Category: Tone

5 More Vocal Skills That Need Each Other

We’ve talked before about vocal skills that compliment each other—aspects of your singing that will never be quite right until other areas get a bit of training. I have a few more to add to that list that list. Such as…

Complete Expanding Your Range & Complete Breathing

Every singer wants to expand and maximize their range, but you will never be able to stretch out without good breathing habits.

You can not make or push the voice to sing higher or lower. Instead, you must relax and allow it to happen. This is why you need solid breath support. When it comes to breath, you only need what you need. More air is not better, and backing off too much will leave the vocal mechanism unable to do it’s job.

Complete Breathing will teach you proper breath technique. And, Complete Expanding Your Range leads you through fun and clear exercises that build on that foundation. Frankly, most singers are pleasantly shocked when they experience easy breathing and easy access to their full range.

Complete Blend & Complete Tone & Complete Diction

Why do some family groups seems to blend so naturally? It’s partially because they have learned to speak from the same parents and have the same musical heritage. The result of this upbringing is that they naturally have the same concept of tone and even the same patterns of diction.

But, you can have this cohesion even if you’re not singing with family members. To do this, you need to master your own Tone and Diction. Then, you can start to “get on the same page” as those we’re singing with using Complete Blend, and that’s when true natural oneness of sound happens.

Remember, your voice is an instrument with many parts and many influencing factors. To be your best you must address the voice as a whole.

Thank you again for reading! Let me know if you have any vocal areas you would like to see addressed here on Ask the Vocal Coach Blog.

4 Vocal Skills That Need Each Other

bread and butter

Some things just go together. Like baseball and hotdogs, bread and butter, baloney and peanut butter (Oh, that was when I was in college with no food budget) and of course, certain Vocal Coach CD’s. Seriously, there are some aspects of your singing that will never be quite right until other areas get a bit of training. Here are some examples:

Complete Breathing & Complete Tone

Breathing (breath management) is obviously a key element of singing. It is also a key component to your tone (the sound quality of your voice). Too much breath over powers the vocal folds, distorts the sound and tires the voice. It also limits smooth transition into the higher notes as well as coming back down. In the same way, spending some time systematically experimenting with different sounds (tone) lets you know your expressive options. Put the two together, Breathing and Tone, and you are on your way to discovering your best sounds and controlling them. The goal is for you to take the message in your mind and heart and make it come alive for your audience. As that begins to happen over and over, muscle memory kicks in and it becomes one more skill set you own. Using Complete Breathing & Complete Tone together will help you convey your message clearly and naturally.

Complete Performance & Complete Diction

There is nothing better than seeing and hearing a singer who fully communicates the message with the voice and the body. A sound quality that fits the song, clear words that you don’t have to strain to understand and facial expressions to match the message. These are the elements that make a good singer better, and an excellent singer just plain fabulous. Just as with athletics, if you don’t skip any of the foundational steps of learning you will continue to get better, and better and better. Working with Complete Performance and Complete Diction together can help make your performance the best it can be.

Are you paying attention to the big picture when you sing. Knowing how all the things that go into singing well and how those skills complement each other is the key to mastering your voice. Can you think of any other skills that need each other? Share them in your comment below.

Singers, Have You Found Your Sound?

How do you describe your own vocal sound?

Is it smooth and resonant?  Is it a bit hoarse, tight or tense sounding?  Is it pinched, scratchy or throaty?  Is it as pleasing, mellow and relaxed to listen to as you would like it to be?

Finding, or discovering your best, most natural vocal sound gives you a benchmark.  A place to go back to when you may be abusing or overusing your voice.  What we’re really talking about here is the sound you get when there  minimal tension in your voice and when your posture, breathing and other basics are working fairly well.

Your vocal sound is the result of a number of factors

One of those factors is the vocal characteristics of the people you imitated while learning to speak. That can include the overall sound, diction and even the tonal quality of those you first listened to.  Other aspects of your vocal sound are a result of your physiology.  Are your adult vocal folds long or short, thick or thin, what is the size and shape of your sinuses and nasal passages etc.  Even your native tongue determines much about your basic, default sound.  English, Spanish, German, French and Chinese all use very different sound characteristics Yet all can be spoken with relative freedom, or tension.

Then, there is your physical makeup and how that effects the acoustics of your voice such as the length and thickness of the vocal folds, the size and shape of your sinuses, nasal passages, oral cavity etc.

In other words, there are a lot of variables, yet most of us, with some right training and guidance, can learn to product an attractive vocal sound.

Complete Tone

In the Vocal Coach Complete Tone CD we take you on a journey that will help you do several things.

  1. It makes you vocally aware of your own vocal characteristics and sound.
  2. It leads you through exercises to help you determine what it feels like when you are doing things right.
  3. It helps you develop muscle memory.  And, muscle memory will bring you back to that place of freedom.

Serious Fun!

Finding, then being able to reproduce your own best sounds is one of the most exciting and practical things any singer can do.  Then, you can choose to change and alter that sound for various styles, while at the same time keeping your voice and not sacrificing vocal health or style.

If you haven’t worked with the Complete Tone CD yet you should.  It’s just a download away, or available as a physical CD at vocalcoach.com.