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Run to the Hills(what technique am I using in the chorus)

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aravindmadis
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I am not sure how to change your tonality. The problem with covering this song or anything else by Bruce and the boys is that he is so iconic a singer that people are powerless to stop from comparing. Even me. I could sing anything in the IM catalog but I do not sound like Bruce and don't care if I don't But I don't cover and present because many, including myself, will compare. And it is not a matter of being lazy or that I don't "want to put in the work" to sound like Bruce. I love his voice, his singing, his style of bravado and confidence. I just don't need to sound like him, for whatever reason.

So, your pitch was good and the timing did not seem like an issue to me. Sometimes, you are better off totally changing the song. Fellow member Jonathon took IM's "Wasted Years" and changed it to one acoustical guitar and a slow, melancholy ballad that was very much how Chris Cornell might do it. This was especially helped by the fact that Jonathon already naturally sounds like Cornell in whatever he does.

I like what you did here but I cannot fix your unique tone. I go through this thing, myself. I can cover some songs by someone else and do quite well, but not the entire catalog. For example, people liked my cover of Judas Priest's cover of "Diamonds and Rust" but that doesn't mean they will like me singing a bunch of other JP songs, nor am I interested in doing so.

And I think that is the way it is with a lot of people. For example, you might fair better in applause if you covered IM's "Fear of the Dark." Not because it is lower in the range and I think you are most definitely tenor. But because I think that song and your voice would be a closer match for what your tone does.

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Thanks Ron, for always being the sane voice in this forum.  You have a way of putting things that make total sense.. Maybe there needs to be more weight in the chorus I don't know.. I don't need to sound like Bruce(nobody can), but I was hoping something along the lines of you are using Edge, Bruce uses overdrive(do not mean literally, but you get the idea).  I want to know what I could do with my physiology to create a similar sound.  If it is not possible, I can live with it... 

Maybe I will indeed attempt "Fear of the dark"! :)  

 

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On 1/5/2016 at 6:32 AM, ronws said:
12 hours ago, Gneetapp said:

Hey Aravind, Congrats for taking on such hard song. I thought you sounded really good on the chorus man! What are you trying to change in this song? I think you just need to keep on singing it to make it your own. Very good! :beerbang:

 

Hi Gneetapp.  I am trying to get the chorus to sound more meaty.  I realize as I get better with mixing, some of the really awesome sounding vocals have a lot to do with how they are mixed and whether they are double tracked.. So whether I can improve on my weight in the range, I am not sure ! :)

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On 1/12/2016 at 0:06 AM, aravindmadis said:

 

Hi Gneetapp.  I am trying to get the chorus to sound more meaty.  I realize as I get better with mixing, some of the really awesome sounding vocals have a lot to do with how they are mixed and whether they are double tracked.. So whether I can improve on my weight in the range, I am not sure ! :)

That is why the production credits on a recording are as important as the band members. There is no professional recording that is just straight to file without editing and effects.

John Lennon did not like the sound of his own voice, He asked Martin and others to do anything even (the famous quote) "put some ketchup on it."

Others felt he had such a natural rock voice because it was not pretty and polished like others.

And others, like Axl Rose, will record one line at a time, a number of takes, and then comp(osite) the final vocal track.

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Hi man. I think this needs some work.

In order of importance, these are the main aspects that I believe you would need to change for this particular song, and other songs that Bruce did with similar interpretation:

1 - On the lows, more energy and more open. Take a listen to the song "All the Young Dudes" from his solo work, and notice how he phrases the verses. In my opinion he overdone it there but that's helpful to wrap your mind around what you would have to do. "Well Billy rapped all night 'bout his, suicide..." etc. If you have trouble to identify that on your voice, think of loud italian guy speaking, exagerate the accent, its fun and it really helps. And relax, perhaps you tried a bit too hard, but you were really squeezing on a lot of places and your tone was compromised.

2 - Rhythm. On this song, specially on the verses, you need to be on the beat, or else no matter how much power you try to apply it will be wasted. The verses in particular do not require an absurd ammount of energy to work like the chorus of "fear of the dark" does, but it must be tight. Listen to it as much as you need to get the accents and timings right.

3 - Through the whole song and into the chorus, go for the more open quality, and ONLY when pitch rises, let the placement lift and the vowel round more, the position is similar to what you are doing on the chorus now but you can't back off the energy, if you change the vowel and place it higher like you are used to, the quality will adjust, don't do anything else. I would practice this on All the Young Dudes too, he does it on the chorus, going from open to narrow back to open.

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   I haven't been around the review section for awhile, What you have done on this is a great start. Felipe made some fine suggestions and I cannot add to that except to say that what you may perceive as "Weight" in Bruces voice is not "Weight".

   Bruce may have a slightly "Tighter" sound but his voice is a little different than yours that is all. As Bob, Felipe and Daniel would say it is in the Vowels at this point for you.

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On 1/15/2016 at 9:34 PM, Felipe Carvalho said:

3 - Through the whole song and into the chorus, go for the more open quality, and ONLY when pitch rises, let the placement lift and the vowel round more, the position is similar to what you are doing on the chorus now but you can't back off the energy, if you change the vowel and place it higher like you are used to, the quality will adjust, don't do anything else. I would practice this on All the Young Dudes too, he does it on the chorus, going from open to narrow back to open.

Hi Felipe.  Thank you for your detailed feedback.  I uunderstand when you say "open quality" but what exactly are you referring to in the bolded portion above?  Is it a physical sensation(like rounding of the lips) or a vowel modification?  Can you please clarify? 

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I think Felipe has a good point here. I think I know what he is talking about with the 'roundness' of the timbre. He's more skilled than I am at demonstrating this, but if you're having trouble understanding the generalized sound, I displayed extreme vowels and sung centered on them in the chorus and then attempted somewhere in between:

https://app.box.com/s/c0vuvtgent151tgbyhxachmwgfpmlpzd

The first is like an 'a' vowel, kind of like apple, or cat. It's twangy, catty, kind of high larynx and more nasal. It's a bit closer to what you're doing and is much closer to the voice you started with, but you might be opening up your soft palate a bit more.

The second is kind of a round sounding vowel. We don't really have a way to type it in English. It's kind of an ooh, kind of an oh, and kind of an uh. For me I picture an invisible L with my tongue. If you do the extreme in falsetto I've been told it sounds like a woman. If you do it lower pitched and with more volume and support in the lower register it might sound more like a cartoon opera voice. 

So those are two extremes. Neither are something I'd sing with, the cartoon opera thing was kind of forced and the cattier thing was very harsh and nasally. The last attempt was to find somewhere in between the extreme sounds.

What you could do is explore the cartoon opera thing, find the placement, try to get it so it's not straining and pushing and then move back more towards the cattier, quackier, nasally position. See if there is a spot in between that you like best for your voice.

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@aaravin this is what I mean:

https://app.box.com/s/8k1pvrn1h544eggheypvlzi8orxc09n3

First more on the direction of what you did on the song, then how I would try to go if I was trying to emulate Bruce and how I believe will help you (get the quality of the low range on All the Young dudes and dont hold back the energy), and then how I normally sing it which sounds best in my voice in my opinion.

The higher area of the chorus you have to round, but, it sounds really cool if you open on "run" and it will make the phrasing easier too. First sample of the chorus is all rounded, second sample opens on run and rounds on the rest. To get that narrow sound Bruce does I would aim the sound directly up (its what I do normally), to go for a more centered approach just lift the placement a little bit but keep it forward, will sound different but more natural.

 

Hope it helps!

 

This needs a strong support to work well though, or else you will end up flipping when you enter head voice which does not sound so nice on these songs.

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On 1/22/2016 at 6:11 AM, Felipe Carvalho said:

@aaravin this is what I mean:

https://app.box.com/s/8k1pvrn1h544eggheypvlzi8orxc09n3

First more on the direction of what you did on the song, then how I would try to go if I was trying to emulate Bruce and how I believe will help you (get the quality of the low range on All the Young dudes and dont hold back the energy), and then how I normally sing it which sounds best in my voice in my opinion.

The higher area of the chorus you have to round, but, it sounds really cool if you open on "run" and it will make the phrasing easier too. First sample of the chorus is all rounded, second sample opens on run and rounds on the rest. To get that narrow sound Bruce does I would aim the sound directly up (its what I do normally), to go for a more centered approach just lift the placement a little bit but keep it forward, will sound different but more natural.

 

Hope it helps!

 

This needs a strong support to work well though, or else you will end up flipping when you enter head voice which does not sound so nice on these songs.

Hey Felipe.. Thanks a lot for producing the sample audio.  I think it will take me several weeks to digest the information, keep experimenting with my voice and come up with my next version.  

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