Trying to Find A Balance



For jazz singer Gretchen Parlato, being able to sync her mind and body is the key to achieving her sound. “My voice is my instrument,” she says. “My body is my instrument. It is all related and connected. I believe that we hold emotions physically in areas of our bodies, so we need to open up these areas, these channels, so that all can pass and move through us. Singing is an exhale. Singing is a release. Singing is breath. Singing is a balance.”

Striking that balance is something that Parlato has been able to hone through her yoga routine, and effectively, as her 2009 debut album In A Dream was lauded as “the most alluring jazz vocal album of the year” by Billboard Magazine. In fact, it’s such a part of her lifestyle that the singer’s latest album The Lost And Found, drew influences from the ancient practice.

“For my album, many concepts from yoga came to the surface. ‘The lost and found’ is the idea of accepting and embracing opposition. The opposition of having a good day versus a really awful day. Feeling like we have found all the answers we were looking for, and then another day comes along and we feel completely lost and hopeless,” she says. “In yoga, there is also this opposition: The balance of hard and soft. (some muscles being lifted, strong, while others are releasing and letting go) the continuous cycle of inhaling and exhaling, balancing each side of the body. Most importantly, what connects yoga, music and life, is that everything ultimately comes back to the breath. When something happens in your life that upsets you, it often helps to take a deep breath before any further action. In music, every note that I sing is supported by breath. Each movement within a yoga pose is linked to an inhale or an exhale. Furthermore, when in a pose that might feel strenuous, or just to simply deepen the intensity, it is necessary to breathe more slowly and fully, focus on the breath and let your body melt into the pose. These are seven yoga poses that connect to singing and music.”

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  • Anonymous

    I have been practicing those 7 yoga practices for years and still do til this day and yeah there are those times when I don’t want to love or even exhale… I do regardless… I like the above article because it goes allong with the music playing and explains many things yet expresses that Sill, love will abide… 7AvaALLSKCOOL8

  • Anonymous

    great song

  • Johnnie Ndoe

    love it

  • Amelwork Zewed

    waw nice

  • Johnnie Ndoe

    Wow i love the explanation above, relatin to this pose, my MAMA use to use this pose for me as punishment wen i was younger 15,16,17, yrs old coming back late from school, being rebellious in genral hahahahahaha brings back memories – so every potency i had in my side body and emotions back then were channel thru hahaha i love it, IYAMI pt 2, haha mama would say “o’ya stoob down fun mi” and i would be there in pain for hours until am snooty nose, cory mr cater my life as a young hustler – some time it would be luckily a family that happened to just come by visiting – would beg my dear MA to leave me hahahahaha today am glad MAMA did that – this pose is a spiritual pose. – HOV wut up sir

  • Amelwork Zewed

    Great song i love it

  • Tiesha Ingram


  • Milad Milacci

    Love her Voice

  • Anonymous

    GP is simply dope. Her voice is AMAZING. Now that I know she’s a yogi, that makes me like her even more:) I love yoga, it’s challenging, cleansing, disruptive, and healing all at once. Yup. Just like life.

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