Here we come back to a question that’s been bugging me for a while – what percent of Americans can sing?
Well, I asked a number of leading experts to come up with some data – the last few years, two of them had asked me to do it – and here’s what you should know.
First off, it’s not possible to sing as hard as the greatest symphonies.
In fact, most of the symphonies that we hear are not in the classical world – they’re in opera. They’re by guys in opera houses and they’re pretty bad.
In fact, about 80% of the symphonies that we hear are in the pop world, so there’s probably a pretty big overlap there. But there’s actually no such thing as singing as hard as the symphonies, no such thing as singing with the symphonies, and yet, there are two-thirds of Americans that sing really hard.
It can be done because there are very strict guidelines, and they are enforced by the federal government – the National Association of Instructional Therapists – and we work hard to obey those guidelines.
They have specific rules about who can, and who can’t, sing in the classroom, and what words you can and can’t use, and we work really hard to adhere to those rules.
We are doing this because – and this is the key here – if it was just a group of kids doing this and singing in unison, they wouldn’t be able to do what we’re doing.
And in some sense – and this is probably the key – it’s sort of like this analogy I have about water. If the water is at 90 degrees, and the temperature drops below 90 degrees, then what happens is the water evaporates or the ice melts and the water freezes again at a certain level.
Well, the problem is, there are different amounts of liquid water in different locations, and there’s never really been a consistent temperature within this body of water. So, in other words, you’d freeze at a certain level, and then the water would go out and freeze again at a different level, and so there would be more moisture, less water, and everything would start boiling again.
So, the National Association of Instructional Therapists would say if you were to go out to the desert or a hot, dry place and try to sing, the most you could do would be about 85
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