Ep 33 How to Sing Mix Part 1
How to sing mix, or how to sing with a mixis a very common question. Inside this tutorial, I'll define and demonstrate mix. Warning:normally I try to avoid this, but in this tutorial I get a little 'geeky' about singing.(Vocal geek) Hi, I'm Chuck Gilmore with Power To Sing. How to sing in a mix. Well, whatis a mixé A mix is a mixture or blend of at least two things. When singing, you're ina mix if you have a mixture of chest voice and head voice. Ahahah. If you sing onlywith chest voice, you have no mix. Ahhhh. If you start in chest and sing higher andbreak or flip into falsetto, you have no mix. Ahahah.because you've lost the connectionto your chest voice. If, when singing, you
bring falsetto down into the area of the chestvoice that is supposed to be chest, there is no mix. It's only falsetto. Ahahah. Amix can only exist if the vocal cords remain connected. If your vocal cords break intofalsetto and you do not reconnect, you have no mix. It's only falsetto. Ahahah. Mixis made with connected vocal cords and a blend of chest resonance and head resonance. Now,where is mix in the voiceé There are several schools of thought about when and where you'rein mix. Some define mix as only occurring in the vocal bridges, passaggi. When singingin chest voice, as you sing higher, and while keeping the vocal cords together, the resonancebegins to move higher from your chest into
your head cavities. The resonance splits sothere's a mixture, or a mix of both chest and head resonance. This split occurs in thebridge or passaggi. After getting through the first bridge the singer encounters a secondbridge and then a third bridge. For women, there are even more bridges. With each bridge,there is a blend of overtones from the register below and the register above. Lower overtonesdamping, or dropping out and higher overtones coming in. As a result of this process, manybelieve that mix is only occurring in the actual bridges. Some believe if the vocalcords remain connected while the resonance has split into both chest and head cavitiesthat mix is always present, both in and in
between the bridges. In other words, everythingis mix. At this point in my singing and teaching, I think it's a combination of these two. Pavarottiis reported to have said that singing was like a repeating figure 8. Seth Riggs concluded,and I believe like Seth, that Pavarotti was describing the repeated narrowing into thebridge and the opening into the new register and so on upward. In my opinion, if the vocalcords remain connected, there's always some chest residue, even if it's very slight. Soeven in the highest head voice, if the cords have remained connected, that seems like mixto me, even if it's 100 to 1, it's still a mix. At a certain point, if the cords remainconnected, does it really matter if we say
it's mix or connected super head voiceé Theproblem is, what happens to mix when you sing down below the first bridge into chesté Well,you could definitely bring mix down into the chest register. So, I understand how thatcan be mix, but in most voices, you can only do that so long before the chest voice takesover. How, then, can that be a mixé A third concept that has helpful for me, is 'maintainingthe verticalquot;.(Vocal Geek) This is mentioned in the book, quot;The Voice of the Mind', by E.HerbertCaesari. Imagine a vertical sound beam started by the vocal cords and shootingupward into the mouth. In head voice, this resonating sound beam, if it maintains thevertical direction, will angle slightly backward
and penetrate into the head cavities abovethe mouth. Ahhh. Ahahah. In chest, there is still a vertical sound beam, but it beginsto angle slightly forward and engage the hard palette. In my opinion, to lose the verticalwhile in chest voice, is to grab the vocal cord, squeeze and close the throat and jamthe sound beam down into the throat. Ahahah.Ahhh. The tone can barely escape and has no roundness,no fullness and no appeal. To me, this is not mix. Maintaining the vertical, even ifcompletely in the lower chest voice, creates an upward lift in the tone. The sound beamresonates on the hard palette appropriately. This seems to recruit more than just chestvoice by adding a rounder, fuller tone, as
Get on Board Music Curriculum for Bristol
quot;Wouldn't you like to go floatingéquot; quot;High in a beautiful ballooné quot;Drifting with ease, the way you please, high in your coloured balloonquot; So, today I did the start of the Year 34 Air unit. The first lesson of the six week plan, introducing Hot Air Balloons The idea of the six lessons is that they build so that the children have a composition outcome, they create their own Hot Air Ballooninspired piece as a group using their voices and percussion instruments
and then they notate it using graphic score, the children were using percussion instruments to create a soundscape of a Hot Air Balloon taking off, so we discussed how Hot Air Balloons move and we imagined that we were journeying in a Hot Air Balloon across the city of Bristol. We imagined what we might hear, and first they just had one percussion instrument per group and the idea was that they really experimented with the ways of making different sounds
with that instrument, that there isn't as such only one way to make a sound and I had things likes whisks as well and potato mashers just to be a bit more free, sort of Stomp style, about what an instrument might be and they took turns passing the instruments around the circle demonstrating the different ways they could make a sound with the instrument. And I introduced the terms piano and forte as well, and interestingly lots of them wanted to say it was somewhere in the middle. so then I could introduce mezzoforte and mezzopiano at the same time.
After they'd experimented with their instruments I then gave an instrument to the whole group and they used their instrument to create a particular sound of a Hot Air Balloon taking off, so we had wind whooshing, birds tweeting, basket creaking and metal clanging, those were the sounds the children thought of themselves. They made their own soundscape, then I conducted the whole class to create a soundscape together. The extension activity in the plan is to invite children to come up and conduct the soundscape themselves. I think this worked really well. I think I'll do it more.
quot;Wouldn't you like to go floatingéquot; I think it's really exciting that this new curriculum is going to roll out across Bristol. Particularly as a Music Coordinator I get a lot of questions from staff about supporting music in the classroom, I think with the timeconstraints of teaching it's difficult to fit, sometimes to fit music in and I think the great thing about these plans is that they're free, so they're easily available. All the resources are there and the plans are very clear so you can, as a nonmusic specialist, or as a music specialist, you can pick them up and use all the resources for your teaching.
Also, it's great that they link in with other topics that you might be doing so they're quite topical. They would be good to make crosscurricular particularly with all the plans centred around Bristol. Which I think is really exciting to link Bristol in to the children's learning. To inspire History topics and other things in the classroom, so I think they will work, hopefully successfully, because you can just pick them up, insert them into a topic you're already doing, there're extension activities, ways to take it further if you wanted to, it's just a great starting point and I'm looking forward to the new things