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Hi everyone. Hope you're well.

Something that I've noticed when I do scales is that if I begin the note with a 'H', I seem to be able to go through the scale a lot easier and easily transition from Chest to Head without strain. The natural way.

This works not only on vowels but also on Hums, which it should if you're phonating from the correct place. I keep the hum continuous throughout the scale with adding a 'H' at the beginning of each note in the scales and it does help. 

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Becuase it takes away a lot of constriction in the voice. It is used a lot in many programs , especially pillars. You just need to be careful you don't blow to much air  and that you support the sound. Also, it can put you in the right placement especially for high notes

 

 

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Becuase it takes away a lot of constriction in the voice. It is used a lot in many programs , especially pillars. You just need to be careful you don't blow to much air  and that you support the sound. Also, it can put you in the right placement especially for high notes

 

 

Thanks for the reply Jarom. I'm wondering how it actually takes away the constriction. What changes exactly? Why the 'H'?

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Think about lifting up a heavy weight; what sound do you make? "Hhhh." I'm not sure the exact anatomy of what's going on... but it adds compression. A lot of students don't sing with enough compression.. but some sing with too much! It just depends on where you are. But that "Hhhh" sound adds a certain level of compression to the vocal cords.
Look up Manuel Garcia's "coup de glotte." It's the same idea!

Thanks! I would have thought that using a 'H' would be the opposite of adding compression because of the air coming through. Actually.. yeah it can go either way. Someone could use the 'H' and just be totally breathy when they get higher with not enough cord closure and then others can get really compressed! Something else that helps me along with the 'H' is adding 'vocal fry' / strong cord closure throughout the scales too. Maybe a bit too much at times like you said! The both of them together really does help relax things.

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The "h" initiates a breathy or breathier onset, which helps those singers who tend to onset too hard, with too much of a glottal attack.  A glottal attack is when you initate your onset with too much force, like when you grunt. The "h" acts like a cushion and lessens impact.

Although it's helpful, you don't want to become dependent on an "h" either.....use it like training wheels...because you want to work towards an onset that is balanced and coordinated.

The "h" can also be used for stylistic purposes as well.

 

 

 

 

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The H releases medial compression, this has nothing to do with twang. You can still twang heavily on an H onset, but you cannot use so much medial compression (sometimes called "glottal compression").

Actually going H-A-Y on a really twangy and compressed A is a very valuable excercise as you usually want lots of twang compression and less medial compression for a balanced tone.

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Yeah it's really individual! That "hhh" depending on how you do it could cause a number of different things!

With the "h" there's a little bit of air at first.. at least how I do it. But the H sound seems like its made by a puff of air followed by a contraction of the vocal folds to stop the air. 

Yeah you're right! I can feel the contraction of the vocal folds after the blast of air :)

Thank you all for your replies. I appreciate them!

As I said in my first post, the breathy 'H' onset does help with more of a smooth sound with less effort. I just thought about singers like Kurt Cobain. He was quite breathy, wasn't he? And whilst he was a bit pitchy at times he seemed to sing higher without using those other muscles to reach for the notes. It was more relaxed. I'm also a fan of Chad Kroeger of Nickelback and in certain songs, he is quite breathy too.. usually in the verses but he's also very compressed too. As many of you may know, Nickelback came around a few years after Nirvana and when grunge was popular. I listened to the very earliest Nickelback album (Curb) where his vocals aren't as good and he seemed to be a lot more breathy when singing.. probably because he was really trying to sing the best he could without having much knowledge and training. Chad improved a whole lot afterwards. Maybe the breathy onsets really helped connect his voice, instead of starting out all heavy and eventually straining on notes. His singing is a whole lot tighter now due to the tighter cord closure / vocal fry he uses (I think). He now seems to be able to sing very high but still quite relaxed without using other, unnecessary muscles.

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