1.Please introduce yourself and tell us who you sing for.
My name is Rachel Thompson and I sing for Chasing After Alice
2.What / Who made you want to sing?
My parents tried to put me in sports at a young age and quickly realized I was awful. So instead my dad put me in singing lessons when I was 7 and I have been singing ever since! I would definitely say that he was and is my driving force when it comes to music.
3.Who was the first singer you saw live that gave you chills?
It wasn’t in person but my dad showed me a video of the Monterey Pop Festival and I will never forget watching Janis Joplin sing and being in pure awe. Her voice was rough and unfiltered as was her presence. I knew after seeing her that I wanted to someday have even a tenth of that kind of confidence and effect on a crowd.
4.Many people say heavy music is just screaming, How would you combat that statement?
While I don’t personally scream a ton in our music, I whole heartedly believe that screaming is not only an art but a technical skill that takes years master. I taught voice for 5 years and worked with a few instructors that taught how to scream and it is HARD. You have to be deeply disciplined to take on that kind of skill and not only that but emotionally ready for the release and power that comes with it.
5.If you growl or do harsh vocals how do you keep your voice after such violent performances?
Ginger, throat coat, lemon and whiskey! These are my secret weapons and I stand by them (especially whiskey)
6. Do you have a warm up routine? Tell u bout it ?
Oh so many! I taught voice and had about 9 years of intense vocal training which has left me with an arsenal of voice exercises that I like to do and scare people with outside of venues. My favorites are sirens (big whirring sounds that can be heard a mile away), lip trills, a verse from my favorite song at the time and before I go on stage a solid set of deep breaths and stretching.
7. Do you think power or performance is more important?
I think you really cannot have one without the other. If there is not power and passion behind your performance then it will fall flat no matter how talented you are. And if you don’t have the technical skill or at least have mastered what makes your skill unique than all the power and passion in the world won’t help your message come across in an effective way.
8. Who do you think gets unfair vocal praise, someone the world thinks is great but is not? / And who is great but does not get the credit?
After teaching voice and being surrounded by a wide range of singers I have found that EVERYONE has something special and fabulous about their voice so I always look to find the positive in any singer. As far as who is great but maybe isn’t recognized I’d say Joe Talbot from IDLES. His voice is so unique and powerful and he has clearly mastered a style all his own that really you would be hard pressed to find a replica of.
9.Name your top 5 vocalist
10.Micheal Buble or Jim Gallette? Just testing your skills here
Ha totally depends on what mood you’re in! Do you want the sweet Frank Sinatra vocal stylings of Buble or the raw insanity of Nitro?
11.Who do you love to listen to that would surprise people?.
If its a female vocal group from the 60s I know it, I love it and I have it on vinyl.
12.If you could remove the autotune from any singer who would it be?
Ariana Grande and Jessie J. Two of the most modern and naturally talented voices that do not need an ounce of autotune ever. Their natural tambour and tone is something to be envied and can only really be appreciated unfiltered and unaltered.