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On the Art of Singing$
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Richard Miller

Print publication date: 1996

Print ISBN-13: 9780195098259

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:osobl/9780195098259.001.0001

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Purely a Matter of Taste

Purely a Matter of Taste

(p.99) 27 Purely a Matter of Taste
On the Art of Singing

Richard Miller

Oxford University Press

This chapter argues that what one likes in music, and particularly in singing, is simply a matter of taste. It suggests that vocal taste is an individual matter, and there is no logic in claiming the superiority of one singing style over another. This viewpoint is difficult to combat unless it is recognized that taste is acquired and modified through expanded experience. The taste argument is being raised with increasing frequency in the field of voice teaching itself. Some sources ask why there seems to be so little academic attention directed to lively and popular styles of singing such as blue grass/country and western, jazz vocal, rock and roll, belting, and contemporary gospel. The answer is that there should be no more lack of discrimination in making professional vocal judgments than in any other area of taste. The appreciation of excellent vocalism as opposed to lesser levels of vocalism is not simply a matter of taste.

Keywords:   music, singing, vocal taste, voice teaching, singing style, vocalism

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