My singing teacher Gareth is amazing. He's the only other person I've ever met who gets that, unless you do it for a living, singing isn't an activity but a state. Which means that on days when college has been crappy and I've been rushed to catch the bus, I haven't eaten anything since lunch and I've got an essay to finish when I get home, I can turn up for my lesson and won't have to open my mouth for the first twenty minutes.
Yesterday he got out his old wind-up gramaphone and we sat and listened to Callas sing Clair de Lune. Then we talked about lied and the relationship between poetry and song, and then about thinking spectrums and Eastern thought philosophy. And then I had a go at singing something.
Singing is a state of being. You can't take it out of context; if you've had a dreadful day it's impossible to sing well at six O'clock, because when you're still learning to make your voice work, take a deep breath and get on with it just doesn't do the job. Music doesn't grow on trees, can't be hatched or swallowed. You have to work for it in order for it to come to you. You have to coax it, focus on it, and get your head in the right place. If you can't do those things, music won't come out of your mouth.
That's what Gareth gets.