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Is head voice a replacement for falsetto?

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Blameitonthevodka
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"Blame",

You have to start by first being clear on the difference between "head voice" and Falsetto. Head Voice is a popular metaphor or picture word we use a lot to describe the higher register of the voice. So in a sense, "head voice" is the place... the location where vocal sounds will be "placed".

Falsetto is a vocal mode. It is a term to describe a unique set of physiological conditions in and around the larynx that produce the acoustic color and effect of Falsetto; windy, feminine sounding, weak, 'heady', etc...

The mistake that people make too often is they perceive "head voice" and Falsetto to be synonymous. As if they mean the same thing, they do not. So, once you get THAT all sorted out, you then are liberated from the notion that Falsetto its the only sound you can make in the head voice... and can get on with training your head voice so you don't sound Falsetto, but more connected, twang vocal mode, full, belt-like, etc...

You can sing Falsetto in your head voice, its easy... its that windy, girly sound we can all make. But the challenge is learning how to sing with vocal twang, a manipulated larynx, balanced respiration and vocal fold compression to make your head voice not sound windy, but full and "boomy". In order to do this, you need to train. You need to train your ass off with register bridging techniques and specialized onsets in the head voice.

My program, "The Four Pillars of Singing" offers a training routine that will go right to the heart of this. Bridging registers and building strength in the 'head voice' is probably the primary mission at The Vocalist Studio... or you can train with me privately over the internet with Skype.

BTW, Owen is one of my students so he can also address this issue and knows a lot about TVS training techniques.

In any case, here is a video I did a few years ago that addresses this issue:

Falsetto is NOT your head voice!

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Haha I don't have any samples but my head voice is really dominant in my voice so I find it easy, I basically just direct the sound to the bridge of my nose. Falsetto....usually no sound even comes out when I try, just air, it's really weird, I probably just don't know how to sing falsetto properly

Here's a video of me singing, but there's no falsetto parts in it http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EJIvEr-Nii0&feature=youtu.be

I also find singing with an open throat easy but I think falsetto needs to be more of a closed throat thing? I don't know

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Well, it seems to me that you don't have an issue then? Everyone's Falsetto is probably questionable in regards to a favorable aesthetic. Everyone is trying to build more full sounds in the head voice. If you are doing that, then your "winning"... am I missing something here?

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There's honestly no way of really helping you without providing a sample of what you call head voice and what you call falsetto because everybody's definitions of those terms are different these days.

I'd think air coming out and no sound would indicate you're trying to produce whistle voice/flageolet...so maybe you are confused about the registers/modes.

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I know the difference between the registers, but falsetto just doesnt happen for me, could it be because I smoke?

How are you certain you know the difference between the registers if one of them isn't even working? Knowing their on-paper definitions in academic sense means absolutely nothing if you are not familiar with how the registers feel and function when successfully executed in your individual voice.

A lot of well known smoking singers can still sing in falsetto so I highly doubt it's that.

Try going for falsetto at different volumes or pitches, still no sound?

Remember that a breathier variant of head voice that is easy to produce is by definition, falsetto in some way shape or form. Falsetto is not really a completely different setup from head voice. It can be, but usually it's a variant of head voice and vice versa.

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Ok what I hear in the sample, the first one is a poorly produced falsetto, the second one some kind of mix of chest and head, but definitely not pure head voice.

If you're looking to find something that would come across as a good falsetto, I would try to find something completely different.

Try this:

Sing a note really softly in your chest voice at a comfortable pitch, hold it, and slide up the pitch like a siren without changing the volume, if anything, decrease the effort level and reduce the volume, but don't let it abruptly flip.

Once you can do that maneuver (it's basically the TVS lift up pull back if you're familiar with Rob's method) and get up to a high pitch successfully with very little physical effort, at the top note you'll probably have found either correctly produced pure head voice or correctly produced pure falsetto.

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sing your sample again but this time sing the exact same note on "glass"........your first "glass" was a4 flat, your second "glass" was e4.

sing both "glass" with the same a4 flat note. try to make the first "glass" sound the same tonally as the e4 did.

sounds to me like you want to avoid breaking into an airy tone.

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I, alone, have the secret pill to developing the falsetto into something beautiful. Practice, like anything else.

Aren't you glad you waited for my sage wisdom? :lol:

Although, I agree with Robert, most guys can already do falsetto and seek to get away from that.

And true, talking higher than is comfortable won't necessarily help anything.

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Thank-you that did help a lot! I'm going to work on that....but I do really like the sound of the mixed chest and head voice thing lol

Me too, it's good and very useful, definitely learn to take that up to higher pitches. But it's not the classic falsetto/head voice sound, which is an important stylistic color in contemporary music. I can't think of a contemporary singer who doesn't use falsetto or head voice every now and then.

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