Cone2011 Posted August 24, 2011 Share Posted August 24, 2011 Hello- My name is James, I'm 17 and am from England. I should add that I am into alternative rock music, and am not looking for quite as strong a rock'n'roll voice as I presume most on here are looking for, and after seeing some of Rob's videos, am not really wanting that total 'vocal athleticism'. Don't get me wrong, his voice sounds amazing, and if my taste was a bit heavier (and had I heard of 4 pillars sooner), Lunte would be my first port-of-call. I'd have to say Thom Yorke is my favourite vocalist, maybe you could say he's a bit whiny, but one minute his voice can sound very delicate, the next it's very full. Some time last year I was lent from a relative Brett Manning's Singing Success (first one); I'd been playing the guitar for some time and really wanted to get my singing better. Back then, the only thing I seemed to be interested in was range - I must have assumed that if I hit a note it sounded good. Although I didn't like a lot of aspects of it, the wildly inconsistency of exercise difficulties, the repetition of the same cliches of "this exercise will be the making of you", and the problem of not knowing where to stop as the piano went higher and higher, I guess I can say it improved my range. Then I realised that measuring how good a singer is by his range is like measuring how good a tennis player is by how hard he can hit the ball. I decided to splash out on Mastering Mix ($$$). I have found this a lot better, I've slowly worked through the lessons, it has seemed to improve individually the head and chest areas of my voice nicely. Then it gets annoying. The pharyngeal (which there's a whole CD on) I have no idea what to do with as it seems to just be a slightly less light variation of the head voice, and the problem is, this seems to be what Brett sees as the core of the 'mix'. Because of the options I seem to be given, when ascending it's a choice between pulling up chest or prematurely making a transition into a weak voice. The program suggests if your voice is too breathy in the pharyngeal exercises, the "Edge" lesson will help. So I move on to that and it's a strange old lesson. The vocal fry's purpose for the first 75% of the lesson seems to only be to find you a very pure head tone. There's a lesson called "Pianissimo", which I can only compare to Rob's "Passagio - Lift Up/Pull Back" Youtube lesson, in the fact it looks for a very pure head tone to help you bridge, I think. Brett says you really need this to have a good singing technique and mix, but he never seems to reference it again, it seems pretty redundant right now. It ends with "Extreme Closure" where you have to do scales of a gulping sound, and is meant to help breathy and raspy singers get a clearer tone (not sure how it works for both?). I've repeated that one many times in hope it'll help. Today though I got really disheartened. I've been doing the CD5 "Mix Workout" exercises, and though still a bit too breathy for my liking, I cope okay. Then there's Exercise 8 called "Various Vowels". It is totally impossible. After many low larynx exercises this pops up and the guy on the demonstration suddenly has the full tone in mid-range that I've been hoping to progress somewhere near, and my voice is breathy as anything. The exercise involves going up the scale with a closed vowel to the top where you stay and change to more open ones. I sound heady even in the lower climbs. Long story short, I googled that specific lesson and turned up here on a thread from a year or so ago where comment was made on how a lot of suckers like me fall into the Singing Success "add an octave!!!" trap and end up with very weak heady voices low in their range that are hardly versatile for contemporary music, unless you're a girl, in which case Brett's goal seems to be to help women find their chest voices. Mastering Mix though I genuinely feel that Brett is trying to address that mid-range to make it stronger, rather than make me a choir boy. And maybe it will work in due course, maybe I should forget that exercise as the next lesson is called "Bridge System" and could be my saviour. It's just I don't quite know what to focus on with it. If I am meant to have something even minutely comparable to that full tone by CD5 Ex.8, it isn't working. In that thread from here I earlier mentioned, I only gathered 2 things about Mastering Mix, as it was new at the time. The first that there was a mixed reaction about the "Edge lesson". Some people didn't like how heady that made you go, others liked how it encouraged closure. The second was that someone said Rob approved of Mastering Mix considerably more than Singing Success, but that wasn't elaborated on. I suppose what I'm asking is two things, firstly, what's everyone's opinion on Mastering Mix? Most importantly though, does anyone know how I can use Mastering Mix in the best possible way to aid me as a slightly more rock-orientated singer than Brett caters for? Are there any exercises/lessons I should really do over and over and some I should stay away from? Are there any glaringly obvious things I should know? I'm really sorry for how disorganised this post is, it's just I'm quite demoralised how non-existent the results seem to have been after 3 months of Mastering Mix. I'm not expecting to become some Freddie Mercury, I just want to be able to sing decently in the musical range where most modern alt-rock/pop vocals are. Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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