My cover of Dream On (Aerosmith)


My motivation in choosing this song was to break out a little from the soft, melodic lane I am in and add some repertoire. I know reasonably well combed hair that doesn’t get to the shoulders with a blue T shirt doesn’t exactly scream rock, but hey, that’s never bothered me. If I am the most square looking dude ever to sing this song, so be it.

But in trying to sing rock, I had to work within my limitations too. I can’t do really heavy distortion like AXL Rose (Guns N Roses) or Layne Staley (Alice in Chains), at least not yet.  I also cannot stay up in the B4-D5 zone forever.  I can hit these notes as one big sustained note when I have to but if I have to sing several lines of verse up there, I run out of support. So metal too was out of the question.  This song offered a decent compromise.  It’s reasonably melodic but has enough of a hard rock character.  It was also enough (or so I think!) to use mild distortion in places, just to sound adequately rough for the song.

The opening verse (Every time that I look in the mirror) is sung in a very beguiling, vulnerable vein by Steven Tyler.  That didn’t quite fit in my voice.  So for the first time, I dispensed with vulnerability altogether and went full tilt all the way through. I usually like to emphasise vulnerability wherever a song has it but the only way to make this song work for me was to really attack it head-on.

The one thing I wasn’t satisfied with in the attempt was where my voice slightly cracks for a bit when I return to Sing With Me after the falsetto Dream On.  In the good ol’ days before I learnt to breathe properly in the way one needs to for singing, I could switch much more easily from falsetto to modal voice. But it is a more difficult proposition now and I will need to be careful henceforth when switching register. On the other hand, had I not learnt to breathe properly, I wouldn’t have been able to sing this song, period.

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