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  1. I guess that there are so many different approaches that work differently for different people. All I can suggest is to dig around, research, experiment and practice. I really don't think that there is any way round that. Even if you find a voice teacher, you still have to figure out if the teacher is right for you. Bear in mind that different techniques may lead to different timbres, and some are physically safer than others, and many are psychological instructions rather than precise ones. For example, "focus the breath on the spot below my nose", is definitely worth a try. It may work for one person, but not another. However, it is psychological --- the breath isn't actually focusing there. It's just a way some people find handy in thinking about what they do, and it gets them to do something else that does really happen. If that works, does it produce the timbre you want? Does if feel comfortable and safe? Are there other techniques that would work better for what you want? Only the singer can ultimately answer these questions, by experimenting and practising. Then again, there are people who are happy leaving all those question to a teacher....which they may find they have to change...again...and again...and again..
  2. "Absolute pitch" is not a single well-defined ability. It involves pitch retention and recall -- allowing you to compare or repeat tones even if they were from the past. There may also be the ability to break down combinations of notes -- allowing you to identify all the separate tones in a chord, for example. But someone with relative pitch may be able to do that, as well, if a reference tone is fresh in their mind. Having one ability does not necessarily imply having the other. It is also not clear how much of the ability relies on familiarity with man made standards (e.g tuning A4 to 440 Hz). Using man-made standards is definitely something that would have to be learned. Would someone who could identify separate notes in a chord still be able to do so if A4 were tuned to 420 Hz instead? Or would they get "lost"? i.e have they only learned "familiarity" with certain tones and chords, or are they truly isolating the tones? If you throw in a couple of unusual or "out of tune" notes into your chord, would they be able to read back the standard notes and tell you if the rest were "flat/sharp"? Or would the entire thing sound unfamiliar or messed up to them? Producing a reference note is easy as pie, so having absolute pitch for that is not a big deal. Then there are people who claim that each absolute note has a character of its own, and the slightest shift of key changes the whole feeling of the music (poor things, lol). There is a story of someone who couldn't listen to a piano 2Hz out of tune without his teeth being set on edge. Whether or not this is a good thing, I cannot tell! It would be interesting to see so-called "absolute pitch" researched more generically (i.e independently of standards, like A4 = 440 Hz). Standards do not reflect musicality. They are restrictions introduced for practical reasons.
  3. *belch* puts beer down Dutch courage FTW! Decent pitch perception. More head tones needed for this song. More dynamic. (Would also help sort out the occasional mis-pitch) Ay...and welcome to forum.
  4. Thanks, Davie. Concern for relatives, friends, children/cancelled school and cancelled exams, health, job, money, food...so many angles anxiety can come from. it will hit people differently depending on circumstance. I aim to stay positive as well as respect the people around me. We are all in the same boat and different boats at the same time. We are in lock down here in the England (even had drones following people around on one occasion that was widely criticized!) I always find myself singing in tough situations. I don't know if that is a "coping mechanism" or from having to reflect so much. Good weather makes me sing too. At least we are having the odd spell of that in England right now. I just hope everything settles down as best it can, and anxiety levels drop for everyone.
  5. Still training folks. COVID-19 has led to internet video and sound quality being lowered! Stay safe!
  6. Would you say that you played it more by ear than musical theory, or vice versa, Davie? Was there a lot of theory involved? I'm just asking from the standpoint of someone who doesn't know any.
  7. Impressive stuff. Composition sounds smooth and the vibe is very relevant. Must have been quite a journey (as well as a baptism of fire). Lyrics first, or music? Or a lot of back and forth?
  8. Nice! Did you create all of the backing track, as well?
  9. ^ Can't comment much on that edgy stuff, as I mentioned. But I noticed a break between oh and oo when you are doing those scales in the first clip. It sounds to me as if you are trying to onset the oo too soon before you have shaped your mouth. Then you try to force the onset without having created that resonant space. Try shaping the lips for the oo a tad earlier (just as the oh is ending), and see if that helps eliminate the break.
  10. I have a very UNedgy tone, myself, so I can't say too much about this technique, except to say that techniques don't always mix and match. Advice for one technique may not apply, or even be detrimental, to another technique. You have to organize and remember what belongs to which technique. I've been listening to your clips, as I have been curious about how you are getting on with the exercises davie gave you. Whatever method/exercise you use, you have to give it time (months! lol!) Short term goal = months! Although I don't use much edge and don't have much experience to share on it, I would have thought that picking a song with plenty of edge in it would help, because you must have the sound you are aiming for in your head in order to succeed.
  11. I think that a muffled sound would usually be more of a placement issue. Singers can sound twice as breathy as you are, while sounding clear as a bell. They are still able to access the higher harmonics that lead to a more defined tone, while sounding as breathy as they want. But everything is interconnected, and it is possible that placement problems can result from airflow problems. Some techniques do not allow you to access higher harmonics with a breathy tone. For such techniques, the route you would take is to reduce the breathiness, using more vocal fold compression. But then you may have to start imagining a different tone from the a cappella singers in the Amazing Grace video. They are not using an edgy tone. Psychologically it is a problem if you have a target tone and a technique that doesn't match. Some tutors suggest that you can start with the vocal fold compression technique, and add breathiness in as some kind of advanced feature. I am very suspicious of this advice, myself. I have not heard any of those tutors themselves demonstrate a breathy tone competently. The genres they tend to sing in are incompatible with breathy tones. I think that the "advanced feature" is control at the diaphragm, which is what should be taught from the start. Not that I recall. If you want more rattle/edge to your tone, then increased vocal fold compression is essential.
  12. Some techniques rely more heavily than others on vocal fold closure. You can hear quite a lot of "breathiness" from the a cappella group in the 'Amazing Grace' video, you posted earlier (I've included a link at the bottom of this post). They sound good. Breathy singing is not a problem at all. In fact it can give a sense of relaxation/peace/emphasis(secrecy) etc. When combined with good projection, it creates a great dynamic, especially relative to the call register. "Breathiness" doesn't cause any technical problems when the airflow is controlled adequately at the diaphragm. Also, with this technique, normal or light vocal fold closure is fine/desirable, but it must come with good "placement" -- a way to get the sound to resonate well in the vocal tract. For techniques that rely more on vocal fold closure to control airflow, breathiness WILL cause technical problems. These techniques need your vocal folds not only to come fully together as they vibrate, but to stay together closed for longer on each cycle, to slow the airflow. You cannot do that and allow breathiness at the same time. Longer fold closure also creates more rattle (edge/metal) to the tone. To my ears, "rattle" has a markedly different quality to the resonant "ring"" created by placement. Breathiness is not a technical or style issue, unless you are using a technique that does not allow it, or a genre that does not want it -- like heavy rock, metal etc. So, in choosing between such techniques, you are actually choosing style and tone, not universal singing basics. Confusion can often be caused when people tell you that your vocal folds are not fully closing. Your vocal folds can be fully closing, while not staying closed for as long as THEIR chosen technique requires. So, it is wise to understand the implications, and to avoid having a genre imposed on you. Unfortunately, that is how some people push their own preferences. https://www.harmonycentral.com/forums/topic/1943938-would-greatly-appreciate-advice-on-my-tone/?do=findComment&comment=31080242
  13. Vibrato is a long running controversial topic. For a start, there are so many different ways people produce "vibrato", and argument over whether they are all vibrato, and which is natural "vibrato", etc. etc. blah blah blah Then there is this myth that vibrato defines good technique. Vibrato belongs to a relatively tiny subset of genres across the world. It is more a style that has its roots in Western classical singing. There was a period in classical singing called the "vibrato wars" where some commentators hated the trend so much, especially wide vibrato, that they referred to it as "bleating". Now, with the ability to autotune vibrato, it may be becoming more popular again.
  14. To this... Wow! Hear the improvement! These two sound more connected and more resonant. A definite buzz is coming through. I think the -aa- vowel is proving really handy.
  15. I don't know how closely you mean to follow the original, but throughout you've changed the rhythm quite significantly from the original. It feels a bit rushed, to my ears. In the opening phrase for example, DANCE IS THROUGH.. each of those words has equal weight and duration, giving it a special emphasis. You changed the rhythm, lengthening DANCE and swallowing the IS. That de-emphasizes a key phrase, imo. I may be wrong, but, when you sing, you seem to be de-emphasizing words you would probably de-emphasize when SPEAKING -- is, the, with, and etc. That may be ok with some songs, but I am not convinced it works with this one. Speech rhythm and emphasis can be very different when in a song. Some of those "diminished" words may fall on critical notes or beats, and you have to sing them and give them prominence, and forget how you would speak them. You can go through the original song and see just how many grammatically unstressed words get stressed. I think that the loudness of the guitar may only be exaggerating contention in the rhythmic arrangement. Perhaps, if you follow the original groove, the loudness of the guitar may not be such an issue. (just my hunch).
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