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Whiter Shade of Pale

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Quincy
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Hey guys, this is a new song I’ve been working on this week after getting back from a 2 week trip. Laying off, not practicing, no singing, etc; it felt totally different and refreshed when I started back this week; and for the better. Feels like I got a whole new voice to explore now.

This clip is still in a rough stage but would like to hear anything that catches your ear that you think could use work. Anything or everything. I have my own opinion of at least 3 things that could use some major work and was going to wait a few weeks to try and refine those things, but there’s no point trying to wait for it to be exactly the way I want it, that never happens anyway. Lol! We are all here for advice and feedback.

Please let me know what you think. Not looking for anything specific, just what strikes you.

http://www.box.net/shared/3jfr4r5c7b

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so my high notes are constricted and off pitch?

Yes. What do you think about it? Everything s so good? Probably try sing it once again with warming up.

The pitches are alright in the lower parts?

I dont want to analyse all of your song, but mostly yes - aright.

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No, you’re right. Particularly the beginning of each chorus and the one line in the first verse… “When we called out for another drink”, are too shouty and tight (off pitch). I need to isolate those and work on slowing it down with the right notes and resonance.

Your advice is spot on and I appreciate you taking the time to listen and give your input!

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Quincy - That sounds very good. The pitch spots are in the typical passagio area above E4. Particularly the F#4 and G#4. Toward the end you sounded much better on those notes. In the beginning they were getting flat. Two things come to mind when I listened. 1) a more constant breath support would help. You are singing with a nice style, with short phrases. It is natural to cut the phrases off by cutting off the breath support - letting the breath cut off the phrase, but this tends to leave the ends of notes slightly lifeless and a little flat from time to time. Keep the breath going (energized) to the very last moment in each phrase (this is a habit I worked hard to break for my own singing). 2) Learn how to sing in the passagio. Some people call this the "cry". Once you learn how to sing in this difficult and challenging area, the pitch will not be a problem for you in the F#4 - G#4 area.

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Quincy - That sounds very good. The pitch spots are in the typical passagio area above E4. Particularly the F#4 and G#4. Toward the end you sounded much better on those notes. In the beginning they were getting flat. Two things come to mind when I listened. 1) a more constant breath support would help. You are singing with a nice style, with short phrases. It is natural to cut the phrases off by cutting off the breath support - letting the breath cut off the phrase, but this tends to leave the ends of notes slightly lifeless and a little flat from time to time. Keep the breath going (energized) to the very last moment in each phrase (this is a habit I worked hard to break for my own singing). 2) Learn how to sing in the passagio. Some people call this the "cry". Once you learn how to sing in this difficult and challenging area, the pitch will not be a problem for you in the F#4 - G#4 area.

(bascially, I was thinking exactly the same thing as Geno - do lip rolls and learn how to cry, aight? ;) )

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Geno, thanks for taking the time to listen and give me your experienced insights. A new angle I can focus my attention on. I would have never thought about the breath cutting off at the end of phrases and yet it makes perfect sense what you are saying. The “passagio cry” will be a main focus for me to monitor and improve on. I’ve picked out some other songs that keep me in that range quite a bit. One I really like that requires a lot of good balance between thin folds and subtle breath pressure changes is “Let it Be”. It’s encouraging to know I am gaining ground bit by bit and has given me more fuel for motivation.

Jonpall, thanks for confirming what Geno was hearing. It’s great having other ears and different insights to pick out things that need work… especially the fine tuned ears you guys have!

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To me, it's apples and oranges. You spoke this song, rather than sing it, as the original. Therefore, it's a stylistic difference, rather than any technical problem. The only I notice, which might be due to how you speak in normal conversation, is how you dropped off resonance and power at the end of words.

Trust me, I know, speaking can affect singing. Jonpall once pointed out, quite correctly, that I crashed or dived notes at the end of a phrase or the end of a word. So, one day, I paid attention to how I speak to people and found that I was doing the same thing in speech. Which was a learning thing for me. To quit crashing the end of a phrase or word when speaking, so that I would quit doing that when singing, except for a specific effect, such as what Bob Seger does on "Turn the Page."

And so, here he is, king of the note crash. Bob Seger and the Silver Bullet Band.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_2iTbyI9VSw

So, again, if this is the style you were going for, you got it. In your own voice. And rejoice in that, even as you learn other intracacies of your voice. Breathing, resonance, controlled exhalation. Everything else is art.

I know I'm always cheerleading for people. My bad. Somebody just try and stop me. Really. I dare ya ...

What, no takers? Come on ... you get the first swing. Just make it a good one ...

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Maybe the dropping off on the endings is a Texas thang. I’m not sure how I speak but will pay a little closer attention and see. I’ve heard Video Bob talk about people not finishing off their phrases and how it really helps the sound to give it a little more oomph at the end. The breath management is really important to keep it consistent and under your control at all times…as that makes pitch and resonance coordination much easier to maintain. And as you say, if you want to make a stylistic choice on an ending, you still would have the option, but on your terms. What I’m finding out about a lot of this stuff is you have to make certain foundational things a habit. Not that it is necessarily hard to do once you get the right coordination. The more things you get ingrained and meshed up properly, the easier the whole process becomes. I have no idea when you run out of these fine tuning adjustments, but I suspect you never do. Ha ha! :lol:

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