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Strengthening the passagio area

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Jeran
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Hello.

I've recently made huge strides in my voice with the use of twanging the heck out of head voice, and have really, at least in my opinion, strengthened it into a full and chesty sounding tone. However, I still can't use it in a song, because I can't do it in the passagio on anything other than the very dark vowels. I have to darken them to the point of sounding rather un-natural in that area. I can do sirens all day long without breaking, but as we all experience, I'm sure, singing songs is a completely different beast to tame. I can sing up there, as long as the song doesn't dip down into around F4, G4, A4, and that'd be a pretty limiting and boring song if i didn't.

My question is this:

Do you think I could strengthen that area by using the NAY sound? It seems that that's the most heady, twangy exercise that I've heard. With an extremely pharyngeal tone, will that "beat" the strength into that area so that I can work on taking the head tones lower?

My vocal hero is Steven Tyler, especially in his later career, ala Nine Lives and Get a Grip. He's up in the wayoutesphere, but it still sounds full and chesty, constrasting with his trademark creak. It seems like he's in chest voice all the way up into the D5 area, contrasting with someone like Geoff Tate, who's pretty obviously in a very well resonated head voice. I'm hoping to use the NAY because it's heady, but also somewhat big sounding.

I'm hoping to work the NAY into the passagio and then when that's strong throughout that area, work on making the sound fuller, replacing the NAY with fuller tonality.

Do you think that'd work, or will it build a wrong coordination in that area?

Thank you.

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Hello.

I've recently made huge strides in my voice with the use of twanging the heck out of head voice, and have really, at least in my opinion, strengthened it into a full and chesty sounding tone. However, I still can't use it in a song, because I can't do it in the passagio on anything other than the very dark vowels. I have to darken them to the point of sounding rather un-natural in that area. I can do sirens all day long without breaking, but as we all experience, I'm sure, singing songs is a completely different beast to tame. I can sing up there, as long as the song doesn't dip down into around F4, G4, A4, and that'd be a pretty limiting and boring song if i didn't.

My question is this:

Do you think I could strengthen that area by using the NAY sound? It seems that that's the most heady, twangy exercise that I've heard. With an extremely pharyngeal tone, will that "beat" the strength into that area so that I can work on taking the head tones lower?

My vocal hero is Steven Tyler, especially in his later career, ala Nine Lives and Get a Grip. He's up in the wayoutesphere, but it still sounds full and chesty, constrasting with his trademark creak. It seems like he's in chest voice all the way up into the D5 area, contrasting with someone like Geoff Tate, who's pretty obviously in a very well resonated head voice. I'm hoping to use the NAY because it's heady, but also somewhat big sounding.

I'm hoping to work the NAY into the passagio and then when that's strong throughout that area, work on making the sound fuller, replacing the NAY with fuller tonality.

Do you think that'd work, or will it build a wrong coordination in that area?

Thank you.

for twang, i have had some success with slow appeggios with nay, but i found a real nice stretch with a crying "neeeeaaaah"and myyyyeeeeen" really exagerate but i never transition to head. i try to avoid getting heady or airy but i do go a little nasal and i do them with good support, a relaxed throat and open mouth pretty to very loud. be totally warmed up first.

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I don't think it necessarily works well for everyone. Nays have a tendency to drop the soft palate and, for me anyway, used to cause constrictions to set in. But I'm sure it works for other people. You may want to try different onset consonants and see what works best for you. Even different vowels.

But as Bob pointed out, find what works best to keep that open throat relaxed feeling. Good support is always a big part of keeping pressure off the throat.

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I don't think it necessarily works well for everyone. Nays have a tendency to drop the soft palate and, for me anyway, used to cause constrictions to set in. But I'm sure it works for other people. You may want to try different onset consonants and see what works best for you. Even different vowels.

But as Bob pointed out, find what works best to keep that open throat relaxed feeling. Good support is always a big part of keeping pressure off the throat.

Quincy, Jeran, Bob: If the N consonant is not acceptable, replace it with a Z or V. That will intensify the effect of the initial consonant, without coaxing the soft palate down for the onset.

Jeran: If you can siren through this area no problem, but have issues with the actual songs, I have some suggestions.

1) Take the problem phrases, and siren them on the vowels contained in the words by removing the consonants from the words. Just sing the vowel sounds, and _slide_ between the notes all you want so that the siren is maybe 1/2 second between each note, with each note sustained a bit, out of time. (that is, without using the regular note values). The idea of this exercise is to sing the note and vowel pattern, and using sirens to connect the notes.

2) Notice in #1 if there are any vowels that are weak for the notes assigned to them. If so, go back and use that vowel for sirens that stop on the problem note from the melody. Sometimes, slightly tweaking the vowel pronunciation can make a huge difference in the passaggio especially.

3) When exercise 1 is going well, speed up the sirens between the notes so that they happen, but much faster. As long as the notes stay connected and easy, you can speed up the siren rapidity until it becomes instantaneous.

4) When exercise 3 (just vowels) is as you want it, begin to re-add the initial consonants one word at a time, and determine if any of them is causing your tone to not be optimum. If you find an issue, work that one syllable. IMO, this is a place where some attention to the air pressure used to make consonants may need some work. Very often, there is just too much air pressure on the consonant. If you find that is the case, practice a form of the consonant that is crisper and shorter, and uses less air while still being understandable.

5) When all the initial consonants are fine, repeat the exercise with the internal and final consonants. At that point, you will have re-assembled the phrase , examined and re-worked every sound used in it.

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Thank you very much for the replies.

Videohere, I'm looking forward to trying the NEAH and MYEN exercises. Do you do them on an octave arpeggios or just triads?

Quincy, yeah, thanks. I'll have to make sure the pharyngeal isn't closing my resonance down.

Mr. Fraser, would using a softer consonant be better for putting more emphasis on the vowels, therefore making EE and OO easier to sing through the bridges?

I just went for a drive (I live in an apartment and the only place I can sing out is in my car) to try out your exercise suggestions, and it seems to be an excellent suggestion! Thank you very, very much. I'm going to go through all of my band's new stuff and iron out those phrases that I really pull chest on, in the hopes of ironging out the kinks before we go into the studio in January. Hopefully I'll be able to convincingly sing the songs without shouting/pulling chest. As a lot of people commented on the last time I posted the stuff found here, http://www.myspace.com/mojomusicsd, I'm very often singing in the passaggio and just banging away at my voice, pulling chest and using very little technique. I REALLY want to correct this, so that I'm not stuck singing everything below the break, or shouting to sing in it.

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Hi Jeran. I'm a rock singer and a big Steven Tyler fan also. Here's a fun Aerosmith cliip: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1_xbo7Dhzmo. Here are some of my vocals http://www.reverbnation.com/jongunnar and here's my msn messenger id if you wanna chat about Aerosmith or vocals: j_g_thorarinsson@hotmail.com. Cheers, dude!

steve tyler went to the same high school as me. his dad was a music teacher at the school. he's from yonkers, ny my neighborhood.

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Hi Jeran. I'm a rock singer and a big Steven Tyler fan also. Here's a fun Aerosmith cliip: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1_xbo7Dhzmo. Here are some of my vocals http://www.reverbnation.com/jongunnar and here's my msn messenger id if you wanna chat about Aerosmith or vocals: j_g_thorarinsson@hotmail.com. Cheers, dude!

Jonpall, thanks a lot for the video link. I love Nine Lives, and it's really cool to see some of its creation. Great vocals, too. Particularly on Still Loving You and Bed of Roses, in which you really do a great job of capturing Jon.

And thanks, Videohere. I did those on the way home from work today. Steven went to Cardinal something or other high, right?

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Thank you very much for the replies.

Videohere, I'm looking forward to trying the NEAH and MYEN exercises. Do you do them on an octave arpeggios or just triads?

Quincy, yeah, thanks. I'll have to make sure the pharyngeal isn't closing my resonance down.

Mr. Fraser, would using a softer consonant be better for putting more emphasis on the vowels, therefore making EE and OO easier to sing through the bridges?

Jeran: Not necessarily. Consonants need to be audible in a manner that balances their loudness with the surrounding vowels. What will work, though, is to be sure that the unvoiced consonants do not get inappropriately high breath pressure, and that the voiced consonants are phonated consistently with the phonation used for the surrounding vowels.

I just went for a drive (I live in an apartment and the only place I can sing out is in my car) to try out your exercise suggestions, and it seems to be an excellent suggestion! Thank you very, very much. I'm going to go through all of my band's new stuff and iron out those phrases that I really pull chest on, in the hopes of ironing out the kinks before we go into the studio in January. Hopefully I'll be able to convincingly sing the songs without shouting/pulling chest. As a lot of people commented on the last time I posted the stuff found here, http://www.myspace.com/mojomusicsd, I'm very often singing in the passaggio and just banging away at my voice, pulling chest and using very little technique. I REALLY want to correct this, so that I'm not stuck singing everything below the break, or shouting to sing in it.

Jeran: Glad to hear it was of some help.

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This may be the answer to the question " why does my voice collapse on lower songs ?". I'll have to try the solutions here.

Thank you Jeran for bringing the question, and Steven and Videohere for providing answers.

please remember i'm just a singer trying to help. steve is the expert.

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