It’s a strange thing about being a singer, that you far more readily remember your failures than your successes. Well, I suppose that’s probably true of any performer and it’s not just confined to the singing fraternity. The difference is, I guess, that singing technique is very much tied to confidence; half the battle goes on in the brain rather than in the throat, and anything that makes your brain say “really, are you sure you can sing that high note? Well, best of luck but don’t count on it!” is far from welcome.
The truly great singers, or the ones we celebrate the most, all have their bad days and duff performances. But either they don’t let it bother them or they brazen it out so well that the world quickly forgets their shortcomings. I’m not going to name names or cite examples but I certainly could. I think the great singers are like great tennis players. They may lose a set or two but they don’t confuse losing a set with losing a match. They move on from their unforced errors, immediately put their lapses behind them and focus on the next point. The rest of us are inclined to stew in our own shortcomings and descend into an Andy Murray-esque funk, slamming down our proverbial racquet and moaning that it’s “not fair!”
Equally upsetting is the performance that you know went well but which is greeted with indifference or even a snotty review. We all get snotty reviews. Domingo gets tons of them in the blogosphere. But I bet he doesn’t waste any of his time on Google, wondering what people are saying about him. It’s the rest of us who fall prey to that sort of thing. Everyone has an opinion and these days they’re only too willing and capable of broadcasting it. I’m a fine one to talk as I type my blog. The internet has emptied a whole new and vast bucket of vitriol on the poor performer’s soul and it’s harder than ever to not only keep one’s head in the game but also from having your poorer moments telegraphed all over the world. YouTube can be a useful selling tool but it can also be like a window on the Oudezijd Voorburgswaal where you are unwillingly exposed like a naked old tart, your flaws and blemishes exposed for the world to laugh and sneer at.
What brought this meditation upon me? I’m not going to tell because it’s simply too self-indulgent and boring, but getting it off my chest has certainly helped. So, the internet has its uses after all. Thanks!

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