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Problem with technique...

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voc-al
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Hey Guys.

I have started about a 5 days ago, the singing for the stars SLS program. I practice every day for approximately 30 to 40 minutes.

While doing my Tongue trills today, I noticed my voice got hoarse. I then stopped and am now sipping hot tea :)

I don't feel as if I am pushing or anything like that. Can someone help me sort this issue out?

Thanks!

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Without knowing much more than what you are describing, I would say: Dial it back. You just started and you probably are experiencing a little fatigue. It's not good to practice while fatigued because you can re-inforce bad habits. Take a day off. Next time you practice put time between each exercise - like practice one exercise for 2 minutes, wait 10 minutes, do the next exercise, and so on.

The other thing is support. I don't know much about your program so I don't know what kind of importance they place on support. If you are not creating enough / consistent air pressure below the folds, your folds will take on additional stress. So make sure you've got good consistent support while doing the exercises.

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Hey Geno!

Thanks for the reply!

My problem regarding air support is, I feel I might be using too much, because when I do the volume just spikes up, and from the few lessons I took with a vocal coach, I got the assumption that all notes should be the same volume throughout the range when I do a lip roll for example, or nay.

Would not enough air support cause me to feel hoarse?

Another issue I have is when I get higher, I feel my voice is airy. Thats when I sing normally, not during lip rolls.

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It would be helpful if you posted a clip.

Yes, not enough support can be a problem. Air in the voice should only be done in really "light" singing, otherwise that can cause problems too.

I wouldn't worry about volume spikes at the beginning. Once you are good at the lip rolls, you can do them throughout your range with even volume and even pressure. But at the beginning, error on the side of too much support. If you have to get a little louder, like when approaching your passagio - E4 to A4 - that's ok. In fact it is preferred. Holding back can be unhealthy.

My suggestions reflect what has worked for me - it may not be what SLS recommends. I'm coming from the Tamplin approach which is a heavier approach, where you start heavier, more belting, and then once the coordination and strength is attained you start to learn how to sing lighter. This approach is basically the same as what I learned from Operatic teachers as well.

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voc - the nays sound good. It sounds a little tense toward the end when you are going high like you're straining a bit, but only you know if you actually are. That wouldn't necessarily be bad if you are supporting. However, long periods of that can cause fatigue.

The lip rolls sound good. The range you did them in is very high. It would be interesting to hear you do them with a wider range from chest, through passagio and into head. like C4 to C5 and back down. Or Bb3 to Bb4.

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voc - the nays sound good. It sounds a little tense toward the end when you are going high like you're straining a bit, but only you know if you actually are. That wouldn't necessarily be bad if you are supporting. However, long periods of that can cause fatigue.

The lip rolls sound good. The range you did them in is very high. It would be interesting to hear you do them with a wider range from chest, through passagio and into head. like C4 to C5 and back down. Or Bb3 to Bb4.

Hey Geno.

I do feel as if I am straining at the top. I also am not sure if I am supporting with enough air, or maybe too much air... Really confusing.

Can you explain as you explain to a noob, what you mean when you said do them with a wider range from chest through passgio into head? C4 to c5 and back down, or Bb3 to Bb4? Just one octave, in other words C,D,E,F,G,A,B,C and back down?

Thanks

VA

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VA - Don't feel alone - Support is confusing, and it is very much tied into breathing. Not sure how SLS describes it. I keep the chest 3/4 full, and maintain that chest position. Then I breath in by moving the abs out and down while keeping the rib cage in place. Some will tell you to pay attention to the lower back too, letting that move out as well. Then, when exhaling and singing, I "push down" on the abs. Some people would say "pull up" but to me pushing down produces a more even upward pressure. For years I "pulled up", and then Tamplin said to push down and this works better for me. To each his own. As you move up above E4, you may need to push down harder. If you are using too much pressure you'll feel it in your neck, below the folds. You'll know it. It's not really harmful though.

The great thing about lip rolls is that the air isn't allowed to escape too fast. It regulates the amount of air, and creates a nice back pressure above the folds. So you get this nice air cusion on top and below the folds which helps the folds vibrate efficiently.

Yes - you got it. An octave major scale starting on C4 or Bb3 - up and down just like you described.

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Keep yourself hydrated while doing your workout.

I usually make myself a tea with lemon, honey tea, organic apple cider

vinegar, and sometimes ginger (to add a kick). I let it cool off while

I'm doing my exercises. Warm water is also OK as long as it's not

too hot or cold.

If you workout your voice 5 or 6 days a week (leave 1 or 2 days for rest), your muscle coordination

will get better and make the exercises easier. So sometimes the problems you get in the

first 6 months of vocal drills is because your muscle coordination is weak. You've only been

doing this for 5 days.

As your voice gets stronger, your body opens up, you'll feel airflow in places you didn't

before, and you'll be more self-conscious of what's going on inside your body. Different parts of

your voice take different times to mature and open up. In my first year of doing daily exercises, every

few weeks I could feel a new area in my vocal tract. That's when you know that your voice is growing.

If you can, stick to a daily regimen, and let your voice grow naturally. Maybe you won't notice a

difference every day, but month-to-month things will change.

Anyway, good luck and don't be afraid of your voice...LOL....

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vNh5YKyf6f8

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Keep yourself hydrated while doing your workout.

I usually make myself a tea with lemon, honey tea, organic apple cider

vinegar, and sometimes ginger (to add a kick). I let it cool off while

I'm doing my exercises. Warm water is also OK as long as it's not

too hot or cold.

If you workout your voice 5 or 6 days a week (leave 1 or 2 days for rest), your muscle coordination

will get better and make the exercises easier. So sometimes the problems you get in the

first 6 months of vocal drills is because your muscle coordination is weak. You've only been

doing this for 5 days.

As your voice gets stronger, your body opens up, you'll feel airflow in places you didn't

before, and you'll be more self-conscious of what's going on inside your body. Different parts of

your voice take different times to mature and open up. In my first year of doing daily exercises, every

few weeks I could feel a new area in my vocal tract. That's when you know that your voice is growing.

If you can, stick to a daily regimen, and let your voice grow naturally. Maybe you won't notice a

difference every day, but month-to-month things will change.

Anyway, good luck and don't be afraid of your voice...LOL....

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vNh5YKyf6f8

Hey Chamcham!

Thanks for the advice! Drinking most definitely helps me. Up to 90 Ounces a day now :)

VA

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