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Ehs and Ohs in the tenor range

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jonpall
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Hi,

When I'm singing a melody that has a few Eh (as in "set") or Oh (as in "so") vowels in the tenor range and the volume has to be medium loud or higher, I sometimes run into trouble because those two vowels can easily be sung a bit LOUDER than other vowels. I can start to sing EVERYTHING loud as the song goes on, or I can modify the vowels, which often just doesn't sound as powerful ESPECIALLY on those two vowels (just think of Journey's "Open arms" - "...so now I COOOOOME to you" - using either Uh or O in the word "come" just isn't as powerful as using Oh).

I wonder what you guys are doing with these vowels. Anyone want to comment?

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jonpall, if i were doing that song on the "come" i'd sing at as "c-ah-m." yawn, open the throat, emphasizing the "ah" and let it bounce off the palate supported and anchored well.. get off the "c" quickly and on to the "ah" hit the "m" at the very end. all the emphasis would be on the "ah."

for my voice it suits me well. hope i've helped.

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Thanks Bob. Now you know that people pronounce english vowels differently depending on where they live, so would it be safe to say that there is a little bit of the Uh vowel in there, too, like in "bird"?

It's interesting because I often have good luck doing EXACTLY what you described - keeping the focus in the soft palate, yawning, and kind of letting all vowels come from the same place. When doing that, my ees sound like like a mixture between "see" and "set" (probably the most accurate would be something similar to the word "hit") and my oos sounds like "could". Is it similar for you? And from which vocal program did you get this stuff from?

Note that these are SEVERAL questions :)

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no, for me it's "ah" as in father....very important... not "ah" as in "lather."

i tried "open arms" and studying youtubes of steve perry if you notice he uses a lot of vowel mods. for his vocals expertly. a lot of times he shades to "ah's"

here's what i mean:

lahying bisahd you heah in the dahk, feelin yah hahrt bea in mahn

singing with that "ah" discipline really keeps you open and relaxed. again, for me, it works.

thank god, "ee" comes easy to me, i do stay in a yawn setup and a slight smile and when i go up high i think "eight" but sing "ee." my "ee's" are very bright and piercing so i have watch i'm not too shrill on them. i personally love the sound of "ee" when singing it cuts across like a knife.

which programs, oh man, that's tough to pinpoint....the programs are the one's we talk about on the forum, vendera's, tamplin's, lugo's, now i have that book "voice of the mind" i found on amazon used...i just finished "singing and the actor where i learned a lot....i guess i like to read multiple perspectives and glean info from each one.

i also learned a lot here.....i think it was steve fraser that said you have to eventually start tuning your own vocal tract and find the right vowel configuration per your particular vocal physiology.

i recently discovered i could get myself into a much easier "gone" that you have to deal with when singing "that was yesterday"

the part where gramm sings "now yesterday's gone....oooooooooooooooo (the ooooooo's are tricky.)

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Any reason why you prefer the Ah vowel? I think I know what you mean, though. It does seem to work somewhat well, although I'm not sure if it's really a 100% pure Ah vowel that comes out. But we could always be talking about slightly different vowels, as always.

And does anyone else want to chime in?

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Second question: Do you (and anyone who wants to comment) allow the Eh and the Oh vowels (like in "name" and "come") to be louder than the other vowels, do you make sure the volume never gets TOO loud or do you sing pretty much everything at maximumum volume, or finally, perhaps everything at about 80-90% volume?

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I was going to say, similar to what I think Steven said in other threads, certain vowel sounds resonate better in a certain resonating space than others. Mainly because of the harmonics in those certain vowel sounds. This creates an apparent increase in volume. So, maybe you have to detune the vowel sound a smidge but that is easier said than done. As you pointed out, how person learned to speak english can depend a lot on where they learned to speak it and how it is affected by their first language, be that english or another language.

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I noticed recently that Eh s and Oh s are pretty hard vowels if I want to keep them at the same level as the others. I'll have to refrain like a LOT, and they can still be quite unstable. If I allow them to do what they want, they're going to be a bit louder. Ah is a bit strange, because it seems to fit ok in both ways. I guess it's because it's like a vowel in between I (sit) and Oh (so).

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Second question: Do you (and anyone who wants to comment) allow the Eh and the Oh vowels (like in "name" and "come") to be louder than the other vowels, do you make sure the volume never gets TOO loud or do you sing pretty much everything at maximumum volume, or finally, perhaps everything at about 80-90% volume?

that's a good question...i really don't worry too much about volume, preferring to sing with just enough (lately) hit the notes with nice a ring if i can....lol!!!

but i want to mention "eh" "oh" are harder than "ah's" and "ee's" .....

but if this helps "come" i would approach almost as an "uh" as in tough.

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I have to watch out for the Ehs and Ohs or they can get away from me and not fit the mode of the song. But if the song can use the louder dynamic to make it work better, I'm more than willing to let 'er rip!:P

I actually like those 2 vowels and find them easier most of the time. Probably because my tendency is to sing a little louder (thicker folds) than is needed on a lot of songs. Which has kind of changed my focus of late; pulling the volume back somewhat and let those lighter sounds get a little practice balancing with lighter air flow. I'm actually starting to enjoy that way too.

But back to your question, I like to take advantage of those loud vowels wherever I can, but reign them in when it messes up the context.

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