How to Belt

Most singers want to know how their favourite singers get their sound…in other words, how they sing so well. We all want to understand the voices of Steve Perry, Celine Dion, Kelly Clarkson, Adam Lambert. The list goes on and on.

It’s a complex question with a complex answer, but one thing is true with all these singers. They are great belters!

First, belting in the true sense simply means yelling. Is this a good form of singing? Absolutely not!

Can a singer learn to belt properly with a strong and healthy sound….absolutely yes! This is why we love singers who sing high notes with ease and power.

There are many key factors…and this may be an appropriate list in order of importance. However, proper and healthy belting cannot exist without all of these factors.

1. The ability to blend (mix) registers. In other words, the ability to transition from the lowest of your low notes to the highest of high notes without a bump in the road (vocal break….I think you know what I mean).

2. The ability of the vocal cords to withstand huge amounts of breath pressure….yes, this means attention to breath control!

3. The single, probably most important factor of all, the ability to “twang”. Twang simply means the larynx is doing remarkable things such as tilting to allow the cords to stretch and thin in a healthy manner. There are other things going on as well, and in a nutshell, it means the singer is able to make sounds which resonate easily because of the formants he/she is creating. This means the singer is able to make sounds that are loud and vibrant to the human ear with very little effort! This is the beauty of twang! This creates the illusion of a powerful chest voice, when in fact the singer is resonating in his head voice like crazy!

4. And lastly, but not necessarily of least importance, is the ability to control the larynx. A great singer can sing with their larynx high, low and in the middle. In other words, a great singer can maneuver the larynx and sing in all positions, depending on the “color” of sound he might want. A low larynx gives a darker sound because there is more space in the throat for the sound to resonate. This is the sound we hear in opera. A larynx that can move freely around from mid to higher, and that can tilt, is the ideal larynx for all other styles.

I hope this has given you a better idea of what good belting truly is. Have a question? Why not drop me a line!