Felipe Carvalho Posted July 26, 2019 Share Posted July 26, 2019 Alright, I don't want to discuss the religious aspect of the title. The meaning intended is "don't mix apples with oranges". Since I started to search for information about singing technique a long, long time ago, and also later when I began participating on online singing communities, a constant problem and complaint is that it's just all too confusing. Too many terms with similar meaning, discussions that many blame on terminology and invention of new terms that try to fix the problem only to then become a part of the problem itself, and so on. However, at the same time, it's been also my experience in direct exchange with skilled singers, that the terminology ceases being a problem when both sides are competent enough and share at least a few similar skills (which is very often the case). Which indicates an underlying common organization. Problem is, this is often just intuitive/practical. So what could that be? Here are the things that seem to be present when talking about technique with different people from different backgrounds (trained singers from different methods): Perception - How something sounds like, what are the qualities you can identify on it by listening. Practice/Execution - How to do it, references and exercises that leads to a certain idea. Sensations - How it feels like to do something, a reference of sensation. Mechanics - What is actually going on, how and why these other things happen. And now I will try to clarify the problem by comparing classical covering with CVT curbing: Covering: Perception - middle to high intensity / cry Practice/Execution - Try doing a dopey voice/Change vowels to UH Sensations - Voice against the nose/Vibrations on the upper part of the head Mechanics - Back of the tongue elevates/Soft palate elevates/Keep considerable amount of twang/reinforcement of 3rd and 4th partials. Curbing: Perception - Held Back / middle intensity / cry Practice/Execution - Try to make stomach aching voice. Change vowels to UH and IH Sensations - Sensation of hold on the throat area. Mechanics - Keep closure levels "middle" / middle level of constriction on the epilarynx / more "equal" level on the spectra up to around 3KHz, And that's where confusion comes from. First because often technical definitions have a primary focus. CVT has strong focus on Perception, how things sound like. While classical technique focus a lot of execution and sensation. Other technical approaches are more about the mechanics. At the same time even if their focus is fixed in one or two key aspects, they all need to address each of these aspects at least to some degree, otherwise the search becomes blind. The result is that from CVT perspective, Covering is curbing, since the quality description seems really fit for it. But from classical perspective, Covering is not Curbing because the orientations to produce Curbing will not lead to the same mechanical principle and execution, and this matters quite a bit. Even if the quality is indeed similar, it's different enough to bring a different flavor when both are used on songs. A cry is present on covering but it's at the same time darker and more "floaty" sounding during phrasing than on curbing. Using covering to sing Soul for example is not very effective, it just does not fit in as well as curbing even if the quality is almost there. And using curbing on Power Metal gets extremely taxing when you go past a certain point in pitch. So when you are looking for information on technique, try to understand where what is being said about the said technique fits. This can really help avoiding confusion and keeping things organized, as well as will open up possibilities to conciliate apparently opposing views (which often leads to better understanding). It will also help you identifying problematic information sources that either ignore some of these key elements but refuse and even act with fear and spite towards one or another of these aspects. And of course remember, the very least anyone talking about technique should be able to do is to sing using it. 1 Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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