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krunchytaco
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Hi,

I'm particularly new to this forum and discovered this website through Google. Anywho, I'm starting fresh. Clean slate. I'm ditching all my bad singing habits and want to learn safe and comfortable methods for singing.

I'm a baritone and living in an era where tenors conquer the radio is a curse for me. Ever since I took up an interest in singing I've always daydreamed and dismally attempted to belt those high blaring chest notes, but to no avail. I let my arrogance and ego take the best of me and I refused to be restricted of those golden notes. So, every time I sang a song by Ne-Yo or Usher, I would strain to get those top notes; convincing myself that I will eventually get towards my goal through pushing. But all that ends now.

My comfortable chest range is about E2-Bb3 (quite unimpressive). I can go up to E4 and probably F4 if I warm up, but I generally feel comfortable bridging around Bb3. Anything above F4 requires excessive belts that sound like shouting. My question is, are there any techniques I can use to hit notes like G4 and above? I generally have to sing in falsetto at around C4 and up if I wanna stay comfortable.

Now, since I'm a baritone I understand that I'll never be a tenor or sound like one. I'm quite fine with that. In fact, I love the fact that my voice is darker in timbre. Only thing that kills me is the fact that I'm restricted in song choice because I can't reach tenor notes with my chest and transposed songs just don't do it for me (I'm a stubborn fellow).

I want to start anew and it would be a huge help if all you vocal aficionados would share your found knowledge with me. Treat me like a newcomer, assume that I know nothing about singing!

Thanks!

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Well I can reach notes like G#5 and A5 by using falsetto if I warm up. But my goal is to create better singing habits so I can hit notes like that consistently. But my main area of work is notes around F4-C5. I want to be able to sing those notes in a chesty-sound.

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Yeah. The technique is called CORRECT singing training. It doesn't matter what scales you use, it matters HOW you do them. I can't say "do this exercise" and it'll work because you'll probably do it wrong. Most people do. I can take anyone's quirky exercise and make it either work or fail because of how I place the note, support it and set it up internally. I call those things the FUNDAMENTALS, and anyone note getting results in singing means they do not have a grasp of the fundamentals (even though they think they do).

I'm a baritone. My top note used to be F4. Now it's a G5. I can now sing songs from my favourite artists like Michael Jackson, Marvin Gaye, Stevie Wonder, Dream Theatre.

Check out my site http://www.Grow-The-Voice.com

Exactly! I've watched numerous videos, consulted with some singers who gave me a couple tips here and there, but most of the tricks and exercises I've acquired don't do me any justice because I don't do any of them correctly. So, I'm taking little steps in singing correctly. I'll check your website, your answer is most appreciated!

EDIT: BTW Watched your Marvin Gaye cover. You're voice is fantastic!

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krunchy,

You say that you are a baritone but you dont say how you came to this conclusion.

Its very strange, because baritones need to have the notes from C4 up to A4 comfortable, and most surelly not in falsetto. So its a matter of training. And in the case of you getting up to F4 and needing to shout above it...

I am jumping to a conclusion here, but probably you classified your voice yourself using some reference that you thought was correct, or was classified way too early before having the head registration well consolidated... Which are both things that are not very useful in the real world... A classification prior to training is just a possibility, and its in NO way a restriction when performing pop.

There isnt "one" technique for you to learn that will result in what you want, the best possible combination is what Phil described, good orientation so that what is necessary is applied correctly. What is necessary will depend on you, not on a fixed "route" to sing well.

So study! And good luck!

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@Felipe

Correct, I may have classified myself wrong and I apologize for my ignorance. As for that F4, I don't necessarily shout, I just strain. It's notes after F4 I have to resort to shouting. I can sing C4-E4, but it isn't as comfortable as singing them in head voice.

I consider myself more of a bass (: and I completely agree, if you practice on the fundamentals and do them correctly, the range will naturally come, so I'm putting my focus on the bare essentials right now.

If it helps, I can post a clip of me singing on sound cloud to better help diagnose my problems and determine what my voice type is. Please get back!

Thanks! (:

EDIT:

@Phil: I can't say how much I appreciate your help and especially in this day and age with the economy on a teeter-totter. Most vocal teachers can't afford to give away free secrets because they have to make a living as well, so I really appreciate your help! I will definitely check your channel out!

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You can send it man, I can point what I hear, but I really will not be able to give an answer regarding your classification, you would have to pass into full head voice to do so, and if you could do that already you would not be asking ;)

See the videos, take some lessons with Phil if possible, I believe it will be clearer for you.

Patience, study, and you will see that there is no secret to it.

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I'm a baritone and living in an era where tenors conquer the radio is a curse for me.

Really? Are you actually listening to the radio? Baritones, or, as I like to say, lower centered voices rule the day in rock. Tenors ruled the yesteryear. And actially, most of them were lower centered voices that could sing high. As opposed higher voices like Rik Emmett who didn't sell as many recordings.

As for being a lower centered voice, yes, you can reach higher notes. But you will possibly not sound like Usher, as you mentioned. Let go of that and you will get closer than you think. First, erase from your mind how you THINK, he or another singer is doing that. Go for the sound, rather than what you think is happening.

Low centered singers who can sing high and even have been viewed as "tenors" by others:

David Lee Roth

Geoff Tate

Tom Kiefer

Axl Rose

Phil Anselmo (really freaking low voice, if you have ever heard him speak, that crazy cajun!)

Brian Johnson

David Coverdale

I will probably think of more, later.

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Krunchy, you are not a baritone, or a tenor. You have a voice that is currently comfortable at low pitches. To echo Felipe, get some kind of training.

Most singers mis-diagnose themselves. Let go of the classifications and find out what your voice actually does.

Post a sample. Who knows? Maybe you can sing.

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I figured I wasn't a baritone when Felipe cleared it up for me, so I apologize for my ignorance! (: In the long run I'm trying to save up enough money to get a vocal teacher, but as of now that's just not possible since I have to balance work with college and bills--I really hate having to give excuses for not affording a teacher, but it's the reality for me :(

As of now, I'm just trying my best to gain some free knowledge and work with my voice up until I get some training. I just don't know where to start.

I will definitely try to get a recording up by tomorrow! Thanks and please get back ASAP (:

EDIT: I cant sing for the life of me, but here lol I sang everything an octave lower because the song was too high for me. It's called 'Do You...' by Miguel. Hope the recording helps diagnose me as a singer. If it's insufficient, don't hesitate to tell me otherwise. I'll be happy to provide a better recording. Cheers!

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Really? Are you actually listening to the radio? Baritones, or, as I like to say, lower centered voices rule the day in rock. Tenors ruled the yesteryear. And actially, most of them were lower centered voices that could sing high. As opposed higher voices like Rik Emmett who didn't sell as many recordings.

Must be really nice in the U.S. In my country radio is completely filled with all that Pop/Dance/RnB-autotune-plastic-voice crap. And yes, most of them are sung by tenors. Some songs they can't even sing the high notes themselves, but you can't really hear it because the voices are overdubbed/autotuned like hell.

I NEVER EVER heard any of the artists you listed in the radio here. God bless the internet!

As for the topic: I think Phil has already stated the most important things. You initial range means nothing in terms of vocal classification. A first "break" at B3 is quite typical for (untrained!) baritones. Doesn't neccessarily have to mean that you are a bass. In fact, real basses are insanely rare. Second break (into shouting or falsetto) at F4 is also typical for baritones.

When I started out I had my first break at A3 and my shouting started at E4. And I am probably not even a profound bass, mostly think of me as a high bass / low baritone, but never really checked it with a (classical) coach. When I sing classical stuff I am much more comfortable with the bass stuff than with the baritone pieces, though.

I can pull up my chest voice to A4 now, but I never really do it because it is way too loud (and my mic technique is crap) and uses too much of my support energy.

However, in contemporary singing voice types don't really matter that much, especially if you are looking for the sound they typically use in Pop/RnB (which means light mass sounds). Even tenors usually sing head voice (and not chest) in those styles on the high notes.

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I guess at this stage it's kind of pointless to classify myself into any vocal category, so I apologize! :) And may I ask what your current range is? I'm just curious is all.

BTW, I've never knew that there were two breaks. This is relatively new to me, so it would be a big help if anyone can elaborate on this. Thanks! :)

A little of my two cents though, if you don't mind: Some singers who explicitly use auto-tune can be surprisingly good. Take T-Pain for example. I'm not a fan of T-Pain and I used to bash on all his works because I assumed his heavy use of auto-tune was to compensate for his lack of talent, but the opposite was true. T-Pain is an amazing singer live, which leads me to wonder why he would want to stylistically incorporate auto-tune towards his singing in the first place. Anyways, with that said, there are people out there who can't sing for their own sake and use auto-tune. Just my little food for thought though.

EDIT: BTW, Do you guys recommend any books that will help me? There's a library I haven't been to in ages and why not take advantage of the opportunity? Carpe diem :)

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To each his own I guess. I really can't dictate who likes what, but that's beside the point. I'm just here to learn how to sing correctly. Any tips you can give me will be greatly appreciated, thanks! :)

Something I have found, now and then, with the exception of Benny, who is really knowledgable and has a voice I just love (yeah, call me a fanboy of Benny, I have no feelings left to be hurt :lol: ), most self-diagnosed baritones are NOT. Many turn out to be untrained "tenors," if we are going to use those terms. So, the solution is to get some training. Teacher, home study, whatever.

First off, don't start out trying to match the tone of, say, Usher. Start out working on doing the note clean, legit. Special effects can come along, later. As Anthony Frisell stated, too many students, and their teachers, are aiming for the polished pro sound, right off the bat. The song you posted, you can sing in the original key. But it will take a while.

How long? I don't know and I don't care. Find your enjoyment in the process, along the way. Someone said 10,000 reps. 40,000 reps. I never bothered to count. If you are counting, you are concentrating on the wrong thing. That hooty M2 vibratory that you did shows that you have placement for head voice. You just need to learn to control and expand it.

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Everyone's a fan boy at heart, no shame in admiring someone :)

I don't want to get my hopes up and call myself something I'm not, so I diagnose myself as a baritone/bass as some sort of middle ground--that's not to say they aren't great because I absolutely love singers like Frank Sinatra and Nat King Cole.

And I definitely agree with you and put myself at fault here because I'd generally try to imitate and sound like tenors such as Usher or Brian McKnight. But like I said, I'm ditching that old mentality and starting anew, so I will definitely focus on strengthening the fundamentals. Really appreciate your help!

EDIT: May I ask if you know of any books that may prove helpful? I got a library pass that's been collecting dust :|

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Everyone's a fan boy at heart, no shame in admiring someone :)

I don't want to get my hopes up and call myself something I'm not, so I diagnose myself as a baritone/bass as some sort of middle ground

Of singers I have heard that would qualify as "baritone," You do not have the ring down low, like they would have. Just because you are having a problem in the middle of the 4th octave does not mean that you are "baritone." And your voice is light, not a lot of low end weight or overtones. So, before you "limit" yourself to baritone or tenor, find out what your voice is going to do. I am not even going to guess what your voice-type is. And in pop and rock music, it doesn't matter. For David Coverdale to be considereda "tenor" by some means that I can be basso profundo just because i like the sound of the title. By the way, I don't sound like a basso profundo, though I have done some notes in the 2nd octave.

Don't type yourself. Try some exercises, try a few things. Find out where your voice fits. Maybe you have that thing for R&B.

Your homework assignment from ronws , try "Rich Girl" by Hall and Oates. I love that song and I am not that big into R&B. I just got to wrap my head around the verses. The chorus comes easy, to me.

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Ive listened, there is a huge margin for development in there. Rest assured.

How old are you btw?

And, Felipe, it can be achieved, whatever margin there is. Age is not important. You have told me that I need to start from scratch, all over again and I am old enough to be your father. So, who cares how old Krunchytaco is (and that is a cool id login, even though I actually prefer soft tacos)?

We start whenever we start.

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Sorry for the late reply! Work, school...bills...roommates lol

@ronws

Although I'm not an avid listener of Hall & Oates, I am definitely familiar with that song--I guess I'm not the only one with good taste! :) Haha And about my screename, I just happen to love tacos, go figure! Lol

@FelipeCarvalho

I'm 18! I'd figure by now my voice had matured. And I would hope so--if I can surprise myself, I'll give you credit for that :)

@PhilMoufarrege

Again, I absolutely appreciate your help! I will definitely email or PM you if I need some important material. It's just that in this economy, I know how hard it is for people to make a decent living. I don't want to take advantage of vocal teachers and leech off their materials. Thank you :)

And that goes for all of you who helped me. I really appreciate it! :)

EDIT: One question though...I find that some vowels are easier to sing than others; is this normal?

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I guess at this stage it's kind of pointless to classify myself into any vocal category, so I apologize! :) And may I ask what your current range is? I'm just curious is all.

BTW, I've never knew that there were two breaks. This is relatively new to me, so it would be a big help if anyone can elaborate on this. Thanks! :)

There are lots of breaks that can appear in different places for different reasons :P But the ones referred to the most are the first and second passaggio. The first passaggio usually only appears in untrained singers that are not able to stretch their folds yet. The second passaggio still apears in trained singers and marks the switch between vibration modes M1 and M2. As Phil already wrote, the second passaggio can move around a bit depending on if you "pull chest" or "bridge early".

My classical (full voice) range (which is all that matters for voice classification) is E2-F4. In contemporary style I can do notes from around E1 to G#5 reliably.

When singing contemporary songs I usually do my classical range in chest voice and switch to head (M2) around G4.

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krunchy yeah thats why I asked, still too young. Its impossible to classify like this, right now your voice is lighter than mine for example.

With time things will define better. Train and study.

benny both passage points refer to changes in sensations, not larynx registration.

And its only relevant if a fully ballanced production is in place. Partial productions with the idea of achieving an interpretation quality easily will present noticeable changes both on sensations and accousticly, but thats just random. If you start happy shouting on EH, then release the posture and close the vowel to UH, there will be a shift, a piece of the whole changing to another piece. Neither is full.

Then yeah, you can wave your voice around and produce a Barney the Dinossaur voice full of passages ;p. Full voice is on M1 for males, does not mean it is the only component. Remember that the term is associated with an accoustic result not a physical quality, and the purpose is description of a end result, not "how to achieve".

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