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very very light tenor.. but can't sing higher than G4?

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The title says it all..

A friend of mine is 21 and he is a very very light tenor. When he sings sometimes, he really reminds me of Justin Timberlake or even Bruno Mars in terms of a light voice, probably without any weight at all lol.... his lowest notes are so airy and weak, he starts to strain and push for a low C (which is my lowest note, we talked about this with ronws friom this forum).

So.. when it comes to higher than G4 he just can't do a thing.. ? He usually goes to falsetto or some lvery very very light head voice.. What's happening? He really can't sing an A4; B4... NOT TALKING ABOUT HIGH C... lol

He feels bad about that, cause even I, being a bit heavier tenor (but still a lyric one) can belt or .. just sing them A4, B4 and that god damn tenor high C..

He sings so easily around G4.. like F 4, E4.. G4 G4 G4 he sustains it perfectly, beautifully.. with no effort, no pushing.. just singing amazingly controlled and pitched. He promised to record something fast and stuff.. just to show. But really, he just cant do the higher jumps. He says that it is due to his voice being .. too light and does not .. posses the ability to thin more so that to go higher for a strong higher note... he says that he would sound like screaming of a rocker ... and really, ive heard him, even today and I sand to C5 (with some efforts and stuff) and he .. just somehow can't . And his voice is REAAALY LIGHT AND high ? He speaks really high, so soft and light. His voice is always in great shape, mornings, evenings.. I dunno. But just cant go above the G4. Been singing since he made 17. So that makes 4. And.. no, he is not a bad singer or stupid, to not find a way.. I would need some help here?

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I think most of use were the same in the beginning, but perhaps at some lower note. I was stuck at D4/E4 for a very long time. Took my lots of lessons before I could go over that. Perhaps he has no twang, no energy, is constricting or something else :) Could be anything.

Having a light voice type is sometimes frustrating because it seems like it doesn't mean that you can sing high with practice ;)

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without hearing him its tough to say.. Tell him to try scales starting on say e3 arpeggio to e4 and as he gets to the high note to get louder/crescendo to involve a little more chest. tell him to stick to an ah vowel or "a" as in cat. Tell him to fight the urge to break..

Felipe recommends chocolate cake:D

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anyone want to bet the price of a Diet Coke that the problem is breath management? That the friend is singing with the same breath as he speaks and so, is not getting anywhere?

I have a light voice. At times, I have been described as a light tenor. Other times, a leggiero tenor, if one was to use operatic descriptions, even though I do not sing opera. So, leaving those fine definitions aside, lets call me a tenor. I would expect any tenor to reach C5. We have baritones that can sing C5. So, I don't think there is any such thing as a light tenor that cannot get above G4 with usable volume and tone.

Don't make me get all "Felipe" on him. Training, with someone or something that teaches breath managament and resonance.

Everyone has to bridge passaggio, even high tenors. Just like everyone has to put on their socks, one at a time. (I get to create my own corny simile. :D )

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The title says it all..

A friend of mine is 21 and he is a very very light tenor. When he sings sometimes, he really reminds me of Justin Timberlake or even Bruno Mars in terms of a light voice, probably without any weight at all lol.... his lowest notes are so airy and weak, he starts to strain and push for a low C (which is my lowest note, we talked about this with ronws from this forum).

So.. when it comes to higher than G4 he just can't do a thing.. ? He usually goes to falsetto or some very very very light head voice.. What's happening? He really can't sing an A4; B4... NOT TALKING ABOUT HIGH C... lol...

Rafael Pashamov: There are a variety of reasons for a voice to be as you describe. Without actually hearing him, we cannot even begin to tell which might be applicable.

But, it may be possible for him to do some experiments that would give some indication as to what is going on. Here is a beginning...

1) Using Ah on middle C (C4), can he onset medium-softly and clearly, without audible air in the voice?

2)After the clear onset, can he crescendo the clear tone to forte without strain, and then decrescendo it?

3) Does his tone have twang or brightness in it?

A fair amount of the way a voice sounds somes from habitual use, based on what the singer asks the voice to do via the concept. It takes us to a fourth question:

4) Is he already singing the way he wants to, or does he aspire to sing with power throughout the range, including into the notes above G4?

I hope this is helpful. Looking forward to your reply.

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He definitely wants to go above G4. He is just so light and bright, with lots of power on everything bellow G4. He just has some problem when he has to sing above G4. He goes to falsetto and whatever. Just like the singer of One republic. He does practically the same thing. He just says that he feels like he has to scream in order to get there. All his teachers say he is a light tenor (he was tenor 1 in my choir when I started). And I really envy his voice.

So answers to questions:

1) Yes.. he does it normally, easily, no airy stuff.

2)Yes, he can. He is really good in controlling his voice. He sings amazingly great.. but just not above G4. Not that it is that necessary to go above G4, he can make an amazing song just bellow A4 and stuff, its just that it bothers him a lot. He says he has to scream above G4.. feels like he is weak above G4. And has never sung above g4.

3) His tone has a lot of brightness.. you can mistake him for a LADY ... and at the same time he is not singing nothing so high.. just some F4, G4... easily, with no PROBLEM... while I myself might sometimes struggle on the G4 thing, but I can go to the A4 and C5 sometimes... but he cannot. He says he has to scream like a rocker. And the main thing: his tone is rich, very powerful and wide(?). Just as if it is a woman singing...and of course it is his voice (not falsetto stuff..)

4) He hates what he can sing, he wants to go and kill those Michael Jackson songs.. and everything else, he has that beautiful tone. he wants to go up...

THank you for the responses:))

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If he can sing above G4 in falsetto have him work that for a while. It seems that most think you cannot train full Head voice from falsetto but you can strengthen the falsetto coordination and get used to the resonance of head voice. After you learn how to close the folds from falsetto then you can start trying to go higher in full voice little by little and connect them.

I am not a teacher. If one of the others contradict what I am saying listen to them.

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Well, just tell him to support, relax the throat, close the velar port, let the air flow controlled while releasing the notes into the posture and shape the vowels using just the right ammount of movement to define them, but yet retainning the legatto and the resonant placement.

Piece of chocolate cake. After a few years of trainning :P.

Really, which part of "there is no magic recipe" isnt clear yet?

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Thanks for your answers.

Based on them, this seems to me (still, would like to hear him) that its a matter of learning how to connect the upper middle voice to the top voice, what is usually called 'briding' in this forum.

Bridging effectively, for any voice type, is performed by maintaining almost all of the the characteristics of the phonation while allowing a very small change in the laryngeal muscle balance to occur, and both of those while maintaining resonant vowels.

Its very, very common for voices to have this problem. Here are some of the things you can suggest to him:

1) Slow sirens of a perfect 5th (7 semitones in size) on a semi-occluded voiced consonant. V, TH, Z... these work pretty well.

2) Vocalize upward chromatic scales from G3 to G4 and back down slowly and evenly on the closed vowels /i/ and /u/ (ee and oo) at a medium volume. These two vowels encourage early bridging, as their first formant frequencies are quite low. Through them, the sensations of maintaining firm (but not yelly) phonation will be experienced. By the time he gets to the G, he will be already quite far into a head voice coordination, and will better prepared to approach the Ab.

3) Repeat exercise 1 on the vowel /oe/ as in the English word 'foot'.

I hope he finds this helpful.

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