You’re out the door to your gig but you forgot to think about what extra help to bring for your voice? I’ve done it a ton of times. So I thought I’d share with you my very own check list of “must-haves” I’ve developed over the years that make that last-minute difference! Every guitarist has a “gig-bag” – and now, so do Singers! Keep this stuff stocked and ready to go.
The Singer’s Gig Bag Check List:
1. Water & a straw.
Water in volumes makes your voice super smooth and keeps your high notes intact. Studies prove that sipping through a straw gives the best hydration and fewer trips to the bathroom.
2. Throat Coat tea.
This tea literally coats the throat and makes it feel smooth and slippery. Bring a thermos to your gig or to the recording studio (add some honey for even extra moisture). Drink warm and use as a gargle at room temperature. For extra slippery-ness, add open 2 capsules of Slippery Elm into your cup.
Watermelon hydrates the throat faster and better than anything. The natural sugar in the fruit keeps the moisture in the throat longer and smoothes out that dry chafed feeling. Second best is any other melon or watery pears or apples. Strawberries are great for the larynx too! Sometimes I cut up small chunks of honeydew melon and add them to my water bottle – feels great on the throat and — yum.
4. Throat Spray or a Spoonful of Honey.
I love Travel Wellness’s Vocal Eze throat spray (all-natural and yummy) or just Aloe Vera and water in a spray bottle. And a spoonful of honey is all you need to moisten your throat at the last minute.
5. Tiger Balm.
Relieves throat tension and opens your breathing. Slather on your neck and throat and wrap a scarf around your neck. Keeps the heat in your throat and vocal muscles so you are warm and ready!
Follow directions on the bottle. Gargling with Alkalol keeps your voice mucous free for about 2 hours. Put some in a nasal spray bottle and spray up your nose too!
7. Sore Throat/Hoarseness homeopathic remedy by Boiron.
This natural homeopathic product reduces swelling of the vocal folds. Use the day before and the day of singing for more clarity and to recover faster from coughs and colds.
1. Young Living Essential Oils.
Lavender, Eucalyptus, Melaleuca and a few blends such as RC (great for asthma), Raven (antibacterial), Purification (cleans the air in your hotel room), and Thieves (kills airborne bacteria; great for traveling on a plane). I recommend using a cool air diffuser to disperse the oils into your room or use directly on your throat. The Young Living oils are super high grade so there is no need to mix them with carrier oil.
2. Thieves hard lozenges.
These essential oil lozenges kill 99.96% of all airborne bacteria. Great for airplane travel or sharing a mic on a public stage. (also available through Young Living)
3. Got last minute tension?
Massage and Yoga work wonders! Go for a massage (but not the same day as your performance- one day prior is best) and stretch your body in a yoga class! If you’re still tense at the gig, get one of your bandmates (or a groupie?) to rub your shoulders and neck before you go on. It will help your voice feel freer right away.
4. Warming Up.
Oh, and let’s not forget the most important thing on the list – warm up your voice!! Check out my Singers Gift Warmups for an awesome 45 min warmup – just like having your own a vocal coach on your iPod!
Have a great gig!
In love and support, Cari.