Tone Talk with Christie Huff

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My name is Christie Huff and I am a country/pop artist with a soulful touch. I am a storyteller and that comes across throughout the lyrics. My music is influenced by Carrie Underwood, Michelle Branch, Bonnie Raitt, and Kacey Musgraves. Currently, I am releasing singles, every six to eight weeks, that will eventually be housed on a full-length LP.

What is your definition of tone, and how has it changed over the years?

My definition of tone is the strength in my voice. When I think of my voice having a good tone, it sounds the strongest and healthiest. The only way it has changed over the years is that I am just pickier with my tone the “fancier” I get with it.

Which guitars, amps, and pedals are you currently using and why?

I currently own a Martin guitar and a Taylor guitar. I love both of my acoustic guitars! I prefer the warmth of my Martin guitar and most definitely play it every chance I get!

What about strings?

My favorite strings are Elixirs!

Are there certain recording techniques you prefer in the studio?

I have different recording techniques to help channel more emotion in my voice when I’m singing. Before I go into the studio to record final vocals, I sing the song four to five times to warm up. Then when I get to the studio, I talk with my producer about what the meaning of the song is and the reason I wrote it. Then, I sing the song twice all the way through recording it. After that, I take the song, section by section, to really get that emotion across. You have to put yourself in a specific place to channel the emotion appropriate to the song. I like to take my time while recording vocals, sometimes I take as long as four hours so I can get into the right headspace, etc.

How do you keep your sound consistent onstage?

PRACTICE!! I keep my sound consistent on stage by practicing a lot, which can consist of a formal rehearsal, or just singing in my room. Vocal chords are muscles and to keep them strong, you must continue to strengthen that muscle, and the best workout plan I can give my vocal chords is to just keep singing!

What does your practice consist of?

If I am practicing with my band, it consists of running our set over and over again. However, if I’m by myself, I do warm-up exercises for my voice and sing through songs. For me, it’s really just about singing a lot!

What is your advice for young women who hope to work in the music industry?

My advice to young women who hope to work in the industry is to know that what they think is important and their ideas are good. It’s just a fact that the music industry is run by men and most people you work with are men. But remember that if you are the artist, you hold the power and what you say, in the end, goes. Also, don’t doubt yourself. In music, it’s not like other careers or school, you can see your progress as you progress through each grade or level. Music takes a lot of time and work. It can appear that an artist is “just starting out” when in fact they have been working in the industry for 5-10+ years. It takes a long time to achieve, so look at time as your value and don’t ever doubt what you think after the time you’ve put in your career.

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