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I really love singing. I do it quite often but I get really nervous about doing in front of an audience; even just thinking about it makes me nervous. I guess this is strictly related to everyone's personality and I've searched around for tons of helpful tips or guides to help you overcome this. But these helps were mostly on the psychological side: get on stage and you'll get rid of stagefright, forget negative thoughts, don't give too much importance to fear, etc.

My question here is mostly about a different, yet still related, problem. If the problem was only sweaty hands, shaking (usual nervous symptoms), I wouldn't mind at all. The problem is that this nervousness directly affects my singing.

My throat, and here is the problem, basically gets blocked. I can even feel it coming, a feeling of my throat getting clogged. Perhaps this is usually referred to as "throat getting dry", but I feel as it closed for a second, and after that I need to swallow before being able to continue.

Setting aside the psychological part (which I suppose is off topic here?), is there something I can try to overcome and avoid this obstacle, no matter how much I feel nervous?

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I won't put this as an answer because you didn't want psychological answers - but I started to get over nervousness by filming myself performing at home, and putting it on YouTube. It was a real wrench at first, but the more I did it, the easier it became, and that translated to performing in front of live people. –  slim Dec 18 '12 at 14:34
This sounds like the classic 'globus hystericus'. IIRC the classic solution is literally to stop thinking about it, feeding the nascent neurosis more and more attention. Easier said than done, tho. –  luser droog Dec 18 '12 at 23:15
@slim It's not that I don't want psychological answers, I thought they were off topic... If they aren't feel free to elaborate on that post an answer! :D –  Alenanno Dec 21 '12 at 12:13

1 Answer 1

I think the core of your problem is psychological, and relatively common, to some degree or other, and I think there are posts on this over on Productivity.Stackexchange.com

That said, there are physical tips which can help, then as you find it easier your anxiety should also reduce - a positive reinforcement cycle:

  • Drink lots of water - this will help in general anyway. Hydration is very important for singers
  • Warm up - same as you would before running a marathon, you need to stretch and warm up the muscles and ligaments
  • Perhaps have a beer - My lead singer always has one or two small beers before a gig
  • You could look at throat lozenges - they may help, but may make it harder to hit notes correctly
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