Am i shouting or i just distorced the vowel?
Learning how to vocalize is one the biggest step a singer has to do in order to discover his\her vocal potentiality. Many student has the perception sometimes that they are shouting or cracking, especially on certain vowels. Here’s some examples:
“I feel my voice ok when i sing until i have to sing some EE vowel cause in that case i feel a crack in my voice”
“My voice start to be tired when i sing an AH vowel, how could i fix it?”
In order to obtain a comfortable singing and a noble sound the student must learn how to sing the vowels in a correct way and how to maintain a good “sound position”. In the following video Luciano Pavarotti speak about strangle sound and covered sound:
He spoke about covering the sound, in that case he explained how to mantain a good AH positioning while the pitch is ascendig in the high note, without opening too much the AH but instead narrowing it.
Staying in the middle!!
During my learning as a student i had the possibility to work a lot on how to keep my vowel as more pure as i can. Personally i sing mostly rock and hard rock stuff so when i started to take singing lesson i had developed really bad habit in vowel pronunciation (distorcing it in order to obtain the high notes).
Once i understand how to keep a good position of all the vowel during vocalizations (AH,EH,EE,OH,OO) my singing became more precice on the pitch, less strained and ,last but not least, noble.
This tendency could be challenged maintaing always a balance position of the mouth while we are doing the exercises and not distorcing the vowel in order to obtain the notes.
In these two videos there will be two different approach to singing from Stevie Wonder, My Cherie Amour.
You can notice two big difference in the videos. The first one is how Stevie approach the vowels. In the 1969 video you can see an AH really open, almost an EH while in the second there will be more balanced position in all the vowels he sang. The second difference is the quality of his voice. In the 69 version you can hear a bit raspy voice (maybe for the overusage withouth training) while in the second, even though is almost 40 years later, you can hear a really brilliant and controlled voice because he started studying vocal technique in order to maintain his instrument always fresh.
But why the vowel pronunciation is so important in the vocalization and in singing?
When we approach different style of singing we tend to be carryed on a certain kind of vocal habit(sometimes too chesty , sometimes too heady, sometimes soft etc..). Learning how to stay in a balance position during the vocalization can teach the student , whatever his favourite genre is, how to threat his voice in order to obtain the best and also how to put some of this balancing in the style he sing in order to remain always in the center. If you know how to staying in the middle , you will know also how to move easily sometimes to the extremes.
DANIELE CALIMERA , IVA CERTIFIED INSTRUCTOR