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Most People speak about mixed voice like it's an actual combination of mix and head voice.
However, after seeing this video, I think that I agree with Rob on this one.  It's about thickening head voice to sound like chest Voice and thinning Head to sound like Chest.
Please help me clear up this confusion


 

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Rob is correct, however it depends on view. You can view mixedvoice as a certain soundcolor possible in both m1 or m2, but IF we are talking the mechanical side of the voice there is no mixedvoice

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 It's about thickening head voice to sound like chest Voice and thinning Head to sound like Chest.

I'm going to assume you meant thickening head voice to sound like chest voice and thinning chest voice to sound like head voice :)

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I think by thinning head he means to lower it until it bridges into chest without sounding like lisa simpson. Blending would probably be a better word for it. So if you do a pianissimo siren all thr way down your range you won't hear a difference in sound quality (unless you do something wrong), rather, the tone is the same throughout. So, thinning headvoice. Even though the quality doesn't have to change even if the tone is bright. It's just harder to do in the beginning.

I still don't know what headvoice sounds thick and what sounds thin, so, to me, the only sensible explanation is in terms of tone. A thick headvoice is a very resonant, bright timbre. A thin one is airy, and what most untrained people would probably term falsetto.

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Well, mixed voice is a kind of cord closure which makes it possible to resonate both in head and in chest. I mean it's not as thick as in chest voice, at the same time it's not as thin as in head voice. Just my observation :)

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If I can do a high note but it sounds bright and really, really loud, louder than most people in their chest, what is that? I am trying to keep the vision of Lisa Simpson out of my head when I sing.

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Mixed voice is a very odd and over complicated topic. Almost mystical according to some instructors. Some people refer to it being those notes in the passagio, I've also heard it referred to as the third register, which, I believe is just flat out wrong. In most popular cases it's bringing head voice right down through the passagio and into chest.

 

The way I understand it is it's just different tones and colours... How much you blend the chest and head resonance. Imo and the way I've been taught is build your chest voice right up, build your head voice right down and then work out what percentage of a 'chesty' mix and a 'heady' mix you need in order to achieve whatever tone you are going for.

 

Ps... I don't know the physiological factors of what is going on. I just know what it sounds and feels like.

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Rob is right, there is not a third register.  There are many ways to describe Chest and Head, but in it's simplest form:  M1 is chest and M2 is Head.  Sometimes people describe "mixed voice" when you get the "sound" of Chest voice but your are actually in Head voice.  But you can't be in both M1 and M2 at the same time.  You can't mix M1 and M2 together.  You are in either one or the other.

( The difference between M1 and M2 is that in M1 the Vocalis muscle is vibrating along with the outer parts of the folds, whereas in M2 the Vocalis is not vibrating.  Since the Vocalis is much bigger than the outer parts of the folds, you can "feel" the difference when it stops vibrating. The skill is being able to connect M1 and M2 without an audible difference.  That is done by keeping the same adduction while transitioning from one to the other.  )

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Head and Chest do not exist. Neither does a "Mix" of these two.

These terms are technical definitions, without the specific meaning you are going to assign to it, it makes no sense. For example, If M1 is chest, and M2 is head, its impossible to have a mix of chest and head.

 

If however you are talking about sensations, you can, but the same sensation may be produced by a totally different coordination, and, is individual.

 

The "mixed voice" described on The Structure of Singing and on Voice of the Mind, which is one of the definitions that made the term more popular, are about a specific quality produced by lowering the level of closure a bit, thus producing a somewhat lighter coordination that could go higher. The authors mistook the quality as being a result of a intermediary register because of the lighter quality itself, later studies have shown otherwise (in which Richard Miller, author of The Structure of Singing participated).

The "mixed voice" described in these books, in the case of males, consists mostly of an increase of space on the upper pharynx, elevation of the back of the tongue, AP narrowing and is done in M1 register.

 

However, the term "mixed voice" was also used on other schools of thought to describe the transition from M1 into M2 on the female classical voices, if I am not mistaken it was used by some French authors. Again the idea was similar to the one described above, a intermediary coordination, studies have shown however that the transition is achieved by matching the levels of closure on both registers, and that, again, the relevant adjustments happens on the epilarynx and upper vocal tract.

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What practical difference would it make?

That made me laugh, not sure why but it did...

Look guys... Jens gets it... actually a lot of you guys get it...

"Mixed Voice" is real... if you are talking about mixed resonance, or a sensation that you can resonant in both a chesty and heady position at the same time. My videos is not claiming that there is no "mixed" sensation. It is simply stating that the term "mixed voice" is creating confusion for singers.

How many people reading this think that "mixed voice" means there is some kind of mystery 3rd register? MANY... if that is what you think, you have been bamboozled. And sadly, most of that confusion comes from voice teachers that use the term and don't have a clue what they really mean by it. If you don't understand formants and resonation, you can't properly explain what mixed voice is... and most voice coaches are clueless about formants and the acoustics of singing.

Mixed voice is a very odd and over complicated topic. Almost mystical according to some instructors. Some people refer to it being those notes in the passagio, I've also heard it referred to as the third register, which, I believe is just flat out wrong.

Agreed. Precisely my point with the video ...  

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What practical difference would it make?

That made me laugh, not sure why but it did...

Mixed voice is a very odd and over complicated topic. Almost mystical according to some instructors. Some people refer to it being those notes in the passagio, I've also heard it referred to as the third register, which, I believe is just flat out wrong.

Agreed. Precisely my point with the video

I'd still love to know the practical use of knowing if mixed voice is a "thick headvoice" (whateverdafuq that is) or a blend of registers. It would probably have little to no impact on how exercises are performed, and, ultimately, on the final product.

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What practical difference would it make?

That made me laugh, not sure why but it did...

Mixed voice is a very odd and over complicated topic. Almost mystical according to some instructors. Some people refer to it being those notes in the passagio, I've also heard it referred to as the third register, which, I believe is just flat out wrong.

Agreed. Precisely my point with the video

I'd still love to know the practical use of knowing if mixed voice is a "thick headvoice" (whateverdafuq that is) or a blend of registers. It would probably have little to no impact on how exercises are performed, and, ultimately, on the final product.

What practical difference would it make?

That made me laugh, not sure why but it did...

Mixed voice is a very odd and over complicated topic. Almost mystical according to some instructors. Some people refer to it being those notes in the passagio, I've also heard it referred to as the third register, which, I believe is just flat out wrong.

Agreed. Precisely my point with the video

I'd still love to know the practical use of knowing if mixed voice is a "thick headvoice" (whateverdafuq that is) or a blend of registers. It would probably have little to no impact on how exercises are performed, and, ultimately, on the final product.

What practical difference would it make?

That made me laugh, not sure why but it did...

Mixed voice is a very odd and over complicated topic. Almost mystical according to some instructors. Some people refer to it being those notes in the passagio, I've also heard it referred to as the third register, which, I believe is just flat out wrong.

Agreed. Precisely my point with the video

I'd still love to know the practical use of knowing if mixed voice is a "thick headvoice" (whateverdafuq that is) or a blend of registers. It would probably have little to no impact on how exercises are performed, and, ultimately, on the final product.

What practical difference would it make?

That made me laugh, not sure why but it did...

Mixed voice is a very odd and over complicated topic. Almost mystical according to some instructors. Some people refer to it being those notes in the passagio, I've also heard it referred to as the third register, which, I believe is just flat out wrong.

Agreed. Precisely my point with the video

I'd still love to know the practical use of knowing if mixed voice is a "thick headvoice" (whateverdafuq that is) or a blend of registers. It would probably have little to no impact on how exercises are performed, and, ultimately, on the final product.

If we have to go here... which I do not advise... I would say that "Mixed Voice" is mixed resonance... a combination of F1 & F2 formants. 

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Rob is right, there is not a third register.  There are many ways to describe Chest and Head, but in it's simplest form:  M1 is chest and M2 is Head.  Sometimes people describe "mixed voice" when you get the "sound" of Chest voice but your are actually in Head voice.  But you can't be in both M1 and M2 at the same time.  You can't mix M1 and M2 together.  You are in either one or the other.

( The difference between M1 and M2 is that in M1 the Vocalis muscle is vibrating along with the outer parts of the folds, whereas in M2 the Vocalis is not vibrating.  Since the Vocalis is much bigger than the outer parts of the folds, you can "feel" the difference when it stops vibrating. The skill is being able to connect M1 and M2 without an audible difference.  That is done by keeping the same adduction while transitioning from one to the other.  )

 

I'm not sure I understand this M1/M2 musculature completely. It is said that only the outside vibrates in falsetto:

Vocal_fold_falsett_animated.gif

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Falsetto

And the full section vibratos in  modal voice:

Vocal_fold_animated.gif

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Modal_voice

However, looking at these illustrations, is it physiologically impossible for different amounts of vibratory mass to occur in each? As an example, say a smaller section of the red area was vibrating or it was primarily orange/yellow.  Or more or less of the orange section was vibrating? This is a situation I'd like access to peer reviewed studies, and hopefully visual evidence on the laryngoscopy of people carrying various weights with their voice preferably with someone who can do messa di voce very slowly in passaggio.

 

It'd be nice to see hard evidence at this point. There is so much singing jargon, that M1 and M2 are at risk for becoming the next 'mix voices' if we don't clearly understand the studies, or if the studies weren't conducted adequately. If there is a lighter mass M1, is this a registration closer to M2 in total mass being vibrated, essentially functioning as a middle voice between the masses by mixing in more mass from M1?

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What practical difference would it make?

Its quite some difference Khassera. The two registers theory was about working out a transition as if it was a result of intrinsic muscular action, in special, the tensors. So you would go from your chest voice and go towards falsetto. This would lead to improving such transition and a gradual blending of quality.

 

However, given what is known now, its much more efficient to address the specific coordinations that will lead to the desired result, the ones I mentioned above. The previous approach would only render results if by luck you produced the adjustments that are necessary. If you work on the adjustments, the training is more efficient and reliable.

 

Instead of working thinking of pitch and muscle coordination, adjust the vowels and the tonal quality accordingly, going towards what you know that will produce what you need (upper pharynx expansion, elevation of the tongue, ap narrowing, etc).

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@Killer if there is red moving, its M1, you can do that (more or less movement) by changing how loud you are, not by going "in-between".

What about airflow? More air with less closure, would be reduced volume. If you were to speak with a breathy low voice, does the amount of red movement change if more air is put at it? Doesn't twanging also change this in some way? It's purely volume? Does the motion of the cricothyroid affect it? Position of tract? More, less twang, etc?

Is an increase in volume necessary to increase the mass or can you increase the mass while altering other mechanisms (resonance, airflow, vowel choice, posturing, etc) to hold back volume relatively?

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What practical difference would it make?

Its quite some difference Khassera. The two registers theory was about working out a transition as if it was a result of intrinsic muscular action, in special, the tensors. So you would go from your chest voice and go towards falsetto. This would lead to improving such transition and a gradual blending of quality.

 

However, given what is known now, its much more efficient to address the specific coordinations that will lead to the desired result, the ones I mentioned above. The previous approach would only render results if by luck you produced the adjustments that are necessary. If you work on the adjustments, the training is more efficient and reliable.

 

Instead of working thinking of pitch and muscle coordination, adjust the vowels and the tonal quality accordingly, going towards what you know that will produce what you need (upper pharynx expansion, elevation of the tongue, ap narrowing, etc).

awesome answer broham. Especially the last two sentences.

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@Killer if there is red moving, its M1, you can do that (more or less movement) by changing how loud you are, not by going "in-between".

What about airflow? More air with less closure, would be reduced volume. If you were to speak with a breathy low voice, does the amount of red movement change if more air is put at it? Doesn't twanging also change this in some way? It's purely volume? Does the motion of the cricothyroid affect it? Position of tract? More, less twang, etc?

Is an increase in volume necessary to increase the mass or can you increase the mass while altering other mechanisms (resonance, airflow, vowel choice, posturing, etc) to hold back volume relatively?

 

Yes, this is true, to be more precise you can do that by varying loudness, as long as you keep the other aspects constant.

But the main point is that more or less of this does not mean more or less "M1ness". It does not even mean more or less "chesty".

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What practical difference would it make?

Its quite some difference Khassera. The two registers theory was about working out a transition as if it was a result of intrinsic muscular action, in special, the tensors. So you would go from your chest voice and go towards falsetto. This would lead to improving such transition and a gradual blending of quality.

 

However, given what is known now, its much more efficient to address the specific coordinations that will lead to the desired result, the ones I mentioned above. The previous approach would only render results if by luck you produced the adjustments that are necessary. If you work on the adjustments, the training is more efficient and reliable.

 

Instead of working thinking of pitch and muscle coordination, adjust the vowels and the tonal quality accordingly, going towards what you know that will produce what you need (upper pharynx expansion, elevation of the tongue, ap narrowing, etc).

awesome answer broham. Especially the last two sentences.

Yes, a more advanced student of singing will lead by acoustics and let/expect the physiology to follow.

Generally speaking... 

Beginners = Lead with physiology and try to get the acoustic effect they want.

Advanced Singers = Lead with acoustics (auditory imagery skills that enable you to hear the proper vowels/formants for every moment in singing) and expect the physiology line up.

Killer, Vibratory Mechanism definitions are based on the closed quotient of the vocal folds. The above animation of vocalis activation vs no vocalis is not really the same thing actually and its not really explaining the same story. That animation, which I like actually... It is not inside my new online course work system, is really more about vocalis strengthening.

 

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@Killer if there is red moving, its M1, you can do that (more or less movement) by changing how loud you are, not by going "in-between".

To me this is the best "visual" of how what people call "mixed voice" works and feels at the vocal fold level (not that you feel the larynx - you will feel this effect as pressure changes) - that red area in the pic is still going to move but it feels like you use less body of it, a less intense vibration, a thinner portion of it.

The ability to back off and use the smallest amount of the body of the fold in M1 without letting go of it and going to M2 is a hugely important vocal skill to develop. It's where the balance of power and finesse lives. I've been trying to get into it a lot lately.

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To activate the vocalis (red), you need muscle engagement. I'm not certain that respiration (Bernoulli) closure is strong enough to guarantee movement of the core like that. There needs to be heavier engagement of the adductors and such... But I also believe we are all somewhat speculating to some degree here.

Owen, messa di voce in the traditional crescendo/decrescendo volume application, as well as TVS M&R onsets that focus on muscle coordination will help you with that.

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Rob is right, there is not a third register.  There are many ways to describe Chest and Head, but in it's simplest form:  M1 is chest and M2 is Head.  Sometimes people describe "mixed voice" when you get the "sound" of Chest voice but your are actually in Head voice.  But you can't be in both M1 and M2 at the same time.  You can't mix M1 and M2 together.  You are in either one or the other.

( The difference between M1 and M2 is that in M1 the Vocalis muscle is vibrating along with the outer parts of the folds, whereas in M2 the Vocalis is not vibrating.  Since the Vocalis is much bigger than the outer parts of the folds, you can "feel" the difference when it stops vibrating. The skill is being able to connect M1 and M2 without an audible difference.  That is done by keeping the same adduction while transitioning from one to the other.  )

 

I'm not sure I understand this M1/M2 musculature completely. It is said that only the outside vibrates in falsetto:

Vocal_fold_falsett_animated.gif

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Falsetto

And the full section vibratos in  modal voice:

Vocal_fold_animated.gif

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Modal_voice

However, looking at these illustrations, is it physiologically impossible for different amounts of vibratory mass to occur in each? As an example, say a smaller section of the red area was vibrating or it was primarily orange/yellow.  Or more or less of the orange section was vibrating? This is a situation I'd like access to peer reviewed studies, and hopefully visual evidence on the laryngoscopy of people carrying various weights with their voice preferably with someone who can do messa di voce very slowly in passaggio.

 

It'd be nice to see hard evidence at this point. There is so much singing jargon, that M1 and M2 are at risk for becoming the next 'mix voices' if we don't clearly understand the studies, or if the studies weren't conducted adequately. If there is a lighter mass M1, is this a registration closer to M2 in total mass being vibrated, essentially functioning as a middle voice between the masses by mixing in more mass from M1?

Killer - The amount of mass that is vibrating isn't the determining factor for the quality of the Sound Wave.  The determining factor is, like Rob said, the Closed Quotient - ratio of time the folds are touching verses not touching - and of course the air pressure - which determines loudness.  The more the folds touch, the more overtones are produced.  If they are only touching little bit, like in falsetto, the sound will be devoid of overtones (like a flute).  

The M1 / M2 transition point can be disguised by trying to keep the Closed Quotient the same when the Red (Vocalis) stops vibrating.  This is easier done when less of the Red is vibrating (lower mass).  That's why it is always suggested to "lighten up on the TA" when bridging to head.  But you don't completely let go of the TA - otherwise you get falsetto.  When the Red stops vibrating, it is still actively helping the outer parts to touch.

 

 

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