Combine Technology And Emotion In Your Performance
Josie Charlwood is a proud independent artist whose YouTube channel boasts over 8 million views, and her original song was featured on a Dutch soap opera. She explains why it’s important to connect to the song, your fans, and your technology.
What drew you into the world of YouTube?
I started when I was 16. I just wanted a place I could share my songs with my friends, I didn’t really mean for it to become a frequent hobby. After the success of my “Feel Good Inc.” cover I became hooked on interacting with people and learning the best new tips and tricks online.
A tip on ‘performing’ in front of the camera?
Imagine the person your song’s about is watching through the camera. Look at the lense like it’s them.
What equipment do you use?
The electric piano I use is the Yamaha P140. I use Neumann KMS-104 or Shure SM58 Beta A microphones. In the loopstation videos I use the BOSS RC-30, BOSS FS-6 Dual Footswitch and sometimes the BOSS ME-50.
What tips would you have for people who don’t have that equipment?
I don’t think your music should really be about the equipment you use. Primarily the things I sing about are from the heart, even if it’s a cover. Technology should enhance the song, rather than the video just being a demonstration of what pedals you own.
What obstacles have you had to overcome for your love of singing?
I don’t think I have a typical tone or range that other singers have. It became quite wearing during my time at university, where my technique would be compared to other singers who were arguably much more technically advanced in their higher range. After graduating, I’ve felt a lot freer with my sound and it’s developing a lot quicker without these comparisons! Singers should stay true to their tone and not feel pressured to sound like anyone else.
Something’s that’s worked for you in reaching a larger audience?
I have a genuine interest in people and really enjoy talking to fans and hearing about their lives etc. Perhaps that’s helped. In terms of tech and tools Live Stream is awesome fun!
A few ingredients of a memorable vocal performance?
Emotion, soul, heartbreak, dynamics, probably some lemon and ginger tea in there somewhere…
Favorite vocal gear?
TC-Helicon VoiceLive 3 hands down. I learnt to navigate the VoiceLive2 first and was originally completely daunted by the VoiceLive3, which has soooo many settings. But after a play-around, it’s incomparable. Great piece of gear.
A musical lesson you’ve learned the hard way?
Never transpose on an electric piano during a live gig. Especially, NEVER forget to turn it off before the next act plays (the guilt still haunts me).
Most important lesson you have learned about social media?
Never write anything online (anywhere) that you wouldn’t want on front page news!
A vocal lesson you’ve learned the hard way?
Buy in-ear monitors.
Tell us about your favourite singers?
I love Carole King, Joni Mitchell, Al Jarreau, Anita Baker, Imogen Heap, Steven Wilson, Julia Biel, Kimbra etc. What do these people have in common? I suppose pure emotion.