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"Mix" equivalent in CVT

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MB20
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I have just bought the CVT book and am trying to come to grips with the different terminology. I come mainly from a SS and SLS background, so it is all quite new and slightly confusing. I understand the basics i.e. 4 modes sung at different volumes with different sound qualities, but what I don't get is where the Mix voice or Passagio comes in. Is it simply through the vowel modification, support etc. or am I missing something. Probably seems like a silly question and I'm sure with more extensive reading I'll find the solution, but If anyone can offer an explanation that would be great. :)

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Hi MB20. There are lots of CVTers on this forum, so if you read through the posts you'll learn a lot.

Mix voice is basically equivalent to curbing in the middle part of the voice. The idea is that if you want to sing at a constant volume throughout your range, a single mode won't do, because they increase in volume as the pitch increases. So to keep uniform volume, the most popular strategy is to use overdrive in the low part, curbing in the middle part, and neutral in the high part. The transition from overdrive to curbing corresponds to the passagio. I forget where in the book this is discussed, but it is in there.

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does that mean that you can only sing up to a certain volume in your "Mix" then? :/ surely not?!

The volume in "mixed voice" will always be about medium level, or slightly louder the higher you go up in pitch. You should always feel that you could definitely sing louder as you're singing in this style of singing. Otherwise you'll start to slip into uncontrollable shouting. Unless you want to master a shouting style, which some singers actually use to good effect. It depends on the sound you personally want.

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Yes, I do thanks Robert. However, I just can't seem to get my head around the fact that you can only use this particular mode in your passagio. CVT says that with the exception of the overdrive mode, that the others can be used throughout your range, so why not through your break?

@eggplantbren: Thanks very much for your answer. I can relate to this in the sense that the whining/moaning noises are like adding cry, which i've always been taught to use to go through the passagio.

What is also confusing me is that twang would seem to be the same as cry, because it's a tilting of the larynx .. but i think I'm completely wrong there?!

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Yes, I do thanks Robert. However, I just can't seem to get my head around the fact that you can only use this particular mode in your passagio. CVT says that with the exception of the overdrive mode, that the others can be used throughout your range, so why not through your break?

@eggplantbren: Thanks very much for your answer. I can relate to this in the sense that the whining/moaning noises are like adding cry, which i've always been taught to use to go through the passagio.

What is also confusing me is that twang would seem to be the same as cry, because it's a tilting of the larynx .. but i think I'm completely wrong there?!

I don't understand your first question here. Curbing can be used throughout your entire range. Very simply because you can "moan" throughout your range. But "overdrive" can't be done too high up in pitch simply because there is a limit to how high and loud you can shout - because overdrive is really just controlled, non-breathy shouting with only Eh and Oh vowels allowed.

For the cry - just don't overclench your throat with it, especially on the higher notes. Just "think" of a moan instead of squeezing. And note that not all vocal schools use a moan in the passagio. I don't think f.ex. that the Four pillars does that. I think it focuses more on twang and a darker vowel (from what I've heard). It gets you a slightly different sound than the cry, as I said before, and all sounds are valid as long as they don't hurt your throat. It just depends on what you want to sound like.

Btw. twang is not the same as cry. Twang is not a tilting of the larynx. It's done by narrowing the epiglottis funnel. That sound can be "discovered" by quacking like a duck or sounding like a witch, but once you've found it you should really try to darken the sound but keep the "ringy sound" from the twang. That way you get a very full sound with a broad spectrum of overtones. And if I remember correctly, a cry is a combination of tilting the larynx and other things so cry and tilting are not the same thing either. Finally, I've heard it many times that "tilting" is actually not fully understood by vocal researchers.

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However, I just can't seem to get my head around the fact that you can only use this particular mode in your passagio. CVT says that with the exception of the overdrive mode, that the others can be used throughout your range, so why not through your break?

They can be used in your passagio! OD->Curbing is only one possible path, albeit probably the most popular and desired. I haven't mastered that way yet, but I have figured out how to use neutral with air throughout my range (including across the passagio) and also overdrive through the passagio. There are multiple ways, it's fun to try them all and see which is best for each moment in the particular song you're working on. :-)

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Yes.

The idea is that, if you obey the rules for a mode, you can use it at any pitch (except overdrive above C5 for males and D5 for females).

For example, in overdrive, as you get higher (towards where you would break if you didn't obey the rules) you need to modify the vowels towards EH and OH, apply a lot of support, and use a high volume. If those conditions are met, you ought to be able to sing through your passagio.

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I do see what you mean, however, at the moment for me as I have not fully bridged my voice, It's seems I can either apply the rules to my chest voice, or apply them to my head voice. Surely there's some sort of configuration change for a smooth transition..?

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I highly advise that all discussion that have nothing to do with helping to answer MB20s question about the Passaggio and the "mix" end now, or this post will be deleted in a NY second. No postings that ignore his question and pitch CVT's book and no postings that invite people to leave TMV Forum and go join another vocal forum which is totally disrespectful of the hard work we do here.

Makes complete sense Robert.

I do see what you mean, however, at the moment for me as I have not fully bridged my voice, It's seems I can either apply the rules to my chest voice, or apply them to my head voice. Surely there's some sort of configuration change for a smooth transition..?

MB20, my VERY PERSONAL advice is that you forget about the term passagio and start working on taking Curbing/overdrive/edge higher by focusing on the principles involved for each. With the exception of overdrive, as you well know, the other modes can be taken as high as your support allows. At first, you will find it hard to take those modes higher than where you naturally break into neutral, but if you obey the volume, the vowels and the requirements for the modes, you'll be able to take them higher. Have a goal of going a half step higher after two weeks of mastering the previous half step. You can also work on transitioning from Overdrive to curbing or overdrive to Edge (the most common choices) and there is a section on the book about it. My advice though, is that you work on the modes by themselves first and then transitions. But that's just me.

The reason why I say forget about the passagio, and here I'll have to disagree with Robert again (healthy disagreement, no attack meant to you since we're all entitled to our own opinions and this is MY opinion) is that I don't believe there is a fixed passagio. That is why I agree with CVT when they say it doesn't exist (though I can't remember if they actually say that in the book, though Robert said Cathrine did say that in a masterclass. It is implied though, throughout the book that it doesn't exist). The thing is that for me, I used to have my "break" at around G4, and about two weeks after I started working on taking my curbing and overdrive higher, I suddenly moved my "break" to C5. So I truly believe what CVT says about the break being only a part in your voice where you TEND to switch to Neutral. It happened to me and once I learned to overcome that break at that point, I was able to understand that the break doesn't apply to me. I won't say it exists or it doesn't. I am not a researcher, so I won't go into that, but this is what I PERSONALLY believe and what obviously Cathrine researched on her own. I'll leave that to the pros.

Now one more thing I wanted to add, again just MY POINT OF VIEW, feel free to disagree completely. I do believe this is still part of the topic of mix/passagio and Curbing. Remember that Pythagoras was ridiculed in the Greek society by saying that the Earth was round. At that time, the scientists/astrologists had a belief that the Earth was flat. If we take that and a lot of other things throughout history as the basis, much, if not most, of what we know now and accept to be facts will be disproved in years to come. Who is to say that something most everybody believes in and even has proof for can't be disproved? Even theorists now say that Einstein was wrong, while a couple of years ago every physicist believed he was right in his relativity theory. I'm not saying whether Cathrine is right or wrong, I have very little knowledge compared to Robert/Steven/Cathrine and all the great teachers here, but she could be right. So I'll keep my mind very open to new discoveries/theories and even when they are not facts, if they work for me and for countless other people, they shouldn't be ridiculed or said they have to be wrong because 1 million people say they are.

Just my thoughts! Peace to all and let's hope nobody feels attacked or that I am going out of line here...

Edited to fix some typos. Also adding that not longer than maybe 50 years ago the only accepted way to sing was classical. Everything else was wrong and was thought to be unhealthy. We now know that is not right. Just another example of how things that were accepted as truths for millions of people turned out to be false.

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All great voice training schools understand that formant and laryngeal configuration are critical to learning how to do it.

What Im saying is, short cutting the learning and muscle development process by racing straight to Formant and Laryngeal configuration/vocal mode techniques before training the timing of bridging and getting a feel for resonant placment is a mistake in my opinion. Only a certain % of people will be able to do it and many others will never get it but are perfectly capable of becoming great singers where it not for the lack of opportunity to train onsets and sirens for a titanium core foundation.

MB20, if you feel your not getting what you need or where you want to go, email me and Ill give you a FREE 1 hour skype lesson with me as soon as you like and show you how to bridge your registers.

Lets just get to get'r done.

Robert

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Actually, I was proving Einstein wrong to my own satisfaction a couple of decades ago, based on algebraic logic, etc but I won't go into that math as I would bore everyone to tears. Anyway, I get the point about comparing Sadolin to Galileo, Pythagoras, et. al. Which doesn't mean that the supposition of no break gets points because she bucks the "system" that acknowledges the break. Even you acknowledge a break, now placed higher in your range than it once was. Well, the break is a change in resonance and breath management, as far as I can see. As you get better at both, the break seems to "disappear." It hasn't disappeared, you've learned how to sing through it with various strategies. Whether it's taking the break high, ala Roger Love or Kenneth Tamplin, or bridging low, ala Lunte, it is still there and must be considered. More specifically, I think, the break occurs with certain vowels, especially if breath management has not caught up with new found ability to make sounds and resonate. Most times the break occurs because a person is pushing as much air as they did at the low end but are now at the high end, with the folds stretched thin and the folds can't contain that much air volume and blow apart into falsetto, i.e., the break.

And my opinion is worth 2 cents.

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I use CVT along with many other vocal programs. Of course the passagio exists. It's very, very simple:

There is a place somewhere between C4 and G4 (for males - there is another place for ladies) that most men find hard to sing at. If they go up a scale, through this place, most of them will have difficulties, yodle, flip into falsetto, scream their lungs out, etc. I think that some 300+ year old Italian dude decided to call this place "the passagio" and people kind of liked it.

Btw. I know lots of CVT people who DO think the passagio exists. This is getting as silly as talking about whether Elvis exists or not.

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Exactly Ron, thats what I keep saying on this forum all the time to the CVT-bers, the very fact that you have to make an argument that the Passaggio doesnt exist, is more verification that in fact, they do believe it exists. Just because you have a set of techniques that can result in a seamless phonation from chest to head without any perceived breaking or choking for singers, (and BTW... so does every other decent voice teacher and school), that doesnt mean that it didnt exist? It means that you learned how to bridge. Apart from the fact that, for the exception of a very small handful of cult followers in Copenhagen, Denmark.... the last time I checked, every singer in the entire Encyclopedia of human history has had to contend with a "passaggio".

"... the passaggio doesnt exist because..... we have techniques that make it go away", means that it does exist, not that it doesnt. Its one of the dumbest lines of logic we occasionally have to content with here on TMV Forum. Im totally sick of hearing about CVT-bees and their "the passagio doesnt exist" group hypnosis!

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Again, I think lots of CVT people DO think that the passagio exists. At LEAST as a trouble spot that needs to be addressed somehow.

They are also not just a very small handful of cult followers in Copenhagen, Denmark. CVT is in fact the largest singing institute in Europe. Personally, I get good results from combinging the ideas from MANY vocal programs out there, CVT being simply one of them.

You guys also have to notice that if you don't have a vocal coach, preferably a good one, chances are that one single vocal program won't be enough for you. You'll have some questions and will start to seek them from other programs or vocal forums. Whereas if you had a vocal coach, you could just ask him/her. But then the vocal coach better be really good.

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