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Voice cut-out

Furious_PhilFurious_Phil Posts: 87Enrolled
edited October 2016 in Vocal Health and Wellness
I am only a couple of weeks into Volume 1, and enjoying it immensely!
I am the sole guitarist and lead vocalist in a power trio, and I am finding it hard to remember to do all the proper vocal techniques I have been learning while doing all the rest :-p
It's starting to kick in, but its not quite natural yet.

I've re-arranged the set list in order of vocal demand... starting off with the ones that aren't too taxing. I remember someone else on here mentioning they did that, so I took his lead.

So I hit a wall last week during "Tie Your Mother Down" (Lynch Mob version), where my throat locked up.

If I had to describe it, it felt as if I accidentally inhaled a flake of pepper or something. If you've ever done that, you know exactly what I mean. I backed away from the mic till the coughing fit subsided. When I returned to finish the song, allot of my high register was hit and miss and my throat was irritated from the previous coughing spell.

To set the stage, I was born and raised at sea level (a stone's throw from the Bay of Fundy/Atlantic) but moved 2 years ago to a pretty arid locale that is at a significant elevation near the Rockies (Calgary, Alberta... border of Montana).
Instinctively, I feel that I may be still biologically adjusting to my new environment.
Further to that, based on what I have read on this forum, I have a strong feeling that I am probably over-singing and need to reduce volume and my amount of air release.
Lastly, I also notice that the mic stand really needs a boom so I am not at risk of craning my neck to get closer to the Mic.

I would really appreciate your input on this issue.

Regards,

Phillip

Comments

  • 2 Comments sorted by Votes Date Added
  • highmtnhighmtn Posts: 9,916Administrator, Moderator, Enrolled, Pro
    You may have actually inhaled something that started the cough reflex. Coughing is one of the worst things you can do to your vocal cords, because you are scraping them together to try to dislodge the particle or mucus, and doing so with blasts of pressurized air.

    Arid climates do have a tendency to dehydrate the body, and therefore the voice. High altitudes also can have that effect. So you do need to be certain to do what you can to remain hydrated.

    Oversinging is the most common way that singers give themselves setbacks. So do your best to keep that in mind. Make sure you have a good monitor mix so you can hold back the volume a little.

    In Volume 3 you will be given more instructions that, if implemented, will help you to protect your voice for years to come. Like you said, you have many new techniques to implement into your routine already, and you haven't yet mastered all of that enough to fully implement them. That will all come with time.

    In the mean time, we do what we can as the changes move along.

    Stay the course! Steady as she goes!

    Bob
  • I just remembered something relevant as well as funny...
    During a short break at the same practice, my drummer reached for his towel to wipe the sweat away from his face. I noticed his expression immediately... he complained he felt like there was hair in his eye or something. I asked if the towel was on the floor or hanging off his kit. It was on the floor, and he has new cats, and is very allergic! Clearly the cats hang out down there in the studio, and get into stuff.
    Guess what, I am somewhat allergic to cats too! So I may have inhaled particulate cat dander etc Good grief!
  • highmtnhighmtn Posts: 9,916Administrator, Moderator, Enrolled, Pro
    Good detective work! That's a likely source for the beginnings of the irritations, in addition to oversinging!
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