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Worst criticism EVER?

Deni 22 Jun 01 - 12:41 AM
Sorcha 22 Jun 01 - 01:19 AM
hesperis 22 Jun 01 - 01:45 AM
GUEST,Ranter 22 Jun 01 - 02:05 AM
fat B****rd 22 Jun 01 - 02:32 AM
English Jon 22 Jun 01 - 05:43 AM
KingBrilliant 22 Jun 01 - 06:32 AM
Justa Picker 22 Jun 01 - 05:14 PM
Justa Picker 22 Jun 01 - 05:27 PM
Jim Krause 22 Jun 01 - 05:39 PM
Clinton Hammond 22 Jun 01 - 05:58 PM
Bert 22 Jun 01 - 06:03 PM
Dorrie 22 Jun 01 - 06:18 PM
mousethief 22 Jun 01 - 06:49 PM
GUEST,John Of The Hill 22 Jun 01 - 07:25 PM
Little Hawk 22 Jun 01 - 08:06 PM
IvanB 22 Jun 01 - 08:10 PM
Rick Fielding 22 Jun 01 - 08:11 PM
Little Hawk 22 Jun 01 - 08:15 PM
Justa Picker 22 Jun 01 - 08:18 PM
Little Hawk 22 Jun 01 - 09:25 PM
Rick Fielding 22 Jun 01 - 10:28 PM
GUEST,Frogmore 22 Jun 01 - 10:34 PM
Marion 22 Jun 01 - 10:53 PM
GUEST,mmm 22 Jun 01 - 10:54 PM
TishA 22 Jun 01 - 11:54 PM
Crazy Eddie 23 Jun 01 - 05:43 AM
bill\sables 23 Jun 01 - 09:53 AM
GUEST,Frogmore 23 Jun 01 - 10:03 PM
Jeremiah McCaw 24 Jun 01 - 11:41 AM
GUEST,blt 25 Jun 01 - 01:03 AM
GUEST,pete 25 Jun 01 - 12:09 PM
CamiSu 25 Jun 01 - 12:41 PM
Deni 25 Jun 01 - 12:51 PM
Trapper 25 Jun 01 - 04:43 PM
Mountain Dog 25 Jun 01 - 06:41 PM
vectis 25 Jun 01 - 07:29 PM
Deni 26 Jun 01 - 01:54 AM
Wilfried Schaum 26 Jun 01 - 03:44 AM
LR Mole 26 Jun 01 - 11:08 AM
Jack the Sailor 26 Jun 01 - 01:33 PM
GUEST,SharonA 26 Jun 01 - 02:03 PM
Willie-O 27 Jun 01 - 08:29 AM
GUEST,SharonA 27 Jun 01 - 11:42 AM
Jack the Sailor 27 Jun 01 - 11:48 AM
GUEST,raggytash 27 Jun 01 - 01:48 PM
GUEST,chuck 27 Jun 01 - 10:06 PM
Melani 27 Jun 01 - 10:44 PM
Bert 27 Jun 01 - 11:58 PM
mmm1a 28 Jun 01 - 12:22 AM
Deni 28 Jun 01 - 01:04 AM
KingBrilliant 28 Jun 01 - 05:15 AM
Uncle_DaveO 28 Jun 01 - 09:39 AM
CET 28 Jun 01 - 06:37 PM
vectis 28 Jun 01 - 06:38 PM
GUEST,Frogmore 28 Jun 01 - 09:23 PM
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Subject: Worst criticism EVER?
From: Deni
Date: 22 Jun 01 - 12:41 AM

I was just scrolling down the threads and wondering, what's the worst thing about being in folk music, or any kind of music for that matter. Has anyone criticised you or the type of music you play? How longago did it happen?Are their remarks still with you? How do you rise above them? Just curious...go on, you can tell us...


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: Sorcha
Date: 22 Jun 01 - 01:19 AM

When my "Violin" teacher told me that "fiddle" music wasn't really music..........I told her off, gave up Classical lessons and have had a blast since. Took me a while to get over it, tho. So, stuff the old biddy!


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: hesperis
Date: 22 Jun 01 - 01:45 AM

Hmmm, not about folk music, but my worst criticism ever was in several Choirs. The directors (a series of them over the years) always told me to be quieter and to blend in. Not just a bit, but several times each song of each rehearsal. From age 13 to age 16.

So now, I can't sing loudly at all. And I don't enjoy the sound of my voice even though I know in my head that it is beautiful.


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: GUEST,Ranter
Date: 22 Jun 01 - 02:05 AM

Tone deaf A--H---s who tell stupid jokes like Can you sing tenor? Tenor twenty miles away.

and

Do you know who sings that song? Then let him sing it.

I have heard these a few times but never from someone who knew the smallest thing about music. You know that they've been dying to use these things ever since they first heard them. And you know they are too ignorant to know better. And you know that you will get in trouble if you choke the life out of them then and there.......


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: fat B****rd
Date: 22 Jun 01 - 02:32 AM

In my schooldays I "sang" in the local "beat group" at church youth club socials etc. One Friday at St. Francis Xavier (St. Fannys) a lad in our 6th form asked if he could tape our performance. Flattered, we naturally agreed. When we'd finished our Berry, Cochran, Shadows etc set I asked why he did it. "It's for our debating society. The subject is "Is this rubbish really necessary""We soon recovered, as teenagers should, and I happily performed necessary rubbish for a few more years.Keep Buggering In, as my dear old dad used to say. fB


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: English Jon
Date: 22 Jun 01 - 05:43 AM

At music college, everyone had to audition to be in the orchestra. If you weren't up to the grade (or played sax, or guitar or anything non western-orchestral) you had to join the choir. As a first study singer, this pissed me off no end, and I made a considerable fuss about the "second class" status conferred upon "singers" (oh they're not really musicians" etc, much to the irritation of the head of faculty.

Anyway, I turned up for lectures one day with my fiddle, and immediately got asked to join the orchestra (without being asked to audition, which is just as well, as I'd only had it for three weeks). I proceeded to inform them that their string section was even worse than the choir (which was true - some of the players were even worse than me, and I was pretty shit then) and for that reason I would not be joining the orchestra.

How to win friends and influence people...

EJ


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: KingBrilliant
Date: 22 Jun 01 - 06:32 AM

A friend of mine (male) was singing with another friend (female) at an open mic. After the first song an old geezer at the front said 'Don't you sing this next song - let her do it, she's got a much better voice'.
She heard, but wasn't sure whether he had. It was a pretty thoughtless thing to say, and I'm sure the geezer had no idea how hard it is to sing after something like that.
They got huge applause though, so all was well in the end.
I was told recently that I sing everything in the same style & the words aren't clear. This was honest and helpful criticism that I totally accept. Fortunately it is something I have been aware of for a while, and am making progress at sorting it out - so it was no shock & didn't put me off (well, Ok it might have thrown me a bit that night, but that's all).
So, constructive criticism is a good thing & should really be welcomed. Non-constructive criticism can safely be ignored.
I was put off for ages once because someone expressed huge relief when I finished a particularly long song. It was my own fault really for not picking a more suitable song.

If anyone ever uses on me or Hamm one of those lines that Ranter mentioned then I'll probably hit them!!

Anyways - lets not worry about people of restricted taste. And cyber-hugs to anyone who has been stung by unwarranted criticism.

Kris


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: Justa Picker
Date: 22 Jun 01 - 05:14 PM

One that sticks in my head, is when our dance band (years ago) would play 5 fast, up tempo numbers in a row, and then go into a ballad, a slightly drunken woman would come up to the stage and yell "Play something we can dance to."

Then, I'm reminded of the many times, where we'd be playing a club during the week, and the room would be relatively quiet all night, and we'd finish the night with a lighting fast version of "It Don't Mean A Thing If It Ain't Got That Swing", spend 5 minutes trading bars of 8 and 4 and then the head and out......And then say "Goodnight". Half way through the tune, 4 people would walk in and sit down. As soon as we'd said "Goodnight"....someone from the table would yell "You can't quit. We just got here."

I'm sure there are past and current working musicians with similar stories, and have experienced these particular comments first hand.


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: Justa Picker
Date: 22 Jun 01 - 05:27 PM

There's a story that Chet Atkins is fond of telling, about a time when he and his wife decided to go on a cruise vacation. While aboard the ship they happen to share a few drinks with another American couple, and the guy asked Chet what he did for a living and Chet replied that he played a little guitar and had a few business interests. (At this point into the conversation, he hadn't introduced himself by name to the others.) The other guy says he has an old beat guitar he brought with him, and maybe he (Chet) could pick a couple of tunes for him. So he gets the guitar and gives it to Chet, and Chet proceeds to display a little of his virtuosity. Guy says to Chet, "Not bad...but you're no Chet Atkins."

Chet actually made fun of this anecdote on the Neck & Neck album he recorded with Mark Knopfler back in the early 90s. On the tune "There'll Be Some Changes Made" when he and Knopfler are trading licks at one point he says after a Knopfler lick "not bad...but you're no Mark Knopfler".

(Guess you had to be there.)


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: Jim Krause
Date: 22 Jun 01 - 05:39 PM

I had some experience with some real beaureaucratic dumbasses one time. I applied for an arts in education position. The application process required that I submit a demo tape. So I send in the tape with the required paperwork and in a few weeks or mabye months, I got back this evaluation that basically said "This guy's got the worst voice we ever heard in our lives." And "This is a parody of a good voice." I quickly sat down and wrote them a nasty letter in the form of a song and sent it to the evaluation committee. And to demonstrate my contempt, the verses were in the form of limericks. I guess I have burnt some bridges in my time
Jim


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: Clinton Hammond
Date: 22 Jun 01 - 05:58 PM

One of my mates told me, "You're really good at what you do, but I just don't like any of your music"

I told him, "That's o.k... Yer a good bartender, but you're ugly as sin."

We get on famously!

;-)


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: Bert
Date: 22 Jun 01 - 06:03 PM

"Can you whistle?"
..."Yes"...
"That's good 'cos you can't F***ing sing"


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: Dorrie
Date: 22 Jun 01 - 06:18 PM

Today my media teacher(norma waterson's son)said that folk music was boring-purely because i said 'sport and the media' is a boring topic and why would anyone really want 2 study for 2 terms. I was real upset and i throw my sock at him.

but really recently loads of people have told me i can sing which was nice

dorrie xxx


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: mousethief
Date: 22 Jun 01 - 06:49 PM

Ranter: *I* wouldn't hold it against you!

Recently a coworker told me that I have the Eddie Vetter warble. I don't think he meant it as a compliment.

Alex


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: GUEST,John Of The Hill
Date: 22 Jun 01 - 07:25 PM

My father once told me I sounded like a rabbi with adenoid trouble, but since I was singing a Dylan song, I guess it wasn't really criticism.


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: Little Hawk
Date: 22 Jun 01 - 08:06 PM

Somebody once said that I sounded like John Denver. Coulda been worse. They could've said Rod Stewart.

- LH


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: IvanB
Date: 22 Jun 01 - 08:10 PM

Ages, ago, when I was married to my first wife, we were both in the church choir. As luck would have it, I was a big fish in a little pond (fairly able tenor in a VERY small section, whereas she was a soprano in a large section which also boasted one professional lyric soprano. Upshot was, I got to do lots of solo work, she rarely did. Then we purchased a house some distance away and joined the small mission parish in our new location. The church had no choir at all so we immediately started forming one. After we'd been there some months, the two of us did a duet for the offertory one Sunday. After the service, one of the parishioners came up to me and said, 'Ivan, I didn't know YOU could sing too!' The ex was ecstatic (and no, that's not why she's an ex).


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: Rick Fielding
Date: 22 Jun 01 - 08:11 PM

It ain't music but it's the one that sticks out in my mind.

During my 11 year "career" in the TORONTO ARTS SOFTBALL LEAGUE, my nickname was:

"Around the bases in eighty days!"

They had a point. Very few batters get thrown out at first after singling to right field. Happened at least once a season to me.

Rick


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: Little Hawk
Date: 22 Jun 01 - 08:15 PM

Ha! Ha! Ha! I can just see you puffing down the base line, Rick. I guess it's a good thing you went into music instead of ending up in the Toronto Blue Jays, eh?

- LH


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: Justa Picker
Date: 22 Jun 01 - 08:18 PM

Ahh...he just needed more incentive.
A buxom babe holding an old D-28 at first base, another holding a 60s Epiphone Texan at second, and a third holding a prewar D-45 at third. Make it around all the bases in under 20 seconds and the babes and guitars were yours. :-) (pre-Duckboots days of course.)


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: Little Hawk
Date: 22 Jun 01 - 09:25 PM

No babes required. The guitars alone would have done the trick, I'm sure.

- LH


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: Rick Fielding
Date: 22 Jun 01 - 10:28 PM

Wise words LH and JP.

Had a guy ask me over and over again for a James Taylor song. Finally I played it. "Your no James Taylor " was his response.

At least fifty club owners say "Hey Reeky, play some rock and roll".

The best criticism is when someone requested a song....you played it ...and they went to the bathroom DURING it.

Bill Langstroth (Mr. Anne Murray), when my Manager asked if I could be on a specific TV show..."Why should I hire HIM? He's just another folksinger". Dammit, I thought I was a JUGGLER!

I gotta be careful with names here. In the washroom of the Royal York, a powerful publicist VIP sidled up to me at the urinal, and said, "you sound good tonight Rick"...he looked at me a bit too personally and then asked "Is your bass player married"? I breathed a sigh of relief.....but I guess I WAS being criticized, in a manner of speaking.

Rick


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: GUEST,Frogmore
Date: 22 Jun 01 - 10:34 PM

Ok, you got my attention. In high school I was quickly asked to leave the glee club rehearsal and I am the only one of those golden-throated crooners who has ever turned a nickle singin'. For 31 years now. HaHa. A "music reviewer" who evidently had a personal vendetta against me because he saw me walk out on his gig wrote that my CD was "good, but 20 years too late." Now what the hell does that mean in the context of "folk music"? An outrageously drunken patron of a southern Md. bar in 1976 kept yelling at me to "play some COUNTRY!" After I'd covered Hank, Jimmie, Merle, Buck, George, etc. he was still not satisfied. I pointed out what I had sung and just before the manager flung him into the parking lot, he shrieked, "Yeah, you done some country but you did it in the HIPPIE STYLE! Maybe I did. I've got many more, but you get the idea. When I entered into this odd occupation I did it partly for the true stories I would inevitably collect. At least when I'm a geezer I won't have to sit around reminiscing about TV shows I've seen with my fellow geezers. Keep truckin'. Frogmore.


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: Marion
Date: 22 Jun 01 - 10:53 PM

Does it have to be about music?

I'll always remember the time I took a Chinese language class (in Montreal); after the first day, I happened to meet a Chinese person, so I tried my new words out on him.

His response: "I'm sorry, but I don't speak French."

Marion


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: GUEST,mmm
Date: 22 Jun 01 - 10:54 PM

well now i don't feel to bad ,after hearing that everyone else has had some criticism. my ex told me that i didn't have what it takes to be a singer after that i have not shared any songs that i have written with anyone other than my babies.since coming into mudcat i have been thinking about letting others hear my songs. mmm


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: TishA
Date: 22 Jun 01 - 11:54 PM

When I was first learning old time two finger banjo from a few local oldsters I was told by a bluegrasser to forget everything I'd learned. Not too long after that, I went to a local luthier for some birdseye maple with which to make a new pot for a 5 string. He told me he didn't know why I wanted such nice wood. Since a banjo wasn't a musical instrument anyway, I might as well make it out of frozen shit.

Well, I just kept picking.

Chip A.


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: Crazy Eddie
Date: 23 Jun 01 - 05:43 AM

Guest mmm,You said:
my ex told me that i didn't have what it takes to be a singer. after that i have not shared any songs that i have written with anyone other than my babies. since coming into mudcat i have been thinking about letting others hear my songs.

Sing good & loud. And if you can't sing good, just sing loud!
Never let anyone take away your right to sing! Eddie


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: bill\sables
Date: 23 Jun 01 - 09:53 AM

Many years ago I was booked to play for a Scout and Cub jamboree. The frst half went well and during the interval the kids were all treated to hot dogs. I started the second half and during the first song one of their leaders called that there were seconds of hot dogs. I never saw the room clear as fast, I was the only one left.
Cheers Bill


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: GUEST,Frogmore
Date: 23 Jun 01 - 10:03 PM

How about this for Saturday night fun? - SONGS OF CRITICISM. Some that come immediately to mind are the Austin Lounge Lizard's "Jesus Loves Me But He Don't Like You", Carly Simon's "You're So Vain", and Louis Armstrong singing "I'll Be Glad When You're Dead, You Rascal You." All those millions of love songs have to be balanced out I think.


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: Jeremiah McCaw
Date: 24 Jun 01 - 11:41 AM

English teacher back in high school described our school band as sounding "like a cow giving birth to barbed wire"!

Still provokes a sympathy clench!


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: GUEST,blt
Date: 25 Jun 01 - 01:03 AM

Well, once a guy I was auditioning for, whose name happened to be Richard, warily wanted to know if I was going to sing any songs where I called men "dickheads," which I got to use onstage as a joke for years afterward.

I think the worst things are people who take the table smack dab in front of where I'm singing and proceed to talk loudly and ignore the fact that there's a musician about 6 inches away.

And once, at a coffeehouse I played at every Sunday morning for 6 months or so, I was dutifully counting my tips and waiting for the token $20.00 check. The manager came up and said she'd neglected to request it this week and did I mind? We got into an argument, she ended up waving a $20.00 in my face, screaming "If you need twenty dollars so damn much, you shouldn't be playing here!" Ah, the delights of being a folksinger in the late 20th century.

blt


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: GUEST,pete
Date: 25 Jun 01 - 12:09 PM

My wifes singing is generally accepted, even by her, not to be her finest talent. she was once asked to mime when her school was recorded for a radio programme


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: CamiSu
Date: 25 Jun 01 - 12:41 PM

Sounds like some of the 'criticism' here is more bad manners on the 'critics' parts. (Especially your bar manager blt!)

There is someone I've heard who really is a bit difficult to listen to as his delivery tends to be in several keys, but he writes lovely stuff! So I'll keep listening. We all have different aspects of talent. (Hesperis, I know a bit whereof you speak. One friend said once, "You have a lovely voice...SING OUT!" And I just can't! I gues we will someday. Until then...microphones?

Mine came in a 5th grade art class. "Cami will never be an artist, only a draftsman." Said to the class at large. It was, however, what I needed to hear to know I had to loosen up, and later I got a teacher who knew how to unlock my talent.

CamiSu


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: Deni
Date: 25 Jun 01 - 12:51 PM

God. I've just got back after a weekend at Teignmouth Festival and read the thread. These are so brilliant, someone ought to put them in one of those little gift books in a card shop. They'd make a good little stocking filler for a guitarist at Christmas. Titles anyone. I might even publish it! I can think of criticisms, mainly from my dear brother, but I'm still dwelling on the worst one! It's so painful to sort out worst from merely bad. Cheers and keep em comin. Deni


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: Trapper
Date: 25 Jun 01 - 04:43 PM

My wife has a lovely voice, and an often instinctive grasp of harmony. Too bad no one gets to hear her - even I only get to hear her when she's about the house and has more or less forgotten that I'm there. Someone told her when she was in her teens that she had a bad voice, and that was it. No amount of compliments and encouragement on my part can change her mind.

I think singing is a gift - what else, at ANY price, can bring the joy, contentment and release that singing can bring. I can't think of a punishment sufficiently cruel for someone who tells a child that they "can't sing".

FWIW...

- Al


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: Mountain Dog
Date: 25 Jun 01 - 06:41 PM

My first experience with music criticism came when I was about four. It was the Christmas season and I was wandering happily through the house, loudly singing my favorite carols.

After a while, my mom asked: "What are you doing?"

"Singing Christmas songs!"

"No you're not; you're just rumbling the air!" she opined.

The result was that, apart from several forced stints in school and church choirs early on, I actively avoided singing within earshot of other people for the greater part of the next 30 years. (I still enjoyed singing, despite the internal conviction that I didn't do it very well or tunefully, and always continued to sing for my own pleasure.) Fortunately, from the time we were married, my wife has not only tolerated my "rumblings" (my speaking and singing voice are in the baritone to bass range), but has actively encouraged me to loosen up and belt it out.

For obvious reasons, I tend to make a point of praising and encouraging kids in doing whatever creative and artistic things appeal to them (provided they're not life-threatening), regardless of their level of achievement or expertise.


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: vectis
Date: 25 Jun 01 - 07:29 PM

When I was six and singing in the school nativity play I felt a stinging slap accross the back of my legs. My teacher ( a nun that must have worked for the Gestapo) told me to mouth the words but not let any sound out because my singing was so awful.
I was 19 before I sang in front of anybody again.
Now I am a resident at a folk club and get paid to do gigs. My confidence is fragile but I enjoy doing what I do and the audiences like it too, I get asked back.


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: Deni
Date: 26 Jun 01 - 01:54 AM

Some of these are quite distressing to read. How can anybody do that to a kid?

Mountain Dog, down here we treasure our bass-baritones. They are not exactly thick on the ground in folk, I can tell you. Keep rumbling.

And Vectis, being slapped for singing! I'm glad you are doing so well now. That's one in the eye for the nun.

Trapper. I had a similar problem resulting from a family member telling me I was a bighead, when I was about eight. It's never left me and I NEVER do any performance to the best of my ability. (OK. I did once. I sang Cabaret at a social club when I was drunk on Pony, 'the little drink with the big kick!')

I think what we have to look at is why some of us are so hurt by these cruel remarks and why some can just shrug them off. Anyone out there want to give us any pointers?

I think if your wife can give other people pleasure by her singing, they'd love to hear her. Won't she do it for them? Go on Trappers wife, we want to hear you.

Cheers Deni


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: Wilfried Schaum
Date: 26 Jun 01 - 03:44 AM

Dear Deni,

I was touched by your question, and read the thread. Worst of are the stories where happy children are demotivated to use the most noble instrument mankind has at their ready use: the own voice to sing. I lost it after a heavy traffic accident, and owe my life only to the efforts of those noble and gallant people of the U.S. Medical Corps who found me in the woods of Germany. Today I read a very bitter critique in Mudcat Cafe (Ancient Brits ...). I think one of the main points in criticizing music are not only questions of taste, but of tact also. I have my preferences, folk songs, J.S. Bach and medieval madrigals, but I don't detest any other kind of music. I know a lot of fellow musicians doing other styles of music, in rock-bands or else. They know my different taste, and I know theirs, but as long as we perform well in handling our instruments we respect one another. It is a hard job sometimes to do music to amuse the audience, and I think it grossly impolite how sometimes those hard working people on stage are sneered at only because there are some people with a different taste in music. If you hit the right tone in cadence, whatever instrument you play, you are doing well, and will be respected by the knowing. At least, ask yourself, how many fun making music gives to yourself.

Wilfried


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: LR Mole
Date: 26 Jun 01 - 11:08 AM

It's as true in singing as it is in playing: the pros are the kindest, and the amateurs (and/or the threatened) are most likely to be cruel. (Could you sing,'Far, Far Away'? 'Hey,sing over by the window. I'll help you out.')


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: Jack the Sailor
Date: 26 Jun 01 - 01:33 PM

A fellow I knew who hates Karaoke took perverse pleasure in heaping undue praise upon the worst singers. Then he laughed at them behind their backs. One day we are sitting in the bar and one of them who the fellow had described as "consistantly a half tone flat" come up to us and positively glowed when he was told how brilliant he was.

Then the singer turned to me and asked me what I thought...

What would you have done?


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: GUEST,SharonA
Date: 26 Jun 01 - 02:03 PM

I'd've complimented the "great job" (as in effort) he did, and avoided commentary about the quality of the performance. If pressed, I'd lie, but I'm a lousy liar.

Once I visited a bar in a small-town camping area with my then-boyfriend, where the limited entertainment included karaoke. He pointed out a young woman he knew who prided herself on her Patsy Cline renditions. When I said I'd like to sing one as well, he asked me not to, saying, "That's all she has [to be proud of]" (i.e. don't show her up).


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: Willie-O
Date: 27 Jun 01 - 08:29 AM

There's something about drunken die-hard country music fans; if you play the Hank or Merle or whatever, they might like you briefly, but will probably ignore you and continue to be obnoxious. The words are coming out of their mouths automatically but they're not listening. (And yeah, they don't want it "hippie style". No surprises please, we're rednecks.) They'll make a bunch more noise, and you'll only hear from them when you stop playing and are at the end of the gig. With management wanting to close down, that's when they throw a big act about wanting to hear more.

SharonA, I think your ex-boyfriend has something going for him!

And oh, if you're playing a Steve Earle song to a biker crowd, you better get it right.

Most hurtful criticism I ever got about a performance though involved somebody's fist connecting with my nose. Wasn't my playing he objected to but my reaction when he tripped over the (borrowed) mixer while coming up on stage in the middle of a song. (See the old old "Gigs from Hell" thread.

Willie-O


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: GUEST,SharonA
Date: 27 Jun 01 - 11:42 AM

Unfortunately, Willie-O, he ALSO had some "thing" going with another woman, sooooo... (you'll notice I said EX-boyfriend!!!)


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: Jack the Sailor
Date: 27 Jun 01 - 11:48 AM

I told the guy he should buy a tape recorder so that he could improve his practice. I don't lie. At least it was constructive critism.


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: GUEST,raggytash
Date: 27 Jun 01 - 01:48 PM

Once while playing in a club session myself and an accordian player were having a good "do". we were joined by a keyboard "player" who's timing left a lot to be desired. I heard the following comment from the bar and it remains the best one line put down I've ever heard. 1st Man "That keyboard player needs a metronome" 2nd Man " No, what he needs is a f*****g taxi home"


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: GUEST,chuck
Date: 27 Jun 01 - 10:06 PM

Red Skelton once had Amanda Blake ["Miss Kitty" from Gunsmoke] on his show, performing in a skit. Part of her act was to sing an old western song. He caught her gaze after she finished, and said, "I can see why you took up acting instead of singing." Needless to say, she broke character.


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: Melani
Date: 27 Jun 01 - 10:44 PM

From my family--"Do you have to do that inside?" I have extreme difficulty playing instruments in front of other people.

When I was little, my mother, a former professional singer, told me I couldn't carry a tune. Can so.

At our chantey sings, the worst performers often get the most applause, simply for surviving an obviously traumatic experience.


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: Bert
Date: 27 Jun 01 - 11:58 PM

"We all have different aspects of talent." Ah! CamiSu, I thinkI love you (Just don't tell Tree)

There is a special place in hell reserved for those who criticize or laugh at children when they sing. And if I finish up down there I'll be applying for the job of standing over them with the barbed wire whip and the branding irons.

Bert.


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: mmm1a
Date: 28 Jun 01 - 12:22 AM

crazy eddie thank you it means alot to me when some one encourages me i am not the best singer or the loudest but it is something i dearly love again thank you for your kind words

mmm


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: Deni
Date: 28 Jun 01 - 01:04 AM

RobDale. I think what I would have done would have been to say the word brilliant gets bandied about too lightly. If we use too many strong words like that, what do we reserve for the truly brilliant in every field. I mean, we might say our child's stick drawing is brilliant, but where does that leave poor old Van Gogh? On a par?

I think it would be diplomatic to say that you enjoyed their committment or whatever positive aspect you can find. I've lost count of the number of performers I love listening to because of their obvious pleasure in singing and their lovely personalities. And some people really know how to put over a song, regardless of their technical ability, and that always has the edge over a nice-but-dull performance. Still...the object is to have someone do both!

Raggytash. Mind if I use that conversation in my club? Course I might leave out the word 'f****ing', or do you think that would ruin it? Probably... Deni


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: KingBrilliant
Date: 28 Jun 01 - 05:15 AM

Rob - you're response was surely the best. Without cutting the ground from under him you managed to make a suggestion that can only help. I'm sure he'll have taken that as encouragement, and will have appreciated the fact that you thought he was worth helping out with some advice.
It would be cruel to over-compliment, we all need honest feedback in order to improve.
Its really mean of that other guy to gush about someone's performance and then laugh at them for taking the compliments seriously. What a git!! Does he have a go himself?
Families can be swines for criticising can't they? Sometimes I need that spur though, then I work hard to do better - out of pure spite...

Kris


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: Uncle_DaveO
Date: 28 Jun 01 - 09:39 AM

Deni said:

"I mean, we might say our child's stick drawing is brilliant, but where does that leave poor old Van Gogh? On a par?"

I often say to a child about his/her art: "I like that! It's fun!" It's all true. I like that he/she did it, and wants to show it. "It's fun" is ambiguous: Is the picture fun to look at? Is drawing fun?

Dave Oesterreich


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: CET
Date: 28 Jun 01 - 06:37 PM

Hesperis, take heart. I am sure that not only can you sing, you can sing well enough that people will enjoy listening to you. What might open the door for you is taking lessons from a really good voice teacher. I would recommend someone with a strong classical background, not because the only good singing is what they do at the Met, but because someone with that kind of training is likely to have the skill to open up your voice, and let you reach your potential. Whatever you were told about your voice when you were a child may well have been wrong then, and is probably wrong now. Don't worry if you aren't Cecilia Bartoli. We already have Cecilia Bartoli. What we need is Hesperis.

Someone you know can probably point you in the direction of a good voice teacher. If not, get out the Yellow Pages.

Edmund


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: vectis
Date: 28 Jun 01 - 06:38 PM

My youngest son is my most critical critic. He came up with some beauties when I took up playing the piano accordion. As I couldn,t read music or play a keyboard it was a bit painful for the family I must admit.
I knew I was getting somewhere when aforesaid youngest walked into the room and announced
"Hey Mum that almost sounds like music"
Ahhh! Praise indeed.


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Subject: RE: BS: Worst criticism EVER?
From: GUEST,Frogmore
Date: 28 Jun 01 - 09:23 PM

"A man with a hump-backed uncle musn't make fun of another man's cross-eyed aunt." Mark Twain


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