#1
so, i started smoking cigars every once in a while and i've found that they are making my voice sound more smooth, as well as i'm able to hit higher notes now.

albiet, i'm sure i am progressing with my singing and becoming better at it too
but i really do believe that cigars have had a positive effect on my voice.
given the health implications, i'm not sure if it's worth it or not, though.


what's your take on this?
Last edited by TonyRandall at May 26, 2010,
#2
well, are you inhaling them? otherwise, there would be no effect at all from them. your voice is probs just getting smoother from your vocal practice and such. smoke tends to make the voice rougher anyway, at least it has on me.
#4
You don't inhale cigars though.. so they shouldn't affect your vocals at all.


Edit: Also since you don't inhale cigars the health implications are small, mouth cancer is the only thing to worry about.
You are aware common practice is to simply taste cigars?
Last edited by stephen_rettie at May 26, 2010,
#5
Quote by stephen_rettie
You don't inhale cigars though..

this i know.


also.
when did this vocal forum start?

i've been using this forum for years and never been here before... =/

edit:
You are aware common practice is to simply taste cigars?


yes.
Last edited by TonyRandall at May 26, 2010,
#7
i want to know too.. jason mraz used to smoke and he sounds amazing...
“Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.”

Oscar Wilde
#8
And Josh Homme.

God, I want his voice so bad. I'm not even gay and I think he's sexy.
~don't finkdinkle when ur supposed to be dimpdickin~
#9
There was an interview on a Jazz radio station with a Jazz singer and he said he wanted to get a certain tone with his voice so he started smoking cigars.
#10
Quote by bobthebum16
There was an interview on a Jazz radio station with a Jazz singer and he said he wanted to get a certain tone with his voice so he started smoking cigars.

interesting.


elaborate...
#11
Quote by TonyRandall
interesting.


elaborate...


That's all I remember...don't know his name...don't remember exactly. I just remember him saying he smoked cigars to be able to sing a certain way...sorry
#13
I don't think I've ever worked with a non-smoking vocalist to be honest with you..
I myself smoke, not too heavily but I've noticed the impact it has on my singing. First and foremost, we're all aware of the damages smoking does to your lungs, and it will gradually decrease the amount of air you can access, therefore affecting how long you can sustain a pitch. Now, you say you're smoking cigars and yes as it has been pointed out you don't inhale, but a fair amount of smoke still enters your lungs regardless. Smoking also makes you dehydrated so keep water on hand - which should be a given if you're singing anyway.
Despite the negative side-effects I feel their are benefits. I personally smoke directly before a vocal take, and I feel that it in a sense soothes my throat, and I feel more relaxed and efficient, it gives me a nice raspy tone and I felt very comfortable and in control of movement of the larynx and mouth. Which is what I think you're getting at..

My advice then to you I guess is if this is a choice you are confident making, then stay or get into good shape. Your lung capacity will inevitably decrease so you can compensate for it. Good luck singing!
#14
Interesting that this thread comes up. I'm attempting to quit right now and plan on blogging it's actual effects on my voice. Been smoking for about 10 years, should be interesting to see what happens.
And no, Guitar Hero will not help. Even on expert. Really.
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#15
I agree with Wiegenlied completely. Although, as he's said, smoking will make your voice sound more raspy, which I guess is alright if you want a hard rock sort of voice, but I myself would never smoke because I don't like raspy voices- I prefer a softer, clean rock/acoustic voice..
#16
Quote by Wiegenlied
I personally smoke directly before a vocal take, and I feel that it in a sense soothes my throat, and I feel more relaxed and efficient, it gives me a nice raspy tone and I felt very comfortable and in control of movement of the larynx and mouth. Which is what I think you're getting at..



exactly,
i have a cigar before every show i play as well as before i record.

there could be some sort of a calming factor to it as well, but i do believe it helps.


i know it isn't healthy, but at the moment, i'm just not letting anyone tell me it's bad for my voice, just by the experience i've had already.

long term though, i'm not sure.


and thanks for pointing out that there is a certain amount of smoke that reaches the lungs. i thought the same, but didn't want to say that in fear being wrong.
#17
you could do a vallo thing and smoke like 90 ciggies a day to keep a deeper singing voice
#19
I suspect this is a correlation vs. causation mix-up. You're practicing more, and therefore increasing your range, and you happen to smoke cigars at the same time. However, cigars, like all tobacco products contain nicotine (there is a common belief that they don't. This is false. The only reason nicotine is addictive in cigarettes is because cigarettes also contain monoamine oxidase inhibitors, which when coupled with nicotine, causes susceptibility to addiction.) Nicotine will increase your levels of beta-endorphins which will significantly decrease your anxiety, thereby causing you to relax, and hit higher notes more easily. The price is mouth cancer.

The idea that smoking cigarettes will make you a better singer is absolutely absurd. I'd love to hear an otorhinolaryngologist's reaction to that ridiculous assertion. You are literally bathing your vocal mechanism with hot, antagonizing gas. It will give you a cool sound in the sense that sending a lead brick through your speakers will give you a cool guitar sound. Anyone who tells you that they smoke to get a raspy sound doesn't know shit about singing, or anatomy for that matter. There is a way to get that sound without smoking, and it sounds better. The only reason you might sound better goes back to nicotine decreasing anxiety. The only thing that smoking will get you on the long term is decreased air capacity and an eventual laryngectomy. Unless you're interesting in using vocal prosthesis or controlled belching for vocalization for the rest of your life so you can decrease your anxiety enough to get a nice range once or twice, I wouldn't suggest taking up smoking.
#20
^it isn't healthy, i know.

let's try to leave this fact out of here, and focus on smoking and singing together.

i've actually been practicing less, as i haven't had very much time, thank you.

i acknowledge the fact that it calms and therefore enables one to increase their range, temporarily. but i'm sure there's more to it than that.
#21
Quote by TonyRandall
^it isn't healthy, i know.

let's try to leave this fact out of here, and focus on smoking and singing together.

i've actually been practicing less, as i haven't had very much time, thank you.

i acknowledge the fact that it calms and therefore enables one to increase their range, temporarily. but i'm sure there's more to it than that.


Other than relaxing properties, I can't imagine there's anything else. I'm really thinking that it's probably a psychological thing.

You may be practicing less, but you're still practicing.

I mean, if you want to smoke and sing, by all means go for it. Will it improve your voice beyond the relaxation properties? Absolutely not.
#22
Yes, for the record I wasn't stating that singing would 'improve' his vocals magically, merely discussing the potential results of smoking on the voice and TS agreed that we have shared similar reactions. All in all, I wouldn't encourage starting smoking as an attempt to improve vocals, or for any real reason, and I don't really know how it effects because I started smokin long before I started singing. So, it may psychological, but if it works..

And the fact of the matter is, a lot of people smoke, therefore, a lot of singers smoke. Smoking is also commonly associated with rock & roll or musicians altogether.

Here's a few well-known singers that smoked: Paul McCartney, John Lennon, George Harrison, Frank Sinatra, Jeff Buckley, Robert Plant, Janis Joplin, David Bowie, Mick Jagger, Madonna, Steven Tyler, David Lee Roth, Chris Cornell, Van Morrison, Axl Rose, Steven Wilson, Mikael Akerfeldt, Phil Anselmo, Roger Waters, Eric Clapton, Ville Valo, Josh Homme, Jack White, Aaron Lewis, Kurt Cobain, Dave Grohl, Lou Reed, Bob Dylan, Bono (only cigars actually)...
Last edited by Wiegenlied at May 27, 2010,
#23
Quote by Wiegenlied
Yes, for the record I wasn't stating that singing would 'improve' his vocals magically, merely discussing the potential results of smoking on the voice and TS agreed that we have shared similar reactions. It may pyschological, but if it works.. And the fact of the matter is, a lot of people smoke, therefore, a lot of singers smoke. Smoking is also commonly associated with rock & roll or musicians altogether.

Here's a few well-known singers that smoked: Paul McCartney, John Lennon, George Harrison, Frank Sinatra, Jeff Buckley, Robert Plant, Janis Joplin, David Bowie, Mick Jagger, Madonna, Steven Tyler, David Lee Roth, Chris Cornell, Van Morrison, Axl Rose, Steven Wilson, Mikael Akerfeldt, Phil Anselmo, Roger Waters, Eric Clapton, Ville Valo, Josh Homme, Jack White, Aaron Lewis, Kurt Cobain, Dave Grohl, Lou Reed, Bob Dylan, Bono (only cigars actually)...


Jeff Buckley was really only in the music scene for a few years, not long enough to see pronounced effects, Robert Plant's range has suffered tremendously, Janis Joplin had an extremely rough vocal tone to begin with, David Bowie is a fantastic songwriter, not so fantastic a singer, Mick Jagger's an even worse singer, Steven Tyler's sound is screamy and grating anyway, Chris Cornell quit drinking and smoking explicitly because of their effect on his vocal cords, Axl Rose is a miserable sounding singer, Phil Anselmo's vocal range has gone tremendously downhill over the years (not sure if you've heard the dude sing live lately), Kurt Cobain hardly sang so much as he yelled, same with Dave Grohl, really, Bob Dylan is an absolutely piss poor singer, Bono doesn't smoke cigarettes, hence no effect to his larynx.

The other singers I'm either not that familiar with, or just apparently have good genes. If you want to smoke, it's totally your own business, but if you're talking about whether or not it has detrimental effects on your cords, it's not even a debate. Even an elementary knowledge of effects of smoking, malignant tumor metastasis, or otorhinolaryngology will make it fairly clear what smoking will do to your larynx, throat, and lungs. By virtue of how singing works, if you damage or irritate these areas, you damage your voice.
#24
The only thing I can think of is it relaxes your throat, sort of like doing a shot of whiskey before going on stage. Theres no way in hell it helps your throat, other then destroys your chords enough for you to get a raspy tone (Which you can do easily without smoking).

I want to hear axe's opinion on this haha...
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