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How many registers does the voice have?

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Steven Fraser

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"If you really want this note to ring like the dickens, just darken the vowel a little bit while you are singing that note. F2 will tune down, and when it is sitting right on the 3rd harmonic, you will get a ring you will not believe. It will also be less work. "

I think I tried something like this yesterday, while waiting for a bus outside ;) I was singing the final chorus in Bon Jovi's song "Bed of roses", which has a Bb4 note on the word "of" and a C5 note on the word "nails". So instead of singing the line "For tonight I'll sleep on a bed of nails", I used the vowels "a" as in "man" and "eh" as in "set" and sung it something like "For tonight I'll slIhp on a bed Af nEhls". It took so much less effort than before and sounded much, much better and powerful. My head was ringing like crazy and I was so freaking loud that it was fortunate that there were lots of cars driving by and not many people around to hear me acting like a lunatic.

Jonpall: Wow! How fun was that? !!!!! Congrats!

Don't worry about being thought a Lunatic. Put down a hat... you'll be a busker!

Once you get more familiar with this approach, it will get more automatic. You will develop a 'sense' of when you are right in that groove. IMO, its what the CVT people call being 'centered in the mode'. I bet it would also be somewhat 'metallic', to use their term. To me, its just 'robust head voice' :-)

The biggest benefit will come when you get over the novelty of it, and you use it to reduce your effort overall. With top notes like that, you will blow out mics if you sing too close to them. You will be able to 'back off' the effort even farther, and still retain control over the dynamic.

An exercise you can use to help develop this sense is based on the Bon Jovi song you allude to. Sing the phrase to the Bb on the word 'of', and sustain it with a diminuendo... the 2nd half of a messa di voce. Keep the tone ringy and clear while you do so. IMO, what you will discover is that, when you are right in the sweet spot... you can reduce the effort substantially and the tone does not get softer as fast as you think it will.

With 1/2 hour or 45 mins playing with this, you will discover the minimum volume that you can produce this full tone. Then, go 1 small notch louder than minimum, and repeat the phrase stopping on the 'of' . This time, do a slow crescendo. IMO what you will find is that you get huge volume increases with very little extra effort, and that you can sing as softly or as loudly as you want... whenever you want to.

Play around. Let us know how things go.

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steve, that would be great...my email is videohere@earthlink.net..is it a steep learning curve?

VIDEOHERE: No. THe installation takes maybe 2 minutes. The introduction of how to use it would take maybe an hour on the phone. Most of the orientation is just getting used to how what you are singing is represented on the screen. And, believe me, its much more fun when the whole thing is running in real-time. you can see visually even the very smallest changes in vowel.

I will send you the install package, and we can set up a time to talk.

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Steven, thanks for that. You always write such inspiring posts. It drives me to improve more and more. I just did your exercise for a short while and it seemed to work. I want to try to find the time to record some vocals in the tenor range and this time focusing on pure, full tones instead of distortion. I want to be able to do both. Perhaps it would not be a great idea if I were studying classical music but it suits my goals perfectly. Then perhaps I'll post it here and maybe you could run it through your spectragram and tell me if you think it's resonant and especially if you can hear some singer's formant in there and it would be cool to know if I had the strength to sing over an orcestra, even though I don't really plan on ever doing so. I have absolutely no idea if being able to do that takes years of training or not and perhaps I'm being disrespectful to classical singers for even mentioning such a thing. Especially since there are so many singers just on this forum that are so much better than me. But I need to pick some song with nice, long high notes for your program, Steven. I'll have to think about it.

I'm actually doing lots of slides and volume swells (in both directions) lately with various vowels and for the tough vowels like "oo" and "ee" I make sure I modify them a bit as I go up. There seems to be a sweet spot to place the tongue (and the opening of the mouth) in order to make my entire head ring with resonance, which I believe you've mentioned here before, and it differs with every pitch and vowel.

I don't really have an idea just how loud I've become recently, but I must be getting louder since I'm considering vocalizing with ear plugs so I don't make myself deaf by my own voice and yesterday the water that was stuck in my left ear from swimming that morning ran out from doing a high C on the "ih" vowel. Yes, all of this was great fun, Steven, and I'm almost scared to go further but I sure will. Thanks, man.

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