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Kellin Quinn's technique and The Four Pillars of Singing

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Bushfire
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I'm only 18 but and I've been singing for about 2 years. I took lessons for about 6 months but didn't feel they were helping so I stopped. I originally was singing softer stuff like Ed Sheeran. Lately I've started to try to sing more pop-punk songs but I'm finding I just don't have the range for it. My ultimate goal would be able to sing in a range similar to Kellin Quinn's from Sleeping With Sirens. Here is an example of what his voice normally sounds like:

And if you skip to about 0:32 you can hear him sing a G5:

Right now I can only hit G4 or maybe A#4 at the highest but it's uncomfortable, so I have a lot of work to do. I also still don't really have a good sense of head voice and don't really have a clear picture of the difference between it and falsetto (my old teacher knew little about the difference too, so he just had me singing in falsetto).

I was thinking about investing in the 4 pillars, but I'm wondering whether or not it would be a good starting point for me to learn the techniques I need to sing in this range/ this style of music, or if I should look to other resources instead. Also, if anyone could tell me what kind of exercises I should be working on to accomplish these kinds of notes/ the tonality of his notes, it would be greatly appreciated.

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4 pillars is very good. But I would recommend doing everything you can to also save up for a few lessons with Rob so he can give you some personal guidance, and record them for future reference. Without the lessons along with it, you are at risk of misinterpreting the program, doing everything wrong, getting nothing out of it.

Also if that is above your budget, check out Phil Moufarrege for skype lessons, he is the most bang-for-the-buck vocal teacher I've found.

If you're not tight on cash, I'd recommend all of it. Start with a bunch of lessons with Phil and then when you feel you have a decent technical foundation built and if you can afford to invest further, move on to buy pillars and take a few lessons with Rob.

I personally did the reverse order, I trained with Rob first, then Phil, but I think the opposite order would have given me faster results.

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If you focus on sounding like someone else, you're liable to do damage to your voice. This would be a Bad Thing. What I recommend is to develop correct technique first, then see who you do/don't sound like. If you like the way a particular singer sounds, pay attention to the technique they use and attempt to borrow that without changing the basic sound of your voice. Covering someone else's music doesn't require that you sound like them. (Example: the late Peter Steele of Type O Negative covering Niel Young's Cinnamon Girl

)

As far as falsetto, that's just what people call it when a male uses head voice with a soft, breathy, "feminine" tone (think Earth, Wind and Fire: Reasons; The Lion Sleeps Tonight (Wimbuweh)). Add in more breath support and resonance (not necessarily more volume) and you get the disco/soul sound that's half-way to full head voice (Leo Sayer: You Make Me Feel Like Dancing; the BeeGees: Stayin' Alive). Give it maxium support and resonance and you wind up with power metal vocals (Queensryche: Take Hold Of The Flame , Luca Turilli's Rhapsody: Ascending to Infinity).

I've been working a bit with Raise Your Voice (Jaime Vendera) and am having some success in making my upper range more usable. The three basic exercises in the RYV program are falsetto slides, dynamic isolation and full-voice sirens. 1) Start by trying to imitate a slide whistle, doing slow 1-octave or 1/2-octave slides up and/or down entirely in a soft, pure sounding falsetto on "moo" (yes, like a cow). You're aiming for a British boys' choir sound with this, just getting your vocal apparatus used to those pitches. 2) Starting on a pitch that is in your "normal" range but that you can sing falsetto (C4 is a good bet), do dynamic sustaining exercises where you start out very soft and gradually go up in energy until you are getting as much resonance and volume as you can without straining anything, then slide back to that very soft falsetto on the same note. Your voice has to shift gears in there somewhere, maybe twice, and will probably crack a lot until you master this one. The "Old Italian" singing method (bel canto) refers to this as messa di voce. I like "vah" for this. 3) Work on octave slides, up and down, at full volume. "Yeah" works well here. This is very tricky to even attempt at the upper end of your speaking voice range/lower end of your falsetto range (passagio)! Jaime recommends spending a full week practicing each of the above exercises in isolation to gain mastery before working all three into daily vocal exercise. For each, you should start at a comfortable pitch in the middle of your range and work up the chromatic scale until you find your point of strain (don't push it, that point will eventually move on its own through daily practice); go back to your starting pitch and do it again going down the scale a half-tone at a time until, again, you reach a point of strain.

On a final note, always remember to warm up and cool down: your vocal muscles are just like the rest of your muscles in that you need to get them ready for a workout and treat them right afterward to avoid straining something in your throat. A simple warmup is going "B-b-b-b-b-b-b-b" (motorcycle lips) while sliding up and down through your full range at very low volume for 5-10 minutes. Mix it up with a rolled 'r' (R-r-r-ruffles have r-r-r-ridges) and soft palate gargling (a la Chewbacca) or actual gargling with room temperature water. More of the same for a 5-minute cooldown, and avoid both cold and very hot beverages to avoid thermal shock to your larynx and vocal chords.

Best of luck to you!

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Okay, thank you everyone for your responses! For now, I will try some of the exercises QuixoticMelodic mentioned and see how they go, then proceed from there. I'm also going to see if I can get someone in my family to get 4 pillars for me for Christmas, and I'll try and out, see if I have any questions, and if so maybe try and set up a real lesson.

Also, what Phil is saying makes a lot of sense to me. I remember hearing that our speaking voices are partially shaped by the voices we grow up around which is in line with this thinking.

Now, specifically regarding Kellin and his style, does anyone know whether or not 4 pillars would be appropriate for this kind of music? I know most singing techniques are versatile and applicable to different styles of music, but I've always been under the impression a lot of pop punk singers don't actually have good technique and sort of just force out their high notes, and with Kellin's voice being rather high sounding for a male, I'm wondering whether or not this sound is achievable.

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"sing like yourself" that type of advice just means "sing the way you already sing"

To me it doesn't, it's more like let your voice do what it's been designed to do and don't interfere with it or try to fabricate a sound. Sound natural. We all have different instruments and it's important to realize that, even if you can imitate other singers or even bird sounds… Learn how to use your instrument.

Nick

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To me it doesn't, it's more like let your voice do what it's been designed to do and don't interfere with it or try to fabricate a sound. Sound natural. We all have different instruments and it's important to realize that, even if you can imitate other singers or even bird sounds… Learn how to use your instrument.

Nick

Our voices are mimiced, very few sounds you make are natural. Even if you mimic axl rose it's still as much yourvoice as the one your speaking with now. The reason it first doesnt sound natural is because the sounds hasnt fully setteled in yet. Mimic a sound for five years it will sound just as natural as all the other sounds you make

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Our voices are mimiced, very few sounds you make are natural. Even if you mimic axl rose it's still as much yourvoice as the one your speaking with now. The reason it first doesnt sound natural is because the sounds hasnt fully setteled in yet. Mimic a sound for five years it will sound just as natural as all the other sounds you make

Jens, you're probably right but no matter how hard I'd try I would never be able to mimic Barry White… So I still have my voice with it's qualities and limitations. Can we agree on that?

Nick

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Jens, you're probably right but no matter how hard I'd try I would never be able to mimic Barry White… So I still have my voice with it's qualities and limitations. Can we agree on that?

Nick

Your probably right, but in my belif it's more about your personality and the enviroment that the physical side.

Very few would put 10 years into training a specific sound. Wich is probably ehat it takes.

I dont like limits i dont like people putting people into fach and deciding what to soundlike or not.

For me if i wanted a new cool sound, it takes around 3 years plus to break it down and make it settle. Copying an entire singer is a diffrent beast but doable with alot of time

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Your natural sound is the sound that you have grown accustomed to over the years. It may be far away from a good technical coordination.

My natural sound is muffled and week because I grew up trying to talk with only the person I am talking to. I did not want the whole room to hear me speak. Others are the opposite Talking loud with too much effort because they need others to hear them. Imitating another singer may lead to a better more coordinated singing voice.

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