Rosana Eckert: A Lover of Music
(Dallas, TX) “I’ve been singing since I could speak,” says Dallas singer and educator, Rosana Eckert.
For Eckert, her musical journey began as a child. Growing up in a musical family, she took piano lessons, learned the French horn, and developed an interest in singing.
“When playing the French horn, you have to be able to hear the note you want to play in your head before you play it,” says Eckert. “Being able to hear the notes in my head allowed me to develop my ear [for music] and become a better sight singer.”
The adage “practice makes perfect” certainly applies to Eckert’s story.
“My practices have never been time oriented,” recalls Eckert.
“Whenever I’m practicing, I set goals and work on mastering those goals until I perfect whatever I’m working on…sometimes it takes 15 minutes…sometimes it takes four hours.”
Consistent practicing has given Eckert the necessary tools to become an asset in many fields, including studio singing.
“Each studio situation calls for a different skill set,” Eckert explains. “If you’re recording in a group setting or as a backup singer [for songs], you need to be able to learn dense harmonies and rhythms quickly, in addition to blending with the sound of the group. That’s the bulk of my studio work.”
Eckert also sings on jingles, in addition to singing backup for songs. There are two main kinds of jingles. Advertisement jingles: which identify and sell a product. Radio IDs: which identify radio station call letters and play in between songs on the radio. Many jingles and radio IDs originate from several producers in Dallas, Texas. Companies include JAM Creative Productions, PAMS Productions, TM Studios, Tony Griffin Productions, and others.
When it comes to singing recent jingles, Eckert’s voice has been heard on stations around the world.
Specifically about jingle singing, “the voice of a jingle singer must be able to accommodate the requirements of different styles [classical, jazz, rock, pop, soft voice, loud voice, etc]. Each studio has a different set of styles and demands, and singers must be versatile.”
In addition to singing, Eckert has contributed to the world of music as a composer.
“I love composing,” exclaims Eckert! “I have started hundreds of songs but have only finished maybe 40 or 50.”
While it can take a while to compose a song, create a melody, or finalize lyrics, Eckert is always pleased when she finishes a song.
Sharing some insight on how she writes music she told InterviewUniverse.com, “I start with a chord progression and a groove for each song. Then, I fill in the rest as it comes to me.”
Eckert admits that sometimes melodies or songs appear in her head while driving, or somewhere other than at her piano. “Using my phone or some paper, I’ll try to capture that idea wherever I am and develop it later on.”
How long does it take to write a song?
“It can take months to write a really good song, in a quiet space. But, I have learned to write under a deadline. I also arrange songs that other people have written.”
Some of Eckert’s music or arrangements have been performed before a live audience. Eckert remembers writing a song called “Corn” for a Dallas chamber choir, known as “The Texas Voices.”
“The choir was doing a show about food. The director was looking for local writers to write songs about food. So, my husband and I wrote ‘Corn.’ I wrote the music; he wrote the lyrics.”
As a senior lecturer of jazz voice at the University of North Texas, Eckert has enjoyed educating students who have a serious interest in music. Her classes include jazz voice, vocal pedagogy for non-contemporary styles, and composing.
“I particularly enjoy teaching students how to write music. For students who have never written before, it’s always nice to see the look on their faces when they finish writing a song.”
Eckert concludes by sharing some advice from her experiences.
“As I tell my students, research whatever you want to do. Learn as much as you can and try to practice as efficiently as you can. Being able to be versatile is great, because it will allow you to say ‘yes’ to a variety of jobs.”
Date Interviewed: 22 April, 2017
Date Released in Print: 13 June, 2017