he commented on how quite a few southern singers are taking their leads way up there nowadays. I'm not calling any names, I think we all know someone who is guilty of this if not you yourself. I know I am.

    At any rate, I've listened to some of the older recordings and I've heard the "Old Heads" taking it up there. But I must admit, the singing, from what I can hear, is different (at least it sounds like that to me, I could be wrong). So, why is there this "change of venue"?

    Does it have more to do with evolution on behalf of man kind?

    Does it have more to do with some guys having experiences singing northern?

    Does it have more to do with the contest pow wow, competing against northern?

    Does it have more to do with groups just tryin' to blow their competition away with being able to hold the highs and not good, structured, sound, song?

    HMMMMMMM!

    What are your thoughts folks! I'm not tryin' to stir the pot. People often do things not knowing they are setting examples. Just wanna know why some things are the way they are.

    Oh, and lets be civil please.

    LSS
    To get a true picture of your purpose in life, you only get the whole picture when you listen with your mind, your ears and your heart. This way The Creator has a direct connection with you and only you...no outside interference.

    When you follow the will of IT that created you, understanding that your purpose is not for you...but for IT and all that IT has created, there can be no wrong except failure to be obedient. Only then do we jeopardize the gifts we are given.

    Its not the final destination that defines us, rather the journey taken!

  • #2
    SKY high baby......SKY high!!!!

    I don't think it's anything new.....although, I'd like to think that the singers of yesterday could SKY better than anyone alive today.

    I constantly refer back to a recording I have at a 1987 Powwow in Oklahoma at Eagle Park.....I dunno who was singing, but, I could make out what appeared to be some Cozads and some other, presumably, Comanche singers.

    .....I'll say this much, I ain't heard any singing by any group come close to the quality, clarity or just RAW BEAUTY as I heard on that recording!! Straight from the get go.....it was SKYING from start to finish!!! Grand Entry was just one great song after the next......all sung like they weren't holding nothing back!! ....man!!!

    Groups today can TRY....but, they just ain't got it like them old time singers. They knew what the hell they we're doing.....and the young folks around today are just emulating a bygone era in Southern Singing History....but, that's just my one sided opinion. Singers sing for different reasons.....and I think that changes with each era, some for the sheer love of it, some for money and fame....and the chicks!! GAH!!!

    ....oh, there's a few out there that can SKY pretty good, but, I mean, they don't hold it out long enough, or they can't "take it up another notch" like them older singers.

    Maybe it comes in with age and experience.....but, that's just what I hear and see.

    I think eventually, if they keep at it....the younger singers of today MIGHT...........MIGHT, be able to match out some of their older predecessors. But...........I highly doubt it. They old singers we're products of their era.....and their style was unique to that time. The singers of today are a whole different breed.....with different motives I guess.

    There are exceptions though.....

    Scizzortail, Southern Thunder, Southern Boys, Yellowhammer, Eagle Claw.....they all "get up there" pretty damned good....and it comes off CLEAN, FLAWLESS & SMOOTH

    ...... it just adds to the whole overall "FEELING" at a dance.

    I think it's a freakin' gift to be able to do that, to take a song, sing the shyte out of it.....and just keep taking it up, higher and higher........the dancers enjoy it because it sounds good, and because they know that the singers are really putting out some effort.....and because it's just the freakin' coolest thing in the world to hear someone who knows what they're doing SKY on a song!!!


    To those who can do it.........keep it up, we love to hear it!!

    ....to those who are on they're way there......keep at it!!!

    To those who've been there and can STILL get there and impress the hell outta these younger singers.....totally leaving them with jaws on the ground with blank stares

    ...........WEE CHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!!
    "This next song goes out to some girls in dot com. They don't know who they are, but, it doesn't really matter anyway."




    "When the God's wish to punish us, they grant our prayers."

    O. Wilde

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    • #3
      It has to all be a matter of personal opinion. I wouldn't say its due to anyones experience or inexperience. I think its just a matter of voice range. Some voices are more comfortable staying low, as others are going high. Personally I think it sounds like crap when singers try to take it too high. But everyone sings different. If everyone sounded the same when they sang, that would be very boring.
      Last edited by bqueton; 06-24-2004, 06:50 PM.
      If life is a waste of time and time is a waste of life; let's all get wasted together and have the time of our lives!

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by bqueton
        It has to all be a matter of personal opinion. I wouldn't say its due to anyones experience or inexperience. I think its just a matter of voice range. Some voices are more comfortable staying low, as others are going high. Personally I think it sounds like crap when singers try to take it too high. But everyone sings different. If everyone sounded the same when they sang, that would be very boring.
        ___

        bque:

        There are a lot of truths in what you have posted.

        Voice range has everything to do with it. Some singers naturally start songs at a higher pitch. But, often times they sky "too high" and their supporting singers barely reach these high ranges and make "incredibly funny faces trying!" (I have proof. I took a camera to the center drum of Stroud and took THE most hilarious pictures on earth!) Sometime in the near future, take a look at the singers who are trying to "sky" at a southern drum!

        All humor aside . . . older, experienced singers (who are fully capable of "skying") start their songs at a level where all the rest of singers can sound in unison and sing at everybody's maximum vocal range.




        This unison and harmony around the drum, is what southern singing SHOULD be all about.
        Powwows will continue to evolve in many directions. It is inevitable.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by WhoMe
          ___

          bque:

          There are a lot of truths in what you have posted.

          Voice range has everything to do with it. Some singers naturally start songs at a higher pitch. But, often times they sky "too high" and their supporting singers barely reach these high ranges and make "incredibly funny faces trying!" (I have proof. I took a camera to the center drum of Stroud and took THE most hilarious pictures on earth!) Sometime in the near future, take a look at the singers who are trying to "sky" at a southern drum!

          All humor aside . . . older, experienced singers (who are fully capable of "skying") start their songs at a level where all the rest of singers can sound in unison and sing at everybody's maximum vocal range.




          This unison and harmony around the drum, is what southern singing SHOULD be all about.
          Thats right, it doesn't sound good when there are only one two or maybe three ppl sing because no one can sky that high
          sounds much better when everyones voices match. I think if you wanna sing that high why don't you just sing northen? Its hard to take a song up if it is started out up really high.
          Dayum I make some keen DrumSticks!!!!!!sigpic

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          • #6
            Hey,
            It has been stated before and I totally agree "it is a matter of personal opinion" and "voice range". I am by no means a pro but I do my best. I go through a 2 part process. When I am honored to catch a song; I go through the workout phase, my voice range plays a crucial part, but to complete the process I have to think about the other singers and their ranges. Sometimes for the other singers to be able to sing that song you may have to tone it down or bring it up depending on them.
            "I am not a superhero; just one of the few working hard and long for the survival of my PEOPLE."

            Comment


            • #7
              Hey Rumaki:

              I think I may have the same recording or similar recording. Eagle Park is that down around Lawton? As I have a recording down there duing that same period maybe 1985. But the singing was awesome and before there really were drum groups in Oklahoma.


              I have another recording of 1982 at Tulsa Pow-wow quality of tape has broken down but you can tell it was a good singing crew.

              The people I knew who were on these were Joe Cozad, Larry, Berkey Monoessy, Frank Adson, Herb Adson and I am pretty sure Peewee Clark and Jim Kemble. It is unbelieveable.

              Comment


              • #8

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                • #9
                  the modern southern singer?

                  my coment on this subject,..Some singers were taught modern ways some learn the old ways.
                  but what i was saying before singing is singing but screaming to get it out is another and i just think some guys need to chill out i can name alot of names but idont wanna hert some peoples fellings. SO SOMEBODY ANSWER THIS QUESTION 4 ME HOW COME AROUND TULSA ALL THE SINGING SUCKS I'VE BEEN TO ALOT OF DANCES AROUND THERE AND THERE CENTER DRUM IS ALWAYS WEEK ITS BEEN THAT WAY FOR LIKE TWO YEARS ITS WONCE IN A BLUE MOON ITS GOOD,????
                  kiah smith

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Sirdady:

                    I've seen exactly what you are talking about. There really aren't any singers around Tulsa anymore. For good singing around T-town now they have to bring in singers from out of town. I've tried to help out around there in the past but it always seemed to me that every around there doesn't want your help. And then there are the times when they always get Osage or Ponca singers and I can't help you out there. I don't know their songs and I don't sing their songs.
                    If life is a waste of time and time is a waste of life; let's all get wasted together and have the time of our lives!

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Welp...it seems as if its a pretty consistent notion around here. We have those that can scream, sky, and pace it all out.

                      I guess the biggest thing in picking out good quality sound is when there is an experienced singer (Head Singer, Cut Man, Singer, etc.) who has the experience with a pretty good range and knows how to pace that range w/ his fellow singers. No one wants to stick out like a sore thumb. Even if he can sky higher than the rest of his crew....LOL...that only means he'll be singing w/o the rest of his guys.

                      When guys have been around long enough and have a few pow wows under their belt, they'll then begin to realize those that tryin' to "Hot Doggit" and stand out....or more or less have not traveled very far down that road of hard knocks!

                      WhoMe, and any others of you out there I've talked with...you and I have spoken before on several accounts...What else have you to say on these thoughts here or this post in general? I think we've pretty much knocked this topic out.

                      No Need To Beat A Dead Horse!

                      Lets wrap this up shall we!

                      LSS
                      To get a true picture of your purpose in life, you only get the whole picture when you listen with your mind, your ears and your heart. This way The Creator has a direct connection with you and only you...no outside interference.

                      When you follow the will of IT that created you, understanding that your purpose is not for you...but for IT and all that IT has created, there can be no wrong except failure to be obedient. Only then do we jeopardize the gifts we are given.

                      Its not the final destination that defines us, rather the journey taken!

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        modern southern singing

                        bquetone,


                        yeah tulsa does get alot of outsiders but i dont think its always poncas & osages, every powwow flyer i get i always see names like JOHN ARKEKETA,OR PAT OWYBAIE there kinda locals around there i gess,.and i see alot of young buks around there always singing i dont no who they are but they have keen voices. i was at a small powwow in t-town at a indian church and it was mosly youg guys man they rocked the house.....
                        kiah smith

                        Comment

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