Sometimes it seems as if we’re not doing art that matters unless we get in touch with some intense human experience. Here at SingThis Mission Control, we’ve ocassionally gone that way: “sing your courage. Sing for simply being alive; then, for waking up. Sing an emotion; speak your truth. Sing for healing, sing absurdity, sing your block.” And it’s valuable, it’s important work.
But not today! Today we strive for a balance.
Where’s the mirth? Where’s the joy? Where’s the fun?!? (Wasn’t singing supposed to be fun?) Where’s the play?
This week, it’s up to you. Bring it.
Your Prompt: Let’s play. Sing for fun. Sing a song of any length (and with any technology that’s fun and enjoyable for you to use) just for the pure play of singing the song you’re singing. If it’s fun, do it. If it’s not, don’t!
Options below. Here’s my example (this is Amado, btw), but do bear in mind that this is just what’s fun for me. (I built a jungle gym out of five-sided puzzle pieces, then swang around in it for 5 minutes.)
It’s good to have options. Here are ways to perhaps make the prompt a bit easier, or ways to go a bit further with it.
Option A: This Is No Game – What seems to differentiate “play” from a “game” is the component of rules. A game is a structured form of play (check Wikipedia for my source), so, you could make up a game to play if you’d like, but what if it’s easier to throw out the rulebook? Whatever structures you’ve learned for singing or vocal improvisation, just for today don’t take them very seriously, at all. Permission to sing with no rules. You haz it.
Option B: Building Blocks – Taking direction from the fun I had with this, let’s create the option for a self-imposed structure for those who have more fun making a game of it. Invent a musical game of your choosing, with any set of rules as seem fun and playful to you. Then, play it for the duration of your song. Will we be able to guess the rules? Will be able to tell if you break them? Doesn’t really matter, as long as it gets you to that place where you’re doing it for its own sake.
The steps are as follows:
- Step 0: Sign up for a free SoundCloud account here. Join the SSS group.
- Step 1: Record yourself singing your play, playing your song.
- Step 2: Upload to SoundCloud and post the track to the SSS group.
- Step 3: Listen to and comment on tracks uploaded by your fellow singers. (Play nice!)
Deadline: Your tracks should be uploaded by midnight wherever you are on Monday, January 18, 2016.
Length: The length of your finished work should be about 2 to 5 minutes, or however long you need to sing your song.
Description: It would be awesome to include a short description of where and when you sang your piece—and how it felt.
Title/Tag: When uploading to SoundCloud, put “[sss-play]” in the title of your track. Also include the term “sss-play” as a tag. This will help us find it.
Group: Once the track is uploaded, click on the “Add to group” button below the waveform and make sure to select the Society for Spontaneous Singing group. (This option will only appear if you have already joined the group! So do that now.)
Linking: You are welcome to include this info in your description:
This track is a reply to “Prompt 51: Let’s Play.” More on the Society for Spontaneous Singing at http://singthis.org. You can join the SSS at https://soundcloud.com/groups/society-for-spontaneous-singing
Thank you, sweet singers!