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interesting singer in gotye

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i'm playing around with the gotye song, and i found it very interesting how the male singer adjusts as shown starting at 1:33.

i wonder if this was something he discovered on his own, or was it the work of a vocal coach?

notice his technique for handling the words "happened and that we were nothing."

interesting.....

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Sounds like curbing/mixed voice. Same as Lou Gramm often does, in particular in songs like I wanna know what love is. It's just that every singer has a different voice. Cool song - I'm singing it in my own band and we're gonna hit the road with it and many other pop and rock covers in a couple of weeks.

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Sounds like curbing/mixed voice. Same as Lou Gramm often does, in particular in songs like I wanna know what love is. It's just that every singer has a different voice. Cool song - I'm singing it in my own band and we're gonna hit the road with it and many other pop and rock covers in a couple of weeks.

Way cool, Jonpall. Good luck and knock 'em dead.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Sounds like curbing/mixed voice. Same as Lou Gramm often does, in particular in songs like I wanna know what love is. It's just that every singer has a different voice. Cool song - I'm singing it in my own band and we're gonna hit the road with it and many other pop and rock covers in a couple of weeks.

Just to clarify for myself, would that be that he start with curbing/mixed at 1:35 and before that uses neutral (if we use the CVT-term)? He sure seems to be singing very quietly in the beginning.

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Once again I'm going to go against the grain here. I had similar thoughts in the resurrected "Steve perry" Thread.

Couldn't it ever be that someone is just singing and not thinking or purposefully doing anything? Why does a label always have to be applied? Curbing, mixing, bridging, raising the larynx, lowering the larynx, opening folds or closing, vowel modification etc. Maybe someone is just singing and not thinking of any of that. Just singing. It has been my experience in life in general that the more we think the more we screw up. Eliminating thought and just doing , should be the goal imo. Maybe the singer, be it Perry or anyone else is just singing and not consciously thinking " I should modify this vowel, or lower my larynx, or twang more or whatever. Maybe they just do what they do.

Just a thought :) (I tend to go against the grain...ask a question then question the answer.....it's how I learn best)

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Tommy, I totally get what you're saying and in many ways I agree. However, the problem is that quite often, it simply doesn't work to tell singers to simply "sing" or "just do it" or something like that - they just hit that brick wall of passagio over and over again and they sound weak even in their chest voice because they f.ex. haven't got their basic breath control down. That's when it becomes helpful to use a few of these weird terms, even for just a few months. After the student has gotten a lot better with some ideas/concepts/exercises, he/she can often got back to "just singing".

It reminds me of a saying by Bruce Lee, which goes something like this: "Before I studied the art, a punch was just a punch. While studying the art, a punch was no longer a punch. After I learned the art, a punch was again - just a punch".

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Once again I'm going to go against the grain here. I had similar thoughts in the resurrected "Steve perry" Thread.

Couldn't it ever be that someone is just singing and not thinking or purposefully doing anything? Why does a label always have to be applied? Curbing, mixing, bridging, raising the larynx, lowering the larynx, opening folds or closing, vowel modification etc. Maybe someone is just singing and not thinking of any of that. Just singing. It has been my experience in life in general that the more we think the more we screw up. Eliminating thought and just doing , should be the goal imo. Maybe the singer, be it Perry or anyone else is just singing and not consciously thinking " I should modify this vowel, or lower my larynx, or twang more or whatever. Maybe they just do what they do.

Just a thought :) (I tend to go against the grain...ask a question then question the answer.....it's how I learn best)

I totally agree with you Tommy...The body has a funny way of adapting to whatever we do therefore since he does that type of thing all the time the body as a whole optimized it to an extent to avoid injury.

We are all naturally mean't to adapt to any situation some of us are just better at adapting than others or are too afraid to setup the right conditions for the body to grow.

Practice is the only way to setup these conditions...You have to place a healthy amount of stress on the voice as it is a muscle just like any other muscle.

Good luck everybody and check out my other posts! haha

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i'm playing around with the gotye song, and i found it very interesting how the male singer adjusts as shown starting at 1:33.

i wonder if this was something he discovered on his own, or was it the work of a vocal coach?

notice his technique for handling the words "happened and that we were nothing."

interesting.....

Video from the past posts I have read of yours you clearly know that a certain amount of stress has to be put on the voice in order for it to become stronger at doing a certain thing.

I just wanted to let you know that your instincts have set you on the right path and the knowledge you have been gaining for however long you have been serious amount singer confirms that.

You know the answer to this question and you are on the right path...Do your thing

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I noticed that from 1:35 on he starts and sometimes ends the phrases softly in headvoice or CVT neutral. He hits the compression on the top notes and most of the time sings passagio notes D4-F4 softer. Seems like something that I'm working on right now, the idea at least for me is to maintain headvoice muscles in control, and in the passagio it's easy to lose that so singing it softly helps to keep headvoice engaged. Higher up it's easier to find the right compression since headvoice is naturally way more dominant up there. Also he sings the verses very softly, seems like he's trying to minimize chest voice and maximize headvoice on the lower end. Hehe, I might be totally wrong but that happens to be what I'm trying to do with my voice right now.

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Video from the past posts I have read of yours you clearly know that a certain amount of stress has to be put on the voice in order for it to become stronger at doing a certain thing.

I just wanted to let you know that your instincts have set you on the right path and the knowledge you have been gaining for however long you have been serious amount singer confirms that.

You know the answer to this question and you are on the right path...Do your thing

i love to study singing as much as i love singing. in fact, a lot of my original feelings and instincts about singing, i realize i wasn't off that much at all.

to me it's has so, so much to do with support...but that's based on my own voice. my voice is like an suv, it needs a lot of gas to move....lol!!!

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Once again I'm going to go against the grain here. I had similar thoughts in the resurrected "Steve perry" Thread.

Couldn't it ever be that someone is just singing and not thinking or purposefully doing anything? Why does a label always have to be applied? Curbing, mixing, bridging, raising the larynx, lowering the larynx, opening folds or closing, vowel modification etc. Maybe someone is just singing and not thinking of any of that. Just singing. It has been my experience in life in general that the more we think the more we screw up. Eliminating thought and just doing , should be the goal imo. Maybe the singer, be it Perry or anyone else is just singing and not consciously thinking " I should modify this vowel, or lower my larynx, or twang more or whatever. Maybe they just do what they do.

Just a thought :) (I tend to go against the grain...ask a question then question the answer.....it's how I learn best)

Well he is doing something, and while he might not need a word for it, I find that it help! Learning new technique by singing songs is hard so exercises might be better initially. But what exercises should I try? Applying a label helps me choose exercises.

I know that I will never sound like any particular singer, but trying to copy singers seems really helpful to me at this point on my learning curve. I think I agree with jonpall on this one. On the other hand I think it is good that you encourage people to find their own voice, free from labels.

I used to be a self-taught hobbyist singer, struggling since puberty to re-find my voice. I though I was a baritone due to lack of technique. I've been singing a lot in a really limited range, but my natural instincts did not help me to break my first passagio with any kind of power (ie non-falsetto). Vocals lessons has helped me some, but I still struggle. But it is more fun to struggle now when I make progress! Hopefully people on this forum might help me in the future when I have more concrete problems, and I will try to help others as well!

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With the risc of embarassing myself I tried to record a part of this song, to showcase a problem I'm having right now. I've been singing with a vocal coach, but not like this. I will take vocal lessons again this autumn but I want to improve during the summer as well.

When I try to imitate how gotye does it, this is what comes out. I don't like how it sounds and I'm curious on how to improve on it. What I achieve here is a small strained sound. I'm not sure if it is actually mixed voice.

(be careful of the volume, turn it down! I've compressed it somewhat)

https://dl.dropbox.com/u/19750082/recordings/masacre_of_gotye.mp3

Any hints for me? It doesn't hurt at all to sing like that, except when listening back to it. Then my soul cries ;)

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I personally don't like this attitude. There were years when I "just sung" in my shower and I sure as hell didn't get beter, even when I tried on my own to get those high notes i was approaching it in a bad way for my particular voice (I simply wasn't one of those light tenors which all my idols were at the time).

Correct understanding of vocal technique and good training helped me a ton. What the sentiment behind the statement above is, if you don't have it natural or can't discover it on your own, training is pointless. Several of the best artists made their way without any coaching that's true, several others needed that guidance given by good vocal professionals. That's why terms were deviced to help the students of voice make sense of what they should be doing. They are a tool, no more, no less.

I agree however that vocal pedagogy seems to evolve into who can invent the most cool word, but then again, I don't care if you call it banana, if thinking of the concept banana makes you do the right thing in your voice. But there is definately a place for analysis voices, and learning what they do good or wrong techically, so you can re-create how to do something within your own voice.

And the point of practising technique is that you in the end can forget it ,> Meaning that you just reinforce good muscle memory and then focus on your artistry and your good habbits will kick in naturally ;p

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With the risc of embarassing myself I tried to record a part of this song, to showcase a problem I'm having right now. I've been singing with a vocal coach, but not like this. I will take vocal lessons again this autumn but I want to improve during the summer as well.

When I try to imitate how gotye does it, this is what comes out. I don't like how it sounds and I'm curious on how to improve on it. What I achieve here is a small strained sound. I'm not sure if it is actually mixed voice.

(be careful of the volume, turn it down! I've compressed it somewhat)

https://dl.dropbox.com/u/19750082/recordings/masacre_of_gotye.mp3

Any hints for me? It doesn't hurt at all to sing like that, except when listening back to it. Then my soul cries ;)

what you need to realize and fully understand is you are not singing the song with your "performing voice" a vocal that is composed of head and chest voice musculature, a mixed voice. without engaging some percentage of chest voice musculature the voice will not carry, project well, or ring.

in most cases, to put it bluntly, predominate head voice musculature singing in and of itself will not grow, will not thicken, will not compress, will not resonate, will not go anywhere without the help of the chest voice musculature.

test it yourself, take what you just sang and try to go louder or stronger...you'll find you'll top out at a certain point. push further singing like that and you'll end up breaking apart into a crack or falsetto.

not until you begin to learn to lean into the voice (or learn to cry into the voice) a little with good support and fold adduction will the voice begin to grow.

your teacher is probably working on building you up to be able to do this gradually, but it's important for you to mentally ingrain this so you become aware that it will take more effort, more physicality, to sing songs like this.

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what you need to realize and fully understand is you are not singing the song with your "performing voice" a vocal that is composed of head and chest voice musculature, a mixed voice. without engaging some percentage of chest voice musculature the voice will not carry, project well, or ring.

in most cases, to put it bluntly, predominate head voice musculature singing in and of itself will not grow, will not thicken, will not compress, will not resonate, will not go anywhere without the help of the chest voice musculature.

test it yourself, take what you just sang and try to go louder or stronger...you'll find you'll top out at a certain point. push further singing like that and you'll end up breaking apart into a crack or falsetto.

not until you begin to learn to lean into the voice (or learn to cry into the voice) a little with good support and fold adduction will the voice begin to grow.

your teacher is probably working on building you up to be able to do this gradually, but it's important for you to mentally ingrain this so you become aware that it will take more effort, more physicality, to sing songs like this.

Do I understand your correctly if you say that it is 0% chest and only headvoice? (or whatever we call it).

How is it as headvoice go? Would I need to practice it more, or is it time to bring it in with my chest musculature? Do you have any tips/links/books on a good way to do this?

I've mostly worked on belting for the high notes with my vocal coach. What I'm trying now is to sing less shouty, to find that mixed sound.

Here is a clip of me singing more powerfully. I think I start in mixed that is better than the one demonstrated in the gotye-clip, but I've never been able to maintain that going up. I switch to more shouty singing instead to reach the higher notes. I'm just posting it to show that I can sing differently as well.

https://dl.dropbox.com/u/19750082/recordings/Scales-D5-multiplemodes.wav

(the mic was clipping some at the top notes so it is sadly saturated.. haven't gotten a new chance to re-record anything at this volume.. no compressor on it, you might have to turn the volume up)

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briefly, as you ascend the scale you are raising up your larynx which is choking off your sound and the vowel you are using up there is too "horizontal" causing you to splat and overcompensate by raising your volume.

up this high you need a vowel that by its very nature has elements of head voice musculature to allow you to release and carry you up without hitting a wall.

very basic explanation.

singing the way you are in that last clip is potentially damaging. you should never up the volume as you ascend. that's pushing and forcing, n.g.

try this...sing a simple 5-note scale, this time use the sound "aw" as in "hawk."

in terms of volume, on a scale of 1 to 10, sing with a 6.

do not use change the sound and do not get louder. one consistent volume. open the mouth like you going to yawn, and maintain the open mouth all through the exercise.

stay with "aw." the "aw" is a great vowel to allow you to release into your head voice yet still keep elements of chest.

try it. you should feel a better sense of ascending a scale with much less tention and strain.

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i love to study singing as much as i love singing. in fact, a lot of my original feelings and instincts about singing, i realize i wasn't off that much at all.

to me it's has so, so much to do with support...but that's based on my own voice. my voice is like an suv, it needs a lot of gas to move....lol!!!

I totally agree with you. Support is the most important thing because it sets up the correct conditions for the voice to operate optimally. The breath fuels the voice and If it is not steady and under control(LOWER BODY CONTROL) Then tension will creep in and the voice will never grow to its full potential.

I am a voice student and honestly the things that I am learning now in school only confirm what I have researched on my own. The human body is very amazing. It is our job to connect the research and science with the psychological thoughts of singing.

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Do I understand your correctly if you say that it is 0% chest and only headvoice? (or whatever we call it).

How is it as headvoice go? Would I need to practice it more, or is it time to bring it in with my chest musculature? Do you have any tips/links/books on a good way to do this?

I've mostly worked on belting for the high notes with my vocal coach. What I'm trying now is to sing less shouty, to find that mixed sound.

Here is a clip of me singing more powerfully. I think I start in mixed that is better than the one demonstrated in the gotye-clip, but I've never been able to maintain that going up. I switch to more shouty singing instead to reach the higher notes. I'm just posting it to show that I can sing differently as well.

https://dl.dropbox.com/u/19750082/recordings/Scales-D5-multiplemodes.wav

(the mic was clipping some at the top notes so it is sadly saturated.. haven't gotten a new chance to re-record anything at this volume.. no compressor on it, you might have to turn the volume up)

All I have to say is the voice is a muscle so train, train, and TRAIN! :-)

Power lifters don't start out squatting 700 lbs...They had to put in thousands of hours of work to achieve what they achieve.

As I said before technique is a matter of doing things in a more efficient way, but it is not the end all be all.

The most important thing is strengthening the muscles of the singing voice by doing breathing exercises first, a correct warm up, the actual workout, a song or two, and a cool down.

Just keep working it will pay off.

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Thanks for taking the time to answer my beginner questions! I'm afraid I'm a bit confused to which one of my two clips your comments are directed at.

My first clip showcases the only sound that I can do that high besides falsetto/belting. You said that it was 100% headvoice. I though it was a poorly executed mixed voice, sounding very strained.

In my second clip I was aiming for belting (CVT overdrive) and then twanged belting (CVT edge). I just started it in mixed (CVT curbing). I had no intention of keeping it in mixed because I've never successfully managed to do it that high (yet). As you hear the vowel is changed at one point when I start belting. I, however, think that the mixed voice in the beginning seems to be somewhat better than in my gotye-clip (some % chest).

I've practiced belting with my vocal coach and I can do it without pushing, but I sometimes choose my vowels poorly. I know how it is supposed to feel when I do it right, but it could still be damaging I guess. I'm no vocal expert!

When you say that it is damaging, do you mean before I start belting, or during belting? Or in the last phase?

When you say choking, during what phase is that?

The scale you suggested seems to be for training mixed voice, is that correct?

Would you start your exercise at A3 or higher/lower? My first passagio is around D4/E4.

Thanks for all the help and comments so far! I will try the scale and see if I can master it.

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All I have to say is the voice is a muscle so train, train, and TRAIN! :-)

Power lifters don't start out squatting 700 lbs...They had to put in thousands of hours of work to achieve what they achieve.

As I said before technique is a matter of doing things in a more efficient way, but it is not the end all be all.

The most important thing is strengthening the muscles of the singing voice by doing breathing exercises first, a correct warm up, the actual workout, a song or two, and a cool down.

Just keep working it will pay off.

Thanks for the encouragement!

Do you think that I'm training in the right direction? To me it seems like training stuff such as in my gotye clip is going to take me nowhere, it seems like the wrong approach.

And how do I know that it is not dangerous? I know that singing never should hurt, but practicing like you describe would make me tired!

I'm going to to train VIDEOHERE scale and try to stay in mixed, not changing into belting. Seems I need to focus much more on mixed and not try to do multiple things at the same time!

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breakin,

don't feel bad.

let's define your goals...is one of your goals to be a professional singer?

ask yourself this first. is this what you really want to do?

simply put, if it is, you must understand it is going to take a lot or work and practise. there are no two ways about it.

you cannot "spot train", work this, work that, or try this or try that without a foundation.

the foundation is your posture and your breath management. you cannot learn to drive a car w/o an engine.

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breakin,

don't feel bad.

let's define your goals...is one of your goals to be a professional singer?

ask yourself this first. is this what you really want to do?

simply put, if it is, you must understand it is going to take a lot or work and practise. there are no two ways about it.

you cannot "spot train", work this, work that, or try this or try that without a foundation.

the foundation is your posture and your breath management. you cannot learn to drive a car w/o an engine.

My goal is to be as good as a professional singer, although i realize have a long way to go! I'm not looking for a quick fix... The hard part is to figure out what to practice! And where!

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