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Many people listen to criticism without a filter. But if you are sharing your musical voice with the world, it is important to understand what is the difference between facts and opinions when it comes to singing.
There are some important differences between facts and opinions, and understanding the difference between them can be the difference between keeping on progressing and giving up your dreams forever.
You know that a statement is a fact when it can be measurable and could be agreed by everyone (who knows about the subject!).
Knowing the facts can help you develop your instrument to how you want it to be.
You know that a statement is an opinion and not a fact when it can’t be agreed by everyone and when it is not measurable.
Summarising, if you see an adjective within a statement, it is probably an opinion. Destructive opinions can be really hurtful for the sensitive heart of the artist, even when they are not even useful!
Iconic example of destructive and useless feedback:
Opinions are, of course, personal. Therefore they have much more to do with the person saying the opinion than with yourself.
I can’t express how important it is to understand what is the difference between facts and opinions when it comes to singing! During all my years of teaching I have had countless students that came to me telling me things like “I am tone deaf, I know it because my family told me”.
Many of those students were completely on key from the first day and they couldn’t even hear it because they already believed what their family told them. By the way, in 100% of those cases, their family members were not even musicians.
We have covered what is the difference between facts and opinions when it comes to singing. You can benefit from others telling you facts because it is hard sometimes to listen and perceive your instrument clearly.
When it comes to opinions it is a little more delicate. Opinions and constructive feedback can certainly help you improve. So Listen to opinions, but remember that they are always subjective. You have the power to give attention and energy to the opinions that actually help you grow as a singer, instead of focusing on the destructive (and almost always uninformed) ones.
You are not required to believe any opinion that limits you. Your thoughts drive your actions ultimately, so you want to feed your mind with things that help you pursue your dreams rather than blocking them.
Managing your mind is a powerful learning tool when it comes to learning, especially when you learn singing, which is something that people are especially vulnerable about!
So, the first thing you have to have on mind when listening to an opinion about something as vulnerable as our singing, is how much you respect the opinion of the person. When you are looking at becoming a better singer, feedback can really help you out and accelerate the process. But not every opinion will be worthy of your energy and time, certainly not every opinion will deserve you wondering if you should change your music because of it.
It all comes back to a very recurrent topic on this blog:
If you are a pop singer and a person who only likes rap music comes and tells you that it sucks then you should probably not take their opinion seriously. Unless they are also a pop music producer!
If your goal is to sing for your little daughter and she tells you that she doesn’t like the songs that you are singing then that is an opinion you should listen!
But one way or another, it is important to create a filter that helps you define what opinions could serve you and which ones you should not waste energy in.
I’ll give you a more practical example!
My goals at this particular moment of my career are mainly about writing my own music. My favourite music is made by people who uses wise words on their lyrics and who say a lot with them. I’m also in love with beautiful melodies. So for me particularly, opinions are important when they come from someone who is already a working songwriter. It also is important when it is about the way they perceive my lyrics and my stories, and particularly important when they come from a professional musician that has some insight on how my melodies could be better.
However, I don’t take seriously opinions coming from people who doesn’t listen to the singer-songwriter genre, and that have opinions such us that compare my songs to the genres they like such as hip – hop, etc, because my music is about something different.
So it really comes down to that simple question: Does it align with your goals?
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