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Spirit Carries On - Dream Theater

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Xamedhi
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I wanted to see how much of this song I could do, it's a tough one.

Quality is kind of meh.. but it is clear enough to know what I am doing and what to correct. I use these recordings as a guide to help me fix details and work on major things as colour and tone.

I know I may stll not have the range to sing this song as it is meant to be sung, heheh, but I think it was a decent try..

https://soundcloud.com/sebabergmann/experimenting-with-spirit

PD: That long silence is because I imagine de music to set my internal mood lol When I sing a capella I always try to keep the tempo the best I can, as if music was playing in the back heheh. Just jump a bit forward for the next part :)

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This is great Buddy. I really think you probably already know the only part that needs work. On the high part you have got the pitch comfortably but I just needs that extra support blending the chest.

what happens when you just go for it on the higher parts do you find you still break in the "mix" section?

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I have problems with connecting my folds.. there is a point where my head voice starts blending with my falsetto and loses its body. I am still kinda figuring out what to do to keep that connection and power, heheh But I think with time I will get it.

I just started to excersise a week ago, almost daily.. with Mister Crazy LOW Range Dave's program, lol .. ( I wish I had the money for Rob's or Kevin Richards's stuff.. but for now I don't ) and my range went up by a note right now.. A week ago I struggled to hit an A... now I could do the B on the last word of the song.

I think time and good, conscious work will do the job :)

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I think you should keep on that track for now man i've done the SLS stuff too I liked it as i got some notes i didn't know I had (head voice in general) and it's like every time you go to there you're building the strength and muscle memory while ironing out the break. it just seems to take a lot of patience :)

I've gotta tell you though i've never had better results than with the Ken Tamplin stuff. Look into it if your spending money a few months down the line.

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Nice :D! Thanks for the input :P

I have some questions, though, lol

How does it feel to go higher than a B4 or a C5? I wanna know if I am doing it correctly when I get there.. lol

I have felt the vibration.. but to be able to connect your folds that high hasn't happened to me, so it really makes me curious Hahah

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How does it feel to go higher than a B4 or a C5?

For me it feels like its all happening above the vocal cords. I know that sounds silly as everything is happening there, but the sound is so focused toward the soft palette that its almost like a Tee Pee getting smaller the higher you go.

I hope others can give their thoughts on this too.

Do a lot with the Pharyngeal exercises in the SLS programme as that is an amazing way to take the voice higher with no weight. Even just saying "hung" the "ng" part of the word that is what your looking for in the sound. hold that sound and take it up as high as you can keeping your throat open. I bet you get to C5 right now.

Now that tone is no good for singing, but sirening like that a few times a day is a great way to build strength without taking too much weight up in the mix voice and with time you will see it will iron out the break.

Hope that makes some sense.

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Yes :D! Actually it makes a lot of sense to me.

If I do it very light I am able to connect up to a C, with an "EE" as I guess it uses less air and tends to compress more. I will keep practicing till I can connect an A or an E and then build up strengh from there to be able to mix it powerful.

Funny thing, but maybe worth noting, I record with my old MP4 hehe as my laptops mic is crap, and I am actually singing 2 meters away from it to avoid saturation and that sort thing.

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A job well done, Xamedhi! In general, good pitch and some nice flurries of vibrato in there. Your voice has a very soothing and relaxed sound to it. The falsetto parts are beautiful - I don't even know if I'd want to hear it in head voice! It sounds great as it is and works for the theme of the song.

What I might suggest to you is to experiment with placing the voice a little bit more "in the mask" as they say. If you want a connected head voice, you want solid cord closure in your bottom register too. It's a soft song, so I don't know if your cords are fully coming together together in chest or not normally (and your mic situation also makes it difficult for me to tell). If you stick your tongue out of your mouth and say "aaa" like in "cat" (U.S. style - not "ah" but aaa with a more nasal sound) you can get the feeling of the cords coming together with more frontal vibrations (please don't take it as far as LaBrie, though! He's way too nasal these days!) Just experiment around and see what you get. Once you get that feeling of solid cord closure in the lower range, you can apply that knowledge to head voice. The "ng" sound jonathan mentioned is another good way to find the nasal resonance necessary for head voice. Just make sure your body is ready, because in head voice, you will need a solid diaphragmatic support in order to sustain the closure and pitch.

As for the feeling, I feel somewhat of a stretch in the soft palate in the back of my throat. And the sound feels like it's moving up and between the ears. I can almost feel it in my ears, actually. The cords themselves don't feel like they vibrate as much as in chest. Sorry if this sounds confusing. I'm not really used to explaining. I'm just vocalizing now and throwing it out there. :D

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Thats great man you will be amazed at how quickly that note and above will become usable but more importantly the F's, G's and A's etc. Just don't get pissed the days its not there. It will be back ;)

I badly need an upgrade myself i know the feeling. my laptop is on it's last legs.

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Thanks Simon! That actually helps a lot. I've been doing those excercises with the tongue out and it feels different.

I have to add that I think I have problems with my chest voice. I took some lessons by 2008, when I had no idea how to sing.. and as I was told to "relax" I think I went to the extreme and started to adapt to an airy sound. I have no problems at all with passagio/bridge.. because I tend to sing back, to the pharynx, but I do have problems to produce the sound towards "the mask" and feel vocal folds closure.

Since I started a week ago with my program I have felt a big change in my voice. Now I speak "in chest voice".. before, I felt like I was always in head voice. In fact when I had any long conversation, or talking in the bus or something.. I lost my voice in no time. These days that hasn't happened to me, it's awesome, lol.

It sounds stupid... but I finally feel like a real man, lmao... being able to talk on my chest voice, and to sing there, when I'm not yet tired.

Those lessons I took where very, very helpful.. cus I was trashing my cords pulling chest.. but then I got kind of "obsessed" with tension.. and kinda messed my voice up, lol

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Thanks again, Jonathan, for your help :D It's good to know I'm on the right track for now.. It's so good I found this forum.

( I want to actually buy a mic.. but I don't know if I can record on my laptop... maybe the sound card is not good for that kind of use. )

( How do guys here usually record? )

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Np, man. You just basically described where I was a few years back with being too relaxed and a bit breathy. In my efforts to dispel tension and find a more natural vibrato, I took the concept too far. With a good voice teacher and alot of practice, I was able to "get the cords to know each other" a bit more.

And yes, I was also head voice dominated. I hated hearing my speaking voice on a recording! haha. I guess the lesson to be learned is that singing/speaking, like most things in life, has much to do with finding the right balance.

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Hahah! That's totally correct.

It seems you used to have the same issue as me, lol. And for the same reasons! That's funny heheh

Thanks a lot, Simon :) I really appreciate your help :P

I have a small question.. sorry if I'm bothering too much, heheh.. but anyway:

I have just started to explore into the world of vocal fry... I swear I had never paid attention to it before, lol

I am wandering.. Is it helpful to find cord closure on head voice by playing with fry? Is it bad for your vocal folds' health if you abuse it or play with it for too long?

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No worries, but I don't think I can answer that one. I'm not really a "fry guy" and have only experimented with it here and there. I've heard different opinions on the technique, and am not really informed enough to say if it's a good idea to use in your situation.

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Well.. I guess I'll leave it for further on and keep looking info about it, just thought it could be an interesting idea, heheh. For now, I'm good with the excercises I've been doing, and have felt an important change.. so I'll stick with it and see how I feel in a month or two.

Thanks a lot guys for your help and interest :)

See you around :D!

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I have some questions, though, lol

How does it feel to go higher than a B4 or a C5? I wanna know if I am doing it correctly when I get there.. lol

I have felt the vibration.. but to be able to connect your folds that high hasn't happened to me, so it really makes me curious Hahah

Someone alerted me to this thread and thought I might have some insight sing I can sing higher than B4 and C5. On a good day, the top of my full voice range is C6. Any day, B5's. I can sing any number of A5's in a row. (Like we have all been doing with the "Child in Time" threads.

I am not a singing expert, I am not a teacher of singing. I am, by trade, an electrician and these days, I am company manager for an electrical sub-contractor specializing in electrical work for swimming pools, spas, and outdoor living environments, like those huge outdoor kitchens you see Bobby Flay cooking on. So, my day job is highly technical, even as I try to explain to a non-electrician, such as a homeowner, why their mosquito misting machine is tripping the GFCI they plugged into that actually serves the pool lights. The initial service call is to find out why the pool lights are not working.

But singing, I don't get technical as much as I get basic. As in, basic physics. I think keeping singing simple helps me escape the deluge of complexity that is my day job. I have been singing a long time but each day, my voice is new to me. And I discover new and simpler ways to view what my voice is.

Anyway, B4 and C5, right? Well, there is a limit, physically, even if it doesn't sound like it, sonically. Classically, voice types can be defined by where the passaggio is. According to Frisell, a tenor is bridging at F4, whether he feels like it, or not. I consulted a classical coach who heard me as a light tenor. Based on the weight of my voice and range. For voice type is not just range but where the bright spot in your voice is.

Another person paid me a huge compliment, noting that I have a good A4. That's huge. None of us will be able to count how many songs we like that have this note. And I can do it, sure.

Anyway, there is a tonal shift, even for tenors, light, heavy, purple polka-dotted, at about the D5 area, one step up from C5.

This is where the basic physics thingy comes in. To resonate the fundamental of any frequency requires a resonating space of a size and/or shape that matches the wavelength of that frequency. And the harmonics are multiples of the fundamental freq. First harmonic is fundamental * 2. So, at G3, there is enough room in the resonating space to resonate both the fundamental and the 1st harmonic. You get the full vowel sound. Let's say that G3=1. So harmonic equals 1*2 = 2. Still room. Let's say that D5 is 10. 1st harmonic is 20. And that is only room for 10. You physically cannot resonate the 20. Not going to happen, ever. This is the point where a lot of guys feel like it's "pure head voice." But according to standard passaggio points, you entered head voice in the middle or lower 4th octave, already.

What do notes feel like to me? Head. It's all in my head. When I do the A5's in "Child in Time," it's behind my nose and the note feels small, like a ball. My jaw is dropped, which actually raises the tongue and ensures that the note is getting into a space small enough to resonate an A5. I am not expelling as much air as I might at speaking speach that most people would use to say "hey you" across a room. However, the exhale is controlled. I used to call it a controlled kiai, like the kiai used in martial arts.

But the resonance?Oh,man. When I did CIT last year, the highest notes (A5) were so loud, my ears were hurting when I was done with the recording. Part of the reason I sent the file to Keith Goehner to mix for me. I wanted to let my ears settle. Plus, he is better at sound editing than I am. I didn't trust my "two left feet" approach to such an important song.

But I am not sure I am describing it adequately. So, I keep it simple.

Motion, when necessary (and sometimes it's necessary,) in the abs.

Note in the head.

Nothing in the throat, ever, amen.

And I do not try to sound like Ian Gillan, for example. I just absorb his emotion and phrasing, if possible. I care not a whit if someone thinks I sound like him. The biggest compliment is if someone thinks I got the feel of that song.

If the high notes feel like falsetto to you, that does not mean that they are falsetto.

When I would sing "Dust in the Wind," I would belt it. Geno convinced me to try it softer. At the time, it felt like fasetto to me but he was right. The softer approach worked and it was not falsetto.

We are always learning.

"Full voice" and "falsetto" are illusions.

Singing is mental.

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Thanks! And thank you for that brief explanation about the harmonics and resonance heheh.. If I wasn't studying classical ballet, I would be studying physics and ingeneering.

Indeed, the high parts that sound like falsetto.. are not actually falsetto, it was a very lightly connected headvoice... my muscles are still not strong enough at that pitch, I just found out yesterday I have been gaining strengh, heheh Last week I couldn't do that A4 at the end "spirit carries OOOOON".. and now I was able to hit briefly some B's or A#'s idk.. without totally disconnecting.

As I said I am recording in a very crappy mic, on my mp4, lol.. so I have to sing 2 metres away from it to avoid saturation and stuff. Actually what you are hearing is loud... I mean, very :S

My dad knows I'm arriving home when I'm still walking 2 blocks away, hahah

I've been told Singing Success, Brett Manning's program tends to develop small and overcompressed voices, but as I have problems with my compression and edge, tending always to the airyness, and already have very resonant voice those are the least of my concerns.

I have never commited to go full-voice-developing mode, as I didn't have the means or the information to be able to do that. Now that I have an excercise guide and have read a toooon of stuff the improvements I've seen in these past 2 weeks are awesome. I wanna see how I feel in 6 months.

Thanks again Ronws :D!

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Our admin, Videohere, has had a couple of threads to claim our accomplishments. And one of the most important posts was his own. Gaining one whole step in his range. That sounds like it's not much but it is. Not just in gaining the note, but in the patience required.

One step at a time, you will get there. The A#4 may be a challenge now but you will get it and more.

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