I always take on new projects and have now decided I’m going to learn how to sing. I’ve been doing a lot of research and the first step for me is to work through all of the basic vocal techniques. This article on musicaroo.com teaches you a bunch of tips and techniques you can use to improve your singing, so I am going to do that first. Once I’ve done that, I’m probably going to hire a vocal coach to get me to the next level.
And for me, the next level means sounding like my favorite singer. He is Maynard James Keenan, the lead singer of my favorite band, Tool. He is also the lead singer of A Perfect Circle and Puscifer. But tool is what he is best known for and it is my favorite band by far. I love Maynard James Keenan, because of the way he uses his voice like another instrument. Many singers just sing, but he adds a whole new element to the music with his voice.
He’s a bit of an enigmatic character, to be honest. He was in the Army in the 1980s, but decided to go to design school after that. He always had a love of music and this is where he let that blossom. Today he is not just a singer and musician, but also a record producer, a winemaker, an actor and he does many other things. Mainly those things involve charities, but apart from that he has always been a recluse. He does not like the limelight.
Even when he sings on stage, he sings in the shadows. The rest of the band is upfront, while he is in the back where no one can see him. I actually like this about him. I’ve always been a bit shy myself and if I were ever to become a professional singer, I would love to be able to hide in the background like he does.
The following video shows how Maynard stays in the background when he sings.
Growing up, Maynard lived in an intolerant household after his mother remarried. His intelligence and his creativity were not allowed to grow or emerge at all. His mother actually had a cerebral aneurysm when he was 11 and this affected the rest of his life. In fact, he wrote several songs about this incident.
This is probably why he decided to be so over-the-top later on as the lead singer of Tool. He performs on stage in a variety of outfits, from almost naked and painted completely blue, to have a mohawk and gas masks and many other things. He is definitely an unusual character, but is highly intelligent and this shows in his songwriting. Most of the lyrics he writes are very intelligent and draw upon a number of inspirations. They are also convoluted and very hard to figure out, but that is one of the great things about Tool.
One of the things I don’t like about Maynard James Keenan and Tool is how long it takes them to bring out new albums. They usually go 5 to 10 years between albums. They say this is because the creative process can’t be hurried and they want the albums to be perfect. In a way I love this, because the albums are perfect, but I also get impatient and want to hear more new tool music. I want to hear Maynard sing more.
If I become a singer like I want to, I will definitely try to be a bit more productive than he is. That said, perhaps it is not fair to say this about him, since he actually sings for three different bands and not just for Tool. Not only that, he has also been a guest vocalist on many other bands’ songs and albums.
Maynard James Keenan is my favorite singer. Now that I have decided to learn to sing, I hope I can match his singing ability soon. I know will take a long time and a lot of hard work, but I hope to get close to him someday. I know he has a lot more natural talent than I do, but I do believe anyone can develop their vocal cords with the right techniques and training and become a really good singer. Let’s see how it goes.