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eMuZe

As a newly practicing singer of 3 months, does it get better?

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Hi guys! New to the forum but I'm really happy to be here. I've been getting pretty discouraged lately about my endeavor to be a good singer and was looking for some honest discussion on the thoughts that keep flooding me when I practice. Mind the context that I have a decent amount of musical experience as a multi-instrumentalist of 5 years and as a songwriter/digital composer. 

  • Mainly I feel like after the first few months of practicing a minimum of 6 hours a week, doing my vocal exercises each day and practicing some repertoire, also meeting once a week with my voice teacher/coach who gives me tips on how to continue to practice good technique, that this has given me some control over my voice, I don't feel powerless to hit the notes now and stuff.
  • The issue lies in this, the tone of my voice still sounds thin and unpleasant almost always, even in full voice in the comfortable part of my range, it just sounds harsh and ugly sounding. Not even a stylistic choice I wouldn't think, it is just "meh".
  • I asked my voice coach and she said that its a long process to balance out the voice and that its much like working out, you have to practice consistently for a long long time for it to really change drastically and achieve the look/feel you want.
  • My question to you guys is this: Is this an attainable goal to not just be a "meh" singer but to be a good or even great singer? Is my consistent practice and vocal health practices all I need to be doing or is there something I am missing? Is it actually just a matter of time and I am just being impatient?

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definitely attainable IMO. In most activities the progress isnt "linear". In other words you make quick gains at certain points and then nothing seems to happen for a while etc.

Your control and awareness will grow and you'll have better control over your sound

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Before i say anything, let me tell u a bit about myself.

Im not a professional singer, I'm a producer. And I've not studied singing or had a coach for 1 second in my life. But I'm talking from experience and I'd say I was succesful because before now when i sung among friends and such, Id get comments like "you sound nice, but your voice is not unique or anything"

Or "shut the (*auto edit*) up"

But now I get real positive comments from the same people.

With that said.

No its not a matter of time if you want to change the tone of your voice.

You should be able to do it in an instant. But first you need to find out how to sound like that.

You might need to sound less or more breathy

Or maybe you need to sing more or less nasaly

Or maybe change the shape of your mouth when singing.

For example i found out i sound a lot better when i relax the muscles on the sides of my mouth, it makes my mouth shape less wide.

So just play around with your voice. And maybe record it to play it back and hear it later.

Once you find the voice you like, try to sing that way everytime you sing. it will probably take 2 weeks to 3 months till it feels natural.

For me it took 1 month. And now it feels unnatural when i sing like the way i used to.

 

I feel like you are exhausted though so how about you try practicing less and having some days completely off.

Good luck bud.

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18 hours ago, eMuZe said:

I asked my voice coach and she said that its a long process to balance out the voice and that its much like working out, you have to practice consistently for a long long time for it to really change drastically and achieve the look/feel you want.

Sounds like good advice to me.

But think of "change" as your voice expanding -- being able to achieve more. Thin tones, harsh tones, etc. all have their place. Work on them, and build new tones. There are people with heavy tones who struggle to thin their tone when appropriate. Celebrate what you have been gifted with, and work on everything.

Also, know the difference between repetition and practice. Repetition gives you the opportunity to observe, but it is not itself observation. Observation is critical to progress and is a key part of practice. So many little improvements happen first fortuitously, but you have to be very alert to take advantage, by hearing the improvement and promptly exploring and learning why it happened right then. That takes real awareness while practicing -- so you are not going through an hour of blind repetition, just hoping that eventually improvements will "happen".

3 months is not very long. Sounds like you are doing well. I would say 3 months is about the time it takes for some muscles you are learning to use just to start to become strong enough. Then they have to become even stronger so that they can do the job in a relaxed way. That relaxation opens the door to the sort of control needed for regulating tone. All that is contingent on observing and engaging the correct muscles. So, it takes "time" and patience.

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On 4/10/2018 at 7:31 PM, eMuZe said:

I asked my voice coach and she said that its a long process to balance out the voice and that its much like working out, you have to practice consistently for a long long time for it to really change drastically and achieve the look/feel you want.

 

6 hours ago, kickingtone said:

Sounds like good advice to me.

He dose not know what good advice is because he has had no training what so ever and only relies on free tips off of youtube

Did you teacher explain in detail what she meant when she said by a long process involved in balancing the voice out and what was involved? if she did not then I would surgest you ask her on your next lesson and if she dose not answer and explain this properly then I would surgest you look for a new teacher 

You mentioned somewhere above that you sounded to breathy; is this the problem you are having and wish to change?

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To add to the confusion from the variety of answers: Everyone is right in this thread. 

Your vocal coach has a particular methodology they are teaching you, so we can't speak to how long it will take using that methodology. But you should be playing and experimenting with your voice and having fun regardless. But if you do play around and experiment with your voice, like Sir suggested, make sure you're staying within the guidelines of a trained professional or you can seriously mess up your voice (either through injury, or simply building bad habits).

It is like a workout, for sure, so it can take time. However, everyone is different in the amount of time it takes because we all have slightly different physiology and genetics to work within. It's also very dependent on what exercises you're being given. 3 months with the exercises Robert Lunte or I would give you, and I would expect a certain level of results far beyond what you described. However, I also don't actually know where you started, what exercises you are doing, or what you're doing now in comparison to where you started. So for me to expect you to be further along is a bit presumptuous.

Also, you can't learn much about singing from YouTube, beyond some very basics that still aren't personally guiding you, and want to take advice people with no training with a grain of salt (healthy amount of skepticism).

Lastly, If you're unhappy with your teacher, keep looking for another one. Alternately, look up videos, like Robert Lunte's or mine, and ask your teacher about the techniques that seem to help you from those videos.

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UPDATE: Thank you guys for all your responses. While there was a variety of answers, I feel a little more confident just knowing that the general consensus is that my voice can be improved. Honestly I am willing to put in the time, I just needed to know there's a light at the end of the tunnel. If you all are interested in where I am going from here: I intend to continue my daily 30-60 minute practice times and continue to be very intentional about keeping good posture and to do my best to maintain good breath support and breathing practices. I will also be continuing to meet with my teacher once a week to analyze my habits and help me to learn the correct and effective way. She has a masters degree in pedagogy and has been teaching a long time, she's a professor at my college for the fine arts department so I think she is qualified to the best of my knowledge. Lastly I have been watching and working through some of Jeff Rolka's tone videos each day during my practice. I am hoping that helps to strengthen those tiny muscles and boost my singing an extra step.

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