What do you drink before looking over the Mic?

stiv

Country Gent
Sep 12, 2014
2,744
Firenze, Italy
Some beer prior to a show helps me calm any nerves and approach some songs with more authority, but gee it’s a balance. To much and .. well we’ve probably all been there
Yeah, I feel you. In my case, I haven’t had any nerves before a gig since ages so it’s just a choice. (Of course, it only means that I’m much more older than you.. 😉).
Anyway, to me it’s all about before and after the gig. I hardly drink anything while I’m on stage, but over the years I learned how not to waste my voice live simply by not using it to show off during a gig, or just by changing the intensity if I don’t feel to go 100%, so I don’t usually need to drink. If I do, it’s water.
Studio it’s a different world: probably because of a wrong technique (that, btw, I never properly studied), my throat gets dry very fast so I need to drink bottles of water while doing recording sessions, even if it’s just a sip it makes me feel confident I’d do good. My friends in London (where we recorded sometimes) called me “First take Stiv”… 🤣
Needless to say I’m no Jeff Buckley btw. My vocals are basics, folkie I’d say, very simple and, lately, done with more attention to expression than perfect pitch 😉
Btw my problems, both live and in studio, have never been with my vocals but with my guitar playing, especially live where I need to be game in both at the same time… 🙂
 

Hammerhands

Country Gent
Aug 26, 2011
2,553
Winnipeg
This isn't going to work before your gig, but if you're not singing that day you can keep phlegm from building up if you cough it up and spit it out. If you aren't somewhere where you're going to gross people out, you can spit it into a paper towel. If you don't spit it out, it just keeps building up.

I'm not sure what to recommend to drink, but I would try hot lemonade or something citric, hot or bubbly. NeoCitran is hot lemonade with acetaminophen and decongestants, probably not something to try before a gig, unless you're really sick.

Remember, that phlegm isn't going to go away, it comes from your lungs and even if you think you've swallowed it, it just goes back into your lungs.

I'm an asthmatic and phlegm is there all the time. It was better after about 10 years of smoking and remained that way until about 5 years after I quit, but it is back now.

When I was a kid, they taught my mother pummeling, I keep thinking they should try this on Covid patients, I feel it would help clear my lungs right now. I remember the picture they gave us, there was a little boy sitting in a kitchen chair laying hunched over, face down with his torso on the table. The instruction to Mom were to beat on me. She was to drum [see post #24] with her fists, like pounding on a desk, on my back in an upward motion. It sure felt good, like a massage, loosened up the lungs for sure.

Let me try something...Ginger Beer has too much sugur to actually help...Rye and water...yes this works very well. In the US you have to order it as Crown Royal and water, or more specifically Crown Royal on ice with a side of water. I just tried it with a pretty nasty Hiram Walker Special Old Rye Whisky, it's got a burn to it.

There's a restaurant and lounge downtown called Bailey's where they serve rye and water correctly, they give you a glass, with ice if you ask for it, and a little water carafe on the side. This is preferable as the perfect amount of water is very little and is a personal choice. If you are trying to breakup phlegm, it needs to be quite strong, better than 2:1 rye:water.

whiskey+and+water.jpg


A warning about rye, for some people it is fighting juice. They can drink anything else and be a happy drunk, but rye will put the devil in them. Whisky or whiskey is an adequate substitute without as much social risk.
 
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Ricochet

Senior Gretsch-Talker
Gold Supporting Member
Nov 13, 2009
23,194
Monkey Island
When I was a kid, they taught my mother pummeling, I keep thinking they should try this on Covid patients, I feel it would help clear my lungs right now. I remember the picture they gave us, there was a little boy sitting in a kitchen chair laying hunched over, face down with his torso on the table. The instruction to Mom were to beat on me. She was to drum with her fists, like pounding on a desk, on my back in an upward motion. It sure felt good, like a massage, loosened up the lungs for sure.

Had it for years from like 8 till 14 YO. You can partly do this yourself, obviously only on the front, mainly breast and sternum area. Yes sorta like a Silverback. Humming seems to reinforce the vibration from the pummeling and helps to vacate the phlegm quicker. Relatively, we’re talking 30 minutes minimum per treatment.

The way they do it over here is, imagine playing a conga, but the hand is not flat but cupped so the air is trapped. I think it’s intended to soften the impact. It’s a very typical sound. You know when it’s a good hit.
 
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Styleruk

Electromatic
Apr 2, 2011
67
Uk
Always drink water, but I have a beer before I start and sometimes theres a bit of beer left in the glass. When playing the lead break on 'shaking all over', I play one handed and take a swig of beer then play the rest of the solo, however, the vocals come in quick after the short part of the break and I've a build up of flem...happens because of the beer almost every time, I'll never learn to pick up the glass of water instead...nope, has to be the beer doesn't it.
Always bitter too, lager is just too fizzy and I'll be belching down the mic as I jump about! but normally I drink water with no ice...rock and roll man.
Played drunk a few times before, you think you sound good but you don't. And I played stoned once, every song seemed to take ages, so I don't do that any more.
 

Back in Black

Country Gent
Double Platinum Member
Jun 22, 2020
1,940
Ontario Canada
Alcohol and singing just leads to karaoke and no one wants that.
And...it could very well be a pre-curser to alcoholism!

I've been at concerts in the past and have seen artists spray their mouth/throat with glycerin.

Playing in the bedroom and singing into my vintage repro Shure mic, I've never concerned my self with throat clearing. I just changed songs to suite.

Clear throat or not, my wife thinks I sound like something is definitely broken.

Best,

BIB.
 

Byron

Country Gent
Sep 4, 2009
1,300
uk
Whisky does work, dunno really why. Like WD40 for the throat (don't try that stuff of course!) Worse mistake I made was really cold water....constricts your throat and not a lot comes out of your mouth apart from a squeak
 

tartanphantom

Friend of Fred
Jul 30, 2008
6,143
Murfreesboro, TN
For me, it's the "Master of the Hunt"-- Jägermeister.

It's aromatic enough to keep things lubricated and air passageways open. And the alchohol content is lower than most hard liquor, so I can sip on it as needed without worrying as much about impairment.

I also keep a bottle of water on hand.
 

TSims1

Gretschified
Jun 18, 2013
12,899
Atlanta
Coffee, water, or Coke Zero. Only one of those is “good” for your voice. But let’s be honest…..life is worthless without coffee.
 
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stiv

Country Gent
Sep 12, 2014
2,744
Firenze, Italy
For me, it's the "Master of the Hunt"-- Jägermeister.

It's aromatic enough to keep things lubricated and air passageways open. And the alchohol content is lower than most hard liquor, so I can sip on it as needed without worrying as much about impairment.

I also keep a bottle of water on hand.
Yeah, ‘cause ol’ Jager (even just one shot) will make you more thirsty than a walk in the Desert. 🙂
The only time I messed up (recently 😉) with a gig has been into a pub where they had the machine for Jager on tap. And the drinks were on the house. 🙂
 

Lockupyourfatdog

Country Gent
Aug 8, 2016
1,047
Everett wa
I used to perform in musical theater. Did four national tours. We were constantly sick and spreading it to each other. Our saving grace was ricola cough drops. The original brown square ones. Now if my voice is ever a little off those are the my go to
 


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