I have a vocal pupil 44 year old female who is a member of a very famous folk family who has never sung before May last year. I have been giving her lessons which basically consist of improving her use of breath - how to attack notes and how to open the throat so as to develop the voice fully. Also to provide encouragement and motivation as her family has several very famous singers and she lacks confidence
We sing folk and gospel songs to develop the sound and the result as of the last lesson was a very powerful soprano with a two octave range. No mike needed in fact I think if she stands too close it damages the thing
I have NOT trained her for operatic singing as she does not want to sing classical music or opera She does sing jazz standards and some music hall She sings in a pure powerful manner which suits shanties and gospel.
She does not want a career but if she did I think in a year or so she would have one of the best voices on the folk circuit.
All I have done is release the sound within her I, too was surprised at the sheer power and
range and there is more to come
IMO there is no such thing as a folk voice