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MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Nickelback Cancels Rest of North American Tour. Chad Kroeger needs surgery on vocal folds.

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Hello everyone!

News has come out and been covered all over the internet about how Nickelback have had to cancel the rest of their North American tour because of a cyst on singer Chad Kroeger's vocal folds, which he is having surgically removed.

If any of you viewed my last thread on vocal fry, I made it clear that I was a huge fan of the band Nickelback and in particular the man himself, Chad Kroeger. I wasn't going to create this thread because I thought some of you might have had enough of me going on about vocal fry and Chad in the other thread, but i'm interested and it is about vocal health so I thought why not? :) 

Here is a quote from the official website:

"Nickelback is forced to cancel all remaining dates of the second leg of the 2015 No Fixed Address North American tour due to lead vocalist Chad Kroeger being diagnosed with an operable cyst on his voice box.  Chad will undergo surgery in 3 weeks following vocal rest ordered by doctors.  Ticket refunds will be available at the point of purchase."

So how do you guys think this cyst appeared? Nickelback have toured for many years and Chad has been fine in the past. Why has this happened now? Is he pushing too hard? Singing too much? Not taking enough care of his voice? He turned 40 last year and whilst I don't see that age as old, maybe that has something to do with it? Getting older.. not warming up and cooling down maybe? I also know that the whole of Nickelback have a few beers on stage most nights when touring, but I don't think they go overboard. Drinking after the show though... I can imagine Chad and the guys drinking a bit. I also saw an interview with them recently where Chad was hungover and you could really tell in his voice.

I understand that singing nearly every night might be a challenge but I don't understand how he's done it for years and been fine as far as I know.

I'd love to know your opinions on Chad's vocal problem itself or just vocal health and how we can go about not falling into similar problems.

One last thing... I'm seeing Nickelback live in November so hopefully Chad makes a full recovery in time. They haven't cancelled the rest of their tour... yet. I know that if I had an operation on my vocal folds and stopped singing for weeks, I'd notice a difference in my singing for sure! Hell.. I can notice a difference if I skip a few days working my voice out!

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Probably because Chad is a professional singer and probably the wear on the cords has caused it.

Why did Ogar break his back during the Crossfit Games? Fatigue, a misjudgement and bad luck. That's how injuries generally occur.

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   Most vocal coaches warn about using distortion for a reason. I mentioned that Chads sound was unhealthy. That does not mean that his type of distortion caused his problem but it certainly did not help anything. The bad thing about being an entertainer is that the show must go on, sometimes this leads a minor problem to become a major one.

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To echo Khassera, essentially you are risk of injury in any activity

Football players that have been playing since pee wee league can still get hurt in the pros, some thirty years later. Baseball players who have played that long and warm up constantly, batters using the warm-up area to perfect the swing. Pitchers in the cage trying out a few fast balls and see if they can hide a knuckleball. These guys can get hurt and do. Rotator cuff, achille's tendon, hamstrings most often for base runners and groin pulls most often for pitchers. 

And this is in spite of all the "training" in the world Liability coverage and risk of injury for a pro athlete is higher than that for a collegiate or scholastic athlete. Why? Because you are in the game for longer durations of the day and week. And especially in impact sports like football, you have to expect tremendous collisions and getting your bell rung at least a dozen times.

I saw the news report, as well. It was easy to assume it is because of that sound. But, other times, I suspected the secret to that sound is called digitech, mxr, or some other brand name of in line effect.

And I am sure a number of people will jump up and tell me, no, he does not use effects because you can't see a stomp box behind the monitor, etc, etc, in a video. And I certainly guarantee they use effects in recording.

Conversely, if one can state or show that really his a sound of his, where it sounds like something is rattling in there, how could he not get injured? "Oh, well, he didn't do it right."

And what if he didn't do it right and learning some technique not only saves his voice but changes his sound? Like Bon Jovi cleaning up his sound and people wishing he could go back to the sound of his youthful and untrained days. And this from singers espousing technical study.

Certainly he will undergo rehab and maybe some lessons and his sound will change and all the girlies that get their panties twisted over that can just keep twisting in the wind.

I personally wore out listening to that sound of his and his clean legit sound is something I like better. There's a short live bit of  him doing "Friends in Low Places."

So, I guess that really is his sound. And rather than assume it is purely a technique problem, I would imagine that it is a combination of everything, including life on the road.

Very few here have been on any kind of tour, let alone the touring schedule of this band.

 

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Here is the other thing, regardless of training, though having good technique will carry you far. In addition to the life on the road, which will take its toll, is age. I know some of you guys will ignore me, In fact, the younger you are, the more sure you will be I am wrong. I know because a several decades ago, I was in my 20's. I thought I knew nearly everything. And while I was raised to show respect to those older than me, I might still think to myself "I will be different. I will last forever. I will hold my tongue right." (old saying around here, you are doing something wrong because you are not sticking your tongue out correctly.)

In you 40's, not counting drastic diseases and accidents, your body has been slowing down since your early 30's but it is accelerating now because it just won't repair as fast from whatever abuse you heap upon it.And ten years down the road after that? It does not get any better.

So, let me try to cheer things up. If you eat right, exercise, get plenty of rest, successfully manage stress, drink only moderately, avoid smoking and were born with good genetics, then sometime between 70 and 100 years old, you will die. Sheesh, that sounded better in my head .....

So, what I am saying is that is a combination including age. In addition, like Tom Kiefer, Kroeger could have an undiagnosed condition such as a paresis that was never uncovered, he just bulled his way through it and that was fine in his 20's, when we are all indestructible. But in his 40's? His body says to him what Arnold Schwarzeneggar said to Yaphet Kotto in the movie, "Commando." (so many wonderful lines in that movie. "What happened to Sully?" " I had to let him go.")

My next point being that while technical training will help with rehab and even some good singing instruction for the future, he is going to have change how much he works and some of what he does. 

Because you could sing with great technique but if  your lifestyle has problems in it, that may not be the only thing you need to change.

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Thank you to all who replied. I appreciate it! Everything you say makes sense. It's bound to happen to some people. You never know, it could have been the rasp he constantly uses.

I saw the news report, as well. It was easy to assume it is because of that sound. But, other times, I suspected the secret to that sound is called digitech, mxr, or some other brand name of in line effect.

And I am sure a number of people will jump up and tell me, no, he does not use effects because you can't see a stomp box behind the monitor, etc, etc, in a video. And I certainly guarantee they use effects in recording.

I'm one of those people that is jumping up and saying he doesn't use a distortion effect live :D. His voice is just genuinely like that. You can even hear it in the video when he talks to the crowd.

When recording yeah.. effects are used.. just like with pretty much every singer on recordings! Nickelback records are super compressed (one of the reasons certain people dislike them) so everything is up in your face.. especially the vocal tracks. And then other things such as vocal doubling, reverb, delay, and most likely a little bit of distortion for those harmonics. But he does sing it like that live too. I've seen too many videos where it's obvious that it's his voice, such as small acoustic performances for radio stations, outdoor acoustic performances for a smaller number of fans, even an acoustic performance without microphones. I can tell just by listening to the big full band live performances themselves.. he'll switch from talking and singing to the crowd and nothing sounds artificial. You can also tell when he switches from a cleaner to raspy sound that there's no distortion.

Actually.. they do use distortion when performing live, but it's a separate microphone that both Chad and the other guitarist Ryan use for effect only. It's meant to be like that.

I have many effects including distortion and it cannot make you sound like the way he does. It's just loads of rasp, like many singers use!

By the way.. going back to effects used when recording.. you should try to get a hold of or find online the acapella track of 'Photograph'. That song in particular is so compressed it's ridiculous. There's even weird glitches in the vocal track where it sounds like they've tried time stretching certain words. I can also hear the autotune used. Way too much!

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Thank you to all who replied. I appreciate it! Everything you say makes sense. It's bound to happen to some people. You never know, it could have been the rasp he constantly uses.

I saw the news report, as well. It was easy to assume it is because of that sound. But, other times, I suspected the secret to that sound is called digitech, mxr, or some other brand name of in line effect.

And I am sure a number of people will jump up and tell me, no, he does not use effects because you can't see a stomp box behind the monitor, etc, etc, in a video. And I certainly guarantee they use effects in recording.

I'm one of those people that is jumping up and saying he doesn't use a distortion effect live :D. His voice is just genuinely like that. You can even hear it in the video when he talks to the crowd.

When recording yeah.. effects are used.. just like with pretty much every singer on recordings! Nickelback records are super compressed (one of the reasons certain people dislike them) so everything is up in your face.. especially the vocal tracks. And then other things such as vocal doubling, reverb, delay, and most likely a little bit of distortion for those harmonics. But he does sing it like that live too. I've seen too many videos where it's obvious that it's his voice, such as small acoustic performances for radio stations, outdoor acoustic performances for a smaller number of fans, even an acoustic performance without microphones. I can tell just by listening to the big full band live performances themselves.. he'll switch from talking and singing to the crowd and nothing sounds artificial. You can also tell when he switches from a cleaner to raspy sound that there's no distortion.

Actually.. they do use distortion when performing live, but it's a separate microphone that both Chad and the other guitarist Ryan use for effect only. It's meant to be like that.

I have many effects including distortion and it cannot make you sound like the way he does. It's just loads of rasp, like many singers use!

By the way.. going back to effects used when recording.. you should try to get a hold of or find online the acapella track of 'Photograph'. That song in particular is so compressed it's ridiculous. There's even weird glitches in the vocal track where it sounds like they've tried time stretching certain words. I can also hear the autotune used. Way too much!

Yeah, actually, I kinda wished you had read all the way through my post where I noted that must be his real voice and not an effect but I guess it was easier to jump on the first thing.

Oh well, I could have edited but I prefer to talk straight from the cuff. I agree, that is the natural sound of his voice, as I pointed out in the last part of my post where I linked the video that you speak of.

 

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Yeah, actually, I kinda wished you had read all the way through my post where I noted that must be his real voice and not an effect but I guess it was easier to jump on the first thing.

Oh well, I could have edited but I prefer to talk straight from the cuff. I agree, that is the natural sound of his voice, as I pointed out in the last part of my post where I linked the video that you speak of.

Sorry Ron! I did read most of your post! I just didn't see the text underneath the video you embedded. I thought it ended with the video. My apologies! I also enjoyed your post after that so thanks :).

Let's hope Chad makes a full recovery and doesn't lose any of his tone or range after this operation. It must be pretty scary for him and the rest of the band.

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you know, if you have never been on tour, you can't really know where the problem can be from.

It's not just a matter of technique or "unhealthy distortion" blablabla...

Not enough sleep, force to sing even if you are ill just because you can't cancel the shows, emotional problems etc etc. All those things can also lead to vocal problems like nods..

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