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At the end of another ten days I was able to sing the twenty-four measures of the song with one single respiration taken at the start. It took therefore almost ten weeks to learn res­piration, and to control it in such a way as to be absolute master of it.
Another example: Let somebody beat the measure at 2-4 and speak out the following notes:
do, re, mi, fa, sol, la, si, do, si, la, sol, fa, mi, re.
With a moderate tempo one ought to be able ten times to make the ascent and descent of the gamut, six times when the chest is filled with air and four times when the air escapes.
Now instead of pronouncing the notes by speaking them, sing them, vocalize them, and one will be surprised to see how, by this simple exercise, one can obtain the absolute control of respiration which, after all, is only a question of will and patience.
To conclude, here are the first points to acquire.
A special vocal technique for recitation or for singing songs, and also respiration.
Now I will give an illustration of what I have said about coloring the words. I will sing, for example, St. Nicolas, in which song you will see the different colors I mean.

E-Book - An Annotated Compendium of Old Time American Songs by James Alverson III