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#1 2014-12-05 18:38:33

lovewarrior
TMV Forum Member
Registered: 2014-12-05
Posts: 9
Reputation :   

Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

Hi there. I registered with the forum because I wanted to get some feedback regarding my next steps as a singer.

I've been singing quite awhile now and tried all kinds of methods although nothing has really stuck with me for long. I usually pick up some things here and there and integrate them into my own style. Every year I am getting better but perhaps I'm looking still to find a little more consistency and a method to my madness. Like I have in other areas of my life...

Recently I've been practising with Gary Catona's voice builder app after reading his book. I originally found him through his google talk and I thought he had an interesting approach so looked into it further. So far its been the most consistent method for me.

Basically he suggests to practise with low larynx, and slide vowels up and down slowly a 5-note scale throughout your lower register. I've been doing it 3-4 times per week with the app (about 30min workout) and the results are a smoother voice. I've been doing this for about 3 months now. He suggest to not mix this with other methods so I thought I'd at least give it a shot.

I'm curious why his methods are not talked about more on here since it is such a popular forum. He seems to work more with famous people and perhaps the other methods and teachers are more for the hobbyists. Hence the distance with the laymen and internet crowd. At least this seems to be true based on the clients. Why aren't the internet guys working with any big names I sometimes wonder? I dont mean to say this as an offence but to encourage to not dismiss the validity of one's claims based on superficialities. This goes both ways.

Gary also has not hidden his thoughs on modern vocal coaches in his book and tends to have a general dismay for the general approaches that have evolved in vocal pedagogy throughout the years. I'm not saying I agree with him but I find this curious how his methods seem to be so shunned or even worse ignored (as evidenced by the other thread here on him). At least from what I can tell, theoretically they seem sound. And are indeed revolutionary if slightly controversial when it comes to the norm (for example he thinks lip bubbles and training falsetto are not just a waste of time but detrimental).

I've asked a few coaches about him personally but I usually don't get much more than dismissive or indiffirent opinions if anything at all which made me even more curious so I started studying with his methods. I wanted to find out for myself since nobody else told me! That said, Robert Lunte I think told me once that Gary's low larynx approach is included in his system. 4 Pillars is one of the few systems I haven't tried yet. I've been overwhelmed by it's complexity and a little scared away perhaps by this. Feel free to chime in Rob if you can address that.

However, I'm a little concerned that Gary's methods apply more to healthy long term classical singing than to dirty rock singing which might sometimes demand sacrifice of vocal health at the price of awesome and emotional singing. I don't think Jim Morrison or John Lennon or Kurt Cobain or James Hetfield or Bruce Springsteen or Tom Waits gave a f##k about how healthy it is. Of course that possibly comes at a heavy price. Catona is more of a opera guy and also champions Sinatra in the book. This kind of crooning thing is cool but I still personally think that Rock N Roll is the epitome of singing when it comes to genuine expression of emotion (just listen to Plant singing at the end of Stairway and tell me i'm wrong). It's no coincidence that rock music sells more than classical and resonates with more people. It's more accessible.

I'm conflicted because while I appreciate how some vocal enthusiasts (Lunte, Tamplin, Richards, Venderra, Lunte, CVT, Fornica, etc) have taken the time to break some of these things down into techniques and training methods that we can all understand yet at the same time I am wondering if this kind reductionism also takes something away from that "natural voice" we all have and should perhaps focus on instead of becoming a "vocal athlete" so to speak. This is where Catona goes into the same group as other vocal teachers. Are we to do as Bruce Lee once claimed about discarding the truths that are useless to us and using what we find useful. Is there any one right approach to do this elusive act we call singing?

I just thought if nothing else, Catona deserves at least some examination.

In the book "Revolution In Singing" Catona writes about ten principles of voice building (he calls it that and distinguishes this kind of training training from practising singing).

1. Vocal expression is our most powerful form of communication.

2. The muscular function of the voice is the same for all people - allowing for the typical gender differences.

3. The voice is not a static, immutable feature of our makeup, but rather a dynamic, flexible process that is controlled by an interconnected system of muscles.

4. There is a casual relatinships between the health of one's vocal musculature and the quality of one's vocal sounds.

5. The vocal mechanism - the lungs, breathing muscles, larynx, pharynx, oral cavity, and soft palate - is controlled and activated by fatigue-resistant endurance musculature.

6. Vocal constriction - the failure of the vocal musculature to perform its many tasks with adequate strength, flexibility, and coordinations - is the cause of most vocal limitations and disorders - from vocal fatigue, hoarseness, and vocal nodules to resonance problems, pitch difficulties and range restrictions.

7. Singing is an athletic activity that is improved through the successful application of isokinetic voice building exercises, which permit the maximum overloading of the vocal musculature.

8. By exercising the vocal musculature, The Catona Voice Building System develops power, resonance, endurance, range, control and flexibility into the singing voice.

9. Vocal Patterning - systematic adjustments to the head, mouth, jaw, and body - is an important component of the Catona Voice Building System.

10. A precise, internally consistent, and uniform system of voice building is essential for realizing the full potential of the vocal musculature.

==========================

Do you agree with these principles?

I can't help wonder what kind of method we would get if all you vocal experts bridged your differences, set egos aside and worked together to make the ultimate voice training system once and for all. Of course our profit oriented monetary system prevents this kind of super efficiency from happening...

What is the next step for me.

I've been having some problems lately with losing my voice too easily live. I think i am incorrectly using the low larynx when singing higher so that damages my voice. This is not Catona's fault but my own. Something to work on. In other words, pushing my low voice too much.

But I have been looking into other methods. My options:

Jim Gillette's Vocal Power

Robert Lunte's 4 Pillars (still intimidated!)

James Lugos' Vocal Insanity

Or just persist with my voice building app (I can't afford private lessons with the man behind it just yet).


Well, sorry for the long post. I did my best to be respectful.

Just felt obliged to shed some light on these matters.

Would appreciate your thoughts.


Thanks.

Last edited by lovewarrior (2014-12-06 21:19:58)

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2014-12-05 18:38:33

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#2 2014-12-05 19:08:49

Danielformica
TMV Forum Member
From: San Luis Obispo
Registered: 2011-08-10
Posts: 1552
Reputation :   62 
Website

Re: Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

I took lessons from Gary and also frm one of his students who was in a band with me and is Sade's background singer still. His name is Leroy and has been a friend and colleague of mine for many years that's how I found out about Gary. As far as gary as a teacher I did not like him.  He claims to be the old melocci style teacher but not so much. He took an old principle and ran with it like a niche. So he is missing many other principles in singing. As far as exercising that way it's  fine just don't over do it. Leroy used to over do it and then tell me he ex as hoarse. Reason being you never want to force the larynx down or up to much. If you need to practice with it down because it rises to much you should incorporate some low larynx. All the programs advocate this but it's not the only piece of the puzzle. Good luck!!


DANIEL
WWW.YOURVOCALTEACHER.COM
WWW.DANIELFORMICAVOCALSTUDIO.COM
www.soundcloud.com/daniel-formica

Disclaimer-Anything I write or try to help people with on here are techniques and things that have worked for ME.  They are not necessarily" right" or "wrong" but have worked for ME and my 20+ yrs as a professional working
singer.
Thank you

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#3 2014-12-05 19:31:05

ronws
TMV Forum Member
Registered: 2010-05-23
Posts: 11731
Reputation :   139 

Re: Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

I read his book, once. His hate-on for tenors or any one not trying to sing baritone was kinda obvious. He has a few good points, as does most anyone. And yeah, to him Sinatra was the penultimate pop singer and he viewed Frankie's higher pitched stuff from his early career to be deficient.

I just assumed he was a baritone that was either jealous or just hated tenors. And pretty much unlike the coaches here that you have mentioned.


"When the daylight is rising up in my eyes ..." - Klaus Meine

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#4 2014-12-05 19:33:41

Robert Lunte
TMV World Forum - Founder
From: Earth
Registered: 2008-11-08
Posts: 3087
Reputation :   55 
Website

Re: Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

Markus,

I got your email.. and sent you a reply... that should cover all your questions that were specific for me. You are welcome to call me personally on the phone if you like to discuss in more detail... I have a few minutes available to an interested potential client. Im available today until 1:00 PST, then Im teaching... you could call me also around 6:00... then I want to get out of here...

Having said that, I think Dan speaks from some good experience. I echo his concern about larynx dampening... its a tricky thing. It is something that you need to practice, understand and indeed, do... but the tricky part is understanding when and how much/often. Larynx dampening can become a problem if you do it too often, exactly as Dan is suggesting. I wouldn't say that it would hurt you physically, (although Im not real familiar with Catona's approach to it... its probably different then mine and others), but my experience has shown that if you do it too much, your voice can get too heavy and too dark too often... it can turn into a habit and all the times when you really shouldn't be dampening because of the sound color you want to create as an artist or bridging requirements, etc... its hard to get out of it. Short answer, if you train and sing with dampening too much, its a habit that you have to train out of to rectify the situation. And it can mess up your formant tunings as a result , among other things...

I personally, in my journey as a singer and coach, had this issue for a short while... so Im very familiar with it, how to dampen properly and now... when and why to do it... and understand where else we need to place the voice other then it always being larynx dampening...

BTW...

Robert Lunte's 4 Pillars (still intimidated!)

That is peculiar? What do you mean by that? Does my program seem to be "complicated" or overwhelming in some way?  Sometimes I get that concern... its not that its really that complicated at all... its just full of information. Im big on giving clients a LOT of value for their money and investment in me.  But if you also train with me, you will learn the Method and how to train with the content... anyways, what do you mean by that?

I hope to hear from you and would love to be your coach... read my email.

Nice response Dan...

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#5 2014-12-05 19:44:08

Robert Lunte
TMV World Forum - Founder
From: Earth
Registered: 2008-11-08
Posts: 3087
Reputation :   55 
Website

Re: Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

That said, Robert Lunte I think told me once that Gary's low larynx approach is included in his system. 4 Pillars is one of the few systems I haven't tried yet. I've been overwhelmed by it's complexity and a little scared away perhaps by this. Feel free to chime in Rob if you can address that.

lol... I think Im going to have to tweak my messaging a bit... TVS and "The Four Pillars of Singing" is comprehensive, but its not nuclear physics... Markus, there is a phase approach to my program... its all broken down into different phases...you ingest each phase at a time... one thing that I am particularly proud of is, "The Foundation Building Routine" phase with is kind of like, the "make it or break it" phase... in the "FBR", which my clients refer to ... you build the foundation for your voice. That means not only the understanding of how the singing voice works so you know what the hell your doing and there are little to no mysteries anymore, but the physical strengthening and coordination that everyone has to go through.. but students seem to be surprised about until they actually step into it and realize that this is a lot about ... athletic training. You learn how to;... rehabilitate your voice from the fatigue that comes from speaking, learn what onsets are (the serve), learn how to balance an "onset package" which is simply the technical components you need to have a high performance, beautiful, strong singing voice...namely: respiration, vocal fold compression, embouchure (mouth shape), tongue positioning, larynx manipulation (which would include dampening, but also raising), singing vowels and psyche. issues like... stop staring at your shoe strings... and on. This could sound complicated, but as you can see, its actually intended to make a complicated subject easier to understand. TVS Methodology deals a lot with training work flows, (step 1, step 2, step 3, etc...) to not make things more complicated, but to make things more easy and clear on what you have to practice.

After establishing that "onset package" , we then work on putting it on the move with vocal workouts... this includes the introduction of vowel modification, bridging the vocal break, building strength and coordination in the head voice (obviously...), and learning the strengthen the chest musculature so that you can belt higher... something that we talk a lot about lately here at the forum... this is all about learning the "pull chest" PROPERLY to strengthen your voice on the high end so that your high notes are not too heady... or "high/late bridging" techniques...

anyways, give me a call or reply to my email...

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#6 2014-12-06 14:43:55

Steven Fraser
Charter Member of TMV Voice Council
From: Plano, Texas
Registered: 2008-11-22
Posts: 1801
Reputation :   101 

Re: Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

lovewarrior wrote:

Hi there. I registered with the forum because I wanted to get some feedback regarding my next steps as a singer.

I've been singing quite awhile now and tried all kinds of methods although nothing has really stuck with me for long. I usually pick up some things here and there and integrate them into my own style. Every year I am getting better but perhaps I'm looking still to find a little more consistency and a method to my madness. Like I have in other areas of my life... (vegan, meditation, gst, etc.)

Recently I've been practising with Gary Catona's voice builder app after reading his book. ...(Snip)...

Would appreciate your thoughts.


Thanks.

Hi, and welcome to the forum.

From your description, the 'principles' are reasonable, but certainly not unique to his approach.  Generally, on this list we do not discuss pedagogies so much as specific things that we are working on, unless a member is actively applying the technique of a specific pedagogy like you now are.  It will be interesting to hear of your experiences as you progress.

The exercise you mention is present in many, if not all, of the method books from the 19th century, I.e., ' Methode de Chant' by Laure-Cinthie Damoreau, 1847; and 'La Voix et le Chant' by J. Faure, 1886.  The latter is particularly important, as it was the method written for, and used, by the Paris Conservatory.  For the interested, the latter book starts where many of us still do... With the onset.

I've read some of the website comments by his students, and I notice that many of them are about vocal repair, endurance or recovery from excessive use in speaking or singing.  That seems to me to be more on the voice 'therapy' side of the voice 'building' world.

All the best.

Last edited by Steven Fraser (2014-12-06 15:08:00)


Best Regards,

Steven Fraser

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#7 2014-12-06 16:02:42

lovewarrior
TMV Forum Member
Registered: 2014-12-05
Posts: 9
Reputation :   

Re: Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

Thanks for the replies, I appreciate it.

Steven I think you might be right about that he seems to be coming more from the therapeutic side and applying those results to something more comprehensive. I think this is the career niche Dan might have been talking about also.

I guess I am still lacking a fundamental understanding of how my voice works which is why I am still confused when I get some problems and thus I come to you guys for the help.

It's just a shame that these things cant be studied properly and I have to rely on who has the best sales pitch instead of scientifially proven facts.

And even genuine criticism is hard to find (since the vocal world is still quite a small field) other than students complaining about trivialities which are hardly helpful.

On Amazon, Robert Lunte's 4 pillars has recieved 19 reviews and all perfect except one which I found the most useful (still 4/5): http://www.amazon.com/Four-Pillars-Sing … 1VOQIUR3KI

When I read amazon reviews, I usually only read 3 or 4 star reviews because they usually have much more substance.

I did get Jim Gillette's Vocal Power which I thought I'd give a try until I decide further. Any thoughts on that program or the train methods used there? Gary emailed me and thinks I should persist with his simple method and just do it correctly and diligently (only using low larynx for lower register training which he cleared up) and the results will show. And he advised not to do other methods or change the exercise (simple slides on all 5 vowels, on 5 note scales, up down the given register. And he's not even making money from this since I already paid the 5 dollars for the app.

Daniel, what other principles were you referring to that he may be missing? We can email about it also if you prefer.

It would be great to get Gary to chime in here also but I doubt that will happen. I can email him the thread however.

I also would love to actually discuss the specifics instead of the pedagogies. I think it would be great to have this kind of conversation in the public with all the leaders of the field. Not just vocal field but knowledge in general. It's such a shame that this is always so hard to make happen.

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#8 2014-12-06 17:30:14

Robert Lunte
TMV World Forum - Founder
From: Earth
Registered: 2008-11-08
Posts: 3087
Reputation :   55 
Website

Re: Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

lovewarrior wrote:

Thanks for the replies, I appreciate it.

Steven I think you might be right about that he seems to be coming more from the therapeutic side and applying those results to something more comprehensive. I think this is the career niche Dan might have been talking about also.

I guess I am still lacking a fundamental understanding of how my voice works which is why I am still confused when I get some problems and thus I come to you guys for the help.

It's just a shame that these things cant be studied properly and I have to rely on who has the best sales pitch instead of scientifially proven facts.

And even genuine criticism is hard to find (since the vocal world is still quite a small field) other than students complaining about trivialities which are hardly helpful.

On Amazon, Robert Lunte's 4 pillars has recieved 19 reviews and all perfect except one which I found the most useful (still 4/5): http://www.amazon.com/Four-Pillars-Sing … 1VOQIUR3KI

When I read amazon reviews, I usually only read 3 or 4 star reviews because they usually have much more substance.

I did get Jim Gillette's Vocal Power which I thought I'd give a try until I decide further. Any thoughts on that program or the train methods used there? Gary emailed me and thinks I should persist with his simple method and just do it correctly and diligently (only using low larynx for lower register training which he cleared up) and the results will show. And he advised not to do other methods or change the exercise (simple slides on all 5 vowels, on 5 note scales, up down the given register. And he's not even making money from this since I already paid the 5 dollars for the app.

Daniel, what other principles were you referring to that he may be missing? We can email about it also if you prefer.

It would be great to get Gary to chime in here also but I doubt that will happen. I can email him the thread however.

I also would love to actually discuss the specifics instead of the pedagogies. I think it would be great to have this kind of conversation in the public with all the leaders of the field. Not just vocal field but knowledge in general. It's such a shame that this is always so hard to make happen.

For starters, you would be wise to listen to what Steve Fraser has to say. He is one of the top experts on this forum and in the world. He also has no bias. He is also the editor of my book, which is clearly stated on the amazon.com listing...

It's just a shame that these things cant be studied properly and I have to rely on who has the best sales pitch instead of scientifially proven facts.

These "things" have been studied properly and there are plenty of facts out there. If you want good science and explanations on your voice and how it works, I recommend my program, "The Four Pillars of Singing" (which Steve Fraser actually edited for me...), Estill or CVI... the the latter two, you will not find any or very little at best, training content, only books.  My program offers you more training content then any program Im aware of.  But more to the point, the notion that the voice has not been studied properly is just not true.

On Amazon, Robert Lunte's 4 pillars has recieved 19 reviews and all perfect except one which I found the most useful (still 4/5): http://www.amazon.com/Four-Pillars-Sing … 1VOQIUR3KI

When I read amazon reviews, I usually only read 3 or 4 star reviews because they usually have much more substance.

Huh? Out of all the reviews you have to read, including the reviews found from the link in my signature... http://tinyurl.com/The4PillarsReviews ... the only one that has "substance" for you is the 3 or 4 star reviews?  5-Star reviews are from people that are genuine as well. IN fact, they tend to be the people that actually worked the program and are not inclined to make excuses. Well anyways...  I have to ask, did you bother to read my reply / rebuttal?  I suggest you do, because that review chalk full of assumptions, misunderstandings and errors in regards to my product. So if your interested in getting the facts and a more balanced perspective in regards to that review, read my reply.

I am not giving you a "sales pitch"... does this look like a "pitch"?  Or does it look like someone is trying hard to reach out to you and help you?  I have not only given you a HUGE email privately, offered you the opportunity to call me personally on the phone, but have responded on this forum... which has made my efforts to help you redundant... all to help you...  I even gave you a small discount to help you out financially. 

Perhaps one of the things you should add to your criteria on choosing a program is,... customer service... who seems to give a shit the most about you... who is willing to answer all your questions in email and then again on a public forum, etc... and even offer you to call them personally on the phone?  I'm just saying...

BTW... in one of your emails you stated:

I like more tension and growl and masculinity like Jim Morrison, Joe Cocker, Mike McDonald, Ray Charles, etc, etc

Apart from the fact that this is referring to singing styles, not vocal technique programs... which are two different things, ... The Jim Gillette program is about heavy metal and heavy metal screaming... at least it was the last time I checked.

I'm trying hard to help you... but in order for you to get the help I can give you, you have to trust me... and recognize this is not a "sales pitch"... this is a real person, reaching out that cares and it is trying to help you... sometimes the best things for us in life are standing right in front of our nose, but we fail to see it...

I have to go teach... I wish you the best Markus...

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#9 2014-12-06 21:02:14

lovewarrior
TMV Forum Member
Registered: 2014-12-05
Posts: 9
Reputation :   

Re: Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

What I meant about study is peer-reviewed science. Until I see that in the vocal field (besides vocal anatomy) when it comes to training methods, all this knowledge is just anecdotal at best. Nor have we seen that one clear method produces superior results so I think anyone saying that is delusional. What I find more likely is that all these many methods have a lot in common and those basic things is what makes them work. The positive results might also be more of a matter of doing something vs doing nothing. I think Daniel and some others would agree me on that point. We simply dont know if the validity of one method's claims is true or not just because you teach them and have put a lot of work into them. Of course beginners will benefit and get excited about all kinds of secrets. But when it comes to singing profesionally, it's a whole 'nother story.

What I meant by the amazon review is that it is helpful BECAUSE of the fact that you interacted and cleared some things up. That's the whole point. This kind of constructive dialogue is helpful and much more honest and trustworthy than only showing 5 star reviews that say everything is perfect. I like people who can think critically and are not afraid to do so. Most of the time these reviews are paid for or traded for discounts and other business. How can one tell the difference in such a world? Amazon is notorious for this. Hence why I trust the non-perfect reviews more. Just wanted to clear that up.

Robert, I dont get what your deal is. You say your efforts are redundant. I think this is unfair as I have not had the free time until today to even go through your email. No they have not been redundant. Not everyone follows your schedule so chill out!

I also dont understand why you have to repeat yourself twice by saying the same things here as in your email. I get it, your product is amazing. 5-star reviews. But if you're always like this, I think it will be difficult to work with you personally. I was initially overwhelmed by you comprehensive product. Now I'm overwhelmed by why you are behaving like this when we dont even know each other and I have not had a chance to fully review my options yet.

Perhaps its better to leave it at that for now.

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#10 2014-12-06 21:12:34

FelipeCarvalho
TMV Forum Member
From: Brasil
Registered: 2011-07-28
Posts: 2889
Reputation :   61 
Website

Re: Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

It's just a shame that these things cant be studied properly and I have to rely on who has the best sales pitch instead of scientifially proven facts.


??

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#11 2014-12-06 21:19:04

lovewarrior
TMV Forum Member
Registered: 2014-12-05
Posts: 9
Reputation :   

Re: Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

Out of all the things said here and my long original post which took me some time to write, I find it odd that this is what you point out.

??

If you disagree with my statement, perhaps you can elaborate. Otherwise I'm not sure what you are adding to this conversation with two question marks. I wrote more about this in my previous post... Feel free to chime in with your thoughts regarding that and other points I made.

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#12 2014-12-06 21:33:49

FelipeCarvalho
TMV Forum Member
From: Brasil
Registered: 2011-07-28
Posts: 2889
Reputation :   61 
Website

Re: Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

Ok:

??

AND

Lessons.

GL!

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#13 2014-12-06 21:44:31

Robert Lunte
TMV World Forum - Founder
From: Earth
Registered: 2008-11-08
Posts: 3087
Reputation :   55 
Website

Re: Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

Just want to help ya bud... sorry if I got too passionate about it.

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#14 2014-12-06 22:49:58

m.i.r.
TMV Forum Member
Registered: 2014-11-23
Posts: 92
Reputation :   

Re: Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

Mr Fraser......You really are the modern day yoda, i have taken a fair amount of time to educate myself on many things vocal, music, and ect related. However, everytime you post something I am like wtf ha ha... I am gonna get you on jeopardy and claim 10 percent of the winnings and buy me something pretty lol. Also thanks for the pointers couple weeks ago. They really helped, i really havent changed much from the classical approach, but now have a modern tone. Also, since i am sticking with basically what i know i am not out of whack any more and have all my power back. All that is left is working on making bflat 4 and up a little more chesty as right now its just a tad bit too twangy for me. It works and people havent said anything bad about it, just my personal preference. Thats about the only thing that is annoying me a bit now.

Anyways back to the reason i posted and sorry for getting side tracked. Lovewarrior, i have read what everyone wrote and it sounds like you got an honest and insightful assessment of what people thought of the program(i have no opinion because i have no experience with him)Just sounds to me you either want permission to do the program. Or want everyone on here to tell you it is the best of the best and all before and after it is trash. My guess that is why felipe gave you such a short slightly sarcastic answer.

So if you want to go forward with it go man go....come back and outsing the crap out of us lol. Especially robert, just because i am pissed at him for blue rain still being in my head.

Last edited by m.i.r. (2014-12-06 22:53:14)

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#15 2014-12-07 00:19:16

Robert Lunte
TMV World Forum - Founder
From: Earth
Registered: 2008-11-08
Posts: 3087
Reputation :   55 
Website

Re: Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

m.i.r. wrote:

Mr Fraser......You really are the modern day yoda, i have taken a fair amount of time to educate myself on many things vocal, music, and ect related. However, everytime you post something I am like wtf ha ha... I am gonna get you on jeopardy and claim 10 percent of the winnings and buy me something pretty lol. Also thanks for the pointers couple weeks ago. They really helped, i really havent changed much from the classical approach, but now have a modern tone. Also, since i am sticking with basically what i know i am not out of whack any more and have all my power back. All that is left is working on making bflat 4 and up a little more chesty as right now its just a tad bit too twangy for me. It works and people havent said anything bad about it, just my personal preference. Thats about the only thing that is annoying me a bit now.

Anyways back to the reason i posted and sorry for getting side tracked. Lovewarrior, i have read what everyone wrote and it sounds like you got an honest and insightful assessment of what people thought of the program(i have no opinion because i have no experience with him)Just sounds to me you either want permission to do the program. Or want everyone on here to tell you it is the best of the best and all before and after it is trash. My guess that is why felipe gave you such a short slightly sarcastic answer.

So if you want to go forward with it go man go....come back and outsing the crap out of us lol. Especially robert, just because i am pissed at him for blue rain still being in my head.

LOL... funny. ah Yes... "Blue Rain"... good tune, maybe Ill redo it one day, then again, I rather like this version... Im working on some new stuff now anyways... got to move forward, the rain stopped... Thanks for being a good sport MIR... Here you go, a blast from the past... I'll post it for fun... If I knew then, what I know now about how the voice works...

Robert Lunte - "Blue Rain"

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#16 2014-12-07 00:21:19

ronws
TMV Forum Member
Registered: 2010-05-23
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Re: Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

Don't worry, m.i.r., that song gets stuck in all of our heads. We are borg, you have been assimilated.

Robert is an awesome songwriter.


"When the daylight is rising up in my eyes ..." - Klaus Meine

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#17 2014-12-07 00:32:32

Robert Lunte
TMV World Forum - Founder
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Posts: 3087
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Re: Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

ronws wrote:

Don't worry, m.i.r., that song gets stuck in all of our heads. We are borg, you have been assimilated.

Robert is an awesome songwriter.

Finally, someone has something nice to say.  Thanks for the compliment Ron.

Speaking of "Assimilation"... have you heard this?  Couldn't resist the coincidence...

This is also a bit dated, but interesting...

Robert Lunte - "Assimilation"

https://soundcloud.com/robertlunte/assimilation-v2

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#18 2014-12-07 00:49:09

Steven Fraser
Charter Member of TMV Voice Council
From: Plano, Texas
Registered: 2008-11-22
Posts: 1801
Reputation :   101 

Re: Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

Hi,

The fiirst line of your original post said that you would like to get some feedback on your next steps, and midway through you returned to that question and let us know about a specific issue:

lovewarrior wrote:

"What is the next step for me?"

"I've been having some problems lately with losing my voice too easily live."

I can speak to this situation, and I think some others can as well, each from our personal experience.

For me, this was a big issue as a singer in my late teens and early 20's, especially when singing unmiked in a dead room without adequate warm up or psychological prep.  Even during the course of A single song I would lose ground, and thing would start to get strained and raw, with this most apparent in the upper middle range.  Smooth transition to the top was risky at best...not a comfortable situation at all.

As a university music student, this happened in front of my own teacher, and in front of all the other teachers in the music school.  They all could see/hear it happening, and it became a recurring focus of my study while there.

My issue?  Too much breath pressure, caused by excessive exhalation force.  What were the remedies? 

1. Tame the "up-and-in" ab contraction, 
2. rebalance the coordination of the breath and laryngeal action, and
3. "Focus" the vowels.

I did not learn until sometime later what happened on the physical level with the last of these.  In today's terms, we call this "twang" or "singers formant" combined with vowel tuning.  Using them at the same time drastically increased my resonance, and I learned that singing this way was much easier, and sustainable for hours.  By the time I was a college senior, I could sing choir tours of 2 weeks with 90 minute concerts each day., or be onstage for an entire opera,  And still have some juice left at the end.

I do not know what your specific technique issues may be, ( we will get to those very soon, I think) but the physiology and acoustics of the voice are very well understood in scientific circles, and that information is spreading out in the voice teaching world pretty rapidly, in places where 'BelCanto' used to be taught almost as a "religion", and into the pop, jazz and rock genres.  It's truly a revolution in the way that singing is approached.  What used to be mysterious and "secret knowledge" passed from teacher to student only in face-to-face lessons can now be experienced in other ways as well.

The principles undergirding this revolution, from my perspective, are (in no particular order)

...breath energy, laryngeal muscle action and resonance interact to produce the vocal tone.  They form a coupled system, and each element must be brought into coordination with the others.

...consistency of phonation throughout the range results when the laryngeal muscles are allowed to adjust their length, mass and tension smoothly.  Provision of too much, or too little, breath energy inhibits this smooth adjustment, as does habitual over/under action of one or several of the laryngeal muscles.

...vowels are the result of resonance, the interaction of the phonated tone with the vocal tract configuration. Changing the configuration of the tract via change in position of the articulators ( tongue, lips, jaw, soft palate ) or the laryngeal position in the throat, or the pharyngeal diameter, will change the resonances in predictable ways that improve, or inhibit, the clarity and power of the vowel.  The lowest 2, and perhaps the 3rd resonance, contributes to the perception of the vowel on the part of the listener.  When those resonances align with harmonics of the phonated tone, those harmonics are strongly amplified.

...the narrowing of the epilaryngeal space ( the part of the vocal tract just above the larynx ) causes a very beneficial acoustic impedance match between the vocal bands and the rest of the vocal tract. The result is increased ease of phonation, and a strongly-increased high-frequency component to the tone.  The frequencies of these components align strongly with the most sensitive range of human hearing, allowing the voice to heard well then they are present.

Successful singers and teachers, whether aware of them or not, access these realities through technique achieved in very-widely varied ways, based on background, habit, preference, intelligence, imagination, concept, metaphor, training, euphemism, or even accident. 

That's what I can offer today, without hearing you.  if you'll post a clip, or describe the situations a bit more, I am sure that you'll get constructive suggestions from a variety of perspectives.

I hope this is helpful,

Last edited by Steven Fraser (2014-12-07 00:55:04)


Best Regards,

Steven Fraser

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#19 2014-12-07 00:57:18

Robert Lunte
TMV World Forum - Founder
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Posts: 3087
Reputation :   55 
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Re: Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

Maestro Fraser, lets hook up again soon... I want to show you the new vowel modification formulas and acoustic modes... also, in preparation for the new forum...

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#20 2014-12-07 01:08:40

m.i.r.
TMV Forum Member
Registered: 2014-11-23
Posts: 92
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Re: Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

Yes do!!!! Sounds like an awesome idea, come here to texas to meet up lol. Then i can crash the party and meet you both lol, since i live in the same city as the maestro.

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#21 2014-12-07 04:02:13

Steven Fraser
Charter Member of TMV Voice Council
From: Plano, Texas
Registered: 2008-11-22
Posts: 1801
Reputation :   101 

Re: Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

m.i.r. wrote:

Yes do!!!! Sounds like an awesome idea, come here to texas to meet up lol. Then i can crash the party and meet you both lol, since i live in the same city as the maestro.

Ronws will want in, too, Imthinkin.....


Best Regards,

Steven Fraser

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#22 2014-12-07 04:18:58

m.i.r.
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Registered: 2014-11-23
Posts: 92
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Re: Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

Done!!! Robert i got a piss load of frequent flyer miles......*cough cough* though i am sure you have a crap ton yourself lol

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#23 2014-12-07 09:54:10

lovewarrior
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Registered: 2014-12-05
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Re: Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

Just came across this, quite amazing I must say!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lx-BpQFbLrg

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#24 2014-12-07 13:33:16

FelipeCarvalho
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From: Brasil
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Re: Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

Except that, no:

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#25 2014-12-07 13:45:43

Steven Fraser
Charter Member of TMV Voice Council
From: Plano, Texas
Registered: 2008-11-22
Posts: 1801
Reputation :   101 

Re: Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

lovewarrior...

Yesterday afternoon, I posted a somewhat detailed response to a situation in your initial post.  I hope you find it useful.


Best Regards,

Steven Fraser

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#26 2014-12-07 13:53:29

ronws
TMV Forum Member
Registered: 2010-05-23
Posts: 11731
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Re: Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

Robert Lunte wrote:

ronws wrote:

Don't worry, m.i.r., that song gets stuck in all of our heads. We are borg, you have been assimilated.

Robert is an awesome songwriter.

Finally, someone has something nice to say.  Thanks for the compliment Ron.

Speaking of "Assimilation"... have you heard this?  Couldn't resist the coincidence...

This is also a bit dated, but interesting...

Robert Lunte - "Assimilation"

https://soundcloud.com/robertlunte/assimilation-v2

I don't think I had heard that one before. I like it, too, a long-drawn story arch and presentation of clear diction similar to Jack Black. I don't mean as comedy. Something along his tribute to Dio.

Well done.

The only person I have met in Texas is former moderator Aaron Meyers. And that is because he has family here that he was visiting. He still prefers the Pacific Northwest.

I drive through Steven's town twice a day. in the morning somewhere between 5 and 6 am, as I have to be at work in n.w. Dallas (near 35 and 635) by 6 am. I rarely get out of the office before 4 pm, to follow the same route back home, this time, with loads of snarled traffic up 35, slow-downs in Rayburn (toll road for s.h. 121) and just general slowness in McKinney as I try to make my way north to near Sherman. So that I have time to drop a deuce, take a shower, eat, and be ready to do it all again the next day, for 5 days in a row.

But, yeah, it would be cool just to meet Steven in person absorb some of his brain with a vulcan mind meld trick.


"When the daylight is rising up in my eyes ..." - Klaus Meine

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#27 2014-12-07 19:01:30

Adolph Namlik
Executive Director, The Modern Vocalist World
From: "No Name", New York
Registered: 2008-11-15
Posts: 748
Reputation :   17 

Re: Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

Robert Lunte wrote:

ronws wrote:

Don't worry, m.i.r., that song gets stuck in all of our heads. We are borg, you have been assimilated.

Robert is an awesome songwriter.

Finally, someone has something nice to say. Thanks for the compliment Ron.

Speaking of "Assimilation"... have you heard this?  Couldn't resist the coincidence...

This is also a bit dated, but interesting...

Robert Lunte - "Assimilation"

https://soundcloud.com/robertlunte/assimilation-v2

"Someone else" has something nice to say as well....:lol:

I listen to "Blue Rain" quite often. Great tune !!! As well as "Nocturne" from Robert's "Back to the Line" CD.

Yes, a GREAT songwriter !!! I also have a CD that Robert sent to me quite some time ago that to my knowledge, has never been published..... Awesome tunes on there as well :cool:


Adolph C. Namlik
Executive Director ~ The Modern Vocalist World
Western N.Y.
adolph@themodernvocalist.com
http://www.themodernvocalist.com/profile/AdolphNamlik
Email : chief188@hughes.net
716~257~9606
"My Life's A Stage"

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#28 2014-12-07 20:38:12

Robert Lunte
TMV World Forum - Founder
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Re: Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

Thanks chief.

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#29 2014-12-07 20:40:21

lovewarrior
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Registered: 2014-12-05
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Re: Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

Steven, thanks for the detailed post although the technicalities went a little over my head. Do you know if the information or principles you speak of are coming more from a hypothetical/conjectural point of view or are these something that everyone tends to agree on? I think there's a lot of myths floating around out there about what works and what doesn't. Hence the confusion. But confusion sells. It's the same thing in the nutrition world. Eating healthily is a very simple thing yet extremely hard for most people to accept this simplicity. I dont think singing is that complicated. I'm a professional singer yet not on expert on the voice. These are two different things. You might be interested to check out the chapter in Catona's "Revolution in Singing" about how he has attempted to get his methods backed up by science. I think you might find it useful also. Although because of my lack of expertise in the mechanics of the voice, I am unable to accurately judge the validity of Catona's claims. Hence, why I am experimenting with them to see if they work.

Just curious, can I hear your singing anywhere?

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#30 2014-12-07 20:56:37

m.i.r.
TMV Forum Member
Registered: 2014-11-23
Posts: 92
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Re: Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

Adolph Namlik wrote:

Robert Lunte wrote:

ronws wrote:

Don't worry, m.i.r., that song gets stuck in all of our heads. We are borg, you have been assimilated.

Robert is an awesome songwriter.

Finally, someone has something nice to say. Thanks for the compliment Ron.

Speaking of "Assimilation"... have you heard this?  Couldn't resist the coincidence...

This is also a bit dated, but interesting...

Robert Lunte - "Assimilation"

https://soundcloud.com/robertlunte/assimilation-v2

"Someone else" has something nice to say as well....:lol:

I listen to "Blue Rain" quite often. Great tune !!! As well as "Nocturne" from Robert's "Back to the Line" CD.

Yes, a GREAT songwriter !!! I also have a CD that Robert sent to me quite some time ago that to my knowledge, has never been published..... Awesome tunes on there as well :cool:

Hey i said nice things too............you never listen to me huffff!!.....I have been having too many wife problems lol, she is rubbing off

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#31 2014-12-07 21:16:32

Robert Lunte
TMV World Forum - Founder
From: Earth
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Posts: 3087
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Re: Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

Relax Mir, its cool... Im only saying that in jest, light-heartedly...

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#32 2014-12-07 21:24:20

m.i.r.
TMV Forum Member
Registered: 2014-11-23
Posts: 92
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Re: Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

I am joking as well lol. Majority of what i say has sarcasm and light heartedness in it. Hard for that to be relayed through typing ha ha.....

So plano??? There is already 3 people ready.....even offered my frequent flyer miles...ha ha, you know you wanna. Better than rain all the time isnt it???

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#33 2014-12-07 21:29:14

Robert Lunte
TMV World Forum - Founder
From: Earth
Registered: 2008-11-08
Posts: 3087
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Re: Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

lovewarrior wrote:

Steven, thanks for the detailed post although the technicalities went a little over my head. Do you know if the information or principles you speak of are coming more from a hypothetical/conjectural point of view or are these something that everyone tends to agree on? I think there's a lot of myths floating around out there about what works and what doesn't. Hence the confusion. But confusion sells. It's the same thing in the nutrition world. Eating healthily is a very simple thing yet extremely hard for most people to accept this simplicity. I dont think singing is that complicated. I'm a professional singer yet not on expert on the voice. These are two different things. You might be interested to check out the chapter in Catona's "Revolution in Singing" about how he has attempted to get his methods backed up by science. I think you might find it useful also. Although because of my lack of expertise in the mechanics of the voice, I am unable to accurately judge the validity of Catona's claims. Hence, why I am experimenting with them to see if they work.

Just curious, can I hear your singing anywhere?

LW

I suppose that "confusion" can sell... for a while. Your correct if you referring to the vocal training community, there is a LOT of confusion out there in regards to how the voice works and more relevant to you, how to train and teach people to build a strong voice. It is typically propagated by people that don't take the time to research, test ideas, grow as coaches and even humble themselves from time to time to add more understanding to their pedagogy... these things are important to becoming a truly knowledgable voice coach. But there are a lot of charlatans... having said that, I can honestly say, there is not one coach on this service that is a "charlatan"... we are all knowledgeable about what we are doing and offering...

The ability to sing is NOT critical to the ability to teach. Consumers tend to draw that conclusion and there are some coaches in the market who are great singers, that would have you believe that it is more important then it really is because that plays to their strengths and it plays to the consumers intuition. If your seeking "truth" in this confusing market, as it seems you are, I advise that you underscore this point.

However, I MUST preference that by saying, voice coaches that DO sing well, have the lability to add that to their list of credibility bullets. It is NOT mission critical, but it is preferred, you might conclude. There are many great coaches that get great results and we never hear them sing. There are some coaches out there that do sing very well,... and they can't teach for beans. What I say to you, is the truth.

I have had a unique opportunity in my career to manage teams of voice teachers in different capacities. Once as a "team leader" for TC-Helicon www.c-helicon.com, a company that makes pedals for singers... where I managed voice teachers from all over the world.. and again in my own TVS Certified Instructor program that consists of talented coaches from around the world... and to some extent, getting to know people in this community in the past 6 years.  I can tell you, perhaps better then anyone else could... I have heard some people that teach that are amazing singers... but they lack experience and technical understanding of how the voice works and... they lack the talent for TEACHING... not everyone is intuitive for teaching. Thats the way it is. Singing and Teaching voice technique are two very different things. Yes, at the end of the line, when you get to the end game, singing, there arrives some relevant cross-over of the two disciplines. But the relevance of coaches that can also sing great, in regards to whether or not you are going have a successful learning experience as a student or not, is about 15-20%.

If you can find a teacher that also can sing, maybe thats preferred, it does ad a bit ( 15-20% ) of credibility and experience to the resume,... but it is far, far less important then what people tend to assume and what they are being led to believe by some of the messaging that is being published out there.

I wish you the best with your Journey...

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#34 2014-12-08 00:08:58

Steven Fraser
Charter Member of TMV Voice Council
From: Plano, Texas
Registered: 2008-11-22
Posts: 1801
Reputation :   101 

Re: Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

lovewarrior wrote:

Steven, thanks for the detailed post although the technicalities went a little over my head. Do you know if the information or principles you speak of are coming more from a hypothetical/conjectural point of view or are these something that everyone tends to agree on? I think there's a lot of myths floating around out there about what works and what doesn't. Hence the confusion. But confusion sells. It's the same thing in the nutrition world. Eating healthily is a very simple thing yet extremely hard for most people to accept this simplicity. I dont think singing is that complicated. I'm a professional singer yet not on expert on the voice. These are two different things. You might be interested to check out the chapter in Catona's "Revolution in Singing" about how he has attempted to get his methods backed up by science. I think you might find it useful also. Although because of my lack of expertise in the mechanics of the voice, I am unable to accurately judge the validity of Catona's claims. Hence, why I am experimenting with them to see if they work.

Just curious, can I hear your singing anywhere?

The science of the study of singing started with the invention of the laryngeoscope, about the time of Manuel Carcia.  He often gets credit for it, but we now know that it was invented in England about the same time Garcia promoted the idea.  Things picked up speed when photography and movies began to be made of the larynx in action, with Brodnitz and his contemporaries in the 1930s.  The fundamental work in the acoustics of vowels was done by Gunnar Fant, who published the paper  'The Source-filter theory of voice production', which layed out the basic ideas about what linguists call 'vowels' in their study of languages.  He could be considered the 'father' of the science of vocal acoustics.

The research gathered steam with the work of William Vennard  and Ralph Appelman at The University of Indiana, who were singers and teachers of singing there, and the work of Berton Coffin at the University of Colorado, Boulder.  Other, coach-teachers like Cornelius Reid and the voice-therapist/teacher Oren Brown brought extensive application of various parts of the principles to bear in their New York Studios.  the production of the 'broadway' voice was elucidated and trained by the work of Jo Estill.

For the past 40-or-so years, researchers such as Sundberg, Miller, Titze, Wolfe, Schute and Story have published excellent, peer-reviewed studies on various aspects, and teachers of singing Doscher, Hanson, Stephen Austin, Richard Miller, Dale Moore,  John Nix and many others (including here)  have applied the principles with students of all ages and situations with great success.

Of particular interest is the work of Sundberg and Titze, whom I consider the Titans in the field, both of whom are still contributing.  You can find info on Sundberg at

http://www.speech.kth.se/~pjohan/currentprojects.html

and by Titze at the National Center for Voice and Speech,

http://ncvs.org/

While 'consensus' may be too strong a word, the theories have been supported by experiment and application in the studio.   Acoustic modelling of the mathematics of vocal tract resonances in real-time voice synthesis produces realistic recordings that match the acoustic profiles of actual singers.   Here is a fun presentation by Dr. Titze for the 1992 NATS convention, given to teachers of singing from around the country:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UQw03TXZsHA

These days, very-high-speed video of the vocal bands in action is used to show clearly the adduction, phonation and abduction motions of the vocal bands in actual singing. MRI measurements of end-to-end vocal tract dimensions are available, and realtime vocal harmonic-intensity display is available for laptops.  I use one of these FFT-based tools in my own voice practice, and recommend it to others as a way to get visual feed-back of the effects of vowel-tuning, and to reinforce the student in the objective measurement of their resonances.

There is still confusion, I admit, but there are also many kinds of students, and not everyone learns this the same way.  Immitation is very effective, and requires no 'head' knowledge to work... it just takes good ears and teachers sensititve to the particular way that a given student learns.

At one point, I had some recordings on the general site, but I cannot find them now.  My favorite things to record are multi-tracked choral pieces, with me singing all the parts.  I will look around for the originals, and post a link.

I hope this is helpful.

Last edited by Steven Fraser (2014-12-09 12:13:48)


Best Regards,

Steven Fraser

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#35 2014-12-08 00:13:47

Robert Lunte
TMV World Forum - Founder
From: Earth
Registered: 2008-11-08
Posts: 3087
Reputation :   55 
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Re: Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

Nice post Maestro... classy.

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#36 2014-12-08 05:54:03

m.i.r.
TMV Forum Member
Registered: 2014-11-23
Posts: 92
Reputation :   

Re: Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

Robert Lunte wrote:

Nice post Maestro... classy.

You should come tell him that in person;)

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#37 2014-12-08 18:02:18

Steven Fraser
Charter Member of TMV Voice Council
From: Plano, Texas
Registered: 2008-11-22
Posts: 1801
Reputation :   101 

Re: Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

Example of some of my overdub experimentation...
Al the voices are mine, with a bit too much reverb, I think.  It's pretty tricky to do the singing and the engineering at the same time, but that is what I was learning to do when I recorded this.

http://youtu.be/iPsMNMjG2fc

Last edited by Steven Fraser (2014-12-08 18:02:49)


Best Regards,

Steven Fraser

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#38 2014-12-08 18:09:18

Robert Lunte
TMV World Forum - Founder
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Posts: 3087
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Re: Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

Maestro, I love your recording.  And I admire that you have the courage, just like anyone, to step up and let us hear your art. Way to go!  I have been recording a lot lately as well... I just filmed this last night, here is the audio...

"Timeless Chains" - v2 - Robert Lunte
https://soundcloud.com/robertlunte/timeless-chains

Been working a lot on M1 pulling or warming up form the bottom up... as well as coaching students in this. Its a great way to get stronger and have that belt sound on top. Also, the result of my efforts to improve the tracking facilities in my studio.

Mir, Steve and I discussed doing a TVS Master Class in Texas at one time... things got too busy, but perhaps we can revisit?  Do a double-header with me and Steve... that would be a really cool event I think.

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#39 2014-12-08 19:00:18

m.i.r.
TMV Forum Member
Registered: 2014-11-23
Posts: 92
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Re: Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

Robert Lunte wrote:

Mir, Steve and I discussed doing a TVS Master Class in Texas at one time... things got too busy, but perhaps we can revisit?  Do a double-header with me and Steve... that would be a really cool event I think.

Yes and yes, that would be awesome, just tell me what needs to happen to make that a reality and i will make it so.

Also p.s., since you shared your sound cloud(which i didnt know you had one until then), i finally got blue rain out of my head.........replaced now by the chorus of souls of silence lol*eye roll*

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#40 2014-12-08 19:18:10

Robert Lunte
TMV World Forum - Founder
From: Earth
Registered: 2008-11-08
Posts: 3087
Reputation :   55 
Website

Re: Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

Hi Mir, glad your happy with the tunes... Im going to be releasing one last, and final rendition with SOS... it will feature more M1 pulling , or "bottom-up" belt singing... which is what all the rage is now with the students... so, Ive incorporated it into "The Four Pillars of Singing" and practicing it as well... I rather like the result.  Anyways, it will have slightly different flare to it... check out "Behind Diverted Eyes"... another catchy tune I think you will like. Here's the link:

"Behind Diverted Eyes" - Robert Lunte
https://soundcloud.com/robertlunte/by-robert-lunte

Regarding the master class... I think the first thing to do would be to clarify a week where Maestro Fraser and myself are available...

Then we would have a conference call to discuss the agenda probably.

We need to discuss the business terms

Agree to do it and begin marketing.

So start by seeing if Maestro Fraser has a preference on a date...

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#41 2014-12-08 20:07:13

m.i.r.
TMV Forum Member
Registered: 2014-11-23
Posts: 92
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Re: Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

Steven Fraser wrote:

Example of some of my overdub experimentation...
Al the voices are mine, with a bit too much reverb, I think.  It's pretty tricky to do the singing and the engineering at the same time, but that is what I was learning to do when I recorded this.

http://youtu.be/iPsMNMjG2fc

Only a true maestro, would get bored with only singing one note ha ha. Wake up in the morning...."you know, I think today I shall become a one man choir" ha

I really liked the low low note harmony, always been a fan of harmony like that. Do you like pulling vibrato for work like this for intonation? Have you ever tried with vibrato? I imagine intonation would be close to impossible, especially since frequency in vibrato changes the lower and higher the notes are.

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#42 2014-12-08 20:09:30

m.i.r.
TMV Forum Member
Registered: 2014-11-23
Posts: 92
Reputation :   

Re: Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

Robert Lunte wrote:

Hi Mir, glad your happy with the tunes... Im going to be releasing one last, and final rendition with SOS... it will feature more M1 pulling , or "bottom-up" belt singing... which is what all the rage is now with the students... so, Ive incorporated it into "The Four Pillars of Singing" and practicing it as well... I rather like the result.  Anyways, it will have slightly different flare to it... check out "Behind Diverted Eyes"... another catchy tune I think you will like. Here's the link:

"Behind Diverted Eyes" - Robert Lunte
https://soundcloud.com/robertlunte/by-robert-lunte

Regarding the master class... I think the first thing to do would be to clarify a week where Maestro Fraser and myself are available...

Then we would have a conference call to discuss the agenda probably.

We need to discuss the business terms

Agree to do it and begin marketing.

So start by seeing if Maestro Fraser has a preference on a date...

Awesome.....so i assume you will initiate contact there since yall already have business arrangements. Whatever you need from me let me say the word. If you need better contact info also let me know and i will send it over to you.

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#43 2014-12-08 20:34:56

Robert Lunte
TMV World Forum - Founder
From: Earth
Registered: 2008-11-08
Posts: 3087
Reputation :   55 
Website

Re: Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

If you want to get serious about this, send me your contact information over email... lets have a phone discussion tomorrow and then we will rope Steve in...

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#44 2014-12-08 20:52:51

m.i.r.
TMV Forum Member
Registered: 2014-11-23
Posts: 92
Reputation :   

Re: Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

Done and done

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#45 2014-12-09 00:00:10

VIDEOHERE
Administrator
Registered: 2008-12-22
Posts: 7197
Reputation :   66 

Re: Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

Steven Fraser wrote:

Hi,

The fiirst line of your original post said that you would like to get some feedback on your next steps, and midway through you returned to that question and let us know about a specific issue:

lovewarrior wrote:

"What is the next step for me?"

"I've been having some problems lately with losing my voice too easily live."

I can speak to this situation, and I think some others can as well, each from our personal experience.

For me, this was a big issue as a singer in my late teens and early 20's, especially when singing unmiked in a dead room without adequate warm up or psychological prep.  Even during the course of A single song I would lose ground, and thing would start to get strained and raw, with this most apparent in the upper middle range.  Smooth transition to the top was risky at best...not a comfortable situation at all.

As a university music student, this happened in front of my own teacher, and in front of all the other teachers in the music school.  They all could see/hear it happening, and it became a recurring focus of my study while there.

My issue?  Too much breath pressure, caused by excessive exhalation force.  What were the remedies? 

1. Tame the "up-and-in" ab contraction, 
2. rebalance the coordination of the breath and laryngeal action, and
3. "Focus" the vowels.

I did not learn until sometime later what happened on the physical level with the last of these.  In today's terms, we call this "twang" or "singers formant" combined with vowel tuning.  Using them at the same time drastically increased my resonance, and I learned that singing this way was much easier, and sustainable for hours.  By the time I was a college senior, I could sing choir tours of 2 weeks with 90 minute concerts each day., or be onstage for an entire opera,  And still have some juice left at the end.

I do not know what your specific technique issues may be, ( we will get to those very soon, I think) but the physiology and acoustics of the voice are very well understood in scientific circles, and that information is spreading out in the voice teaching world pretty rapidly, in places where 'BelCanto' used to be taught almost as a "religion", and into the pop, jazz and rock genres.  It's truly a revolution in the way that singing is approached.  What used to be mysterious and "secret knowledge" passed from teacher to student only in face-to-face lessons can now be experienced in other ways as well.

The principles undergirding this revolution, from my perspective, are (in no particular order)

...breath energy, laryngeal muscle action and resonance interact to produce the vocal tone.  They form a coupled system, and each element must be brought into coordination with the others.

...consistency of phonation throughout the range results when the laryngeal muscles are allowed to adjust their length, mass and tension smoothly.  Provision of too much, or too little, breath energy inhibits this smooth adjustment, as does habitual over/under action of one or several of the laryngeal muscles.

...vowels are the result of resonance, the interaction of the phonated tone with the vocal tract configuration. Changing the configuration of the tract via change in position of the articulators ( tongue, lips, jaw, soft palate ) or the laryngeal position in the throat, or the pharyngeal diameter, will change the resonances in predictable ways that improve, or inhibit, the clarity and power of the vowel.  The lowest 2, and perhaps the 3rd resonance, contributes to the perception of the vowel on the part of the listener.  When those resonances align with harmonics of the phonated tone, those harmonics are strongly amplified.

...the narrowing of the epilaryngeal space ( the part of the vocal tract just above the larynx ) causes a very beneficial acoustic impedance match between the vocal bands and the rest of the vocal tract. The result is increased ease of phonation, and a strongly-increased high-frequency component to the tone.  The frequencies of these components align strongly with the most sensitive range of human hearing, allowing the voice to heard well then they are present.

Successful singers and teachers, whether aware of them or not, access these realities through technique achieved in very-widely varied ways, based on background, habit, preference, intelligence, imagination, concept, metaphor, training, euphemism, or even accident. 

That's what I can offer today, without hearing you.  if you'll post a clip, or describe the situations a bit more, I am sure that you'll get constructive suggestions from a variety of perspectives.

I hope this is helpful,

steven, thanks for this post. a few years ago i wouldn't have had a clue what you were referring to, but i certainly do now.

to put it in street language, this is what i call "singing in the pocket," and learning to become more acoustically accurate.  sometimes you have to purposefully configure the vocal tract (which many here would not agree with) to get height and space and maintain this height and space and it feels very strange at first.

it can feel incorrect.

when you get in this mode, you just feel like all you have to do is flick the vocal folds to change pitch.

just commenting on the way it feels for me.  others may not feel it this way.

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#46 2014-12-09 00:22:42

geno
TMV Forum Member
Registered: 2009-10-30
Posts: 2059
Reputation :   53 

Re: Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

Steven Fraser wrote:

Example of some of my overdub experimentation...
Al the voices are mine, with a bit too much reverb, I think.  It's pretty tricky to do the singing and the engineering at the same time, but that is what I was learning to do when I recorded this.

http://youtu.be/iPsMNMjG2fc

Excellent!  Great voice.  It sounds massive, like a lot more than 4 parts.  Not sure there was too much reverb at all.  I guess it comes down to the size of room you were going for and how far back you wanted the listener to be.  I can relate being the singer and audio engineer at the same time.  Done with Sonar?

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#47 2014-12-09 01:57:04

Steven Fraser
Charter Member of TMV Voice Council
From: Plano, Texas
Registered: 2008-11-22
Posts: 1801
Reputation :   101 

Re: Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

geno wrote:

Steven Fraser wrote:

Example of some of my overdub experimentation...
Al the voices are mine, with a bit too much reverb, I think.  It's pretty tricky to do the singing and the engineering at the same time, but that is what I was learning to do when I recorded this.

http://youtu.be/iPsMNMjG2fc

Excellent!  Great voice.  It sounds massive, like a lot more than 4 parts.  Not sure there was too much reverb at all.  I guess it comes down to the size of room you were going for and how far back you wanted the listener to be.  I can relate being the singer and audio engineer at the same time.  Done with Sonar?

Thanks, Geno.  You got me off my ass to put this out there.  I needed the motivation to try putting together existing audio with stills to make a video.  I want to do better at that, but this is what I could do in 90 mins starting from scratch.

Only 4 parts, but each sung 6 times with separate takes and volume levels on the mixer, using an experimental approach I worked out that had a nice effect, I thought.

The studio was the front room in my house, carpeted and very dry acoustically.  The blend starts to happen when you add the 3rd track on a part.  Suddenly it's not one voice, or two, but expands to many.

Sonar, yes.

Thanks for the feedback, everybody.


Best Regards,

Steven Fraser

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#48 2014-12-09 05:37:29

Robert Lunte
TMV World Forum - Founder
From: Earth
Registered: 2008-11-08
Posts: 3087
Reputation :   55 
Website

Re: Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

VIDEOHERE wrote:

Steven Fraser wrote:

Hi,

The fiirst line of your original post said that you would like to get some feedback on your next steps, and midway through you returned to that question and let us know about a specific issue:

lovewarrior wrote:

"What is the next step for me?"

"I've been having some problems lately with losing my voice too easily live."

I can speak to this situation, and I think some others can as well, each from our personal experience.

For me, this was a big issue as a singer in my late teens and early 20's, especially when singing unmiked in a dead room without adequate warm up or psychological prep.  Even during the course of A single song I would lose ground, and thing would start to get strained and raw, with this most apparent in the upper middle range.  Smooth transition to the top was risky at best...not a comfortable situation at all.

As a university music student, this happened in front of my own teacher, and in front of all the other teachers in the music school.  They all could see/hear it happening, and it became a recurring focus of my study while there.

My issue?  Too much breath pressure, caused by excessive exhalation force.  What were the remedies? 

1. Tame the "up-and-in" ab contraction, 
2. rebalance the coordination of the breath and laryngeal action, and
3. "Focus" the vowels.

I did not learn until sometime later what happened on the physical level with the last of these.  In today's terms, we call this "twang" or "singers formant" combined with vowel tuning.  Using them at the same time drastically increased my resonance, and I learned that singing this way was much easier, and sustainable for hours.  By the time I was a college senior, I could sing choir tours of 2 weeks with 90 minute concerts each day., or be onstage for an entire opera,  And still have some juice left at the end.

I do not know what your specific technique issues may be, ( we will get to those very soon, I think) but the physiology and acoustics of the voice are very well understood in scientific circles, and that information is spreading out in the voice teaching world pretty rapidly, in places where 'BelCanto' used to be taught almost as a "religion", and into the pop, jazz and rock genres.  It's truly a revolution in the way that singing is approached.  What used to be mysterious and "secret knowledge" passed from teacher to student only in face-to-face lessons can now be experienced in other ways as well.

The principles undergirding this revolution, from my perspective, are (in no particular order)

...breath energy, laryngeal muscle action and resonance interact to produce the vocal tone.  They form a coupled system, and each element must be brought into coordination with the others.

...consistency of phonation throughout the range results when the laryngeal muscles are allowed to adjust their length, mass and tension smoothly.  Provision of too much, or too little, breath energy inhibits this smooth adjustment, as does habitual over/under action of one or several of the laryngeal muscles.

...vowels are the result of resonance, the interaction of the phonated tone with the vocal tract configuration. Changing the configuration of the tract via change in position of the articulators ( tongue, lips, jaw, soft palate ) or the laryngeal position in the throat, or the pharyngeal diameter, will change the resonances in predictable ways that improve, or inhibit, the clarity and power of the vowel.  The lowest 2, and perhaps the 3rd resonance, contributes to the perception of the vowel on the part of the listener.  When those resonances align with harmonics of the phonated tone, those harmonics are strongly amplified.

...the narrowing of the epilaryngeal space ( the part of the vocal tract just above the larynx ) causes a very beneficial acoustic impedance match between the vocal bands and the rest of the vocal tract. The result is increased ease of phonation, and a strongly-increased high-frequency component to the tone.  The frequencies of these components align strongly with the most sensitive range of human hearing, allowing the voice to heard well then they are present.

Successful singers and teachers, whether aware of them or not, access these realities through technique achieved in very-widely varied ways, based on background, habit, preference, intelligence, imagination, concept, metaphor, training, euphemism, or even accident. 

That's what I can offer today, without hearing you.  if you'll post a clip, or describe the situations a bit more, I am sure that you'll get constructive suggestions from a variety of perspectives.

I hope this is helpful,

steven, thanks for this post. a few years ago i wouldn't have had a clue what you were referring to, but i certainly do now.

to put it in street language, this is what i call "singing in the pocket," and learning to become more acoustically accurate.  sometimes you have to purposefully configure the vocal tract (which many here would not agree with) to get height and space and maintain this height and space and it feels very strange at first.

it can feel incorrect.

when you get in this mode, you just feel like all you have to do is flick the vocal folds to change pitch.

just commenting on the way it feels for me.  others may not feel it this way.

Steve, really great... thanks!

BTW.. you should do a full EP of your multi-harmony compositions...

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#49 2014-12-09 13:31:17

geno
TMV Forum Member
Registered: 2009-10-30
Posts: 2059
Reputation :   53 

Re: Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

Steven Fraser wrote:

geno wrote:

Steven Fraser wrote:

Example of some of my overdub experimentation...
Al the voices are mine, with a bit too much reverb, I think.  It's pretty tricky to do the singing and the engineering at the same time, but that is what I was learning to do when I recorded this.

http://youtu.be/iPsMNMjG2fc

Excellent!  Great voice.  It sounds massive, like a lot more than 4 parts.  Not sure there was too much reverb at all.  I guess it comes down to the size of room you were going for and how far back you wanted the listener to be.  I can relate being the singer and audio engineer at the same time.  Done with Sonar?

Thanks, Geno.  You got me off my ass to put this out there.  I needed the motivation to try putting together existing audio with stills to make a video.  I want to do better at that, but this is what I could do in 90 mins starting from scratch.

Only 4 parts, but each sung 6 times with separate takes and volume levels on the mixer, using an experimental approach I worked out that had a nice effect, I thought.

The studio was the front room in my house, carpeted and very dry acoustically.  The blend starts to happen when you add the 3rd track on a part.  Suddenly it's not one voice, or two, but expands to many.

Sonar, yes.

Thanks for the feedback, everybody.

Well now you're pushing me.  I need to marry up video with my music.  Nice job on the video - Ken Burns effect. 

You should do more of this.  You obviously have talents in this area.

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#50 2014-12-09 16:21:18

MDEW
TMV Forum Member
Registered: 2012-06-24
Posts: 2866
Reputation :   32 

Re: Gary Catona's Voicebuilding system examined

Steven, Thanks for giving an Idea of your approach to a chorus sound. Whenever I tried it always sounded like one guy singing the four parts only, not like a choir. Different settings for each voice recorded?
   Did you add the reverb after to the master or to the individual voice per track?

  BTW it sounded great.


"Knock me down, It's all in vain. I'll get right back on my feet again."  Pat Benatar

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