The Mystery of the Seven Vowels: In Theory and Practice (Anglais) Broché – janvier 1991
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First off, it confirms the suspicion that so many musicians have-- that when they are playing they are more than happy but somehow engaged in a spiritual act. I have felt that for years, struggled to explain it friends and colleagues, and felt somehow like I had some secret that should be plain for everyone to see. This book confirms a powerful side of music that I've experienced, and it explains it (to me anyway)-- and for that I'm grateful. I have to point out that this is my own experience. While I think you can have this experience too, unless you're a musician and have at least a hint that it is there, you'll have to just take in on faith that singing in this manner can be a spiritual experience. Developing your voice takes a bit of practice but anyone can do it-- afterall the task here is to sing, not sing like Ella Fitzgerald. But I do promise that if you do it you'll like your singing a lot more than you might otherwise expect to.
Luckily the book is also a very practical tool that can help you use your singing to serve a wide range of practices. I've seen simplified vowel singing exercises used as warm-ups for acting troupes-- and that they were a tiny part of a "group mind" building exercise. But this book shows that they can be used for a much more powerful group mind exercise. I've since learned that Del Close on occasion had his students sing vowels-- I suspect he had this book or was aware of some of the source material. The point is that they applications of this kind of thing go far beyond manner described in the book.
Finally the book can serve as a big step forward for any performing artist that realizes that their art is also practice in "self-mastery". Your voice is a big part of who you are and of your presence-- either on stage, in a room full of people, or alone. This book shows why that is and gives you simple ways to build that part of yourself-- and it does so simply by showing what was done very long ago in the ancient world.
This is no new-age self-help book, though that might be how I'm describing it. It is very straight forward explanation of an enigmatic musical and spiritual practice from very long ago, and a survey of how that practice was interpreted by later generations. He simply shows what they did, and why they did it, and how successive researchers looked at these ancient practices. But, the inescapable conclusion anyone could draw from it is that you can and should do it too.
If what I'm saying makes little sense, or if you buy the book and don't see what I'm talking about, post a comment and I'll try to help.
(I could not sing the harmonics), but the text and the research are excellent.
Thanks to this book I got interested in ancient wisdom in Egypt and discovered other authors such as Ernest McClian.
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