When you’re a country music superstar, you’ve gotta keep those vocal cords in peak condition.
And sure, that includes doing things like drinking plenty of water, not smoking, giving your voice a rest when you need to.
But if you’re going to be out on stage singing in front of an arena for an hour and a half, you probably need to make sure you’re warming up your vocal cords properly too, right?
If you’re looking for some traditional vocal warm ups, there are all kinds of videos on YouTube videos out there that will give you some techniques you could use.
But Justin Moore has his own method, and I think I would prefer this one better: Singing old country songs and taking shots.
Hey, if it works it works.
On the most recent episode of The Justin Moore Podcast, Justin and his co-host and tour manager JR were joined by his podcast producer and member of his management team, Cody Villalobos, for an end of the year wrap-up that quickly turned into a behind-the-scenes look at life on the road with Justin.
And one of the secrets that Cody revealed about Justin was the way he gets ready for his shows.
According to Cody:
“By the time I get to your bus, JR and Justin have at least buried one or two shots before I even join the situation.
It’s kind of a cool thing, Justin, for the record, his vocal warm ups are just singing to old country songs on his bus as we’re taking shots.”
I love it. Maybe a little Tracy Lawrence, or even some Keith Whitley?
“Trick of the trade right there.”
But of course that’s just the warm up – and the party doesn’t stop there, as Cody describes:
“We’ll do one or two more shots on the bus before the show, so you guys are probably, at least JR is probably two to four deep, Justin might be one to three deep by the time we hit the stage.”
Gotta be honest, that sounds like the perfect buzz to me. Not too drunk that you’re gone out of your mind, but just enough to get all warm and tingly and feeling good. You’re right in the sweet spot at that point, and all you’ve got to do is maintain from there.
But Justin admits that this past year of touring and finally getting back on the road after a year off due to COVID has thrown off his routine a bit – and it took him awhile to get his sea legs back under him:
“Part of it was, when we went back to work, I was actually – I don’t think concerned is the right word but I was somewhat nervous, I guess, cause we took so long off that I’m like ‘Damn, I want to be on point here.’
Usually it’s second nature, and it became that again, but I got to the point where I thought ‘Man, I gotta be on top of my game.’ Because we’re just out of practice.
Trying to remember the show and the words, and when do we do this, and I played a lot more during this particular set than I have in the past, and the guys relied on me to play and play well instead of just holding my guitar…
And then it got to the point I’m like ‘Yeah that’s cool, that’s good enough.’
Every now and then we’d turn it up after the show but really not much.”
And it turns out there might be something else slowing Justin down a little these days – something we can all relate to: Getting older.
“Hell, I’m pushing 40…it just hurts bad these days.”
Amen to that.
But for all you young country singers out there wondering how to warm up your voice before you take the stage, take it from one of the best voices in the business: Old country songs and shots.
Works every time.
And if you want some more behind-the-scenes stories from being on the road with Justin, you can check out the full episode of The Justin Moore Podcast here: