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Ep.25: How to Sing High Notes? Vowel Modifying Hacks
In the last Episode #24 I talked about how modifying the vowel can make it easier to sing high notes successfully.
Inside this video I’ll show you how Michael Jackson did it and I’ll give you some vowel modifying hacks for most vowels to give you immediate success as you sing high notes in your songs.
Hi, I’m Chuck Gilmore with Power To Sing.
Great singers and performers modify vowels of words that are sung on high notes.
Here’s some hacks to modify vowels in the words that are on high notes. By high notes I mean words where the pitches are in the first bridge or the head voice.
If the high note is on a word that sounds like “a” (Bach) narrow it towards “uh” (buck)
If the high note is on a word that sounds like “uh” (buck) narrow it towards “oo” (book)
If the high note is on a word that sounds like “oo” (book) narrow it towards “ou” (no)
If the high note is on a word that sounds like “ou” (no) narrow it towards “u” (too)
Often there’s no need to narrow all the way to the next vowel. Just moving towards it will work.
If the high note is on a word that sounds like “ae” (cat) narrow it towards “ε” (bet)
If the high note is on a word that sounds like “ε” (bet) narrow it towards “I” (bit)
If the high note is on a word that sounds like “I” (bit) narrow it towards “i” (beet)
This works best if you think of the word with the more narrow vowel, rather than trying to change something with your throat, tongue or lips. By thinking of it before you sing the word, that’s often enough. If the vowel is still spreading, you may need to think of the next more narrow vowel.
Experiment with this to find the best one.
You’ll also be surprised that narrowing the vowel slightly maintains the vowel’s and the words natural sound. If you over narrow it, it will not sound like the word. This means you’ve narrowed it slightly too much.
If done correctly the only thing your audience will notice is how good you sound when you sing high notes.
Can you tell where Michael Jackson is modifying his vowel in the chorus of his song “Bad”?
From the above list of modifications, which one does he use on the word, “bad”?
This, and other vowel modifications in his songs, together with excellent technique, helped to save his voice from serious abuse and allowed him to sing night after night, year after year. [Video excerpt from Michael Jackson’s “Bad” music video]
If Michael had routinely spread and splatted his vowels when he sang high notes, he would likely have been pulling chest voice. Unfortunately Pulled Chest/High Larynx is a common vocal type even amongst professionals and has led to vocal damage and surgery.
Do you know your vocal type? I’m not referring to whether you are soprano, alto, tenor or bass. Your vocal type is what you tend to do when you sing.
Visit PowerToSing.com and take the vocal test which I call the PowerTest. Take the quiz and immediately discover your vocal type.
Then go to the Knowledge Center and watch the videos about your vocal type. Download the free exercises for your vocal type and start improving your voice today.
I’m Chuck Gilmore with Power To Sing.
You can sing higher with beauty, confidence and power.
I’ll see you inside the next video.
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