(Ed. Note: This is submitted by Nadeshda. Be sure to give her a rousing round of applause and express your gratitude! It’s much better than the article you were gonna get today!)
SO here we are again, singing and chilling like we mean it , well you better be. Get your favorite beverage, take a couple of sips and let us start talking about this singing business again.
You may wonder how I got involved in all of this, it was through a regular Friday night meet-up discussion about instruments and all things musical. One day I bravely shared some of my vocals and people enjoyed it. This started my involvement with sharing, teaching and learning about ‘How to Sing’ on playguitar. Also, theBuddha asked me too and he is very inspiring and good at getting people busy with all sorts of fun stuff while being excellent at what he does ! (Ed. Note: Damned right!)
Let me get another cup of coffee and while I do that listen to a song I wrote and shared with some of my friends. Shhh, I didn’t warm-up properly for the song but still managed some good tone, I wonder why?
So this phone recording came out okay and I think that years of proper training and proper breathing allowed me to do the sneaky recordings. I shouldn’t but some of these things we will be working through will become second nature to you and sometimes when you are caught in a last minute affair you will sound okay but let’s learn the basics first before cutting any corners, m’kay.
I have sung in choirs since being a wee lass and swimming since I have been three years old, so breathing properly has always been drilled into me somehow and singing lessons to wazoo has filled my brain with endless information that honestly, sometimes I forget.
I am hoping this series helps me to remember and blesses you in the process.
We really shouldn’t sing without warming up our voices correctly so let’s get on with the lesson.
So without further waffling let us look at:
What is it and how can I get it to sound good? This is the question today.
We know it when we hear it and sometimes we feel it on the inside but what is it really ?
I can safely say that it is volume of sound, easy listening and it lingers. We find it in ALL instruments.
What part of our body does the resonating?
The Vocal Tract which is a container of air and has an opening called the mouth. We know the power source of singing is the ribs, diaphragm and the lungs which in turn push the air through the vocal fold into the Vocal Tract to form sweet, sweet sounds when all things are working together beautifully.
SILLY FACT: The average length of a vocal tract for males is about 17 cm and 14 cm for females.
The shape of the tract helps to solidly the sound and tone and the following video illustrates it perfectly while synthesizing vowels on a 3D MRI. The stereolithography (Rapid Prototyping) produces glottal waves using a Rosenberg-Klatt waveform with 1/f fluctuation of its cycle. Male and female models were used to produce the vowels.
So how do I get better Resonance?
I am so glad you ask these wonderful questions as I am going to give you some homework and you will enjoy the results.
Let’s wake up that sweet, sweet sound!
Try the following exercise and repeat until you notice a difference. When you are done, sing a song you are comfortable with.
- Open your mouth and take a breath through your nose and with a basic speaking volume, sustain a comfortable mid-range pitch, through an “NG” tongue position.
To help you find this tongue position, say the word “Sing” and maintain the tongue position of the “NG”. The back of your tongue will lightly close with your soft palate. Keep the tip of your tongue resting against the back of your bottom teeth. Feel the sound vibration vibrate along the roof of your mouth and under your nose.
2) Do this a couple of times using medium volume and try producing different sounds after your beautiful “NG” sound. Here we go…!
- NG-EE (Mean)
- NG-EH (Hen)
- NG-UH (The)
- NG-I (Him)
- NG-A (Same)
- NG-AA (Apple)During the last two vowels (below), DO NOT shape your lips for the sound. Your mouth should only move a wee bit, just let it flow and let the sound naturally resonate in your mouth. Try these too…
- NG-OH (Moan)
- NG-Ooo (Moon)
You are doing great! Congratulations you have completed your second singing lesson; now shut up and go sing me a song!
Comment if you notice a difference in resonance, tone and sound.