Why We Sing
‘A must-read for anyone moved by the power of song’ – Lesley Garrett, CBE
Singing has always been there for us, at the root of what it is to be a human being. Through personal anecdote and scientific fact-finding, this book celebrates the way song inspires and heals us, from the cradle to the grave, and in the process does for singing what The Well-Gardened Mind did for nature, and what Why We Eat did for our diets.
As a singing therapist, teacher and performer, Julia Hollander is in a unique position to consider singing’s importance to our wellbeing, charting its extraordinary influence on all aspects of our spiritual, emotional and physical lives.
Why do parents feel compelled to sing to their newborns, and how does it help their development? What is it about song that brings communities together in harmony but also in protest? How come an activity that helps to embed languages and maths formulae can also be used to rehabilitate Long Covid sufferers? And what magic is at work when people who have lost the power to speak are still able to sing?
By delving into her own life experiences, and calling on those of her fellow singers, the author seeks to answer these questions, underpinning her findings with the latest scientific research.
In so many walks of life, people of all ages and backgrounds are waking up to the joys of singing, its power to give hope and connection in a fragmented world. Song-making is available in an increasingly broad range of social and therapeutic contexts, prescribed by doctors and community services. This book offers explanations for why this should be, and inspiration to anyone who loves to sing.
I've always felt that breath turning into song is like water turning into wine. In this fascinating book, Julia Hollander explains why. [...] A must-read for anyone moved by the power of song. -- Lesley Garrett, CBE * Lesley Garrett, CBE * Hollander has gathered a wealth of scientific research and aligned it with her own personal experience to produce a truly illuminating, joyful and resonant book about why we sing. -- Dame Sarah Connolly, CBE * Dame Sarah Connolly, CBE * This book is a must for people who sing and for people who don't but should ... Hollander brings us memories, life's events, political dedication and the deep desire to communicate, as well as giving us the history, the physiology and the social value of singing. -- Peggy Seeger * Peggy Seeger * Julia's comprehensive, scientific approach to the question of why we sing is laid out gently, generously and genially ... It is fascinating to find a book so packed full of actual answers. -- Roderick Williams, OBE * Roderick Williams, OBE * A refreshing read that I recommend to all who are interested in our voice and how we use it. -- Brett Weymark, OAM, Artistic & Music Director, Sydney Philharmonia Choirs
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