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Learning From Vowels

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Hi everyone... I have no idea about formant tunings and so on but from my own fiddling around I have realized this about my voice.

Falsetto/Head voice - The Ooo and Eee vowels REALLY help this part of my voice grow... I have more difficulty with Oh Eh and Ah .

Mixed Voice - The UH/AW/Ouhhh vowel are usually good if I am not "too open" and have a decent amount of support.

Chest Voice - Open AHHH Vowel usually gives me a darker sound but "EE" is very buzzy

Right now I can blend from the top-down a lot easier and a single-register is slowly letting itself flourish. My question is what is the best way to use vowels to:

1: Allow the head register to blend into the lower voice smoothly without "tension"

2. Allow flexibility in the mixed register AFTER head register strength is developed

3. Ensure that the Chest voice PROPERLY enters falsetto WITH ADDUCTION and POWERFUL sounding tones.

Which vowels are best to train each area of the voice. You cannot tell me that the "ER" vowel is good when training the head voice. Or that the tiny "oo" vowel is the best vowel to develop the chest voice. What specific sequence of vowels will help me expand head voice all the way down and which vowel sequence will help me build my voice from the bottom up CORRECTLY.

Hope someone can offer some useful tips, techniques, ideas... I am all ears :) I'm all about my vowels lol!

- JayMC

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jaymc :

Falsetto/Head voice - The Ooo and Eee vowels REALLY help this part of my voice grow... I have more difficulty with Oh Eh and Ah

this is very true, but it's important to understand why. the first two are narrow vowels..by their very nature they engage more head voice than chest voice and using them teaches you to shed weight and narrow (naturally). the latter set of vowels employ more chest voice.

continue to work the head voice with those descending slides. the top down approach teaches you to keep the voice up and out of the throat, and teaches you how to employ head voice as the main producer of the voice rather than drag up the chest voice. you will need to do that eventually, but it will come without the pull and drag but from more of an attachment.......a union based on an increase of breath tension (messa di voce)...later on.

explore falsetto with a nice dopey yawn...from the top to the bottom (it's not just high notes).

as time goes on it will thicken and become very resonant.

the best vowels i was taught to train head voice are "oo" and "ee" (a tall "ee" not a horizontal "ee') make your "ee" shape from an "oh."..."aw" is a great one too because it helps the voice with building strength in the passaggio area...like in "hawk."

as you gain strength, add the others......."eh", "oh" and "ah." remember when you train falsetto, stay in that falsetto configuration, open throat, relax the jaw and tongue, get the palate up, don't push the sound. if it should get "feminine or operatic sounding run with it...explore that setup and that sound.

eventually you will begin to sense that you can lean into your falsetto a little and produce a lightly connected head tone

the falsetto "oo" is also a great warmup/warmdown vowel....

anyone else want to add?

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I'd love to chip in if I may :) It's my first time in the forum and I love gassing about this stuff.

Looking into formants and harmonics, and how to shape the vocal tract to boost these, may be something you might find interesting as you've figure out and astutely noticed some great things already, I presume just through experimenting.

To get the best out of how vowels help you to transition well it's good to split them up into 2: resonator 1 (throat - chest) and resonator 2 (mouth - head). We can tune these resonators independently to get the best tonal picture, but also as a by-product great bridging and comfort.

Resonator 1 can be tuned using the following vowels (as each vowel has it's own layngeal positioning naturally), and they are primarily ensuring that the larynx is in the best possible spot initially.

Chest - A (cat)

Upper Chest - Ah (father)

Bridge - Uh (mother)

Sometimes Ouh (nook) if the larynx is a bit unruly.

Through these vowels the larynx lowers gradually and subtly and gives up resonance to the head voice resonator (2).

When resonator 1 is happy, then resonator 2 can be tuned depending on where we are in the range. For the chest resonator 1 is most dominant and any changes to it will have the biggest effect on tone so need to worry about the mouth too much. But as a note it's good to have a wider mouth position to get the most bite.

But for bridging the lips usually need to come forward a little and the tongue to fall back a little (which is exactly the movement from A through to Uh). The jaw also needs to begin to lower. This will all ensure that resonator two is ready and shaped to pick up the resonance and boost similar harmonics to the chest below, resulting in an even tone through the bridge. If it's not ready, then that when things go wrong and can get throaty or cracky.

Out the other side of the bridge the jaw continues to drop and the larynx remains on Uh position, but the lips and tongue can now have more effect on sound as resonator 2 (head) has now become dominant. So you can play around with slightly wider mouth shapes on an Uh vowel, and a more forward to tongue position in those spots.

Ee has a very forward tongue position inherently which is why it is often suited to achieving good resonance in head. The fact that it is very buzzy in your chest may be a clue that it will present itself as a bugger to bridge on with intensity. The tall Ee (as was nicely mentioned in another comment) is definitely the solution to that, and to break it down, a it's tall because the Ee is pronounced with a tongue that is further back and in line with the bridging strategy above.

Different dialects ensure that we are kept on our toes with which movements and adjustments we make to ensure singers can bridge evenly, and in the beginning singers need more exaggerated vowel shapes to avoid pulling chest ie very narrow mouth and unfinished larynx positions.

The mechanics of it are very interesting and make sense after a while, but the singers job is to tune into the sound of each vowel and regulate it's tone. That way you will generate the optimal movements of both resonators automatically and bridge like a pro

Hope it helps :)

Chris

Hi everyone... I have no idea about formant tunings and so on but from my own fiddling around I have realized this about my voice.

Falsetto/Head voice - The Ooo and Eee vowels REALLY help this part of my voice grow... I have more difficulty with Oh Eh and Ah .

Mixed Voice - The UH/AW/Ouhhh vowel are usually good if I am not "too open" and have a decent amount of support.

Chest Voice - Open AHHH Vowel usually gives me a darker sound but "EE" is very buzzy

Right now I can blend from the top-down a lot easier and a single-register is slowly letting itself flourish. My question is what is the best way to use vowels to:

1: Allow the head register to blend into the lower voice smoothly without "tension"

2. Allow flexibility in the mixed register AFTER head register strength is developed

3. Ensure that the Chest voice PROPERLY enters falsetto WITH ADDUCTION and POWERFUL sounding tones.

Which vowels are best to train each area of the voice. You cannot tell me that the "ER" vowel is good when training the head voice. Or that the tiny "oo" vowel is the best vowel to develop the chest voice. What specific sequence of vowels will help me expand head voice all the way down and which vowel sequence will help me build my voice from the bottom up CORRECTLY.

Hope someone can offer some useful tips, techniques, ideas... I am all ears :) I'm all about my vowels lol!

- JayMC

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welcome to the forum chris, nice post.

bob (videohere)

there comes a point in training where you just have to start experimenting with vowels and vowel shades to see which ones work best for your particular voice.

they'll be easy ones and more difficult ones to adjust and sometimes the configurations you need to make to the pharynx, larynx, face, jaw, etc., whatever are alien to you, and you need to get past that uncomfortable feeling or what you might look like when you sing certain vowels, for example an "oo."

just speaking for myself, learning and experimenting with shades of "oo" and "uh" can give you a really powerful "chesty" head tone.

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there comes a point in training where you just have to start experimenting with vowels and vowel shades to see which ones work best for your particular voice.

Amen.

I have said this many times bofore, in various ways. The singing in your own voice, for which I receive ribbing in the cliche thread, is part of this.

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my brother ron, that's not exactly what i meant by this.......i don't think it's mandatory to always sing in your own voice. for example....you can color it to sound sexy ...lol!!!

singing has some acting in it......look at elvis....he added sexiness to his voice i'm sure intentionally.

i meant you have to work with those vowels to get the most efficient, most resonant sound out of every vowel. you can sing and miss the target and still sound decent, but the singers who hit the pockets efficiently and consistently are the ones who sound the best.

that's a half ass explanation of maxing out with the formants....lol!!!!

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