Entries tagged with “singing lessons”.


Here’s a fun little song that I sang for my student’s at the spring recital.

So last time, we looked at several examples of fake vibrato and listened to them, so this time, I would like to share with you just a few examples of good “natural” vibrato and explain why people use it.

First, looking at an example from Opera. When people sing opera, they have trained their voices to sing over the sound of an orchestra, and although I don’t care too much for the large vibrato sound of an operatic voice, I admire their ability and understand why they do it. The reason they use such large vibrato, is because without it, they would be wearing out the vocal chords very quickly. Vibrato gives vocal chords a momentary relaxation. So if someone is singing loudly for 2 hours, they must have some kind of respite for their vocal chords.

Here is an example of a person with a naturally small voice, using her vibrato to make her voice larger and more easily heard, when needed.

Example #1 Kathleen Battle–Ombra Mai Fu

I love her voice because although she has a good bit of vibrato, she also has a very clear tone and terrific control.

For a non-operatic voice, using vibrato correctly, let’s look at another favorite soprano voice. She has more of a broadway voice, pure, and only using vibrato at times.

Example #2 Sissel–Lær Meg Å Kjenne

Now for a man’s voice, let’s use Josh Groban as our typical classical/pop example.

Example #3 Josh Groban–“Remember When It Rained”

How about a little Buble? A little more jazzy, a little less vibrato, but a great sound.

Example #4 Michael Buble–Come Fly with Me

Example #5 And the legendary Bruce Springsteen…A voice that has lasted him beautifully.

There are many others, but those are just a few who use their natural vibrato.

Question:
For the last few years I’ve been trying to get my throat relaxed and lately Im doing my best, but when i come home tired from work or I´m somehow tense for any reason my singing is horrible. Could you tell me one of your tips for that?
And another thing is that when i´m singing, specially higher notes, i go off tune very often, and even though it´s only slightly it makes my singing worse and anoys me a lot. Could i have your advice on this matter? it would be very helpful. Thanks a lot!

Answer:
In response to your question about relaxing while singing and tuning on higher notes, I’m hoping to make another video about that very subject. That seems to be one of the most common difficulties for singers. There are several reasons why you may be unable to relax while singing, and be unable to hit those high notes when you’re tired.
First, when you’re trying to relax while singing, make sure that the voice your using is in the correct place. What I mean by that is, you have 3 voices: Chest voice (that’s the lowest), middle voice (the most comfortable and easy to use), and head voice (the falsetto voice). Most people try to add power to their voices as they go up from their chest voice to their middle voice, or from middle to head by pushing the lower voice up farther than is comfortable. This creates a lot of tension within the throat and gives that powerful sort of sound, but at the same time tires your voice out quickly and many times is unable to hit the high notes in tune. If you are finding that the higher notes are flat, this could be the cause. Remember to keep your throat (voice) as comfortable as possible by switching from voice to voice whenever you need to.
Another possibility for not being able to hit the high notes on tune, is you might be working to hard at hitting them. As ironic as that sounds, many times, singers think that putting more intensity into the higher notes will help them hit them, but really, they’re just making it more difficult. An exercise that I do to help students reach those higher notes while staying relaxed is doing an owl “hoo” sound in their highest notes and descending. Don’t be afraid to use your falsetto voice to do this.
Here are a few more exercises to help you relax while singing. Just as a warning, some of these will seem pretty ridiculous, but have good results.
1. Put your arms above your head and breath deeply. This also automatically places your breath lower so that you have better support for your voice. Slowly lower your arms and continue to use that low breath while singing.
2. Hum the song before you sing it or sing the song on an “a” (as in cat) sound or an “ah” sound. If you find yourself getting tense during a certain section, go back and make sure that you’re switching to the most comfortable voice possible.
3. Sing while bending parallel to the floor. In some ways, this relaxes your throat. This doesn’t work for everyone, but it’s always worth a try.
4. Sing the tense part of the song on “ah” with your tongue hanging out of your mouth.