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Found 10 results

  1. I've now had a few wonderful lessons with Robert and I'm still working through my lessons So much material in The Four Pillars. Seriously good stuff. When I started, after years of singing classically in mostly head register, I had an extremely limited belt range (for a woman). So limited that I was only able to hit G4 or so in belt. I've been at this for 3 or so weeks now, and I'm up to a solid D5 in a strong belt using the onset and sirens, and today on a few sirens I was able to bridge up to my F#5 smoothly and cleanly with almost zero tonal change. I still have a LOT of work to do, but holy shnikes. I'm not solid yet - I have a lot more practicing to do but I have to say I'm pleased. I'll keep going with the log, so that progress can be seen and heard, but I'm super happy so far!!!
  2. I've been teaching a lot of new students lately, so haven't had time to dive into the course as much lately. Granted, I've been teaching the onsets in more of a TVS way now, and have noticed a big improvement on helping my student's get results even faster than before, not just that but pinpoint issues extremely fast too. For myself, it has given me a lot more control over my voice as well, but in ways I didn't know were even an issue. This is exactly the type of program I've been looking for, since I feel I'm already pretty advanced in my singing. I'm writing this just to say thank you for one thing in particular. After learning the lift up/pull back technique, using TVS coordination onsets, and even contract & release (although I overused it at first, ouch, lol!), my opened up my voice more than I thought possible. Before, I could easily sing a C5, even up to an E5 while belting, but only for about 30 minutes before feeling some fatigue. I could even belt up to a G#5 for a very short period. With the fatigue, I figured I was pushing too hard, but didn't know another way. So, with the new album being written, I simply started writing and altering my songs to stay lower in pitch than that. After practicing TVS methodology, I quickly realized just how much a belt is truly just head voice with TA being added. With this realization, I could suddenly control the volume and pressure of my belting much more than before. I can belt the E5 for hours now. To be clear, I know the difference in sensation and sound from a true belt vs. falsetto with twang or added harshness. I haven't ventured much above that, since I currently still fight the urge to push. The last time I belted the G#5, I was teaching a soprano a certain song, and didn't realize how high I was singing until it started hurting 15 minutes in. Then it was too late, I had pulled a muscle and it took me 3 months to recover. Needless to say, I'm overly cautious about belting above the E5 now. Not that I normally sing anything that calls for anything higher than that anyway. I'm very excited about this discovery, and I'm looking forward to the lesson on belting to refine it even more. Thank you for taking the pressure off my upper belt range. This will be extremely important as The Silent Still begins to tour our Rock Circus Masquerade production at the end of this year.
  3. belting

    HERE IS AN EMAIL THAT WAS DISCOVERED WHERE ROBERT LUNTE, FOUNDER OF THE VOCALIST STUDIO, ANSWERS QUESTIONS ABOUT KTVA VS TVS TECHNIQUES. HERE IS AN EMAIL THAT WAS DISCOVERED WHERE ROBERT LUNTE, FOUNDER OF THE VOCALIST STUDIO, ANSWERS QUESTIONS ABOUT KTVA VS TVS TECHNIQUES. Hey Rob, So I noticed that there is a difference in definitions between TVS and Ken Tamplin's program. Ken Tamplin refers to head voice as a mode; basically a strong reinforced falsetto. WELL, ... IN REGARDS TO THE TRUE DEFINITION OF VOCAL MODES, THAT IS NOT A DEFINITION THAT IS AS ACCURATE AS IT NEEDS TO BE. IF WE ARE GOING TO TALK ABOUT MODES, IT IS BEST TO REFER TO THE ORIGINATORS OF PHYSICAL MODES, THE ESTILLIANS… WHICH IS MORE OR LESS WHAT THE TVS PHYSICAL MODES ARE INSPIRED BY. FALSETTO IS A PHYSICAL MODE, HEAD VOICE IS NOTHING MORE THEN A METAPHOR FOR THE UPPER REGISTER… HEAD VOICE ACTUALLY DOESN’T MEAN ANYTHING, IF YOU WANT TO BE STRICT ABOUT IT. IT IS A “PICTURE WORD” TO REFER TO THE UPPER VOICE SENSATION WE ALL HAVE… TO CALL IT A VOCAL MODE, IS TO CLAIM THAT IT IS A PHYSICAL AND TANGIBLE THING, WHICH IT ISN’T. THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS ‘REINFORCED FALSETTO’. THERE IS ONLY A PHYSICAL MODE CALLED FALSETTO AND IT IS CHARACTERIZED BY A WINDY, OPEN GLOTTIS THAT ESCAPES RESPIRATION. IF THE PHONATION DOES NOT HAVE WIND, IT IS NOT FALSETTO. IF YOU “REINFORCE” A PHONATION ON A HIGH NOTE ABOVE THE BRIDGE, IT IS MORE ACCURATELY GOING TO BE VOCAL TWANG… WHICH IS ANOTHER PHYSICAL MODE. In TVS falsetto is a mode, but the head voice is just what you call notes that resonate from the head, in whatever mode you are singing. WELL DONE, THAT IS MORE OR LESS CORRECT. HOWEVER, NOTE THAT THIS DEFINITION OF MODES IS NOT JUST THE WAY TVS SEES IT. IT IS ALSO THE WAY ESTILLIANS AND CVI SEES IT. ESTILL ARE THE ORIGINATORS OF VOCAL MODES, SO PEOPLE THAT CARE TO BE ACCURATE ABOUT VOCAL MODES, TEND TO FOLLOW THEIR ORIGINAL FOUNDATION ON THE TOPIC, WHICH TVS PHYSICAL MODES DO. I prefer the TVS definition. However, I think that makes the whole bridging late vs bridging early debate between the two systems inconsistent. IS THERE A DEBATE? ... OH YA, KTVA WOULD LIKE CONSUMERS TO BELIEVE THERE IS… THERE IS NO DEBATE. TVS HAS BOTH BOTTOM UP AND TOP DOWN TECHNIQUES. THIS IS A TIRED, OLD IDEA THAT STARTED ABOUT FOUR YEARS AGO THAT HAS BEEN PROPAGATED TO CREATE CONFUSION IN THE MARKET ABOUT WHAT TVS STANDS FOR... KTVA HAS GOT A LOT OF MILEAGE OUT OF PROPAGATING THIS MISINFORMATION. IT IS COMPLETELY STUPID AND I HAVE CREATED NO LESS THEN FOUR VIDEOS TO COMBAT THE CONFUSION. Ken's criticism of what he calls late bridging seems more apt to describing some classical voice teachers who teach bridging to a falsetto mode instead of a twang mode, or metal screamers who rely on a distorted reinforced falsetto. His criticism being that early bridging over time breaks down the "mid voice," of which he doesn't define. HE TALKS A GOOD GAME AND CERTAINLY SINGS A GOOD GAME… BUT WITH ALL DUE RESPECT, IN MY OPINION AND FROM FEEDBACK FROM HIS CUSTOMERS, HE DOESN’T ALWAYS DEFINE OR EXPLAIN A GOOD GAME. IN REGARDS TO EARLY BRIDGING AND VOCAL ATROPHY… ON THIS POINT, I AGREE WITH KEN. THE LACK OF BOTTOM UP TRAINING WILL RESULT IN WEAK TA MUSCLE STRENGTH AND ENDURANCE. BOTTOM TRAINING IS ESSENTIAL TO BELTING, BUT ALSO JUST TO BASIC VOCAL HEALTH. THIS IS WHY THE NEW 4PILLARS SYSTEM HAS AN EXTENSIVE BOTTOM-UP AND BELT TRAINING EXPLANATIONS AND ROUTINES. With the TVS definition, I'd say I mostly bridge early. But it's not such a big difference it seems. I can still bring a bigger boomier sound up higher, but from learning early bridging techniques, I'm not stuck to an overly heavy phonation with constriction. It's dynamic and free. PRECISELY!!!!!!!!!!! YOU NEED BOTH APPROACHES! DIFFERENT PEOPLE NEED DIFFERENT APPROACHES BASED ON THEIR NEEDS. YOU DESCRIBED THOSE NEEDS NICELY. I TOTALLY AGREE. KNOW THIS… THE REASON ANY COACH WOULD BE LIGHT ON TOP-DOWN TRAINING TECHNIQUES IS SIMPLY BECAUSE TOP-DOWN TRAINING TECHNIQUES ARE MORE COMPLICATED TO UNDERSTAND AND TEACH. IT IS A LOT EASIER TO TEACH BOTTOM-UP TECHNIQUES. TOP-DOWN TECHNIQUES REQUIRE MORE PRECISION AND MORE UNDERSTANDING OF THE MUSCULATURE AND OTHER DETAILS. "PUSH FROM THE BOTTOM UP ON AN AH VOWEL"... IS A FAR EASIER STORY TO TELL, THEN BUILDING FROM INSIDE THE HEAD VOICE. I think part of the confusion also stems from the SLS / singing success terms, where the mixed voice is their term for twang, and head voice is defined as a strong falsetto. WHICH IS AN AWFUL DEFINITION OF TWANG… AND PAINFULLY INCORRECT. AGAIN, IF ANY OF THESE PEOPLE, WOULD BOTHER TO STUDY VOCAL MODES AS I HAVE, THEY WOULD NOT BE TALKING INACCURACIES TO CONSUMERS. SLS AND SS SEEM LIKE THE LEAST INFORMED TEACHERS SOMETIMES. TO BE SURE, THEY ARE NOT TRAINED IN VOCAL MODES AND ARE WAY OF COURSE WHEN IT COMES TO BELTING. VERY FEW PEOPLE WILL EVER BUILD A STRONG TOP REGISTER BELT WITH "SING LIKE YOU SPEAK" TYPE METHODS. It's kind of silly considering the actually mixed resonance we feel is only from around c4 to E4. Mixed voice is just a bad term. YEP… THAT IS WHY I KILLED IT IN MY “MIXED VOICE IS DEAD!” VIDEO… IT IS A TERM THAT SOME TEACHERS USE TO KEEP THEIR STUDENTS CONFUSED. THE MORE YOU CAN KEEP YOUR STUDENTS CONFUSED, THE LESS YOU HAVE TO REALLY UNDERSTAND YOUR SUBJECT MATTER AND BE ABLE TO REALLY EXPLAIN THINGS AS A TEACHER. Am I understanding this right? TOM, I THINK YOU HAVE A LOT OF THIS PRETTY SQUARED AWAY. IT SEEMS THE TVS CONTENT IS HELPING YOU TO SORT THIS ALL OUT, WHICH IS GREAT. Tom
  4. HERE IS AN EMAIL THAT WAS DISCOVERED WHERE ROBERT LUNTE, FOUNDER OF THE VOCALIST STUDIO, ANSWERS QUESTIONS ABOUT KTVA VS TVS TECHNIQUES. HERE IS AN EMAIL THAT WAS DISCOVERED WHERE ROBERT LUNTE, FOUNDER OF THE VOCALIST STUDIO, ANSWERS QUESTIONS ABOUT KTVA VS TVS TECHNIQUES. Hey Rob, So I noticed that there is a difference in definitions between TVS and Ken Tamplin's program. Ken Tamplin refers to head voice as a mode; basically a strong reinforced falsetto. WELL, ... IN REGARDS TO THE TRUE DEFINITION OF VOCAL MODES, THAT IS NOT A DEFINITION THAT IS AS ACCURATE AS IT NEEDS TO BE. IF WE ARE GOING TO TALK ABOUT MODES, IT IS BEST TO REFER TO THE ORIGINATORS OF PHYSICAL MODES, THE ESTILLIANS… WHICH IS MORE OR LESS WHAT THE TVS PHYSICAL MODES ARE INSPIRED BY. FALSETTO IS A PHYSICAL MODE, HEAD VOICE IS NOTHING MORE THEN A METAPHOR FOR THE UPPER REGISTER… HEAD VOICE ACTUALLY DOESN’T MEAN ANYTHING, IF YOU WANT TO BE STRICT ABOUT IT. IT IS A “PICTURE WORD” TO REFER TO THE UPPER VOICE SENSATION WE ALL HAVE… TO CALL IT A VOCAL MODE, IS TO CLAIM THAT IT IS A PHYSICAL AND TANGIBLE THING, WHICH IT ISN’T. THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS ‘REINFORCED FALSETTO’. THERE IS ONLY A PHYSICAL MODE CALLED FALSETTO AND IT IS CHARACTERIZED BY A WINDY, OPEN GLOTTIS THAT ESCAPES RESPIRATION. IF THE PHONATION DOES NOT HAVE WIND, IT IS NOT FALSETTO. IF YOU “REINFORCE” A PHONATION ON A HIGH NOTE ABOVE THE BRIDGE, IT IS MORE ACCURATELY GOING TO BE VOCAL TWANG… WHICH IS ANOTHER PHYSICAL MODE. In TVS falsetto is a mode, but the head voice is just what you call notes that resonate from the head, in whatever mode you are singing. WELL DONE, THAT IS MORE OR LESS CORRECT. HOWEVER, NOTE THAT THIS DEFINITION OF MODES IS NOT JUST THE WAY TVS SEES IT. IT IS ALSO THE WAY ESTILLIANS AND CVI SEES IT. ESTILL ARE THE ORIGINATORS OF VOCAL MODES, SO PEOPLE THAT CARE TO BE ACCURATE ABOUT VOCAL MODES, TEND TO FOLLOW THEIR ORIGINAL FOUNDATION ON THE TOPIC, WHICH TVS PHYSICAL MODES DO. I prefer the TVS definition. However, I think that makes the whole bridging late vs bridging early debate between the two systems inconsistent. IS THERE A DEBATE? ... OH YA, KTVA WOULD LIKE CONSUMERS TO BELIEVE THERE IS… THERE IS NO DEBATE. TVS HAS BOTH BOTTOM UP AND TOP DOWN TECHNIQUES. THIS IS A TIRED, OLD IDEA THAT STARTED ABOUT FOUR YEARS AGO THAT HAS BEEN PROPAGATED TO CREATE CONFUSION IN THE MARKET ABOUT WHAT TVS STANDS FOR... KTVA HAS GOT A LOT OF MILEAGE OUT OF PROPAGATING THIS MISINFORMATION. IT IS COMPLETELY STUPID AND I HAVE CREATED NO LESS THEN FOUR VIDEOS TO COMBAT THE CONFUSION. Ken's criticism of what he calls late bridging seems more apt to describing some classical voice teachers who teach bridging to a falsetto mode instead of a twang mode, or metal screamers who rely on a distorted reinforced falsetto. His criticism being that early bridging over time breaks down the "mid voice," of which he doesn't define. HE TALKS A GOOD GAME AND CERTAINLY SINGS A GOOD GAME… BUT WITH ALL DUE RESPECT, IN MY OPINION AND FROM FEEDBACK FROM HIS CUSTOMERS, HE DOESN’T ALWAYS DEFINE OR EXPLAIN A GOOD GAME. IN REGARDS TO EARLY BRIDGING AND VOCAL ATROPHY… ON THIS POINT, I AGREE WITH KEN. THE LACK OF BOTTOM UP TRAINING WILL RESULT IN WEAK TA MUSCLE STRENGTH AND ENDURANCE. BOTTOM TRAINING IS ESSENTIAL TO BELTING, BUT ALSO JUST TO BASIC VOCAL HEALTH. THIS IS WHY THE NEW 4PILLARS SYSTEM HAS AN EXTENSIVE BOTTOM-UP AND BELT TRAINING EXPLANATIONS AND ROUTINES. With the TVS definition, I'd say I mostly bridge early. But it's not such a big difference it seems. I can still bring a bigger boomier sound up higher, but from learning early bridging techniques, I'm not stuck to an overly heavy phonation with constriction. It's dynamic and free. PRECISELY!!!!!!!!!!! YOU NEED BOTH APPROACHES! DIFFERENT PEOPLE NEED DIFFERENT APPROACHES BASED ON THEIR NEEDS. YOU DESCRIBED THOSE NEEDS NICELY. I TOTALLY AGREE. KNOW THIS… THE REASON ANY COACH WOULD BE LIGHT ON TOP-DOWN TRAINING TECHNIQUES IS SIMPLY BECAUSE TOP-DOWN TRAINING TECHNIQUES ARE MORE COMPLICATED TO UNDERSTAND AND TEACH. IT IS A LOT EASIER TO TEACH BOTTOM-UP TECHNIQUES. TOP-DOWN TECHNIQUES REQUIRE MORE PRECISION AND MORE UNDERSTANDING OF THE MUSCULATURE AND OTHER DETAILS. "PUSH FROM THE BOTTOM UP ON AN AH VOWEL"... IS A FAR EASIER STORY TO TELL, THEN BUILDING FROM INSIDE THE HEAD VOICE. I think part of the confusion also stems from the SLS / singing success terms, where the mixed voice is their term for twang, and head voice is defined as a strong falsetto. WHICH IS AN AWFUL DEFINITION OF TWANG… AND PAINFULLY INCORRECT. AGAIN, IF ANY OF THESE PEOPLE, WOULD BOTHER TO STUDY VOCAL MODES AS I HAVE, THEY WOULD NOT BE TALKING INACCURACIES TO CONSUMERS. SLS AND SS SEEM LIKE THE LEAST INFORMED TEACHERS SOMETIMES. TO BE SURE, THEY ARE NOT TRAINED IN VOCAL MODES AND ARE WAY OF COURSE WHEN IT COMES TO BELTING. VERY FEW PEOPLE WILL EVER BUILD A STRONG TOP REGISTER BELT WITH "SING LIKE YOU SPEAK" TYPE METHODS. It's kind of silly considering the actually mixed resonance we feel is only from around c4 to E4. Mixed voice is just a bad term. YEP… THAT IS WHY I KILLED IT IN MY “MIXED VOICE IS DEAD!” VIDEO… IT IS A TERM THAT SOME TEACHERS USE TO KEEP THEIR STUDENTS CONFUSED. THE MORE YOU CAN KEEP YOUR STUDENTS CONFUSED, THE LESS YOU HAVE TO REALLY UNDERSTAND YOUR SUBJECT MATTER AND BE ABLE TO REALLY EXPLAIN THINGS AS A TEACHER. Am I understanding this right? TOM, I THINK YOU HAVE A LOT OF THIS PRETTY SQUARED AWAY. IT SEEMS THE TVS CONTENT IS HELPING YOU TO SORT THIS ALL OUT, WHICH IS GREAT. Tom View full articles
  5. There is still alot of debate in vocal teaching circles concerning the healthiness of belting. Even finding a consistent definition is tricky. It's a sound that is often identified with Broadway or gospel singing. It is a big, loud, powerful sound that can be quite stirring. The potential problem with pure belting is that the chest voice range is pushed higher than is optimal, which can make a singer hyperfunctional. In my opinion, it is better to develop a strong mix or middle voice that can can be leaned into for more power. One exercise that can help in that area is the pharyngeal voice or 'witch's voice. The use of this device dates back to the baroque period and the training of the castrati. This ugly, bratty sound helps to bridge the chest into the middle area easily without pushing or straining. Use the sounds 'nay', 'naa', & 'waa' in your practice. As you ascend the scale, don't get intentionally louder- the pharyngeal resonance will give a sense of more power without your help! Just keep the sound ugly without strain. Be sure not to jam the sound into your nose. It works wonders without taxing the voice. A great scale pattern to start with is the octave arpeggio with the top note repeated: nay- nay-nay-nay-nay-nay-nay-nay-nay-nay 1 3 5 8 8 8 8 5 3 1 The repeat of the top note give the muscles a greater opportunity to remember the proper response. From here, you can add the octave & a half pattern as well as the mixed octave scale. These two amp up the challenge by covering more range more quickly.
  6. There is still alot of debate in vocal teaching circles concerning the healthiness of belting. Even finding a consistent definition is tricky. It's a sound that is often identified with Broadway or gospel singing. It is a big, loud, powerful sound that can be quite stirring. The potential problem with pure belting is that the chest voice range is pushed higher than is optimal, which can make a singer hyperfunctional. In my opinion, it is better to develop a strong mix or middle voice that can can be leaned into for more power. One exercise that can help in that area is the pharyngeal voice or 'witch's voice. The use of this device dates back to the baroque period and the training of the castrati. This ugly, bratty sound helps to bridge the chest into the middle area easily without pushing or straining. Use the sounds 'nay', 'naa', & 'waa' in your practice. As you ascend the scale, don't get intentionally louder- the pharyngeal resonance will give a sense of more power without your help! Just keep the sound ugly without strain. Be sure not to jam the sound into your nose. It works wonders without taxing the voice. A great scale pattern to start with is the octave arpeggio with the top note repeated: nay- nay-nay-nay-nay-nay-nay-nay-nay-nay 1 3 5 8 8 8 8 5 3 1 The repeat of the top note give the muscles a greater opportunity to remember the proper response. From here, you can add the octave & a half pattern as well as the mixed octave scale. These two amp up the challenge by covering more range more quickly. View full articles
  7. This article will compare the 'belt voice' production as used by female singers, the 'robust head voice' as used by Operatic tenors, and the male 'Rock' pharyngeal voice. These types of vocalism share some characteristics that make them similar to each other, but also have some characteristics, which differentiate them. As I have done before, I will use spectrographic analysis to assist in the understanding of how these voices can be compared and contrasted. A First example: 'Top Line F', Belt and Robust Head Voice The following spectrograph shows the harmonic content of two voices singing the F natural usually written on the top line of the treble staff, that is, the F at the upper range of both the belt and tenor voices (the F the octave and a perfect fourth above middle C.) The female singer, represented in blue, is Patti LaBelle, from a televised recording of "You'll Never Walk Alone" from Carousel, recorded in the mid-'60s. The tenor is classical tenor Nicolai Gedda, from a 1973 recording of "Credeasi Misera" from I Puritani. Patti http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OTAOD-2Fnqw at 2:19 Nicolai http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9w_TTK7UP1c at 4:50 As I have done with prior recordings, I have matched the volumes of first harmonic (H1) so that the relative intensity of the upper harmonics can be identified. With this matching, we see the following: There are five strong harmonics displayed by both voices, and for both of the notes, the 3rd harmonic is the strongest. This gives the voices power and color. The relative intensity of the harmonics is approximately the same in both voices. H1 and H2 are lower in intensity than H3, but strong enough to make the core warmth of the tone quality very solid. The 4th harmonic in both voices is within the 'red lines', the most sensitive part of our hearing range. The white trace sections are 'wider', indicating that Mr. Gedda's vibrato is as well. Ms. LaBelle sang her note with almost no vibrato, so the peaks are very pointed. A Second Example: Middle line B, Pop Belt and Rock Pharyngeal Voice This second spectrograph, which I have annotated for harmonic identification, is of two voices singing the B above middle C. The two voices are Robert Plant of Led Zeppelin, singing 'A Whole Lotta Love', and Whitney Houston singing 'I Will Always Love You', on a vowel approximating /a/. I have matched the fundamentals as before. Robert Plant's voice is in blue, and Whitney Houston's is in white. The spectrograph shows the following: With the fundamentals equalized, the loudest harmonic in both voices is H2, and approximately the same intensity in both. With fundamental matched, and H2 so similar, the core of the tone for both voices on this note is identical. H2 in both voices carries the bulk of the volume for both. H3 in Robert Plant's voice is somewhat louder by comparison to Whitney Houston's, but for both, it is louder than the fundamental, and the second loudest harmonic overall for both as well. Recall that the 3rd harmonic (an octave and a perfect 5th above the fundamental) as an odd harmonic, adds color to the tone quality. The relative strength of this harmonic in Robert Plant's voice helps us to distinguish his from Whitney's tone quality. H4 for both voices is about equal, but H5 and H6 in Plant's voice are stronger than Whitney's. This may be the result of "Singer's Formant" in Plant's voice. H6 is particularly well situated, as it is not only strong, but within the sweet spot of hearing. Example Three: Broadway Belt, and Operatic Tenor This one is a fun one. The following spectrograph is of two very famous singers, Ethel Merman (the quintessential Broadway belter of the mid-20th Century) and Luciano Pavarotti, Operatic Tenor. Ethel is singing the last note of 'There's No Business Like Show Business' from Annie, Get Your Gun, and Pavarotti is singing the last note of 'Celeste Aida' from Aida. As usual, for comparison I have equalized the strength of the fundamentals so that relative harmonic balance can be shown. Can you tell which is which? Without giving away yet which is which, the following can be observed: With the fundamentals equalized, the Blue voice has a louder H2 than the White one, which makes the core of the tone quality just a bit brighter, but not much. H3 in both voices is the loudest harmonic, so they both have the color this harmonic brings to the tone, with a small advantage for the White voice. H4 for both voices is quite a bit softer than H1, H2 and H3, adding some brightness, but not much to both. The higher harmonics have less energy in both voices, but overall the White voice has more than the Blue one, which gives it more ring. Both voices have vibrato (as evidenced by the 'wideness' of the harmonics), with the Blue voice having just a little bit more than the White one. Have you determined which is which? Pavarotti is in White. Merman is in Blue. Conclusions In looking at these representative voices, there are some commonalities that we can identify for this pitch range: In each voice type, the principal strength of the tone is in the 2nd and 3rd harmonic. The fundamental is often 4th or lesser in strength, meaning that other harmonics align more closely with the resonances of the vowels chosen than it does. Some voices display presence of singer's formant, and others do not. Each of the singers shows strong voice production characteristics, but not equal balances of resonance. This essay was first published December 21, 2008 on The Modern Vocalist.com the Internet's #1 community for vocal professionals, voice health practitioners and pro-audio companies worldwide since November 2008.
  8. This article will compare the 'belt voice' production as used by female singers, the 'robust head voice' as used by Operatic tenors, and the male 'Rock' pharyngeal voice. These types of vocalism share some characteristics that make them similar to each other, but also have some characteristics, which differentiate them. As I have done before, I will use spectrographic analysis to assist in the understanding of how these voices can be compared and contrasted. A First example: 'Top Line F', Belt and Robust Head Voice The following spectrograph shows the harmonic content of two voices singing the F natural usually written on the top line of the treble staff, that is, the F at the upper range of both the belt and tenor voices (the F the octave and a perfect fourth above middle C.) The female singer, represented in blue, is Patti LaBelle, from a televised recording of "You'll Never Walk Alone" from Carousel, recorded in the mid-'60s. The tenor is classical tenor Nicolai Gedda, from a 1973 recording of "Credeasi Misera" from I Puritani. Patti http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OTAOD-2Fnqw at 2:19 Nicolai http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9w_TTK7UP1c at 4:50 As I have done with prior recordings, I have matched the volumes of first harmonic (H1) so that the relative intensity of the upper harmonics can be identified. With this matching, we see the following: There are five strong harmonics displayed by both voices, and for both of the notes, the 3rd harmonic is the strongest. This gives the voices power and color. The relative intensity of the harmonics is approximately the same in both voices. H1 and H2 are lower in intensity than H3, but strong enough to make the core warmth of the tone quality very solid. The 4th harmonic in both voices is within the 'red lines', the most sensitive part of our hearing range. The white trace sections are 'wider', indicating that Mr. Gedda's vibrato is as well. Ms. LaBelle sang her note with almost no vibrato, so the peaks are very pointed. A Second Example: Middle line B, Pop Belt and Rock Pharyngeal Voice This second spectrograph, which I have annotated for harmonic identification, is of two voices singing the B above middle C. The two voices are Robert Plant of Led Zeppelin, singing 'A Whole Lotta Love', and Whitney Houston singing 'I Will Always Love You', on a vowel approximating /a/. I have matched the fundamentals as before. Robert Plant's voice is in blue, and Whitney Houston's is in white. The spectrograph shows the following: With the fundamentals equalized, the loudest harmonic in both voices is H2, and approximately the same intensity in both. With fundamental matched, and H2 so similar, the core of the tone for both voices on this note is identical. H2 in both voices carries the bulk of the volume for both. H3 in Robert Plant's voice is somewhat louder by comparison to Whitney Houston's, but for both, it is louder than the fundamental, and the second loudest harmonic overall for both as well. Recall that the 3rd harmonic (an octave and a perfect 5th above the fundamental) as an odd harmonic, adds color to the tone quality. The relative strength of this harmonic in Robert Plant's voice helps us to distinguish his from Whitney's tone quality. H4 for both voices is about equal, but H5 and H6 in Plant's voice are stronger than Whitney's. This may be the result of "Singer's Formant" in Plant's voice. H6 is particularly well situated, as it is not only strong, but within the sweet spot of hearing. Example Three: Broadway Belt, and Operatic Tenor This one is a fun one. The following spectrograph is of two very famous singers, Ethel Merman (the quintessential Broadway belter of the mid-20th Century) and Luciano Pavarotti, Operatic Tenor. Ethel is singing the last note of 'There's No Business Like Show Business' from Annie, Get Your Gun, and Pavarotti is singing the last note of 'Celeste Aida' from Aida. As usual, for comparison I have equalized the strength of the fundamentals so that relative harmonic balance can be shown. Can you tell which is which? Without giving away yet which is which, the following can be observed: With the fundamentals equalized, the Blue voice has a louder H2 than the White one, which makes the core of the tone quality just a bit brighter, but not much. H3 in both voices is the loudest harmonic, so they both have the color this harmonic brings to the tone, with a small advantage for the White voice. H4 for both voices is quite a bit softer than H1, H2 and H3, adding some brightness, but not much to both. The higher harmonics have less energy in both voices, but overall the White voice has more than the Blue one, which gives it more ring. Both voices have vibrato (as evidenced by the 'wideness' of the harmonics), with the Blue voice having just a little bit more than the White one. Have you determined which is which? Pavarotti is in White. Merman is in Blue. Conclusions In looking at these representative voices, there are some commonalities that we can identify for this pitch range: In each voice type, the principal strength of the tone is in the 2nd and 3rd harmonic. The fundamental is often 4th or lesser in strength, meaning that other harmonics align more closely with the resonances of the vowels chosen than it does. Some voices display presence of singer's formant, and others do not. Each of the singers shows strong voice production characteristics, but not equal balances of resonance. This essay was first published December 21, 2008 on The Modern Vocalist.com the Internet's #1 community for vocal professionals, voice health practitioners and pro-audio companies worldwide since November 2008. View full articles
  9. If we define belting in the most general terms possible, let's entertain the notion that it's a vocal sound that derives from talking or yelling. Belting is most often linked to musical theater singing, but has been used to describe loud singing in commercial styles such as rock and gospel. Following is a brief description of the essentials of the mechanism of belting voice production, particularly as compared to classical singing. Head: aligned with body but with jaw parallel to ground (head tilted down in classical) Jaw: firmer masseter (chewing) muscle which protrudes jaw slightly forward Hyoid bone: pulls forward Thyroid Cartilage: slides forward (tilts down in front for classical) Larynx Height: higher position (approx. 1 1/2 cervical vertebrae higher) Vocal Fold Vibration Pattern: clapping, square-edge, no zippering, particularly at higher volumes Vocal Fold closure speed, speed quotient: faster Vocal Fold closure ratio, closed quotient: longer, closed minimum of 50% of time Increased sub-glottal pressure - upper belly must firm OUT, lower belly IN, to correctly pressurize vocal folds T-A muscle (vocalis): more contracted Frequencies: even range of frequencies up to 15k Subjective sensations: Extreme breath holding prior and during Singing smacky and sticky The feeling of folds high speed of closure and long closed phase Intense support (5 rules: chest stays up, side/back ribs stay out, upper belly magic spot firms out, lower belly gradually goes in, waist goes out) Sound shooting through mouth or chin or upper neck or lower neck or nose Modern belting ideas: Timbre (nasal and/or ringy) and volume should be character-based choices Can be loud, medium or soft (rarely), but cannot be breathy Musical Theater belting can be delineated into at least five belting sub-styles: Heavy Belt, Nasal Belt, Brassy Belt (nasal/ringy, mostly nasal, i.e. Ethel Merman) Ringy Belt (nasal/ringy, mostly ringy i.e. Kristin Chenoweth) Speech-Like Belt (broad spectrum of resonance i.e. Idina Menzel) Teaching Approaches: Calls (Come ere Daddy!) Nasals (e.g. nyaa) Lean Exercises Pressure Sounds (bee staccato) This essay first published November 30, 2008 on The Modern Vocalist.com the Internet's #1 community for vocal professionals, voice health practitioners and pro-audio companies worldwide since November 2008.
  10. If we define belting in the most general terms possible, let's entertain the notion that it's a vocal sound that derives from talking or yelling. Belting is most often linked to musical theater singing, but has been used to describe loud singing in commercial styles such as rock and gospel. Following is a brief description of the essentials of the mechanism of belting voice production, particularly as compared to classical singing. Head: aligned with body but with jaw parallel to ground (head tilted down in classical) Jaw: firmer masseter (chewing) muscle which protrudes jaw slightly forward Hyoid bone: pulls forward Thyroid Cartilage: slides forward (tilts down in front for classical) Larynx Height: higher position (approx. 1 1/2 cervical vertebrae higher) Vocal Fold Vibration Pattern: clapping, square-edge, no zippering, particularly at higher volumes Vocal Fold closure speed, speed quotient: faster Vocal Fold closure ratio, closed quotient: longer, closed minimum of 50% of time Increased sub-glottal pressure - upper belly must firm OUT, lower belly IN, to correctly pressurize vocal folds T-A muscle (vocalis): more contracted Frequencies: even range of frequencies up to 15k Subjective sensations: Extreme breath holding prior and during Singing smacky and sticky The feeling of folds high speed of closure and long closed phase Intense support (5 rules: chest stays up, side/back ribs stay out, upper belly magic spot firms out, lower belly gradually goes in, waist goes out) Sound shooting through mouth or chin or upper neck or lower neck or nose Modern belting ideas: Timbre (nasal and/or ringy) and volume should be character-based choices Can be loud, medium or soft (rarely), but cannot be breathy Musical Theater belting can be delineated into at least five belting sub-styles: Heavy Belt, Nasal Belt, Brassy Belt (nasal/ringy, mostly nasal, i.e. Ethel Merman) Ringy Belt (nasal/ringy, mostly ringy i.e. Kristin Chenoweth) Speech-Like Belt (broad spectrum of resonance i.e. Idina Menzel) Teaching Approaches: Calls (Come ere Daddy!) Nasals (e.g. nyaa) Lean Exercises Pressure Sounds (bee staccato) This essay first published November 30, 2008 on The Modern Vocalist.com the Internet's #1 community for vocal professionals, voice health practitioners and pro-audio companies worldwide since November 2008. View full articles