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newbie question: twanging exercises?

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hello all! after doing pianissimo and medium-quiet vocal slides (G2-C5) for a while, i'm getting a more connected and even tone, but while it feels free, it also lacks the presence that i want, especially in the D4-A4 range, and i'm not sure how to start working on that properly. when i try to make the sound more metallic, it is usually accompanied by slight straining that becomes quite apparent by the time i reach G4. even though i can vibrato it, it feels hard to hold on to and a bit too shouty for my liking. i've noticed that the only way i can make this sound is in a high larynx position, but i think it is interfering with the tone quality, so i'm pretty sure that what i think is twanging is incorrect.

the twanging exercises i've heard about to feel that sensation (witch cackle, duck quack, infant cry, etc) also seem to cause me to strain as i go higher. the one thing that seems to work for me is humming in that "pharyngeal" voice, but as soon as i open my mouth i have the same problem. so my question is: does anyone know any exercises to build presence where i'll be able to tell that i'm doing it correctly? if it helps, i do have a bit of a thicker/heavier voice than most mainstream pop/rock singers (the genre i like to sing), though not quite a baritone timbre. i hope this was clear enough, and i look forward to hearing from you :)

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Yes, I do. Its a big focus on my pedagogy. It sounds like your getting a "twang-like" response, but your bringing in constriction with it. I have discovered that students can, unfortunately, manage to twang and pull in constriction at the same time... as we say at TVS, you need more "isolation" in your twang... that is to say, more isolation from constriction. Ok, you kinda knew that already, but you first need to make sure you understand the talk-track as it helps to learn how to do these advanced techniques.

Now then, how do you get more isolation? Why is it that your still pulling in constriction? This is becuase you are likely not placed properly in the head voice. Your bringing constriction into your head placements and therefore, into your twang. Remove the pollution! Commit 100%, not just 70% to the head voice. Ssubmit absolutely to singing windy and fluty and falsettoey for just a few scales to insure that you are fully, 100% in the head voice and never begin your twang calibrations until you have achieved a pure heady placement and total isolation from any constriction, because if you do, you could hurt yourself! Playing with twang is serious business, you have to be careful. It will make your sound amazing once you get it, but it can snap back at you if you dont respect the need to fully get placed into your head voice before calibrating contractions.

Having said all that, post a file so we can hear what your doing so this is not just assumptive pedagogy... I need to hear the issue. Your also welcome to send me a file to robert@thevocaliststudio.com.

There are techniques to train isolation, but honestly, I cant write all this out on a forum post... its too involved and complicated... it really needs to be a skype call, internet lesson to get this right....but I will say, quacking is one of the things you can do, but its doesnt work for everyone, so we have other little tricks to work with... however there is another issue involved here for you... as I said... your issue is symptomatic of another problem... not getting the best head placements.

Id be happy to help you and believe this is right up my alley...

Hope this helps, look forward to that file.

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thanks for the reply Robert, i never really thought about it like that before, but i completely understand what you mean. although i'm currently just singing for fun, i'm still trying to improve and learn properly :) i'm away at school (for the next 6 weeks) and i don't have access to my gear, but i'll post a clip as soon as i can!

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