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The difference in head voice between girls and guys.

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This is something that I've been wondering about lately. I've noticed that for girls who haven't been singing very long (more than a few years) singing with a strong, thick head voice sound is difficult, I hear a lot of them refer to it as falsetto (and that is what it sounds like). However I know (or have falsely assumed?) that it's not true falsetto, or what I would personally call falsetto because they can usually slide up into it from a comfortable chest voice note.

Unless falsetto is connected to modal voice for people with higher voices? I wouldn't know, but I suppose it would make some sense if it is. Can TA connection drop out completely without creating a distinct break? Mine can at very low volumes but I don't see it as something I can do while actually singing. I wish I had started singing before my voice changed :P

Guys seem to have the opposite problem. If an adolescent or mature male can sing in head voice at all it's usually easier to scream it than it is to sing softly. Singing softly in head voice with control and minimizing wasted air can take many years and is physically tiring from what I gather. I can't really do it yet. If you watch an operatic dramatic tenor singing in light mezza voce you can tell that he is working. Whereas leggiero tenors seem to have a lot less difficulty.

Is this due to a female's (or anyone with lighter) TA muscles facilitating CT connection better? And perhaps a male's thick (therefore tensed/more active?) TA muscles create the loudness and sharpness in a male head voice?

Or have I completely misunderstood everything?

I work at a rock music summer camp and one of the songs we we considered playing was Back in Black. The girl who would have been singing it was wondering how a guy got his voice that high and I explained that Brian Johnson wasn't singing in chest, he was singing it all in head. She was kind of like "really? no way!" when I explained this. She sings in her school chorus so naturally, her head voice is connected but light and falsetto sounding. There isn't any wasted air to speak of; it's rounded, light and not so loud. Like a choral singer can be expected to sound. Could she hypothetically learn to sing in a loud and sharp head voice? Not that I plan on teaching her to do so, I'm just curious.

Also I would like to thank Geno P. for the NCVS link and matrix in one of his threads. Hell, this inquiry probably could have gone in that thread.

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Rock music camp? What a cool job!

Falsetto can be connected seamlessly - I just tried it and I can do it. And Robert Lunte demonstrates going from falsetto to a head voice and then to a scream in one of his videos. As far as the strength of the TA, Steven Fraser says it is more awkward for a Bass because of the thickness of the TA. But Steven is a bass and his top note is a C#6, so I would say that anyone can learn how to coordinate the TA / CT.

I think that the girl at camp could learn how to sing Black in Black with a strong head voice. She must have some sort of a chest voice and then it's a matter of learning to coordinate more of the TA with her head voice so that she can keep a thick tone up there. And then the sharpness could come with increased twang. That's just my opinion (I am not an expert!)


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I can maybe try to answer the topic. I'll make it simple and I'm not a teacher but this is my experience 'cause i like to listen to sounds!

Headvoice is the same for boys and girls imo.

When I went to music high school and had choir lessons, many boys don't sing in headvoice I think. They sing in mixvoice. But constricted.

When a guy is joking and talking like a woman, that's not headvoice, that's falsetto. Falsetto can sound like headvoice, but it sounds pushed and constricted. You hear less air the higher you go in pitch. This I discovered myself with my own voice as well. And when you also go higher and higher in falsetto. There's will be a stop and this is why many teachers say you reached your top note you can't go higher anymore. But we know now that's nonsense :)

When you hear girls singing in a choir, that's also not their headvoice. It sounds airy, that's falsetto! The higher they go, the less air you will hear, and lure you to be headvoice. 'Cause obviously it also resonates in your headvoice, same for men and women!

So to my belief, headvoice is a hard term to understand. Many times people refer it to where it's resonating, and many times people refer it as a sound and so. The real headvoice sound, resonates in your head, and has a rounder sound, than a falsetto sound, which ALSO resonates in yoour head voice, but a bit off.

With the Headvoice, headvoice - The larynx is not pushed up and it's not constricted or so on. It raises VERY little!

With the Falsetto - The larynx raises until there's a stop! It will also make your jaw, toungue and so on work harder as you go higher up.

TO summarize, Headvoice is a term described for both as resonating in your head, and as a rounder sound. Falsetto is a term where there's more air goin' through your vocal cords so it's less possible for the vocal cords to close. Falsetto is not proper singing to my belief.

This falsetto-sound, however, can be used as an effect. But there I'm not sure if you really use Falsetto or another healthier technique to obtain this breathy sound. If you like this sound, don't use it because it sounds cool, use it when the emotions in the songs tells you to use it.

I would go to a teacher to learn this breathy sound, and the same rules for the proper headvoice sound. :)

Please, I'm not a teacher. But I hope you will understand what I wrote.. here's a link to maybe trust a bit more than me, he's epic!

Hope you will enjoy it!

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haha we all know about Brett Manning. His system doesn't really work for everything that I want to do but I found him helpful starting out a couple years ago. I think Geno answered my question when he said that falsetto can connect with head voice seamlessly. I'm a low baritone so this isn't necessarily the case with me.

Also, falsetto isn't necessarily airy and airy isn't necessarily falsetto. Like a Michael Jackson OOH HOO! squeal or a high 5th octave power metal scream isn't breathy. I can usually sing falsetto as low as g4 without sounding breathy.

here's a strong falsetto sound.

as for head voice and mezza voce

the top notes here are about as controlled as true head voice gets. That's the sound that most tenors (and basses for that matter) would kill babies for. 1:38 in particular is insane.

There's not really any such thing as mix voice. There's blending of TA and CT connection if that's what you mean by mixed voice in which case anything that isn't falsetto is mixed voice.

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but yes i knew that they were the same vocal mechanisms. anatomically nothing is different besides proportion. i was just thought that it was interesting that girls and guys often have almost the exact opposite problems with learning to sing high.

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Well.. to me mix voice exist. It's a matter of what vocal method you believe in.

I've no idea what TA or CT is but mix voice is simply when you can connect chestvoice with headvoice without any breaks. And for that matter, it's just a word.. said by ONE or MANY methods. My teacher tells me, there's your mix.. but I can think instead.. "ok there's my diamond". And the falsetto thing.. I call my breathy voice for falsetto.. you call it what you want. :) It's all just words.

Brett Manning can't help a whole world.. neither can other experienced vocal teachers.. It's also a lot about the chemistry between the teacher and student, the ability form the teacher to BE a teacher etc. I've been to 5 different coaches.. spending 6 months with each.. it's finally with my SLS teacher as I find success. We're different.. and also.. the vocal method doesn't always tell yu if it's a great vocal method.. mostly it's the ambition by the teacher.

To me.. it's ridiculous to say that mix voice doesn't exist.. it's simply just a word for a technique to learn.. I went to a teacher who didn't use any word like chest voice, headvoice or so.. and said more like alien-words I didn't have a clue what it is.. to me that was very disturbing... but yeah.. some love vocal technique.. I love to sing and I trust my teacher :)

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