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[JAPANESE MUSIC CONTENT] What's this singer's technique?


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Hi everyone!

I don't think you often come across Japanese music here, but anyway, I'm an aspiring Japanese pop singer. The songs I listen to are, to my ears at least, very different from western songs. I posted 2 videos of my idol singer singing. I'd like to sing in his style, and I was wondering what is his general "technique" to begin with. Can you guys tell? Speech Level singing, or abdominal singing, etc. Also, what "genre" do these 2 songs belong to? I personally think they're a kind of mixture of pop and rock (lots of shouting in high notes and high pitch, but doesn't sound as hardcore as rock).

The 2 songs:



Also... since I live in Canada, it's pretty hard to get a teacher who specifically teaches Japanese pop. I'm afraid that almost any teacher in North America just focus on western songs and can't teach me to sing what I want to sing. Would any of you have a recommandation for me, as to which vocal coach I should go to to learn to songs like the ones I've posted above in a style similar to that singer's? I'm completely fine with webcam lessons, so the location isn't a problem at all. I'm making money this summer, so I can afford some expensive lessons. Quality is the top priority. Some of my friends recommanded me Singing Success studio of Brett Manning, but they don't seem to focus on this kind of pop/rock music, and honestly I don't even think Brett Manning himself can sing as energetically as the Japanese singer I've showcased (the teacher has to be able to DO it to be able to TEACH it, right?). Some others have suggested Ken Tamplin Vocal Academy, and although that dude sings rock very well, it seems he focuses on pure hardcore rock (heavy tone when shouting, lot of fry; I want to be able to shout in a light and clear tone like in the 2 songs above), so then again, I have doubts. Voice coaching seems like one of the biggest frauds in this society, and even when it is not, sometimes some teachers just can't teach a specific genre, so I really need recommandations before choosing.

Thanks a bucketload if you've taken the time to listen to a bit of the 2 songs and read all this text wall. Help would be greatly appreciated! Thanks again!

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Well resonated head voice. That is what the singer is doing. So, you need a coach who gives headvoice the proper attention it deserves. Outside of the classical opera world, that person is Robert Lunte, benefactor of this forum and the main website.

Try this link:


No, I am not a student of Lunte's system, 4 Pillars. I don't work for him. I am a fan of his performances, from which his teaching style arises. Of any of the modern vocalist coaches, he has the respect for head voice it deserves. The only thing I could suggest is get into headvoice even earlier than he suggests. As in, always sing in headvoice. No break, no problem, you will always have the right breath, etcetera, etcetera. The next best thing is to have a classical voice instructor from the 1900's. And yeah, I know, people are afraid of classical based instruction. My reply is, "Grow up! Grow a pair! Put on your long pants and start shaving and behaving like an adult." Sorry, that was a little strong but too much attention is paid to the frippery of pop singing, like rasp and sound effects. The singer you posted is singing classically. And Lunte can help you do that.

And yes, Lunte can help you do rasp and stuff like that but please, for all that is right in the world, don't make sounding like Janis Joplin (no matter how much even I like her) be your goal. Your goal is to sing as you, but confidently. Which is harder than it sounds. Because of psychology, not anything physical.

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Thanks for the reply! I'll definitely check out that link!

You said that he is singing classically. Could you elaborate? I'm a starter in all this music world, and when I hear "classical" I just think of "opera". In what way was he singing classically? How could I hear it?


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Because he is singing in head voice. By that, I mean, the tones are resonating in his head, specifically, above the soft palate. Take a finger and feel along the roof of your mouth. Feel the hard part? That is the hard palate. Go a little further back and feel the soft part that gives way. That is the soft palate. When you raise it, accomplished with slight smile or yawning sensation, you physically open the passage to the resonating chambers in the head. A simple fact of physics. High notes are physically small notes and need a small space to resonate in. Volume comes from resonance, not air pressure or air speed. The same way a piano or acoustic guitar gives volume by resonating. The strings themselves don't make a loud noise. Same with your voice. If you don't raise the soft palate to allow access to the smaller resonating spaces, then your mind will tell your larynx to rise up too much in order to create a small resonating space. This puts undue strain on both your vocal chords (folds) which are now stretched to the limit, and the elevator muscles that move the larynx up and down. By the way, the back of the tongue is connected to the same muscle that lowers and raises the front of the larynx. Under such strain, the body tries to push more air to keep the dangerously thinned out folds vibrating until they give way to strain and fly apart and you flip into falsetto. If you keep doing that, the folds will also keep hitting each in a hard fashion and build up a callus, called a nodule.

If you resonate in the head, even on lower notes that are not at the top of your range, the mind will not need to tell the larynx to rise up to create the right size of resonance because you are already in the right size of resonance in the head. The larynx then remains stable, rising and lowering just a tiny bit. This takes the strain off the folds, which can now vibrate fully at whatever pitch. With that happening, your mind will regulate the air pressure just enough to make the sound. You get your volume from resonance. You did it as a baby. All that the training is doing is to help you get out of your own way and do what you once did, naturally.

Singing in headvoice, regardless of range means feeling the notes mostly behind your nose but the high notes feel higher. About middle of my range feels right behind my eyes. My highest notes feel like they are tickling the crown of my skull. If you look for those feelings, you are in headvoice. Keep it there.

Those guidelines are most often found in classical instruction, especially instruction from the early 20th century, from both doctors of the voice and teachers. The way of chest voice is the way of vocal death.

Ergo, your singer was singing classically, even if he wasn't using the classical singer's formant of keeping the larynx low, which provides a dark, heavy sound.

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