Every tone in the human voice has its own particular power, and can be made to exert its influence upon the hearts and minds of others. The Hindu in reciting his prayers, very frequently intones to himself one of his most sacred words - OM. The intoning of this word brings to him not only a sense of reverence, but a feeling of power. Furthermore, it develops that wonderful head resonance, which gives richness and colour to his speech. The mere use of the word OM might help one to develop resonance of voice, but when one considers its relation to the Supreme Being, then the added thought and feeling produced would add beauty to the richness and colour that should go with resonance. Inner feeling has everything to do with the colour of the voice. After all, it is an effort to interpret the Divine that lives within us. The majority of people fail to understand why one singer moves them to the very depths of their being while another who may have a more beautiful voice awakens no such emotion. We may account for it by saying that one has magnetism and the other is lacking in it. But what is magnetism? The magnetic forces in life are generated by inner feeling; consequently, the singer who has developed the greatest amount of feeling will be best able to give a record of it through the voice, for the voice can never give out what the life has not experienced. One can never give to the world that which they do not possess. Often we hear bright, fresh, beautiful voices- that are produced in a thoroughly artistic way, and while they contain the freshness and, possibly, the innocence of life, yet they are never able to do more than to produce a superficial effect or give a temporary pleasure. They are like the light breezes that play on the surface of the water, causing it to ripple and dance, but they are not like the driving wind that causes the ocean to become a great seething mass of billowy waves ever rising and falling because of the power that is exerted by it. As I have said, every tone to which the human voice can give utterance is filled with a power that is all its own. Think how much that power would mean in life if it were only understood, and then used for the development of the user, and also for the good influence it would exert on others. The singing voice can make us feel more of the innate power of life than possibly any or all other things in life. But we have not understood its power or its possibilities, and have thought of it merely as something to please, something to amuse, something to listen to in order to pass away a pleasant hour or two. We have thought of the sermon or the spoken prayer as forming the principal part of religious services, and of the Church music as a sort of ornamental arabesque that is no real or necessary part of the service. But the sermon and the prayer fall far short of giving as true an expression to the divine in man as the great anthem sung by the choir or the entire body of people in unison. For, such singing, if done in the spirit of reverence, will awaken a deeper glow of feeling than could any spoken words. Some time our religious bodies will have shorter sermons and prayers, and much more beautiful music, for music has a transforming power that nothing else in life possesses in the same degree.
In another part of this chapter I (Introduction) have referred to the necessity of attentive listening to the tones one makes with the voice, or the beautiful tones produced by another, and how necessary it is to make each tone beautiful; not to try to make them alike, as that would be impossible to do, for each tone has its own particular rate of vibration, therefore no two tones could be exactly alike. Each tone, in the highest sense, should represent some particular degree of a spiritual attribute or a mental faculty of being.
The word register, in relation to voice production, is partially artificial and only partially true. When we speak of a lower, a middle, and an upper register, we are too apt to think of them as purely physical - chest, middle, or palate, and head tones; and if any one of these registers of the voice is weak or uneven, then we try to overcome the physical weakness and establish strength. There is a much deeper way of getting at the truth of this. Unity and trinity seem to be inseparably related. There is unity at the heart of music, but there is the trinity of rhythm, melody, and harmony necessary to its expression. There is only one Life in man, but there is a trinity of expression: spirit, thought, and sense; or, in another way, soul, mind, and body. Chest notes or the lower tones in music correspond to sense or body. Middle or palatal tones to that of mind, and head tones to soul or spirit. The tendency also is from lower to higher tones because through development one is always reaching up from the lower to the higher. Some singers find their notes weak in the lower register. When such weakness occurs, no matter what the voice may be, contralto or soprano, bass or tenor, in some way the physical side of their lives is being neglected. Such neglect might result from excess in eating or drinking, but is even more likely to arise from not enough eating or drinking, or not enough physical exercise. The body is the instrument through which they give expression to their song; if the instrument is not properly used, or if it is misused, it is no longer able to produce true musical tones. Therefore, it is necessary that the body should regain its normal pitch; that it should be tuned through the use of everything necessary to its upbuilding, so that the whole body, as an instrument, may be both elastic and vibrant. The mind is responsible for this condition of body, and it is the mind that is the master, and must bring about the true adjustment and supply the body's every need.
Next we come to the so-called middle register, which corresponds to mind, and any unevenness in this register shows that the mind is not attuned to life, or, at least, only partially so. Worry or anxiety produce a disturbing influence, and distraction of any kind will affect the evenness of quality. So there should come that control over one's thoughts that will bring about a state of mental restfulness and poise. With evenness of mental control established, there will come evenness to the middle or throat register.