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Geoff Tate is Awesome...

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Robert Lunte
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I'm kind of with Matt. I got the Tate bug for a while but after OMC I just didn't relate to his singing anymore. I remember there use to be a radio show on I think Saturday nights called 'Metal Shop', around 1983 or so I heard Queen of the Ryche and I thought 'what the hell is this' I'd never heard anyone sing that high before. But that was it for me. I was always way more into Dio and Dickinson for that genre of singing, they just had the grit I liked.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GrOJYP27SRs

\M/

p.s. Great job with the site Rob, it's nice to have a cool communuty of singers to discuss topics like this.

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Hey guys... I think me and Center finally have something in common!!! "The Warning" album is flat out one of the top 3 metal vocal performances of all time. If you have not heard "The Warning", please listen to this album before you draw your final conclusions on Tate.

I totally understand what James is talking about... after OMC, I was a bit disappointed because I wanted to hear the bridged head tones like on The Warning, but after a while I began to "get it" with OMC. Its more of a belter album and well done to be sure. Probably influenced by the changing times... When I think of Geoff Tate, I always think of the first EP and The Warning...

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i think like alot of queenryche fans i feel their musical output started to go downhill after Empire. i dont think this was because of tates vocals (though they did start to change-more straight tones, less tenor ranges ect.) but that the music started to sound alot more grungey and apart from alice in chains and a few other bits and bobs i was never into grunge. i think one of tates best vocal performances is on OMC (also one of my fav albums)as it has a good balance of low, middle and high ranges. i actually really like tates lower tones as they have a nice smooth depth to them a bit like a singer like coverdale. its funny cos when you here tate speak he has a deep, low voice and you would swear that he would be a baritone.

Matt, the difference between a singer like Dio and tate is that, to use more classical terminology, both are tenors voices its just that Dio has a more dramatic tenor voice I.E. heavier, beefier (and also uses grit) and tate has a more lyric tenor voice I.E. lighter, fluid/agile. although i appreciate and draw inspiration from lots of different metal/rock voices i think i feel more affinity with the ones that are clean and more lyric because thats also more my voice type though like tate and coverdale i can get some nice low tones too.

Robert, dude, despite that we have some different views on vocal technique (or at least the applications of, as we both believe in use of bridged/mixed coordinations) we do have alot in common. we both love some great metal and rock bands like queensryche, judas priest ect. we both love some great vocalists like tate, labrie ect. we both like trying out different vocal mics (including that we both like the EV N/D767a-though i think you might love it than me ;o) ) not to mention we are both called Robert!

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I was trying to watch it far enough to see the drummer explode or the miniature stonehenge be lowered from the ceiling with dwarves skipping around it but just couldn't watch that far.

I'd rate that guy as being as unlistenable to my ears as the Dream Theatre singer, but then again we all have different tastes.

*edit*

I just re read my post and hope I didn't offend anyone, that's not my intention. I just find this kind of singing comical, I didn't like it in the 80's and I don't like it now. I've had guys audition for bands I've been in that sound like this and we've laughed ourselves silly when they've left.

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Lol, thats gonna cause a flame war...yeah center, point taken. Tell the truth, I didnt bother to check his range out, I have a prejudice I guess that he's a judas priest singer whos mostly singing between C and E. Didnt check his register, perhaps he's not all that high. I have to say I think he has a falsetto timbre a lot of the time.

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Matt, if you mean geoff tate has a falsetto timbre in the sense that its a dissconected tone/voice from chest voice (I.E. falsetto) then, its not, its actually a connected production. if you mean that it sounds quite falsetto like in timbre then, yes i can see what you mean. this is for a few reasons. as i said before he is more lyric/lighter in timbre/fach but its also because he has a higher larynx and uses a more twangy sound. this creates a more sqeezed, pintched type sound. (as i side note its common that lighter timbre/fach tones are perceived as higher in pitch. for instance if you listened to dio singing a tenor high C and geoff tate singing a tenor high C without any prior knowlegde of what the notation of the pitch was, you might perceive tates as higher in pitch-this is why people often perceive falsetto pitches as very high when they are not nesercerily)

for an example of a metal singer singing high pitches who does use falsetto, listen to King Diamond -see below( he sounds like a Metal Bee Gee!!!)

http://www.dailymotion.com/video/xasqg_king-diamond-welcome-home_music

prickstein, i can understand how some people may not like those type of lyric-y, tenor-ish metal voices such as tate, labrie etc because of course we all have different tastes and thats cool, its what makes our world a more interesting place to live in, however to sing those types of songs in a authentic way with a connected vocal production-not using falsetto, is no easy feat.

by the way if you dont like tate, labrie ect and find their voices unlistenable/comical your gonna puke if you listen to King Diamond hahaha

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I'm with Robert that the Warning was and remains one if not the best album for a clean lyric tenor in metal. I do myself also prefer a darker tonal quality, but I'm a spinto lol darker and more textured. Musically however for me Queensryche went south after Chris DeGarmo departed. I also agree that sound is not typical jamming on the highway music - you have to be in a specific head state to enjoy it. It is however done well and exceptionally well in Tates earlier years.

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Oh absolutely, a lighter timbre certainly fools the ear into thinking its much higher than it need be. Even when Dio hits an E it sounds like a G4 until you go check it ;) Dios C will sound much lower than Tates C. Anyway, without checking the Tate video, I'd still ´hazard a guess that he's a little above the classical tenor range in that vid. I'd guess he's around C and above for quite a lot of the time, above not being a classical requirement for a tenor (to my knowledge). Also, I'd say dio has both dramatic and lyrical tones.

And yeah, thats what I mean by falsettoish timbre. Its not falsetto, its connected (though I dont think his closure seems all that impressive). But the difference in tone quality is not large. Personally, I wouldn't use descriptions like "darker" or "lighter" timbre, its about tate not having much resonance in his tone, IMO. theres very little chest resonance which is ok if thats that you want, but his head isn't resonating all that much either. His mask probably resonates a lot, but I dont hear the actual skull, all the cavities, being open and vibrating. hes in headvoice, but he's not in a full, rich headvoice.

He's playing a small bodied guitar with 08 strings instead of a big ole western guitar with 12 guage strings.

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Matt, your analogy of "He's playing a small bodied guitar with 08 strings instead of a big ole western guitar with 12 guage strings." is exacly correct. because he is using a high larynx (and adding a more twangy sound) it creates a smaller resonance space and gives it that more pinched, piercing sound. however it is because he has a lighter tenor timbre aswell. the heavier tenor timbres sound fuller and richer by their very nature.

another classic example of a lighter/lyric metal tenor voice is John Arch, the original singer with prog metal band Fates Warning (see below)

as for classical tenors, i think it is a requirment that they can sing the high C though there are pieces that go up to even the F above.

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I was trying to watch it far enough to see the drummer explode or the miniature stonehenge be lowered from the ceiling with dwarves skipping around it but just couldn't watch that far.

I'd rate that guy as being as unlistenable to my ears as the Dream Theatre singer, but then again we all have different tastes.

*edit*

I just re read my post and hope I didn't offend anyone, that's not my intention. I just find this kind of singing comical, I didn't like it in the 80's and I don't like it now. I've had guys audition for bands I've been in that sound like this and we've laughed ourselves silly when they've left.

dude i think your digging yourself deeper :lol:

dont worry, we all have different tastes. thats cool. :)

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Matt, your analogy of "He's playing a small bodied guitar with 08 strings instead of a big ole western guitar with 12 guage strings." is exacly correct. because he is using a high larynx (and adding a more twangy sound) it creates a smaller resonance space and gives it that more pinched, piercing sound. however it is because he has a lighter tenor timbre aswell. the heavier tenor timbres sound fuller and richer by their very nature.

another classic example of a lighter/lyric metal tenor voice is John Arch, the original singer with prog metal band Fates Warning (see below)

as for classical tenors, i think it is a requirment that they can sing the high C though there are pieces that go up to even the F above.

Center your correct the vast majority of old world tenors only sang to B flat in concert, there are exceptions but the majority to B flat

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I grew up a HUGE Rÿche fan.....all through middle/high school, I used to try my best to sound exactly like Geoff Tate. I was 95% guitarist back then and 5% vocalist....so when I tried, it sounded HORRID!

I got to where I could sing "Silent Lucidity" quite well....not sure I could pull it off these days without getting a little dirty.

I LOVE Rage For Order.....that's probably my favorite next to The Warning...

I also LOVE Promised Land.....actually, I'd say even a little more than The Warning.

I just wish Tate would have kept his voice in shape....I saw a video for "I'm American" recently and....man....I'm all set.

I got to see them in 96' on the Hear In The Now Frontier tour....Geoff hit *the* note in "Take Hold Of The Flame" and everyone went nuts! Now would you guys say that's Geoff going into falsetto there? (On the cd, anyway)....

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