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better results when singing songs

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Hi guys. I've noticed that when training using any exercises (roberts, kens etc) doesn't seem to make a difference, I can keep 'connected' and full up to about a C#5 / D5 but singing an actual song I can belt an F5 (not easily mind you!) without breaking into falsetto. Then I go back to the scales and can only get to a D5. I was wondering if anyone else has experienced this? I have heard of it the other way round. Like you can do the exercises but can't apply it to the songs, that makes more sense but any ideas why it's this way round?

It feels like I can't properly 'commit' to a scale / exercise , I can't put as much passion into it, maybe it's a mind set thing. I know at the end of the day it's the songs that matter but would be interested if anyone else has experienced this?

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:/ Try singing one of your songs that you belt that F5 just using the vowels in the words to the song. Maybe you modify your vowels slightly different than what the others are suggesting in the exercises.

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i can understand this more the other way around.

but i would say you get those days where you want to work out really intense but something (stress at work, family issues, relationship issues, not feeling up to par) all wreak havoc on your energy.

and you don't even realize it sometimes you just underdo.....you can't maintain the support, or you can't disconnect from all the stress in your life.

me personally, when i do light exercises, i feel this tug of war with myself between feeling the light stuff not accomplishing anything and my realization that i need to do these to keep balanced.

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It feels like I can't properly 'commit' to a scale / exercise , I can't put as much passion into it, maybe it's a mind set thing. I know at the end of the day it's the songs that matter but would be interested if anyone else has experienced this?

Yes, I know this, too. And it's pretty much exactly this. If you want to belt high you need a lot of air pressure and dedication, which comes much more naturally in a song compared to an excercise.

Additionally, high notes in songs are often isolated and you can approach them after you just took in a breath, which makes it easier to control the air flow. The breathing pattern is something that is really important when it comes to high belts. It is a lot easier to get a high belt out as the first note after breathing in. That's why you often hear opera singers for example or musical singers that insert a short 'breathing break' before belting out a very high note.

When doing scales you usually breathe in first and then do at least one or two lower notes before approaching the really high ones, but when you have already sung some notes and have less air in your lungs to work with it is harder to keep up the pressure that you need for very high (belted) notes.

Of course it doesn't help to breathe in more air, because if you breathe in too much you can't support properly, so it's really a thing of adjusting the breathing pattern and timing.

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Gina, I have the same problem particularly on octave scales. My teacher has pretty much only had me do scales in 5 note increments, except for 1-3-5-8 with a sob sound, which is a training exercise and is never supposed to sound beautiful.

The biggest thing I've found with scales is that you want to start the bottom note with an onset you'd be comfortable singing the top note with. Easier said than done, especially with octave scales.

Personally I'm not bothered by the fact that I can't easily do solid ascending octave scales up to the top notes of my range. The only time it bothers me is that at some theater auditions, they will 'test your range' in precisely that manner. They instruct you to sing ascending octave scales on an ah vowel until you start to strain.

It's a horrid means of testing vocal range, IMO, but alas it's their call.

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Thanks for all your replies folks. Many things to try and think about there. I had a thought last night that singing songs is so different to singing exercises and this might be the main reason i'm thinking. I'm happy that it's this way round and not the other though :D More practising challenging songs me thinks as this is really helping to grow my voice

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