Favorite Songs and Hymns For School and Home, page: 0346

450 Of The World's Best Songs And Hymns, With Lyrics & Sheet music for voice & piano.

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Other things being equal, says a distinguished phy�sician, there is no occupation so conducive to general good health and long living as singing. It does not argue anything that many professional singers die early in life. The hard lives they lead, travelling about from place to place, keeping all kinds of hours, eating all kinds of food, and enduring all kinds of exposure, would break them down even though they had constitu�tions of steel. In fact, it is only an argument for the truth of my theory that professional singers are able to live as long as they do and be as healthy as they are.
If they stayed in one pface, kept regular hours and lived like civilized beings, they would be the longest-lived class of people in the world, and the healthiest, too; though, of course, as long as there were other singers alive, they wouldn't be the happiest. You see if a person is taught to sing properly in the beginning, and then keeps it up regularly, the effect is certain to be very beneficial to all the vital organs. For instance, to begin with, the pupil is taught to breathe as he should, and as very few persons do; that is, by the deep, abdominal method, lifting and lowering the dia-
phragm and filling out the entire lungs below the chest. That develops the lungs, and brings all their surface into action, insures pure blood, and a strong and regular action of the heart. Then the act of singing, by which the lungs are filled to their utmost capacity in the way I have described and then slowly emptied over and over again, is a splendid exercise for those organs. Nothing, in fact, could be better. Then the action of the diaphragm being pressed strongly downward, and of the walls of the stomach being pressed outward,
have a certain effect upon the digestive organs and help to keep them in tone. Added to all this the public singer, if he or she be endowed with the true artistic instinct, has a kind of physical frenzy in singing that throws off a great deal of magnetism. Of course, it often leaves the performer weaker and exhausted at the end of the programme, but it is like the athlete on the bars. The exhaustion is a good sign, if it is not carried too far. After rest and recreation the performer always feels the better for it.
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E-Book - An Annotated Compendium of Old Time American Songs by James Alverson III