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Need Some Advice For Upcoming Recording

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Matt
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Hey Guys! Sites looking good!

I used to sing like hell 15 years ago, but real life caught up on me and I never became the rockstar I thought I was destined for :/

Anyway, never stopped listening and wailing in the shower and at parties, even though my father, as a jazzmusician was fairly haughty about rock musicians...

So I've just been offered to record Edie Ciao Baby, by the cult. I love Ians rockstar style, but I was never too impressed with his voice which seems to have wide open, woofy chords, but no matter.

This is roughly what I sound like, though having done lip rolls, "creakiness" to get the chords together and glissandos on Aaah, etc for a month now I'm sounding a but better than this cell phone recording. Was in a studio today and I was pretty pleased with the sound, however, my voice was shutting off at around G# which was a bit embarrassing...

This awful recording, which is the only thing I have at home at the moment, shows roughly where I am, though I've lost some of the ugly woofiness which is most obvious towards the end of the recording.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v82LWlYfovo&feature=related

Any tips? Where am I? Whats my biggest weakness/strength?

Also, having done "creaky" exercises to join the chords, I'm noticing the place that I used to think was comfortable back when I used to sing a lot, which I mentally think of as a ping pong ball resting on air just above the chords. Is this a correct placement?

I'll be really grateful for any pointers and thanks a lot for the site!

Matt

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I don't hear such bad things as you say:-)

I think you gotta be more bluesy..more...sexy..more into the lyrics...good vibrato tho:-)

You're really into cov bro!!!

Remember David before joing purple was only a clerk..and he was very goofy....glasses...fat...FLAT....my god..Ian told about his first recording of burn..he was terrified and did everything wrong:-)ahahah

But see what he became just six months after joining them..he WAS deep purple..and became the most famous former deep purple member..even more famous than deep purple themselves!

So..leave bulls**t behind you...now it's time to ROCKKKKK!!!!!

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Thanks so much for the opinions!

You're right about more blues, more soul, more sex, more syncopated. Thanks for pointing that out. ;)

Would you say I'm totally in chest voice here? I think the reason that my voice was shutting off at G# was because I have little confidence in going into my head voice, which actually sounds quite alright - I think...

I think this is my head voice...(though once again, pretty stiff and unsexy...:P)?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0aqZcEYzp3M&feature=channel

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hi matt.

let me just start off by saying you have a very nice/good voice :)

the second recording is not in head voice. the highest notes you are producing there are at the top of your chest voice going into the mix area.

most people without training will have a break or flip when going from low to high notes and it may be that when you were singing more full time you conditioned your voice to co-ordinate that area successfully, however i would imagine without proper practice in that area the ´´bridging`` co-ordination would be one of the first things to go so to speak (infact maybe even those individuals that natuarlly bridged without needing training might find that without prolonged practice it fades, who knows?) anyway the thing you DONT want to do in an attempt to sing high but with a full tone is pull chest voice up (some of the signs of pulling chest voice up are if the words/tones sound kind of shouty and splatty, you HAVE to sing much louder and your larynx comes up really high) you need to do excersises that will help co-ordinate the transition between chest and head voice. personally i like the contemporary vocal methods that are based on the original bel canto techniques such as Speech Level Singing, Singing Success and teachers like Roger Lover and Thomas Appell as i think they deal with the issue of bridging (as well as bringing out the best in a voice) the best.

like i say you do have a good voice, nice intonation and runs etc. one little tip is that, and it may just be the recording, it sounds a little bit nasal which can screw things up technically so its worth working on that if its there . try simply holding your nose as you sing (this will identify straight away if you are singing out the nose as you will sound like you have a cold the whole time) and try to imagine/think/direct the words out your mouth. act like you are talking to someone across the room, that sometimes helps to project the sound out the mouth.

as for the age issue i dont think it matters. i mean look at the rockers like Alice Cooper, Maiden, Preist and of course Coverdale. rock and metal fans arent as superficial, we care about talent not age!!!

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I thought your voice sounds good, granted the recording is a bit low-fi... Hey Matt, your a good singer and you are not too old to be a "star" as a rock singer... sing projects, regional bands, etc... you can still be a regional hit... This was nicely bluesy...

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yeah a good dose of silence is always a good one when youve over done it a little. i find that sometimes if you can feel you may be starting to do something wrong in the midst of singing even a little 30 second-1 min rest can give you enough time to re-co-ordinate (ah there is a purpose for solo´s afterall :P)

sorry was a reply to another thread lol......................................

as for the recording of The Cult song, as far as i remember it doesnt go that high and if it does go past your break point you might be better off just transposing the notes rather than pushing and pulling up chest voice untill you can co-ordinate the area properly.

i would keep practicing your ´´creaky`` excersises and simple scales and sirens/glissando´s on narrow vowels such as OOO as in FOOD a EEE as in FEED to get you going.

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Thanks a huge amount everyone. The cult song goes to around G, which I'm usually fairly comfortable with. I would like to squeeze in a couple of A's towards the end - I can accomplish that with some fairly incorrect and strained vocals which is usually acceptable in rock, but I'd much prefer to be able to keep a nice timbre even in my yelling, not to mention how nice it would be to not feel like my throat is lined with sandpaper after that.

Funny how I intuitively discovered myself about Ooo's and Eee's long before I ever opened a book on technique. Of course, that was because I noticed how much weaker those vowels would be and any lyric I ever wrote, I made sure that the high notes only had Aaahs in 'em...;)

I also always thought the typical Bon Jovi "Mey" instead of "Me" was very ugly, and even as a kid it was obvious that Ronnie Dio was booming out those vowels without blinking.

I thought the second track was in headish voice, though CotU says its mixed, which I gues I can agree wtih. My terminology was probably a little confused - I seem to be able to distinctly feel the sounds being formed higher up all along the hard palate if I allow them to, if I try to stay relaxed, once I pass, say F - F#. I'm just not sure if I should allow my voice to do that, if its right or wrong? It feels quite right, but one never knows if thats because ones cheating. I suppose the reason I'm unsure about that is because I can't really feel any connection between my breathing and the tone, in the more obvious way that I can feel my breathing working with my chest voice at lower notes.

I also tried holding my nose and there was no problem or change in tone, apart from obvious consonants like N.

Not pulling chest voice is something I'm going to have to think about. I simply want to be creaking as I go into head voice, is that correct?

Can anyone hear whether my breathing seems OK?

I just love the stuff I'm learning here, reading both my problems and others.

Yay TMV!

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hi matt,

well the feeling of placement you described seems quite natural to me, some advocate focusing the tone or placement in the ´´mask`` i personally let the placement go where it naturally wants to go as some techniques perscribe and that usualy involves the higher the pitch and dependeant on the vowel, the more the feeling of the tone arcing backwards untill it reaches the soft palate and feels detached like its shooting up through the top back of the head. it doent mean that you wont feel some vibrations in the mask its just that your not trying to actively focus it there. but hey try it, it may work for you just dont let it go in the nose.

as for the vowels you are right the narrow OOOs and EEES are on the headier/lighter side of the fence but they can help negociate the bridge. if you can go from chest to head without a flip or break on those then you may want to try some wider vowles like AH as in FATHER that have a thicker texture. as for the breathing thing well maybe what your experiencing is that low pitches require more air than high ones so sometimes high pitches can feel kinda detached because your using much less air and energy.

as for the nose thing, thats cool and like you say consonants like N and M will naturally go there you only have problems when vowels go there.

you are right that having a creaky or whimpering/crying like quality to the sound can help adduct the cords for high pitches but dont overdo it.

dude i highly suggest you investigate a book or CD training (some of which are really not exspensive) like the ones i suggested or if you can afford it take some lessons with a SLS teacher or similar. you seem to already have some knowledge or natural inclinations that are going down the right path so i suggest you keep going!

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I never understood singing into the "mask". I can direct my voice so my face is buzzing, but it feels unnatural and it probably sounds like nasal crap..? I can do exercises and feel my cheekbones buzzing etc, but I don't understand why I should be doing that...perhaps I overdo it when I try it. When I sing with a tone I'm happy with, my face doesnt buzz.

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I never understood singing into the "mask". I can direct my voice so my face is buzzing, but it feels unnatural and it probably sounds like nasal crap..? I can do exercises and feel my cheekbones buzzing etc, but I don't understand why I should be doing that...perhaps I overdo it when I try it. When I sing with a tone I'm happy with, my face doesnt buzz.

Matt: There are plenty of folks that sing quite well that do not feel the buzz. I would not worry about it.

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Hehe, I'm still worried why I don't understand the mask though...

Anyway, is this pure head voice? Please, please note, I'm not in any way trying to sound good, or even remember the lyrics, I'm just trying to find a sound that even though it sounds horrible and strained is quite easy and in actuality not very strained for me to produce, and whether this is what I should be trying to develop, or whether its the wrong track completely:

http://media-mobi.com/en/?play-fkjs5ysutrbaqfpvbij4xhkrajhmmlxi

http://media-mobi.com/en/?play-e1gjhmi9kbv27in42uofsw9o87gs4a2d

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The mask is a sensation. You don't need to use it as a sensation if it doesn't hit home for you.

Here's a picture of where resonance is actually happening :

The rest of the resonances we feel are sympathic resonance.

So don't worry about it :P

Btw Matt I suggest that you read all the posts, because allready alot of stuff would come clear to you if you read them and wouldn't have to ask those questions :P

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actually this diagram is incorrect, if you mean that primary resonances are created in the circled area of pharynx.

That is definitely an area where resonance is felt, and even more significantly, where we feel muscles changing as we adjust resonance. But even this is indirect.

In this diagram, the unmarked area between "larynx" and "epiglottis" --AKA the laryngeal vestibule, epilaryngeal tube, or ary-epiglottic region -- is where primary resonance shaping occurs.

when this region is a little tighter --aryg-epiglottic folds pulling more taut like a drawstring at top, and inner surfaces also slightly more tense, reinforcing bright harmonics -- "twang" and other "forward resonances" are shaped. This is my rudimentary understanding, again I refer to the geekier work by Titze, Estill, Sundberg for better detail.

hardy any epilaryngeal activity can be felt consciously because the region just doesn't send much muscle-status info up to the brain.

So a teacher is going to refer to the stuff that CAn be felt.

Yes Robert the importance for a singing student is how well teacher is able to draw the right stuff out of your semi-unconscious instrument. I just think it's important for TEACHERS to stay up to date on their knowledge.

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In this diagram, the unmarked area between "larynx" and "epiglottis" --AKA the laryngeal vestibule, epilaryngeal tube, or ary-epiglottic region -- is where primary resonance shaping occurs.

when this region is a little tighter --aryg-epiglottic folds pulling more taut like a drawstring at top, and inner surfaces also slightly more tense, reinforcing bright harmonics -- "twang" and other "forward resonances" are shaped. This is my rudimentary understanding, again I refer to the geekier work by Titze, Estill, Sundberg for better detail.

Joanna,

Great stuff. Extending the idea, the configuration of the epilaryngeal tube, so that it acts as a resonator in its own right, will affect the strength of harmonics in the singer's formant region by facilitating the clustering of formants F3, F4 and F5. It does this with minimal effect on the resonances which form the vowels (F1 and F2).

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Thanks Steve -

There was a very funny bit last June, at Voice Foundation Symposium. Johann Sundberg gave a keynote on resonance & formants. He played a high coloratura soprano note, followed by a clip of crowing rooster. Fundamental, F1 and F2 were identical; only when he included F3- F5 could one distinguish the singer from the cackle! :)

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matt,

first clip is in the mix area. watch your vowels cos you splat the word TAKE at 0:18 which is why its sounds a bit pulled (your larynx probably came up as a consequence and your tone may have felt strangled off)

second clip is indeed sliding from the mix area into the head voice but its mixed head voice, which is too say it has some of that fullness of chest voice with it-which is what you want. once again watch your vowels the IT of TAKE IT sounds strained try singing it with a more OOO shaped lips. the DAY sounds much better and i reckon it felt easier too.

i think you are heading down the right path you just need a few pointers- i reckon with a little guidance you would ´get it` much faster than most.

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Some great adivce for me. I understand perfectly the "splat" people are talking about etc. You guys are teaching me how to handle my voice.

Suddenly, it came to me what my headvoice was, without practicing but just through reading this stuff while at my mums for xmas.

This is my mix with quite a good deal of head resonance, for example on the word "you", correct?

http://media-mobi.com/en/?play-gkrepknxoctcrcnkqu0qladd1664ghu0

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Some great adivce for me. I understand perfectly the "splat" people are talking about etc. You guys are teaching me how to handle my voice.

Suddenly, it came to me what my headvoice was, without practicing but just through reading this stuff while at my mums for xmas.

This is my mix with quite a good deal of head resonance, for example on the word "you", correct?

http://media-mobi.com/en/?play-gkrepknxoctcrcnkqu0qladd1664ghu0

Matt: Sounds very good! Hooray for you. Here is what the spectragraph looks like for the oo vowel of the last note:

Enjoy!

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Heh, I'm not sure how to read the spectragraph...though it looks pretty stable and even?

Anyway, this headvoice is the voice I've always been afraid of using, always thought it sounded weak - and it was lying there dormant all the time...Now I just need to get used to using it without fear and developing it, I think? So much of this is about just being told which direction to go in, it seems...If this is correct, I finally understand what headvoice is about, and even how I'll go about finding more resonance to increase tone quality in my head. The last "bringing me home" for example I simply didn't allow to resonate enough. I can quite clearly feel and even hear where and how it resonates in the head...a breakthrough it would seem

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