#1
I've become so frustrated with my voice that I've contemplated just not even trying to sing anymore. My voice constantly sounds weak and immature whenever I sing anything about the G below middle C, and when I have to sing around my break range, which is from the A below middle C up to middle C, my voice starts sounding tired, weaker, thinner and even more immature. I mean, those notes aren't hard for me to hit, but when I have to sing in that area for a while, it starts sound even worse. I've been in the high school choir for 4 years, I've practiced exercises and stuff to attempt to improve my tone but nothing has helped, my voice now is the same as it was when I was a freshman in high school. I've looked up on youtube and all over the internet to why a voice sounds weak or thin or immature, and I've heard everything but nothing seems to help me.... Is there something I'm missing? Am I just inherently a bad singer?

I guess I'm basically just trying to find some advice that's different from the usual, something that I can understand because I guess I'm not understanding everything I've learned on how to sound good.
#2
Honestly wish I could help you.. :/

It shouldn't be age voice change as from what you've written, you're beyond that.. (Though Ive heard the voice is STILL maturing right around the 20s.. I can't say, I'm not male)

You haven't started smoking or been around a lot of cigarette smoke lately? Not been sick or anything either?

My guess is probably not, but I'm at a loss. Perhaps it is a gender issue and someone else will have better ideas.
#3
well ive been vocally trained and your problem is very common, basically your vocal chords/lungs are like any muscle and they can grow weak or strong depending on how much you "work them out." So if you just randomly go to sing you will run out of breath easier and you will sound dry and thin faster. it's just like going to run someodd miles if you havent before, you will tire out much faster but the more you do it the more you will build up endurance and strength. And the same goes for singing you have to "work out and flex" you voice. But you might be singing up too much and thats why it sounds thin. Also, as anexa stated, if youve been sick recently then thats a factor AND if you have JUST started smoking then that is another factor. ever wonder why john mellencamp sounds the way he does? He goes through like at least 5 packs a day and hes had like two heart attacks. And he said that himself. But it also just could be that your voice is still changing. I hope ive helped you a bit man.
#4
Quote by Anexa
Honestly wish I could help you.. :/

It shouldn't be age voice change as from what you've written, you're beyond that.. (Though Ive heard the voice is STILL maturing right around the 20s.. I can't say, I'm not male)

You haven't started smoking or been around a lot of cigarette smoke lately? Not been sick or anything either?

My guess is probably not, but I'm at a loss. Perhaps it is a gender issue and someone else will have better ideas.


It may be my voice is still changing... Even though my speaking voice is somewhat deep it still cracks once in a while.

I smoke once in a while but not enough for it to be considered a habit or for it to be effecting my voice.

Quote by RockNRollCowboy
well ive been vocally trained and your problem is very common, basically your vocal chords/lungs are like any muscle and they can grow weak or strong depending on how much you "work them out." So if you just randomly go to sing you will run out of breath easier and you will sound dry and thin faster. it's just like going to run someodd miles if you havent before, you will tire out much faster but the more you do it the more you will build up endurance and strength. And the same goes for singing you have to "work out and flex" you voice. But you might be singing up too much and thats why it sounds thin. Also, as anexa stated, if youve been sick recently then thats a factor AND if you have JUST started smoking then that is another factor. ever wonder why john mellencamp sounds the way he does? He goes through like at least 5 packs a day and hes had like two heart attacks. And he said that himself. But it also just could be that your voice is still changing. I hope ive helped you a bit man.


I warmed up for about 10 minutes or so and I sounded a little better, but I still noticed that I would start thinning out sometimes... Like I was playing and singing along with Obadiah Parker's cover of Hey Ya and that's pretty much all at the top of my range and I noticed it was happening then.

Could it also be that I don't quite know how to connect my head voice to my chest voice (although sometimes I mix them without even knowing it, and when I try to do it again I can't) so when I am singing at the top of my chest voice, I'm straining a little?

I think I'm going to ask a friend, who takes lessons and is a phenomenal jazz and blues singer, to help me out, as I don't have enough money for formal lessons.
Last edited by ItsOnlyGNR at Aug 5, 2011,
#5
Yes that part is very crucial, to not sing only from your throat but to let it come through you chest and out your mouth, if you only sing through your throat you will strain you voice. But it is very hard to get a grasp of until you are shown how to, this took me forever to get a hold of as well so dont give up but yes i would suggest talking to your friend who can hopefully demostrate this for you in person and best of luck to you, hope ive hepled a bit.
#6
can you upload a clip? sounds like a resonance issue or simply not supporting the note properly. normally I vvouldnt give the typical classical voice advice but thats vvhat it sounds like, I'd say upload a clip of your voice no matter hovv bad you think it sounds so vve knovv exactly vvhats going on.
#7
Your problem, based on your description, is that you don't know how to correctly produce your voice. It has nothing to do with smoking or your age.

A "weak" sounding voice is one that is not produced correctly. In order how to produce it correctly, you should get some lessons.

CT
Could I get some more talent in the monitors, please?

I know it sounds crazy, but try to learn to inhale your voice. www.thebelcantotechnique.com

Chris is the king of relating music things to other objects in real life.
#8
Sounds like he has had lessons though.. or choir anyway. Not sure how good choir in school is as a way of singing education though, as I've never done it.

But I know (as someone who had been doing it for years) that it is possible you may not be placing your voice correctly (as suggested above).. I didn't find that out until I got a singing teacher. After that all my issues went away and everything suddenly got MUCH easier.
Last edited by Anexa at Aug 6, 2011,
#9
Quote by Anexa
Sounds like he has had lessons though.. or choir anyway. Not sure how good choir in school is as a way of singing education though, as I've never done it.

But I know (as someone who had been doing it for years) that it is possible you may not be placing your voice correctly (as suggested above).. I didn't find that out until I got a singing teacher. After that all my issues went away and everything suddenly got MUCH easier.


Basically, the choir instructor just tells you the main aspects of having a good voice and reinforces it every day or so, but she doesn't really teach us individually how to produce a good tone.

And yes, I think I do sing from my throat now that I think about it.

I'll upload a clip in a little bit, I just have to put on my computer from my multitrack recorder real quick.
Last edited by ItsOnlyGNR at Aug 6, 2011,
#10
Alright, the song is in my profile. I'm still getting used to the onboard mics on the multitrack, the recording of my voice sound alright but the guitars are kind of average sounding...

This is an original song that I'm not even finished with yet, after that first verse that I have recorded I don't even have anything else written yet lol. This probably wasn't the best example to give you guys since I wrote basically the entire melody right in that G, A, B below middle C range which is close to my break range, but it's the only thing I had recorded besides a remix of a rap song me and a friend are doing.

The main thing that I just can't get over is that Jack Johnson and Jimmy Buffett (who happen to be 2 of my main influences if you can't tell ) are basically untrained vocally and they aren't technically that great of singers but they still sound good... I mean, I wouldn't have a problem with my voice if it didn't sound like my voice was strained or weak or if my voice didn't crack every once in a while.
Last edited by ItsOnlyGNR at Aug 6, 2011,
#11
Quote by Anexa
Sounds like he has had lessons though.. or choir anyway.


Choir =/= lessons. But you know that.

Quote by Anexa

Not sure how good choir in school is as a way of singing education though, as I've never done it.


Expect a lot of:
"Drop the jaw"
"Move your lips a lot"
"Push with the diaphragm."



CT
Could I get some more talent in the monitors, please?

I know it sounds crazy, but try to learn to inhale your voice. www.thebelcantotechnique.com

Chris is the king of relating music things to other objects in real life.
#12
I know a few singers who are absolutely great who do choir, but the teacher gives them one-on-one lessons, which she does in a pretty nepotistic manner (her daughter is her star), and the guys are completely terrible because they were ignored (or because they have no talent - it's hard to tell). But I digress - you're better going it alone if you have a teacher who doesn't teach so much as lead.

Edit: Or, better yet, get a teacher. I forgot that bit!
#13
Well......
I don't know jack about singing and have a similar problem w/vocals.
One "technique" or tip I've found interesting is one that is used in Marine Recruit training, of all places!
Think of singing as [very] controlled shouting!
Think about it...

HTH,
D-10
#14
Quote by deltaten
Well......
I don't know jack about singing and have a similar problem w/vocals.
One "technique" or tip I've found interesting is one that is used in Marine Recruit training, of all places!
Think of singing as [very] controlled shouting!
Think about it...

HTH,
D-10


I guess that would make sense... When you shout it does kind of prevent you from producing sound from your throat. I guess the thing to do would be to figure out what it feels like in your chest, throat and head to shout and then just figure a way to lower the volume??
#15
Re: shouting

I have a problem with this. See, when most people shout, they explode air from their lungs and blast it through their vocal cords and out of the mouth.

Here are the problems:
- exploding air from the lungs and blasting it through the vocal cords will lead to strain
-expelling sound with this sort of force does not give the voice enough chance to resonate. As a result, you will get a one-dimensional "shouting" tone, as opposed to a resonant "singing" tone. People will listen to your vocals and will say, "it sounds like you're shouting."

Mind you, if you're doing, like, George Thorogood and stuff, that might be what you want. (except for the damage part...)

CT
Could I get some more talent in the monitors, please?

I know it sounds crazy, but try to learn to inhale your voice. www.thebelcantotechnique.com

Chris is the king of relating music things to other objects in real life.
#17
I've found something else that may be wrong with my singing.

I just learned that your larynx is not supposed to move up and down when you change pitch and mine was doing this...

But the thing is is that when I practice keeping my larynx neutral, I sound weird, I don't know how to explain it, kind of dopey-sounding... How do I fix this?
#18
*note*

".... as [very] controlled shouting!"

mebbe if I could have made the bracketed 'very' part in huge, italics/bold font and in bright, fire-engine red???
The reference was to the use of diaphragm and control...not screaming!
Perhaps you misunderstood my intention?
HTH
#19
GNR;
Is it your opinion that yer voice sounds "weird"; or have you had someone say that? MOst will find their own recorded voice to sound strange.
El-o-cu-tion and pronunciation along with accentuation of ending syllables or letters should help some.


HOw do ya get to Carnegie Hall?
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GPS !!
#20
Quote by deltaten
*note*

".... as [very] controlled shouting!"

mebbe if I could have made the bracketed 'very' part in huge, italics/bold font and in bright, fire-engine red???
The reference was to the use of diaphragm and control...not screaming!
Perhaps you misunderstood my intention?
HTH


... except singing and shouting are different actions.

How about this:

Could "throwing" be thought of as *very* controlled slapping with a ball in your hand? I mean, the two actions are similar enough.... but throwing is not slapping.

CT
Could I get some more talent in the monitors, please?

I know it sounds crazy, but try to learn to inhale your voice. www.thebelcantotechnique.com

Chris is the king of relating music things to other objects in real life.
#21
I always thought i had a weak voice too. I got out of it, try singing LOUDER as if you're scolding at someone. then get louder if it needs to be, but your normal singing at average should be quite a bit louder than your speaking voice, than get louder or softer with dynamics.