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Speaking voice versus singing voice

GUEST,matt milton 27 Jan 12 - 09:05 AM
GUEST,matt milton 27 Jan 12 - 09:07 AM
Will Fly 27 Jan 12 - 09:10 AM
GUEST,Don Wise 27 Jan 12 - 10:02 AM
Black belt caterpillar wrestler 27 Jan 12 - 10:21 AM
Marje 27 Jan 12 - 10:44 AM
GUEST,matt milton 27 Jan 12 - 11:11 AM
GUEST,matt milton 27 Jan 12 - 11:14 AM
Jim Carroll 27 Jan 12 - 01:09 PM
Richard Bridge 27 Jan 12 - 01:16 PM
GUEST,Speranzo 27 Jan 12 - 02:08 PM
GUEST,SteveG 27 Jan 12 - 02:58 PM
Jim Carroll 28 Jan 12 - 04:27 AM
Jim Carroll 28 Jan 12 - 04:53 AM
GUEST,matt milton 28 Jan 12 - 06:30 AM
GUEST,matt milton 28 Jan 12 - 06:36 AM
Leadfingers 28 Jan 12 - 07:17 AM
Bert 28 Jan 12 - 09:36 AM
Phil Edwards 28 Jan 12 - 10:17 AM
GUEST,raymond greenoaken 28 Jan 12 - 10:52 AM
Paul Davenport 28 Jan 12 - 12:28 PM
paula t 28 Jan 12 - 12:33 PM
EBarnacle 28 Jan 12 - 01:11 PM
GUEST,Azoic 28 Jan 12 - 01:15 PM
GUEST,raymond greenoaken 28 Jan 12 - 02:54 PM
Jim Carroll 28 Jan 12 - 02:56 PM
GUEST,matt milton 28 Jan 12 - 02:59 PM
Suegorgeous 28 Jan 12 - 03:22 PM
Crowhugger 28 Jan 12 - 03:36 PM
Joybell 28 Jan 12 - 03:37 PM
Jim Carroll 28 Jan 12 - 05:16 PM
Stringsinger 28 Jan 12 - 05:35 PM
Stringsinger 28 Jan 12 - 05:37 PM
Richard Mellish 28 Jan 12 - 05:59 PM
Bert 29 Jan 12 - 12:22 AM
Marje 29 Jan 12 - 12:27 PM
JohnInKansas 29 Jan 12 - 02:39 PM
matt milton 29 Jan 12 - 03:47 PM
Don Firth 29 Jan 12 - 04:27 PM
tonyteach1 29 Jan 12 - 04:42 PM
GUEST,Tom P 29 Jan 12 - 07:45 PM
Crowhugger 29 Jan 12 - 08:34 PM
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Subject: Speaking voice versus singing voice
From: GUEST,matt milton
Date: 27 Jan 12 - 09:05 AM

Kind of following on from a different recent thread...

I've been having singing lessons for a few months now, and I find them very valuable.

However, I have one issue that I'm undecided on. My singing teacher is frequently getting me to pitch my songs decidedly higher than I used to sing them. Frequently a good 3 or 4 tones.

I understand why she does this. Singing the songs at a higher pitch in many ways feels more physically comfortable, particularly once I've warmed up. You can feel your mouth and chest and diaphragm really opening up.

The trouble is, when I listen back to recordings, I simply don't like the sound of my voice in that range. It sounds a bit too choirboy for my liking.

I was in a recording studio the other day and I was struck, listening to the playback by how different my speaking voice sounded on the recording, counting off a take, to my singing voice.

My speaking voice was quite a full-sounding baritone, while my singing voice sounded light, thin and reedy.

It made me wonder whether there is a lesson to be learned there: is the pitch-area I tend to speak in ultimately more naturally "my voice" than a singing voice which extends a good octave and a half above that?


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Subject: RE: Speaking voice versus singing voice
From: GUEST,matt milton
Date: 27 Jan 12 - 09:07 AM

or, to open up the discussion a bit, do other people on here have singing voices at dramatically different ends of the scale to their speaking voice?


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Subject: RE: Speaking voice versus singing voice
From: Will Fly
Date: 27 Jan 12 - 09:10 AM

Not dramatically different, Matt - but singing to an audience requires me being about a tone higher than singing the same thing at home. Adrenalin and all that. Also, as I've got older, my voice has deepened - why, I even started shaving the other day... :-)


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Subject: RE: Speaking voice versus singing voice
From: GUEST,Don Wise
Date: 27 Jan 12 - 10:02 AM

Singing for yourself at home is something you tend to do at less than full volume which means, in my case (ignoring other changes due to age etc.) means I tend to sing a couple of tones too low. Up on stage, especially if there's no PA, no matter how good the acoustics are, a higher pitch allows the voice to carry better, at least in my experience. The downside is that all those beautiful accompaniments tend to be write-offs since all too often it's not simply a case of capoing up or down.
My speaking voice can be a problem- I'm a voice-over artist and quite often if I'm close to the mike and speaking fairly quietly the pitch slips a tone or two upwards in the direction of the 'Head voice' rather than the more usual, and usually required, 'Chest voice'.


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Subject: RE: Speaking voice versus singing voice
From: Black belt caterpillar wrestler
Date: 27 Jan 12 - 10:21 AM

If you have a voice with more lower harmonics you can have problems finding a microphone that accurately reproduces the sound of it. Is it just a feature of the microphone that is creating a recording that seems too thin to you?
It took me a few years to come across a microphone that would work for me and yet was in my price range!


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Subject: RE: Speaking voice versus singing voice
From: Marje
Date: 27 Jan 12 - 10:44 AM

Singing teachers do like to push you up towards the top of your range. In classical choirs, there's always a need for lots of high voices, and the tenors and sopranos get most of the best leading roles in opera etc, while basses and altos have to play the villains and the old bats. I had some lessons for a while, and the teacher used to say, "You know, you could have been a soprano!" as if this was a missed opportunity, whereas I had simply no wish to sing soprano; I think my lower register has a warmer, more natural sound.

The fact is that in folk music, most people prefer to sing (and to listen to) songs that are closer in pitch to the speaking voice, and singing teachers may not take this into consideration.

However, I don't think it does any harm to learn to open up your voice and extend your range. It may result in a better sound throughout your range, and it certainly won't hurt. It will just give you more options.

You'll need to experiment a bit more and listen back to recordings of yourself to choose the right range for your material and the settings where you sing. Fixing a key towards the top end of your comfort zone will probably help your voice to carry better, but there's no need to be coerced into the choirboy or operatic-tenor range if you don't like the resulting sound.

Marje


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Subject: RE: Speaking voice versus singing voice
From: GUEST,matt milton
Date: 27 Jan 12 - 11:11 AM

"If you have a voice with more lower harmonics you can have problems finding a microphone that accurately reproduces the sound of it. Is it just a feature of the microphone that is creating a recording that seems too thin to you?
It took me a few years to come across a microphone that would work for me and yet was in my price range!"

That might well be true. I'm reasonably happy with the specific recordings I made (well, three out of the four songs). We used a Neumann U87ai in the studio. And I deliberately sang quite close in, to maximise that bass-boost proximity effect you get with cardioid mics.

I have an AKG C414B at home, which seems to suit my voice quite well, but again, I find I really have to get in close-up to approach the sound I think of as "my voice".

Which mic was it, by the way, that ended up being right for you, Caterpillar Wrestler?


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Subject: RE: Speaking voice versus singing voice
From: GUEST,matt milton
Date: 27 Jan 12 - 11:14 AM

...and yes Marje, I do feel pleased with myself for having extended my range a couple of tones higher since starting singing lessons. For singing live, it's really valuable. Quite apart from anything, it's nice to be able to show off!

But on recordings, well that's another matter...


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Subject: RE: Speaking voice versus singing voice
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 27 Jan 12 - 01:09 PM

Traditional singers tend to sing in speaking tones and pitch their singing voice around where they would speak. Listen to Sam Larner's 'Butter and Cheese and All' where he speaks the between the penultimate and the last line "and you know what they are, don't you?" - song and speech exactly in pitch - it's virtually impossible to spot the join.
Walter Pardon and Harry Cox both used their speaking voice when they sang - many of the singers we have interviewed have insisted that this is the way they got the songs to work for them.
I was once told by a music teacher friend that his profession found the natural, open-toned 'folk voice' "ugly" and "unnatural" and that they strove for "bel canto" (beautiful singing) - one of the reasons I've always mistrusted trained singing for folk song.
In the workshops I've been involved with we had voice exercises to discover your 'natural voice' and once you have found that you can (hopefully) take control of your voice and move it into any area you need to in order to handle the whole folk repertoire - narrative ballads, lyrical love songs, shanties...... whatever.
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: Speaking voice versus singing voice
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 27 Jan 12 - 01:16 PM

You won't be surprised to hear that I see support for my views about voice teachers (ie at best a necessary evil, at worst wholly malign) passim.


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Subject: RE: Speaking voice versus singing voice
From: GUEST,Speranzo
Date: 27 Jan 12 - 02:08 PM

@Jim Carroll -
From your experience, are there any workshops you'd particularly recommend? "Natural voice" hunting sounds pretty useful.


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Subject: RE: Speaking voice versus singing voice
From: GUEST,SteveG
Date: 27 Jan 12 - 02:58 PM

As someone has said it can be an advantage to extend your range as a few songs do have quite a range on them, especially those that have been adapted from dance tunes. Try Cecilia Costello's 'Grey Cock' or Margaret Barry's 'My Lagan Love', even the shanty 'General Taylor' or even the fun song 'The Irish Rover'.
As Jim quite rightly says most British source singers tend to be close to their speaking voice but that wasn't always the case. There is evidence to suggest that a century or more ago singers pitched their singing voice much higher than their speaking voice for reasons already mentioned, so they carried further. I seem to remember Willie Scott had quite a high pitch but I expect he was used to singing in roaring winds out on the fells.


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Subject: RE: Speaking voice versus singing voice
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 28 Jan 12 - 04:27 AM

"From your experience, are there any workshops you'd particularly recommend"
We learned them in The Critics Group and used them extensively in London Singers Workshop (both long gone), but once we had mastered it, it was something we did at home.
Don't know where you are (or if she still holds them) but Frankie Armstrong was holding voice exercises at one time - I heard they were excellent
The voice exercises are 4 vowel-like sounds based in order to produce a 'pure, uncluttered sound'.
Then there were a number of sohort singing exercises in order to deal with accuracy in articulation, pitch, large, small, awkward tntervals, breath control.... pieces (a minute or so long) from Wagner, Gilbert and Sullivan, mouth music, Kurt Weill
You can probably devise your own exercises; I have recordings of the ones we did which I have been promising people for ages, but have never got round to editing into a usable form - am now doing so as I type - happy to let anybody interested have a copy when I've finished sorting them.
Can I say, there are plenty of others if you can lay your hands on them but they worked for us.
Also, one of the importent aspects of voice production is controlling tension - it's worth getting hold of simple relaxation exercises for this too.
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: Speaking voice versus singing voice
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 28 Jan 12 - 04:53 AM

Can I add the a degree of un-selfconciousness is necessary when tackling any voice exercises.
This is an extract from Des Gerraghty's biography of Luke Kelly, from when Luke was a member of The Critics Group.
Jim Carroll

"There is certainly evidence that Luke took practice seriously, with occasional unseen consequences. Fintan O'Toole, in a piece on Ewan MacColl in Magill magazine, recounted a story MacColl told him of Luke, while he was on tour in Scotland: 'Luke Kelly was in the shower when the nice Edinburgh couple with whom he was staying - a doctor and his wife - started to hear strange noises, strangulated throaty sounds coming from upstairs. "My God", they thought, "he's an epileptic and he's having a fit." They rushed upstairs and shouted through the door at him but got no reply except the same throaty sounds. "My God", they thought, "he could be drowning in the shower." They kept calling and getting no answer. Eventually they smashed down the locked door and found young Luke Kelly standing under the shower practising the vocal exercises which Ewan MacColl had set for him: 'Mee, mee,mee, ahh, ahh, ahh...'"


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Subject: RE: Speaking voice versus singing voice
From: GUEST,matt milton
Date: 28 Jan 12 - 06:30 AM

"You won't be surprised to hear that I see support for my views about voice teachers (ie at best a necessary evil, at worst wholly malign) passim"

Where? Not from me!

I've been singing all my life and I really regret not having had singing lessons earlier. Essentially I've been singing badly all my life, even though I was singing well.

Singing lessons have improved my posture, breathing and overall fitness. I've increased my range both up and down.

My sole issue is really an aesthetic one rather than a technical one: she thinks I sound better singing high up; I think I sound better low down. A folk audience might agree with her, for all I know.


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Subject: RE: Speaking voice versus singing voice
From: GUEST,matt milton
Date: 28 Jan 12 - 06:36 AM

above should read "even though I thought I was singing well"


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Subject: RE: Speaking voice versus singing voice
From: Leadfingers
Date: 28 Jan 12 - 07:17 AM

Slight Thread Drift Alert !!
I think it is as important to project when introducing a song as when actually singing . It can be an annoyance when , although you can hear a singer singing , so often , the introduction can be almost inaudible even when amplified .


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Subject: RE: Speaking voice versus singing voice
From: Bert
Date: 28 Jan 12 - 09:36 AM

...My sole issue is really an aesthetic one rather than a technical one...

Of course it is, but if you sing close to your speaking voice you will sound more like yourself.

Which is a much better thing than sounding like all those other high pitched singers who sound like Bob Dylan whinalikes.


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Subject: RE: Speaking voice versus singing voice
From: Phil Edwards
Date: 28 Jan 12 - 10:17 AM

she thinks I sound better singing high up; I think I sound better low down

When I'm practising songs there always comes a point where the song finds its pitch for my voice, which usually means going up as high as I can manage. I'm interested that you find the timbre of your voice changes a lot, though. I find that I can sing more or less the same notes as mostly chest (Boney's Lamentation) or mostly head (The Unfortunate Lass); which one I use depends on the song. Perhaps the difference is that you've extended your 'head voice' register beyond what your 'chest voice' can manage - in which case I'd love to know how you did it!


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Subject: RE: Speaking voice versus singing voice
From: GUEST,raymond greenoaken
Date: 28 Jan 12 - 10:52 AM

I suspect my experience may differ from others here, as I find that with increasing years my voice has actually got higher. I think this is to do with gradually losing my lowest notes, and therefore tending to sing in higher keys than before. But I find I like this much more than I ever liked the lower keys. There's something quite thrilling, quite exhilarating about pushing yourself to the top of your range; and it seems to me that many of the songs I sing have their emotional nucleus at the top end of their melodies. I have a fairly high speaking voice, so maybe I was always destined to sing "up a-height", as we used to say in my home town.

And perhaps unsurprisingly, my favourite singers have tended to be those with plenty of altitude.

Anyone had a similar experience?


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Subject: RE: Speaking voice versus singing voice
From: Paul Davenport
Date: 28 Jan 12 - 12:28 PM

Some singers, like Joseph Taylor, appear to have used a higher than speaking voice. The training of an operatic coloratura soprano basically involves learning to sing falsetto which destabilises the voice and allows much quicker movements over the tonal range. This means that decoration and embellishment can be performed more easily that with a 'speaking' range voice. I sometimes wonder whether Taylor knew that, by using the top of his range, he would have similar access to faster and easier ornamentation? Interestingly, Taylor is not unique among traditional singers for using this device.


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Subject: RE: Speaking voice versus singing voice
From: paula t
Date: 28 Jan 12 - 12:33 PM

I've experienced the opposite. At Grammar school I was a soprano - usually being asked to sing solos which contained notes that no-one else could reach. Two of these were the opening solo line from "The Peat Fire Flame" from "Songs Of The Hebrides" songbook and "Balulalow" from Benjamin Britten's "Ceremony Of carols".

Nowadays I'm VERY alto! The singing lessons were good though because I was taught how to relax and to breathe properly. I think my teacher was a bit ahead of her time.


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Subject: RE: Speaking voice versus singing voice
From: EBarnacle
Date: 28 Jan 12 - 01:11 PM

This thread suggests why so many popular singers have high, whispy voices which sound as though they are whining, rather than singing. These voices make them sound like children rather than adult performers.


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Subject: RE: Speaking voice versus singing voice
From: GUEST,Azoic
Date: 28 Jan 12 - 01:15 PM

I think June Tabor and Dick Miles have good voices.


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Subject: RE: Speaking voice versus singing voice
From: GUEST,raymond greenoaken
Date: 28 Jan 12 - 02:54 PM

>This thread suggests why so many popular singers have high, whispy voices which sound as though they are whining, rather than singing. These voices make them sound like children rather than adult performers.<

You mean "popular" as in "pop", or "popular on the folk scene"? Or both?


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Subject: RE: Speaking voice versus singing voice
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 28 Jan 12 - 02:56 PM

"...appear to have used a higher than speaking voice."
Do we know this is the case with Joseph Taylor Paul? I know the Grainger collection pretty well and I wasn't aware there was enough of his speaking voice to make a solid judgement on its general pitch.
I do know that the spread of tension is one of the major factors in over-pitching (not suggesting that Taylor was either overpiching or tense, though I have heard it suggested that the apparent vibrato in his singing was due to nervousness.
There's a story conected with Grainger's recording of the Brigg singers.
It is claimed that, after singing Lord Bateman, George Wray asked could he hear the recording. Grainger duely obliged and Wray stood scratching his head and finally said "That bugger learned it a lot quicker than I did".
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: Speaking voice versus singing voice
From: GUEST,matt milton
Date: 28 Jan 12 - 02:59 PM

"Which is a much better thing than sounding like all those other high pitched singers who sound like Bob Dylan whinalikes"

Bob Dylan's the last singer I'd describe as "high pitched"!


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Subject: RE: Speaking voice versus singing voice
From: Suegorgeous
Date: 28 Jan 12 - 03:22 PM

Other natural voice teachers may be found here: Natural Voice Practitioners Network

And to Jim's suggestion re Frankie Armstrong, I'd add from personal experience: Maddy Prior, Nancy Kerr.

Sue


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Subject: RE: Speaking voice versus singing voice
From: Crowhugger
Date: 28 Jan 12 - 03:36 PM

Singing in my lower range has many similarities with my speaking voice. Singing in my upper range does not; qualitatively the sound is quite different, and I understand how that can seem foreign and seem--been there, felt that! But after I spent a few fall seasons singing alto in Handel's Messiah and alto & sometimes 2nd soprano in something or other by Vivaldi two things happened: (1) I got used to the sound of the higher voice and came to accept it as part of me and (2) I found I really enjoyed a cappella singing and joined both a chorus and quartet that do mostly that. I particularly love the cleanly locked chords with overtones you can get when not tied to the tempered scale.

Through years of singing folk style and some blues, my usual singing voice has always been my lower range, although I would sometimes use my high ranger to harmonize, if no one else was already up there. Nowadays I regularly sing bass in a women's a cappella quartet. Yet I ALWAYS warm up my full range (B3 to F6 or so) giving particular attention to the high end because up there my sound has certain a brightness, focus and resonance, all of which I am striving to have more of in my "comfortable" voice. Singing up there in warm-up reminds me how it feels to make those sounds, and then I aim to retain that as I sing my quartet part, which is mostly lower notes.

Doing this is founded on the guidance of some very good voice teachers my quartet works with, and I never feel sore or fatigued from doing so, always energized and amazed by process and the resonant result. So I feel confident that I am not doing anything to harm my voice. Just yesterday we worked for 3 hours with two teachers, the time flew by and my voice still had easily an hour's worth of singing left or even more, because we were making cleaner and better sound with less effort than at the start of the session.

After every such session, I renew my motto: "Singing is fun. Singing better is even MORE fun!"


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Subject: RE: Speaking voice versus singing voice
From: Joybell
Date: 28 Jan 12 - 03:37 PM

My speaking voice is so different from my singing voice that friends used to say, "I can't believe that sound is coming out of your mouth". Low speaking voice, soprano singing voice. Over the years -- nearly 70 of them now -- I've learned to extend my singing range downwards. Now I sing each song in the range that works for me. I don't like vocal tricks unless they're part of theatre. Mostly I prefer to let the song tell its own story.
One problem I've never overcome is using both ranges in one song. If I record myself singing harmony with myself it sounds like two people who never met before and didn't bother with rehearsing.
Eerie effect.
Cheers, Joy


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Subject: RE: Speaking voice versus singing voice
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 28 Jan 12 - 05:16 PM

"Singing is fun. Singing better is even MORE fun!"
Couldn't agree more.
This from a talk we did on MacColl and The Critics a few years ago.
The MacColl quote is from a private interview we did with him in 1980
Jim Carroll

He (MacColl) was insistent that, in order to make a good job of singing it was necessary to put in a great deal of time working at both the technique and the analyis of the songs.
Contrary to the impression put about by some people that The Singers Club was a place where you went to worship songs rather than enjoy them, Ewan believed that in order to get the maximum pleasure from singing it was necessary first to tackle the technical problems.

E.M. "Now you might say that working and training to develop your voice to sing Nine Maidens A-milking Did Go or Lord Randall is calculated to destroy your original joy in singing, at least that's the argument that's put to me from time to time, or has been put to me from time to time by singers who should know better.   
The better you can do a thing the more you enjoy it.   Anybody who's ever tried to sing and got up in front of an audience and made a bloody mess of it knows that you're not enjoying it when you're making a balls of it, but you are enjoying it when it's working, when all the things you want to happen are happening.    And that can happen without training, sure it can, but it's hit or miss.   If you're training it can happen more, that's the difference.   It can't happen every time, not with anybody, although your training can stand you in good stead, it's something to fall back on, a technique, you know.   It's something that will at least make sure that you're not absolutely diabolical……………
The objective, really for the singer is to create a situation where when he starts to sing he's no longer worried about technique, he's done all that, and he can give the whole of his or her attention to the song itself, she can give her or he can give his whole attention to the sheer act of enjoying the song."


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Subject: RE: Speaking voice versus singing voice
From: Stringsinger
Date: 28 Jan 12 - 05:35 PM

A natural singing voice isn't strained or pinched. So often, when singers try to emulate a "folk sound" they constrict their larynx so that the tones are thin and reedy. The solution is to relax the larynx, work for relaxation in general and find the natural balance of your singing voice with enough proper breath support.

The "choirboy" sound is an interpretive affectation.

It's important not to force the voice for it to be focussed with full vowel sounds.

The worst possible thing you can do is to try to sound like a field recording of a traditional singer because it's not natural to you and becomes an imitation.

Imitators abound in the folk music field and always sound affected and phony.

Sing like your voice is, not like someone else's.


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Subject: RE: Speaking voice versus singing voice
From: Stringsinger
Date: 28 Jan 12 - 05:37 PM

The best usual kind of mic to use is a deep capsule mic for singing. This is a general not a fixed rule. Condensers generally work better.


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Subject: RE: Speaking voice versus singing voice
From: Richard Mellish
Date: 28 Jan 12 - 05:59 PM

Perhaps a bit peripheral, but related to the discussion of where best to pitch songs: some singers consistently sing louder the higher they are up the scale, sometimes to the extent that the top notes of a song are painfully loud and the low notes can barely be heard. I regard that as bad singing. Of course some variation of loudness is fine, and even desirable, but it should go with the sense of the words, not crudely with the pitch.

Richard


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Subject: RE: Speaking voice versus singing voice
From: Bert
Date: 29 Jan 12 - 12:22 AM

Matt, This is not what I'd call low or even normal.


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Subject: RE: Speaking voice versus singing voice
From: Marje
Date: 29 Jan 12 - 12:27 PM

One thing that's emerging in some of the comments above is what happens as our voices age. In general, men's speaking voices get higher and women's get lower, until by the age of 80 (or something like that) they are indistinguishable in terms of pitch.

Something similar has got to be happening to our singing voices as we get older, and although there are no doubt plenty of youthful Mudcatters out there, I know that there are a good proportion of folk singers in their 50s, 60s and 70s. We can't stop getting older, but some training in singing techniques will help us to maintain a good range and slow down the rate at which our voices change into those of quivery, whiny old men or growly, plummy old women.

And although I have commented above that voice teachers may try to push you up to sing up to the top of your vocal range, I still recommend trying some vocal training. You don't have to sing in a range or a style that you don't feel comfortable with - it's your voice and you have the final decision about what you do with it. A good teacher will understand and respect that.

Marje


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Subject: RE: Speaking voice versus singing voice
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 29 Jan 12 - 02:39 PM

You're probably already aware that most people's speaking voice covers a fairly small pitch range, usually near the lower end of what they can sing. (although it does vary)

The "singing voice," even in the same pitch range, likely will sound a little different, especially if the coach is trying to teach you to "open up" to get a little more resonance with your singing. Some voice teachers prefer to "teach" toward the upper end, at least at first, because for most people the sound naturally tends to be a little "thinner" there, so the effect of getting "full throat and lung resonance" is easier for the student to learn.

With practice, you likely will be more comfortable with what you hear in your singing. There also is the hazard that once you become more accustomed to "full voice" singing, you may find your speaking voice tends more to resemble what you've learned to sing - which is usually okay unless you get to where ordinary conversations sound like an oratorio.

John


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Subject: RE: Speaking voice versus singing voice
From: matt milton
Date: 29 Jan 12 - 03:47 PM

maybe you have a point there.

Perhaps I should try singing instead of speaking in my daily life! I might end the working week with my own opera. Probably a rather boring one. Has anyone written a libretto about a man who works as a copy-editor in the book publishing industry in central London yet?


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Subject: RE: Speaking voice versus singing voice
From: Don Firth
Date: 29 Jan 12 - 04:27 PM

I have taken voice lessons from three different voice teachers over the years (one of whom was a retired operatic soprano), and none of them tried to push my voice higher. They did help me work on expanding my singing range, but that's a different thing.

I do not try to sound "folky," nor do I try to sound like an art singer. I just open my cake-hole and sing.

Seems to work pretty well. . . .

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: Speaking voice versus singing voice
From: tonyteach1
Date: 29 Jan 12 - 04:42 PM

I am a singing teacher. The reason for getting you to singer higher than you are accustomed to is to open the voice up to extend the range - improve the tuning and add resonance to the voice. Remember also you have only been singing a few months. The full effect of the lessons will only take effect over a period of time. I would raise the issue with the teacher concerned. As the higher range gets more resonant you will see more quality coming out in the sound. But your voice is a work in progress and will sound better as you develop more support on the higher notes.

I have added 3 - 5 notes on to some singers voices and raised their whole range by 2 - 3 notes giving them a more effective sound. This does not mean that they use the higher register all the time but is there when needed and also your voice will sound more relaxed and resonant in its middle range

I would also suggest singing a song in several keys - one for singing lessons and one for performing and work out over a period of time which is best.


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Subject: RE: Speaking voice versus singing voice
From: GUEST,Tom P
Date: 29 Jan 12 - 07:45 PM

Do you guys have any advice on how to sing very low pitches? I can hit them but they become very quiet to the point where I'm almost whispering. Which could be kind of sexy, but normally it is just clumsy.


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Subject: RE: Speaking voice versus singing voice
From: Crowhugger
Date: 29 Jan 12 - 08:34 PM

Does this breathy sound happen every time you sing the particular note?

I find that a certain low note or two will be breathy when I've first begun singing but solid after half an hour of singing. For me this is the case with what I consider the lowest note I can solidly sing, C below middle C. If absolutely necessary I can get enough sound on the B to make it work if it's only here and there. Some days though, when I visualize sending the sound through a small spot between my eyes, I can get that low B, sometimes even B-flat, to sound cleanly.

If the lowest note of a song is always breathy but occurs rarely and only for short duration, I might leave it in that key if I like how the rest of the melody sounds and (if accompanied) how the guitar part works. But if it's breathy and it's important to the melody, I will move the song to a higher key, and use a capo. If that causes the top-most notes to be too high, I don't sing the song. That has been a very rare occurrence for me because a great majority of songs I've wanted to sing have a melody that falls within an octave or slightly more, usually either doh to doh or sol to sol, give or take a note or two. I can fit that into either my low range or high range and not have to use the two different sounding voices in one song.

Also: CORRECTION to my range given in 28 Jan 12 - 03:36 PM post--I had handbell arranging on my mind and gave my range in handbell parlance. My range is B2 to F5 or so.


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