What is a balanced voice?

It’s no secret that good technique is key to singing well.

Once you have established a firm foundation on which to build your voice, you should then, and only then, venture on to extreme singing.

What is extreme singing? Any coordination that requires the voice to go beyond the basic set-up of a balanced mix between your low and high register.

I always “balance” my voice in warm-up. I ensure I can easily soar and siren through my entire range (mine is D2 to D5). I usually start with lip bubbles and vary the vowel/consonant combinations daily.

One of my main goals when warming up is gain insight into my breath control and cord closure. Depending on my “energy” and focus on any given day, this can vary. Warming up gives me the cues I need to know how my voice is going to be in performance.

If you have been singing all your life, odds are you can be ready to sing in fine form in a matter of minutes.¬†However, if you don’t sing every day, it may very well take you 15 to 20 minutes of warm-up before you are ready to sing well.

 

 

 

Extreme Singing

So you want to sing with more “belt” in your song?

Well first, let’s check…..do you know if you are mixing? Do you know if you are accessing your head voice resonance and tilting your larynx?

Belting cannot be done safely (or sound good) without these two conditions first.

I suggest that you continually work on bridging (mixing) exercises every day as a warm-up and as a build-up to more extreme singing. Once you can easily go up and down your entire range without strain then you are ready to “intensify”.

Not sure if you are bridging correctly? Sing your entire song with a hum…..the kind of humming sound you make when you say “uhm, uhm, that tastes good!” Notice the slightly “nasty” and “whiny” sound you are making.

Make sure your nasal port is closed. In other words no sound is coming out your mouth.

You may notice that you have trouble reaching your high notes…..yes, this is a true indicator!!

Take your volume back to a point where you can manage your high notes with this buzzy hum.

Add a slight “sob” feeling to your voice….as if you whining about something…you will notice that your cheeks and your nose and even your eyebrows will engage with this sensation. Relax into this. Don’t fight it. Recognize that all the action is in this area……what classical singers call “the mask”.

Now back to your song…..are you sure you are ready to belt?

If you cannot hum your song with ease in your head voice (without flipping into falcetto), then you are not ready for belting out a song……..

So…..back to your bridging (mixing) and building exercises!!

Questions? Why not drop me a line!

 

The age of extreme voices

As many of you know I’ve studied the voice for many years, and will continue to do so. It is one of the most mysterious instruments I know. Complete Vocal Technique (CVT) is one method removing some of that mystery, and helping singers all over the world make the sounds they want without harm to the voice.

Gone are the days where we can assume what proper or good singing is. As Cathrine Sadolin, creator of CVT states, “who are we as teachers to dictate how the voice should sound”. You, the singer, should chose how you want your voice to sound. In my opinion, there are bad singers all over the world having huge success in the music business, and at the same time there are great singers who don’t work at all with their voice.

CVT is based on the physiology and anatomy of the voice, and addresses extreme voices in an interesting way. There are three general rules with CVT…singing should always feel comfortable, the technique should work at once, and lastly, if it feels wrong then it is wrong.

This really intrigues me because I have had this exact experience when studying with various teachers. The bottom line is that the sound I wanted to make was not the sound my teacher wanted me to make.

Singers should know there are safe and sound methods of singing available. An open throat with a low larynx is going to teach you one sound color, and this may not be the sound color you want for your future. Once your muscle memory has this embedded it is extremely difficult to change later on in life.

So, in closing, singers and teachers, try to keep an open mind. The world of singing technique is becoming more versatile to stay up-to-date with the over-demanding styles of music in the 21st century.