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How to be sure that I'm in head voice?

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aarondale
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---You can skip this section, it's just a personal background---

Often, teachers explain that one has to sort of learn head voice since we don't use them in our every-day speech.

As I understand, head voice is a very relaxed and piercing tone, like that of Mickey Mouse, Elmo, and other such characters. Here's the catch, I spent my entire life making strange noises and voices. There is not a day that goes by that I am not shouting (with unbelievable ease) like a cartoon or extremely dramatic character. It's in my nature to be loud and over-the-top and super-expressive.

Being that I can so effortlessly reach and support these sounds, why am I not able to sing in my "head"? It should be easy, right? Not so...

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To differentiate pitch from tone, I will refer to the girly screaming (pitch) as "shrieking".

OK, so my sound is very much like Rob Halford and so tend to use his works when practicing and learning techniques. Notice I said my sound is like Rob, meaning I use similar techniques but do not sound like an imitation.

My problem is that I can only shriek in passing. I can't sustain a note when shrieking.

For instance, I can sing You Don't Have to be Old to be Wise, but I can NOT sing Victim of Changes.

I am confused. I know that the opening sustained note of Victim of Changes (Whiskey woman don't you know that you are driving me insane) is head. Right? But is this line in the second verse of You Don't Have to be Old To be Wise a head voice? (Second verse begins after 1:50- Now I don't care if the people stare). Can somebody break down what registers are being used in the latter song, so I know where I am? Like a map that says "You are here", haha.

If these are both head voice, why can I sing one but not sustain on the other? I keep being told that I should feel it vibrating in the back of my head, but I constantly remind whoever is feeding me this ancient rhetoric that my maxillary sinuses were surgically hacked to bits and I still have chronic (PERMANENT) rhinosinusitis. Should my unique sinuses make a difference?

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If these are both head voice, why can I sing one but not sustain on the other? I keep being told that I should feel it vibrating in the back of my head, but I constantly remind whoever is feeding me this ancient rhetoric that my maxillary sinuses were surgically hacked to bits and I still have chronic (PERMANENT) rhinosinusitis. Should my unique sinuses make a difference?

aarondale: forget for a bit where it feels. That is not what makes it head voice. What makes it head voice is the way it is produced, the interaction of the phonation with the resonance.

A question for you: What happens if you sing a siren on EH from the G below middle C to the C above it?

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Hey there, Fraser, I stay in D/FW as well :)

I'm deaf to pitch, I only imitate sounds. Since I can't "sound" like a piano, I can't match a piano's pitch. But with a coach, I will match them spot-on. Hate to say...

Videohere, if I'm able to reach these high frequencies with so much ease, resonance, and fullness, how could I learn to sustain them? Exercises and such...

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Hey there, Fraser, I stay in D/FW as well :)

I'm deaf to pitch, I only imitate sounds. Since I can't "sound" like a piano, I can't match a piano's pitch. But with a coach, I will match them spot-on. Hate to say...

aarondale: That's interesting. Does that mean that you can't do a siren on EH from G3 to G4? Just curious.

If the reply is NO, then there are some exercises that VIDEOHERE will likely supply that you can use to connect the upper part of your voice to the middle.

FYI, while a fair number of persons have trouble taking a note from the timbre of a piano, its a skill that can be learned if you want to.

I hope this is helpful.

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When and where did I say I cannot slide a note up? I simply said I couldn't understand exactly what he was asking me.

What's more concerning right now is that I still don't know if the line of the song I mentioned is head or not... I sing this song exactly as it sounds, so if it is head, then I am singing in my head voice...

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In "You don't have to be old" I think that note is an A4. Some people have increased their range to sing A4 in what would be called "Chest Voice". Some say that anything above G4 is head regardless of what you want to call it.

Again we need someone other than me to give you a definate answer.

I listened to the 2 songs he is using different set up to sing them. Victim of changes is more of a talky kind of sound. Also he is singing Ab4 1/2 step down from A4. Half a step can make a big difference.

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Clever guy, but my main concern was the line in the second verse of You don't have to be old to be wise. The part that I'm uncertain of (whether it's mixed or pure head) is "Now I don't care if the", at the beginning of the verse.

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And I'm not too far from the DFW area. I'm 2 towns away from the Red River. If I sneeze to the north, it's raining in Oklahoma.

We should get together and scream like girls.

:lol:

I already sound girly.

I tried a blues song, singing low. Epic fail.

Shame, cause I likes me some blues.

I'm even writing a new original song that is a blues song. And I started low as I could go and it just didn't sound right. Went up an octave, got some Sarah Vaughan going, and that felt right.

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What I'm assuming is that you are referring to a connected head and chest voice. Mine is very naturally and effortlessly connected. No breaks, no disconnecting, and no building strain.

I don't even understand scales so...

you may think your voice is totally connected from chest to head but if you can't sustain the notes something needs work.

connecting requires fold closure (in varying degrees, all depending)...you might be letting go too much as you move up top and that's why you feel like you can't sustain.

and you can let go up top and be not aware that it's potentially harmful because you are letting too much air go through the vocal folds which will dry them out.

send a sample of what steve fraser suggested..then we can let you know if you're on the right track.

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We should get together and scream like girls.

When I speak naturally, it has a sort of resonance that would lead people to believe I sing something like David Bowie, whom I do tend to cover as well. People often tell me that they enjoy hearing me speak and when I tell them that I sing, they aren't surprised. What does surprise them is when I open my mouth and shout like a demon.

I also find that it's extremely easy to cover Blue October, but my voice will almost always end up mixed and then in my head. That's where it naturally pulls and resonates when I apply diaphragmatic pressure.

Hey, sometimes it just feels good to sound...weird. I like to feel like a psychopathic man-eating demon XD

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Hey! Great news!

I meant to update this, but about a week ago (day after my last post) I started singing the first line from Victim of Changes and nailed it. I realized that the whole time I've been trying to sing it, when I should have just focused on making the sound, which is what I'm best at (impressions).

So as it turns out, I could scream all along. Thanks again!

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