Get Started as a Bedroom Musician

Learning to make music can make for a new you in the new year

Kill Yr Idols

Finally, if you feel like your singing is ready to move from the shower stall to the recording booth, you could take a shot at American Idol -- hell, if William Hung did it, why can't you? Local curator Marisa Olson tried out for the current season of the show and chronicled her experience -- from sit-ups to stilettos to running scales -- in her blog ( If her ordeal scares you off, you could always try a low-budget alternative. Producer Rodney "Darkchild" Jerkins, who's crafted hit tracks for the likes of Britney Spears, Destiny's Child, and Mary J. Blige, will soon release Versatility, a retail CD of 11 original instrumental productions for aspiring vocalists to sing to. According to VH1, he even plans to offer a contest in which the best interpreters of his work will win a recording contract with his Darkchild label.

American democracy may be in a lull, but at least in R&B, egalitarianism is alive and well.

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