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After a months focus on breathing and support

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quietstorm
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Hi all!

I have been practising a lot on breathing and support.. I sort of can control it now.. But i need to keep my hands on my waist just to make sure i keep doing it.

Can you guys listen to a clip of me singing and maybe tell if you think I am using my breathing and support properly? I am aware that I sing a lot in head voice, coz I am very strong in that part, but I do try to sing in chest voice on lower pitches, dunno if I'm succesful in that yet tho.

Cheers :)

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What a great clip! Your vibrato is particularly nice.

Stylistically it's sweet. The chest resonance could do with interacting a little more which would give the piece that extra polish, and you could start with using an A (cat) sound, maybe swapping lyrics in the bottom for NA or GA to give you the right sensation. But, taking the vowels in your performance that get the best chest activitation, they are actually UH (lower larynx vowel) so your larynx could probably do with being in a slgihtly lower spot generally. See 0:37 WORDS, 0:48 jeSUS and 0:55 greatER. You'll hear the extra chest and cord adduction.

Onset exercises aid with vocal cord adduction which may help further. Bearing in mind your larynx position and how that affects your cord adduction Gou (Good), or even Nou (nook), could help due to the onset properties of the consonant. An M can help too. Essentially we want compression of the vocal cords just before the air begins to vibrate them resulting a clean sound, and in singers with light chest it's often happening the other way round.

Looking at the higher notes (especially the A4 - C5 parts), getting some more UH in the sound, which essentially encourages a slightly lower larynx position, would leave you with a fuller tone without getting louder.

In any case you sound really good, and any adjustments you make will need to be subtle. And your breathing sounds just fine btw :)

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See, that's the thing, Chris. I have found, at least where I live, that uh is a low larynx sound. In fact, it would pull me down on the lyric word "love." I would instead, learn from Glenn Hughes, and sing "l oo v" and it would keep that word tuned up.

Quiet, ah in father should be a tall and straight ah sound, not uh, at least from what I have learned. Vowels are formants, especially the further back that you have them. That is, deal with vowels from the back of the tongue, not the lips. Use the lips sparingly, to articulate the words in the lyrics.

I could be wrong but thinking of such things seemed to help me, though others may disagree that I have helped myself with such thoughts. :D

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all i can say here is the "uh" vowel and shades of it produce some awesome results .....sometimes i'll slot into an "uh" or that french "oo" and it feels like your resonator in a foot tall...you just know instinctively it's solid and "right."

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I totally get you ronws :) I primarily work on getting the right interaction between the formants (ie resonant spaces) and harmonics to get the best out of a voice technically. I've heard many a singer respond to UH as you have described and the resolution is absolutely as you have described with the more closed vowel, but they are usually experiencing chest voice that is too intense and ready to engage. Quietstorm has a problem with chest that is too light so a more open vowel encourages better chest resonance. Everyone ends up being different :/ But that's the joy of being a vocal sleuth!

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That was another thing about "uh" that crept up on me. Jonpall had once noticed that I was crashing notes (sudden deflection down in pitch at the end of the word or phrase.) And I noticed it in the way that I speak, as well. And it is from how we use the "uh" sound where I live. Males drop pitch at the end of words and sentences for emphasis. And uh is produced, here, with a low tongue. So, when I would sing uh, like others singing with some of the same set-up as speach, I was detuning, as it were.

Again, going more toward oo, while it can be a closed sound for me was still better because it kept the note from crashing.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hi all!

Thank you ever so much for all the help and sorry for writing too late here..

Well to chrisjohnsonvocalcoach.. I do find that I need to sort of find chest voice so I don't "crack" when I sort of sing certain words or pitches. What I found out is to actually try to sort of focus my sound into the nose, which I think you guys refer as twang, and also do that uh sound, which I need to do it carefully.. Coz if I try do the uh sound and forgettin to twang, I end up pull chest voice! Dunno if it makes sense..? But when I get the chest voice right I can feel how the higher pitches also get into the right place as well!

I learned also something from my teacher called "hold". It's like when I breathe in and sing a phrase, and I still have quiet some air left before next phrase, but the support muscles needs to be loosened up, I simply just let the stomach out, and activate my support muscles again and continue the phrase! This has helped me a lot to improve my singing as well! But what i do still is forgettin to breathe in air when I actually need air! Just wanted to share this coz when u drop out your stomach muscles, you open your mouth naturally and some air will come in, but you don't breathe in really! Really good tool and I'm leaning this to become natural becoz it's like saving my singing! :)

Anyway! I will stay focused! :) cheers guys

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I learned also something from my teacher called "hold". It's like when I breathe in and sing a phrase, and I still have quiet some air left before next phrase, but the support muscles needs to be loosened up, I simply just let the stomach out, and activate my support muscles again and continue the phrase! This has helped me a lot to improve my singing as well! But what i do still is forgettin to breathe in air when I actually need air! Just wanted to share this coz when u drop out your stomach muscles, you open your mouth naturally and some air will come in, but you don't breathe in really! Really good tool and I'm leaning this to become natural becoz it's like saving my singing! :)

Anyway! I will stay focused! :) cheers guys

And this is support or management of the breath, exactly. Relax for the inhale, control the exhale, to varying degrees. You were, as I would put it, staying in "sing" mode, just learn to breathe while you retain the "sing" mode.

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