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benny82

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  1. Like
    benny82 got a reaction from Robert Lunte in Extreme Throat Tension? What To Do...   
    Muscle memory can be a beast. If you program it to some unneccessary tension it can get very hard to get rid of misbehaviour. The excercise is indeed great to get the proper narrowing in the back of the vocal tract that gets you a more "deep" placement.
  2. Like
    benny82 got a reaction from Kevin Ashe in Expanding range downward   
    @Kevin Ashe is right though. They key is (just as in the high range) to stay "connected". This also means that, at some point, fold closure gets so strong that a registration into M0 ("vocal fry") will happen. Many people make the mistake of opening the folds (usually by dumping the larynx) to prevent the registration into vocal fry. But that registration is the natural thing to happen in the low range. Even basses sing their lowest notes in M0. It just sounds fuller and more resonant compared to a tenor voice.
    Just don't ignore the fact that there must be a registration event in the low range and train to have a smooth transition from M1 -> M0 in the low range just as you would train the M1 -> M2 transition in the high range. Once you have the smooth connection and learned where to switch, the power in the "unknown" register will develop over time.
    Of course don't expect to be able to do the same things a bass can do in this range.
  3. Like
    benny82 got a reaction from Robert Lunte in Voice Cracking / Fading in Middle Range   
    Depends a bit on what your understanding is about "chest voice" or "head voice". In the middle range you use a coordination that is not the same as your speaking voice and also not the same as your falsetto. It has the vibratory mechanism of the speaking voice, which is why some people would say it is still "chest voice", but it has the resonance mode of falsetto, which is why some people say it is "head voice". Others just call it "mixed voice" 
    There are several methods to learn the coordination and for everyone something different tends to work better or worse. Personally I prefer to train to "get out of speaking mode" in the low range, which makes it easier to get into the covered coordination needed for the passaggio. One method for this is to start in falsetto above your middle range and siren it down as low as you can, the vowel OO works well for that. This leads to a very dopey/breathy low range coordination. After that you remember the posture you had in the low range and sing a strong AH vowel through that postuere. Then you siren that AH vowel up into the high range.
    It feels a bit like "smoothing out" the differences between falsetto and chest voice. You strengthen your M1 by going from a slightly more dopey position which gives you less resonance boost in the low range and works out the vocal mechanism more. The twang/edge mechanism will take over the role of your main resonator. A stronger M1 can be stretched further into the higher range and the goal is to stretch it up to the point where M2 becomes strong enough, which is usually somewhere between A4 and C5.
    If you want a very systematic approach to learning this I recommend to look into the 4 Pillars.
  4. Like
    benny82 got a reaction from Robert Lunte in Voice Cracking / Fading in Middle Range   
    It's normal for the beginner. This area is the passaggio. The main reason for the voice cracking there is that the upper vibratory mechanism (M2) is too weak in that area and will not work, while at the same time the lower vibratory mechanism (M1) loses its resonance amplification. The coordination has to be learned to sing your lower register through the whole passaggio without the aid of the "chest resonance".
  5. Like
    benny82 got a reaction from Adolph Namlik in Voice Cracking / Fading in Middle Range   
    Depends a bit on what your understanding is about "chest voice" or "head voice". In the middle range you use a coordination that is not the same as your speaking voice and also not the same as your falsetto. It has the vibratory mechanism of the speaking voice, which is why some people would say it is still "chest voice", but it has the resonance mode of falsetto, which is why some people say it is "head voice". Others just call it "mixed voice" 
    There are several methods to learn the coordination and for everyone something different tends to work better or worse. Personally I prefer to train to "get out of speaking mode" in the low range, which makes it easier to get into the covered coordination needed for the passaggio. One method for this is to start in falsetto above your middle range and siren it down as low as you can, the vowel OO works well for that. This leads to a very dopey/breathy low range coordination. After that you remember the posture you had in the low range and sing a strong AH vowel through that postuere. Then you siren that AH vowel up into the high range.
    It feels a bit like "smoothing out" the differences between falsetto and chest voice. You strengthen your M1 by going from a slightly more dopey position which gives you less resonance boost in the low range and works out the vocal mechanism more. The twang/edge mechanism will take over the role of your main resonator. A stronger M1 can be stretched further into the higher range and the goal is to stretch it up to the point where M2 becomes strong enough, which is usually somewhere between A4 and C5.
    If you want a very systematic approach to learning this I recommend to look into the 4 Pillars.
  6. Like
    benny82 got a reaction from Robert Lunte in R.I.P. Chris Cornell   
    ... still can't beleive it 
  7. Like
    benny82 got a reaction from Robert Lunte in Laryngeal Mechanisms M1 and M2   
    So here is a little test about M1 vs. M2 that I would like you to do. I think this helps quite a bit about M1 vs. M2 (and @Felipe Carvalho I have seen you do similar things on YT);
    - start on a low note in your speaking range on typical speaking volume
    - sing AH as breathy/dopey as possible
    - then add Edge/twang to the note without increasing volume
    If you do not increase volume your voice should go into vocal fry because the twang increases the fold closure/resistance and the breath pressure will be not enough to cause a full vibration
    - increase breath pressure very slightly until you phonate a clean note again (just overcome the TTP), now you are on that clean Edge/Twang sound.
    Now go higher in pitch and do this exact excercise on each note in your range.
    What you will notice is that your range is divided into three parts by this excercise
    1. in the low part of your range you will just hear the quality change breathy -> fry -> edgy
    2. in the middle part of your range you will hear the quality AND a flip, breathy -> fry -> flip -> edgy
    3. in the high part of your range you will just hear the quality change again
    My personal understanding is that a flip indicates a switch of register. So part 1 is your "only M1" range. Part 2 is where both registrations are easily possible, but M2 will be too weak and you should train to use M1 over the full range of part 2. Part 3 is where M2 should be your standard registration and in this part it is powerful enough to be used.
    Personally, my part 2 spans about an octave from G3 to G4 (maybe A4). From A#4 I on I can definitely sing very powerful with my falsetto.
  8. Like
    benny82 got a reaction from Robert Lunte in Laryngeal Mechanisms M1 and M2   
    Very interesting read @Felipe Carvalho and a lot more clear than most articles about the M1 vs. M2 thing. I would also agree with almost everything you said there. Here are some further points to think about. Hope they contribute to the thread:
    1. Is M2 the same as "falsetto"?
    The thing is that falsetto usually describes a certain sound that is very light and sometimes breathy. It goes a bit in the same direction as Rob's question. There is definitely a distinct difference between a counter tenor falsetto and a rock tenor "fake belt" or "reinforced falsetto". The latter can even produce an Overdrive/Shout sound color, which falsetto cannot do.
    2. An interesting thing that in terms of sound color or perception of "vocal mass" the amplitude of the EGG signal seems to be a defining factor. While the "knee" in the EGG signal indicates involvement of the body of the folds, which could be describe as the "horizontal depth" or "mass" of the vibration, the amplitude of the EGG signal indicates the "vertical depth" of the vibrations. Some studies I know have shown that the "vertical depth" of the vibration seems to correspond to the perception of "mass". Thus, a possible answer to question 1 would be that rock tenors do not have more body engagement but more vertical adduction compared to countertenors.
     
  9. Like
    benny82 got a reaction from Colorbaaars in Stop Focusing So Much On Support.   
    Exactly my thoughts. Support is a lot more about control than about power. There is no need to "strengthen" your support or to train the diaphragm. Actually, if you look at the size of the instrument (the vocal folds), the lungs and breathing muscles are vastly oversized and way too powerful to drive such a small instrument.
    One should also consider that the diaphragm is an inhaling muscle and not an exhaling muscle. People often tell you to "hold back" air with the diaphragm to reduce pressure on the larynx. But why would you want to "hold back" if you could just push less hard with your exhaling muscles.
    The real "magic" in support is learning to make very small and controlled actions with those big muscles, especially the exhalers and not the inhalers.
  10. Like
    benny82 got a reaction from MDEW in Stop Focusing So Much On Support.   
    I can definitely relate to that. I think it has more to do with endurance though than with strength. Singing in that sense is more like Marathon running than 100m sprint. Marathon runners do not have specifically storng leg muscles usually. What they need is coordination, rhythm and endurance, to keep their muscles going for a long time.
    Aside from that I still think that, if anything, the exhalers need a lot more strength and endurance training than the diaphragm. The diaphragm is pretty much used 24 hours non-stop. It is probably one of the most used muscles in the body. The exhalers though are not used to supplying the pressure required for singing on a constant basis. Especially not to sustaining that pressure over longer periods.
    And actually, most excercises that are advertisted as "diaphragm training" mostly focus on the exhalers instead of the diaphragm.
  11. Like
    benny82 got a reaction from Felipe Carvalho in Stop Focusing So Much On Support.   
    I can definitely relate to that. I think it has more to do with endurance though than with strength. Singing in that sense is more like Marathon running than 100m sprint. Marathon runners do not have specifically storng leg muscles usually. What they need is coordination, rhythm and endurance, to keep their muscles going for a long time.
    Aside from that I still think that, if anything, the exhalers need a lot more strength and endurance training than the diaphragm. The diaphragm is pretty much used 24 hours non-stop. It is probably one of the most used muscles in the body. The exhalers though are not used to supplying the pressure required for singing on a constant basis. Especially not to sustaining that pressure over longer periods.
    And actually, most excercises that are advertisted as "diaphragm training" mostly focus on the exhalers instead of the diaphragm.
  12. Like
    benny82 got a reaction from Robert Lunte in Stop Focusing So Much On Support.   
    Very well put. This is what I mean. The opposition of the diaphragm is needed to get better and more smooth control. It's the only reason why we don't sing on the exhalation muscles alone.
    There is no need to specifically strengthen the diaphragm imo. The power it naturally has is usually enough to provide the needed opposition. The exhalation muscles have to overcome the oppsition of the diaphragm to create pressure on the lungs and this pressure needs to overcome the resistance of the vocal folds and vocal tract to create airflow and sound.
  13. Like
    benny82 got a reaction from Adolph Namlik in Stop Focusing So Much On Support.   
    Very well put. This is what I mean. The opposition of the diaphragm is needed to get better and more smooth control. It's the only reason why we don't sing on the exhalation muscles alone.
    There is no need to specifically strengthen the diaphragm imo. The power it naturally has is usually enough to provide the needed opposition. The exhalation muscles have to overcome the oppsition of the diaphragm to create pressure on the lungs and this pressure needs to overcome the resistance of the vocal folds and vocal tract to create airflow and sound.
  14. Like
    benny82 reacted to Felipe Carvalho in Stop Focusing So Much On Support.   
    When it comes to *why* we support using the muscles against each other, the best way to understand it is to remember that we do not sing on a single fixed condition all the time.
     
    You don't just attack a single vowel and sustain it on a single intensity for some time. We articulate phrases, vowels change, pitch, dynamics, consonants which will require more airflow such as sibilances or that creates an aspirated attack such a H.
    Specially when doing this higher in pitch, its a real lot of different conditions happening very fast. Also, depending on the amount of air you have inside, the pressure will vary considerably, after taking a breath the tydal pressure is excessive already.
    By both pressing and opposing it, you are able to make adjustments much faster, you make a small FLOW stable with the opposition of a much larger "force" than the thing you attempt to drive needs, and the pressure will then adjust accordingly to keep that flow going.
    If we want to go more nerdy, we increase the compliance of the power source. The result on the singing is that you get more headroom, you articulate easier without messing up what you are trying to do, to the listener it sounds like you are singing with ease, that you are comfortable.
  15. Like
    benny82 got a reaction from Jarom in Stop Focusing So Much On Support.   
    Exactly my thoughts. Support is a lot more about control than about power. There is no need to "strengthen" your support or to train the diaphragm. Actually, if you look at the size of the instrument (the vocal folds), the lungs and breathing muscles are vastly oversized and way too powerful to drive such a small instrument.
    One should also consider that the diaphragm is an inhaling muscle and not an exhaling muscle. People often tell you to "hold back" air with the diaphragm to reduce pressure on the larynx. But why would you want to "hold back" if you could just push less hard with your exhaling muscles.
    The real "magic" in support is learning to make very small and controlled actions with those big muscles, especially the exhalers and not the inhalers.
  16. Like
    benny82 got a reaction from Adolph Namlik in Stop Focusing So Much On Support.   
    Exactly my thoughts. Support is a lot more about control than about power. There is no need to "strengthen" your support or to train the diaphragm. Actually, if you look at the size of the instrument (the vocal folds), the lungs and breathing muscles are vastly oversized and way too powerful to drive such a small instrument.
    One should also consider that the diaphragm is an inhaling muscle and not an exhaling muscle. People often tell you to "hold back" air with the diaphragm to reduce pressure on the larynx. But why would you want to "hold back" if you could just push less hard with your exhaling muscles.
    The real "magic" in support is learning to make very small and controlled actions with those big muscles, especially the exhalers and not the inhalers.
  17. Like
    benny82 got a reaction from Robert Lunte in Stop Focusing So Much On Support.   
    Exactly my thoughts. Support is a lot more about control than about power. There is no need to "strengthen" your support or to train the diaphragm. Actually, if you look at the size of the instrument (the vocal folds), the lungs and breathing muscles are vastly oversized and way too powerful to drive such a small instrument.
    One should also consider that the diaphragm is an inhaling muscle and not an exhaling muscle. People often tell you to "hold back" air with the diaphragm to reduce pressure on the larynx. But why would you want to "hold back" if you could just push less hard with your exhaling muscles.
    The real "magic" in support is learning to make very small and controlled actions with those big muscles, especially the exhalers and not the inhalers.
  18. Like
    benny82 got a reaction from Robert Lunte in How to "Pavarotti" the high C?   
    Basically what Daniel said. Covering is really the key here. And what Covering mainly is is a modification to more closed vowels during passaggio without losing the "strength" of the vocal fold coordination.
    There are several scales that can help you learn the covering. One of the most popular is the "Caruso scale" (look it up on YT). It usually starts on an open AH ("father") in the low range. This AH should be strong and loud, not breathy or soft. Then you go higher in pitch and modify to AW (as in "law"), during passaggio it will modify to OH ("go") and in the highest part of the range (from something like A4 on) towards OO ("tool"). It is very important to keep the intensity of the strong low AH while doing the modifications. If you sing an isolated OO in your high range without that "foundation" of the low AH it will usually be falsetto.
    With this covered sound the notes up to A4 will usually already sound strong enough. The A4-C5 (with the OO modification) will often be "reinforced falsetto" (M2) when you start out. Most singers need a lot of training to get them as strong as Pavarotti. The thing to do here is to slowly and carefully open up the vowel again. This is a balance act because if you open too much you lose the covering and splat and if you don't open it will stay a reinforced falsetto sound.
    You also have to consider that the A4-C5 area for classical tenors is a range where the voice is "pushed" slightly (which is why Pavarotti entitled tenor singing as "dangerous" compared to bartione/bass singing), a bit similar to belting/shouting in contemporary singing. In a balanced coordination with almost equal intensity between low and high range this area will usually be sung in M2/reinforced falsetto. Until like 200 years ago it was actually "standard" in classical singing to not push the full voice beyond A4.
    Another scale you can try goes from EH at the bottom to IH at the top. This is what Pavarotti does here. You can hear very well here that the top notes are more like reinforced falsetto and not like the more "belty" sound he will use for those epic high notes. But this is really what you should go for at first and from there you can open slightly.
     
     
  19. Like
    benny82 got a reaction from Xamedhi in Can I hurt my voice and throat without producing sound?   
    Yep, another problem that often happens is when people "go big" in singing they tend to open up the vocal tract to create "space" when you need to do exactly the opposite (create narrowing/resistance).
  20. Like
    benny82 got a reaction from Xamedhi in Can I hurt my voice and throat without producing sound?   
    I would not say damage, but I can definitely relate to it. It is more like over-tension. It also happens if you "sing into yourself" while listening to a normal song, not only extreme stuff. You are basically tensing the muscles in the throat without providing the airstream that is usually there to provide some relaxation.
  21. Like
    benny82 got a reaction from geran89 in Vowel Modification Not Necessary (Classical folks weigh in)   
    Yeah, but it is also very interesting how different people look from different angles at the same thing ;-)
    CVT modes have the advantage that they are probably a lot easier to exactly define physiologically (by degree of narrowing in the vocal tract). That does not mean that they are the most practical in application.
    What I often see when beginners use the CVT book and start to hear the sound examples is something like this:
    Hmm, Edge sounds like it is pretty much unusable outside of certain belty sound colors in the very high range (centered Edge is very close to TVS "quack mode") Hmm, Curbing sounds very winy, may fit for some pop singers but not for my taste Hmm, Neutral is pretty much falsetto, not what I want to do in my high range They end up (of course) using Overdrive almost exclusively, splatting their vowels and pushing their chest voice because it is the only mode that "sounds cool" in its centered form ;-)
    I usually recommend people to look at the sound samples for "Edge with classical sound color" because this shows very well how broad the spectrum of Edge as a mode actually is once you start to modify the sound color away from its quacky center.
  22. Like
    benny82 got a reaction from Draven Grey in Vowel Modification Not Necessary (Classical folks weigh in)   
    I think you are using Curbing and Edge more in the TVS sense of the word, right? In CVT it is pretty much the definition of the Curbing mode that it cannot be used on volumes higher than medium. It even has a symbol that shows a volume fader going down. In classical terms I think it mostly resembles "mezzo voce" (which means "half voice" or "diminished voice").
    The TVS mode "Curbing" is indeed quite close to the concept of "Covering", the CVT Curbing is not.
    TVS Edge on the other hand is characterized by forward placed more open vowel shapes while in CVT Edge is simply characterized by high epiglottic constriction (twang) and a very narrow vocal tract in general. Thus adding edge as a sound color in CVT would be done by raising the back of the tongue (narrowing more) and not by opening the embouchure. Opening the embouchure would be more like "adding Overdrive" in CVT and if you open too much you will lose the mode and make an uncontrolled switch to Overdrive (= splat the vowel).
    UH for example is a Curbing vowel in TVS, but it is a satellite vowel of Edge in CVT (satellite vowel means that it belongs to the mode but is not exactly in the center). OH is a Curbing vowel in TVS but it is an Overdrive vowel in CVT. Thus, TVS Curbing can get A LOT higher in volume than CVT Curbing.
    In CVT the only vowel that is centered in Curbing is currently the vowel O as in "woman".
  23. Like
    benny82 got a reaction from geran89 in Vowel Modification Not Necessary (Classical folks weigh in)   
    There is always a back-coupling between the vowel in the vocal tract and the action of the vocal folds. You cannot isolate support from the vocal tract. You could isolate breathing, but breathing is not singing.
    There is kind of an exception if you use Falsetto or "Neutral" as CVT calls it. In Neutral the vocal tract is so wide and the vocal fold vibration is so weak that the back-coupling effects are minimal and you can use whatever vowel you want.
     
  24. Like
    benny82 got a reaction from Adolph Namlik in Vowel Modification Not Necessary (Classical folks weigh in)   
    There is always a back-coupling between the vowel in the vocal tract and the action of the vocal folds. You cannot isolate support from the vocal tract. You could isolate breathing, but breathing is not singing.
    There is kind of an exception if you use Falsetto or "Neutral" as CVT calls it. In Neutral the vocal tract is so wide and the vocal fold vibration is so weak that the back-coupling effects are minimal and you can use whatever vowel you want.
     
  25. Like
    benny82 got a reaction from Robert Lunte in Vowel Modification Not Necessary (Classical folks weigh in)   
    There is always a back-coupling between the vowel in the vocal tract and the action of the vocal folds. You cannot isolate support from the vocal tract. You could isolate breathing, but breathing is not singing.
    There is kind of an exception if you use Falsetto or "Neutral" as CVT calls it. In Neutral the vocal tract is so wide and the vocal fold vibration is so weak that the back-coupling effects are minimal and you can use whatever vowel you want.
     
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