Imagine this: Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons are on tour in your country. One of the singers falls off stage at the soundcheck and breaks their leg. You’re the last-minute replacement. This could be your big break.
Frankie makes a last minute change to the set list. He adds The Night. You don’t know the song, but you smile at Frankie anyway. “My favourite song,” you say. You feel sick.
A roadie hands you a dog-eared copy of the score, with all the latest additions to the song. Frankie smiles. You gulp. Read the lyrics now. The first thing you notice? An awful lot of words.
If English isn’t your first language, it can be difficult, when you sing, to know where to bend words or break lines without damaging their integrity. You’ll need to squeeze, stretch and chop in all the right places if you want the words to fit the music in The Night. You’ll lose the job if you don’t get it right.
Smile. Borrow Frankie’s diamond-studded pencil. Get to work. Find a private corner. Listen to The Night. Mark your lyrics to show where the strongest stress falls in each line. That’ll be your scaffolding :
Continue reading Bend, Stretch and Chop with Frankie Valli. Or lose your job.