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Unbelivable vocal discovery, I'm actually shocked...

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DDisNow
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Ok, this will be somewhat long and may sound weird to you, cause god knows it's shocking to me, in fact so shocking I must share.

I'm the definition of an amateur, you know, sing for fun, shower, with buddies etc.

I was always confident in my voice, have a pretty high speaking voice and had no major issues singing high without "pulling chest". My musician buddies said "You sing in tenor range very well"

Some time ago I decided to take it a little more seriously and have a look at certain techniques out there and see how I can improve what I was doing.

So just like anyone looking for a good professional advice, of course I went to youtube :-)

For the first time ever I started hearing about middle voice, mixed voice, passagio, mixing, blending etc and of course I found it interesting, because wow if you learn how to sing there, life will be so much easier, and I will be able to extend my range which wasn't very large (Soon I'll find out why)

Problem was, I couldn't find the passagio, no matter how hard I tried my voice wasn't cracking, flipping or anything.

I would start in what I assumed was chest, go up to what I assumed was head or mix and end up in falsetto. all connected. no problems. How could that be?

I was thinking, this damn passagio is so tricky I can't even find it!

So I had a chance to run into a professional voice teacher and figured I'll take a lesson and get to the bottom of this.

Boy was I in for the surprise of a lifetime.

After doing some vocalizing and talking to the teacher for a while, he said point blank "the reason you don't have a break or can't find it is because 95% of the time you are talking as well as singing in your head/mix voice!, "No matter if you're speaking/singing low or high pitches, you're staying in head/mix!"

What?

A 30 year old man, with a masculine voice talking in freakin' mix voice?

He wanted to do some more vocalizing and as we started going lower and lower,I swear to god, I discovered this whole new chest register I never even used for speaking not to mention singing.

Turns out, for the first time in my life I was being introduced to my true chest voice that I wasn't even aware of! Can you believe this thing?

It felt so weird, because for the first time I was singing/speaking these low pitches I never even knew I could. He told me "Buddy, you're a bass, welcome!"

Well, seems the reason no one including myself found my speaking voice weird is because I was mixing chest+head unconsciously all the time to the point it became a normal mid-range sounding speaking voice.

Now that I'm getting to know my true "real" chest voice, it sounds and feels so weird and so "low", it's very hard getting used to.

I don't know why I ever started doing this "mix" and why I never talked in pure chest like most people.

I understand now that it sounded "normal" because my true speaking voice is so friggin' low that when mixed with head it sounds balanced.

At least now I know why I have no issues bridging+connecting. I'm there all the time.

I don't know if this type of situation happens often or if it often goes undetected as it did with me, but I'm discovering a whole new voice and that's exciting and somewhat shocking at the same time.

Instead of strengthening my break and head voice like most singing students, I now need to work on strengthening this "new" chest voice of mine.

Jeez, I need to lay down.

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That's not a typical story at all. First time I ever heard that kind of situation, but hey, you've got the passagio thing already worked out. I think that natural tenors start out by speaking in their head / mix voice too, like you, and it makes it easy for them to sing high. But all this can be learned. Wherever we normally speak is where it is easier to sing.

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Whoa. Cool.

I watched a movie a couple of weeks ago, Horrible Bosses. Here's a clip of one of the main characters (the dude, not Jennifer Aniston):

It struck me how he spoke in that scratchy mix/head throughout the movie. Either that or his chest voice is ridiculously high. Kinda makes me wonder if I should try to incorporate some passaggio notes into my speaking voice...

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The man in the video speaks in his head all the time, as i hear it. Now about the topic - that's interesting, and i know one tenor, who also speaks in mixed voice, and he sounds like a girl almost :D , but that's realy rare.

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I can say that after I expanded my range my speaking voice became higher in pitch. As Daniel pointed out to me - if you listen to operatic tenors speak most of them speak in a much higher pitch.

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The other day, I was leaving a message for an inspector on an inspection request and when you are done, the system plays it back for you to approve as the message you want to leave. And I still sound like a woman, sort of, on the phone.

And yeah, even the office desk phone I was using has limitations for the mic in the headset, it doesn't lie that much.

Just like, when I used smaller mics that were not as good to record stuff for here. If I was off pitch, you could hear it, regardless of the crappy quality of the mic and despite all my protestations that it sounded off because I was clipping the mic.

As a boy, I had a high voice. In puberty, my voice never cracked. When I was a teenager, especially answering the phone, the person on the other end would say "yes ma'am" or "no ma'am." I would laugh and tell them I was a boy. They would apologize. No sweat.

I speak most comfortably around C3.

Certainly, it might be revelation for the original poster but long has been established the need to bridge at some point. Some say early, some say not til later.

That one solution, which is what the op is talking about is resonant speaking. The more you get used to using at least some head resonance in your speach, the less trouble in transitioning to singing. Some dialects in some languages, I think, foster this habit. How much of a "naturally talented singer" comes from the language and dialect they were raised with?

Anyway, this accustomization to use of head voice is not necessarily so that every voice can sing the tenor range, though it is possible and we have many examples of baritones here singing to the top of the tenor range, and beyond. Tenor is both a range and a texture or tessitura. The practice of mixing, blending, or shift resonance to head is to make whatever voice you have sound full and brilliant regardless of what your natural range is. No matter how high the notes they have sung, Axl Rose and Geff Tate are still described as baritones or basso-baritones. No one has ever accused Rik Emmett of being a baritone. Anyone here care to desribe Bon Scott as a baritone?

Of the baritones here, I don't see any of them really spending time in their full range. They are spending most of the time from upper baritone in to tenor, that being where a majority of songs have the vocal melody set.

Anyway, to the op, you might be shocked but there is a history and precedent for what you discovered for yourself.

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Yeah but remember speaking in a higher pitch is ALOT more wearing for the voice than speaking low.

That's why higher typed voices and women's a lot more frequently visits ents

You are possibly right. I don't know, not having stats to prove or disprove that. I just know that my voice does better when I don't force it too low or too high in speach.

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Wow. I've never heard of that before. That's really great. How does it feel to sing deeper?

Well, to be honest with you, it feels very weird and somewhat contrived as I'm trying to get used to it.

I do not have full command of that area yet even in speaking.

In order for me to stay "down there" comfortably for practice, I need to pretend like I just woke up and that my voice feels low and groggy, that's the only way I can do it at the moment.

As soon as I try to have a normal conversation my voice just automatically shoots a couple of steps up into my head and I have to try and "push" it down and it feels very odd and unnatural.

As I said, still work ahead of me.

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range will probably be huge, once developed of course. Deeper voices usually have a much more interesting tone in falsetto and it can be used with more quality.

Tessitura is, usually 2 octaves, also once fully trainned.

Usually, each type of male voice will sit around these:

Bass - E2-E4

Baritone - A2-A4

Tenor - C3-C5

It varies a lot, and can be lower or higher depending on how heavy or agile the voice is. There are voices that have more than 2 octaves of tessitura, and others less. But its very uncommon, the usual is 2.

But this varies a lot, the colour is what matters more. There are Basses with tessitura from G2-G4, and there are Baritones with tessitura from G2-G4.

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Thanks, Felipe. Through the different books I have read, the range ends seemed to vary. And with some of the self-described basses around here claiming they can get down to C2 (american) I thought that would be included in in the bass range. But your list seems to match most of what I have read.

And, again, I agree and remember Steven's best description. Your usable tessitura involves the region where you have the greatest dynamic, or change in volume and tone.

And I agree with you, Felipe. That a bass can sing a note in the tenor range and it will have a unique tonal quality and that it will not be the bass transformed into a "tenor." But it will be a bass singing a note above the nominal range needed in opera.

I read a book that described the tenor as the freak of nature. Tenor meaning, from the original word, "to hold." As in holding or carrying the main melody, while the other voices sang counterpoint or harmony to it.

Tenor was actually sung by a woman or a castrato. Bass corresponded to contralto (contra-alto) and baritone corresponded to soprano, especially what we call mezzo-soprano. That the florid singing was usually from a coloratura soprano. Then along came the role of Othello and the role was said to have demanded a more masculine voice carrying the high line. This led to the introduction of a man singing soprano range but what we modernly call tenor. And that the true tenor male is the result of incomplete organ development, assuming that proper development turns all men into baritones and some into basses. I don't know how true or provable that is but it was an interesting theory.

Now, if bass is E2 to E4, and I hear plenty of guys able to sound that range in full, round tones, then it would seem there is credence to the author's words that I was reading. That basses and baritones abound and the male tenor is the odd duck.

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Well, the voice ranges classification describes the range of a trained singer of course and it's about half an octave higher than untrained singers mostly have, and of course it matters a lot how those notes sound when sang by trained and untrained singer, so the range is only one side of a differense between them. Only thing, that i'l disagree, that untrained tenor's range is like f2-f4, because i never heared tenor sing f2, it's to damn low for tenor, i know that, i'm a tenor, most likely it would be a2, and even it's too low, but ok, let's say a2-f4 sounds reasonable for tenor. What about other vices, i'd prefer to hear it from those voices owners.

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Yea, F2 is probably way too low for a tenor. I'm a baritone almost bordering on bass and the lowest I can get is maybe E2-Eb2. I could probably get a D2 right after I get up out of bed in the morning, but it's not a full enough sound to use in a performance. True tenors generally can't go any lower than A2 and even that's a pretty weak note.

As a low baritone, I'd say that my highest safe note when I was an untrained singer was probably about Eb4. Of course I'd sing E4-G4 all the time and sound like crap doing so because I was straining.

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There is no such thing as untrainned tenor/baritone/bass range.

Most untrainned voices have less than half of an octave of usefull voice, and simply no tessitura.

A coach/teacher, will look for other qualities when working with untrainned voices in order to make the calls of what to workf and when. Range is useless in this regard.

And again, reaching a note is not the same as having it as part of your tessitura. I can reach notes within the bass and baritone tessitura, and it sounds ok with a mic. But Im not a bass, nor a baritone.

In fact, Im not even a tenor, since I cant sing tenor arias, and Ill never be trainned to do such as its not my objective.

And really, I doubt even these claimed ranges actually mean something. What I know as range is where you can use your voice to deliver something usefull when you sing your normal stuff.

Cant deliver something decent = no range at all. Just noise.

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