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Vocal Warm-up: The Open Mouth Hum
In the video above, I give a very basic demonstration of the Open Mouth Hum, but before you begin, here are….
6 Important Points to Remember When Practicing this Warm-up
1. Relax Your Jaw — Your jaw may fall into a slack position, gently down and back. I like to have my jaw so relaxed that if I wanted to I could take my thumb and index finger and move my jaw up and down during the exercise and my jaw would not resist the motion.
2. Allow for an Open Throat — inhale a “surprise” breath through the mouth, sense how open your throat is. This sensation works in conjunction with reminder #3.
3. Allow for high soft palate — when you take in a “surprise” breath, your soft palate will also lift. The “ng” sound will also aid in the doming of the soft palate.
4. You will feel the vibration or hum behind your nose — you will not feel the humming in your mouth. If you plug your nose and the sound stops, your placement is correct.
5. Relaxed resting tongue slightly forward — the tip of the tongue should be resting behind the bottom front teeth. Don’t let the tongue slip back into the mouth. The sides of the tongue are supple. There is an arch in the tongue making the “ng” sound.
6. The “ng” sound — this is the same sound as in the end of the word sing, song, and hung.
Bonus Suggestion: Have Fun With the Note Patterns
You may use all sorts of different note patterns when singing this warm-up.
In the video, I demonstrate a four note pattern ascending and descending, but you may use a full octave, three or five note pattern, chromatic formation, or a triad. Have fun experimenting with different patterns.
Look to your music for ideas.
– Does your voice feel breathy or tired? Use the Open Mouth Hum warm-up.
– Do you have laryngeal tension? Try this gentle Open Mouth Hum.
– Is there an awkward register transition? Use an Open Mouth Hum to gently guide you through it.
I also like to sing entire melodies with the Open Mouth Hum to help the placement of my tone.
Have fun warming-up with the Open Mouth Hum
Let me knows how it goes in the comment section below and share this post with a singer friend! Happy singing!