Maxwell: Love, Losing His Voice, & Life After 45
Gerald Maxwell Rivera, better known by his stage name, Maxwell burst on to the music scene with smooth grooves that had the ladies swooning and the fellas dancing. But the super cool demeanor that Maxwell only came after dealing with with so much in his life, including a bit of growing now in his 40’s.
Maxwell’s father died in a plane crash when Maxwell was three years old. The experience made him a deeply religious child, and during his childhood he sang in a Baptist church. Even though he has had success, the 46-year-old Maxwell reflects on what made him the man he is today: “I lost my cousin. I lost a lot of things. I lost a lot of friends,” he said.
“I came to realize so many good things about people that were always really there and then so many bad things about people who really weren’t. When you turn 40 and when you cross a decade, God shows you the truth and you just sort of have to take it and run with it, and basically make the right choices. And that’s kind of where I’m at right now.”
In 2009, the singer had to go through throat surgery because of swelling. This is always a tricky surgery for singers, as it is their primary instrument and there are so many things that can go wrong. Normally, the vocal cords are pearly white without any vasculature. However, when a blood vessel is present in the vocal cords. The issue with a blood vessel within the vocal cord itself is that it fluctuates in size due to whether it is irritated from phono-trauma or even hormones. Such fluctuation in size causes the voice to change in pitch and quality on an hour to hour basis depending on how much swelling occurs. For a singer, it makes the voice unpredictable.
When the blood vessel becomes engorged and traumatized, it may even rupture leading to a vocal cord hemorrhage. Especially in a woman, the blood vessel may be more prone to hemorrhage during her menstrual cycle.
This is a dangerous situation for a singer like Maxwell because…