Jeri, see the Favorite Instruments thread I refreshed.
Here is what I added to the thread on 'what do catters play', which applies to the voice.
Bravo to those learning to use the voice to its potential. Singing in English is a disadvantage because the language has so many consonant stops (s, t, sh, m, ng, etc). It is a more difficult language to get the greatest potential developed in your voice. For that reason, a good teacher of vocal technique will have you learn songs in Italian just for practice, and for technical muscle and placement development. You may never sing them in public, but using the Italian to practice opens the voice up when you use the techniques that a good teacher can show you. Learning something in French can help you develop the 'lift' of the soft palate as well as singing from the 'mask' of the face. We have had several threads on the topic of singing technique and development. This one has links to warming up and vocal health, etc. singing voice
Here is a thread from 1997 about catter's favorite instruments (my favorite is my voice).Favorite Instruments
I should have added that the open vowel sounds of Italian, French, Spanish, etc is one of the reasons those languages are easier to sing with power, clarity, ... so when singing English, you can 're-phonate' the words to consciously sing more on the vowels of the words. For example, give attention to the vowel sounds in "weather", not singing on the 'r's at the ends of words. weeaaaatheeer, not wwwweathththerrrrrrr. It's hard to describe this in writing instead of demonstrating by having you hear it sung.
alice in montana