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KTVA Review

KevinGremKevinGrem Posts: 116Pro
Alright, it's been about a year now since I started training using the KTVA. My voice has improved for sure, but as for how much it's improved, it's difficult to say. My goals were to be able to sing higher than before. There are three different areas of improvement I want to mention:

First, before I was doing this program, the highest note I could sing in full voice was a B4, which is actually a lot higher than most people who begin the program. A lot of people can only go as high as F#4, so of course they increase their range a ton after they do this program, since there's a lot of room there for growth. For me there is a lot less room, but I have still have grown the voice to some amount. B4 is where my passaggio begins. That hasn't changed; I'm not sure if I could ever expect the passaggio to change where it's located. What I have improved on though, is singing within and through the passaggio. What used to be a B4 for me is now a full note higher; a C#5. The passaggio notes, B4, C5, and C#5, are really a vocal register of their own, at least that's how it seems to me. What I mean is, the voice is always going to get thinner at B4. But that ability to sing in that thin yet full voice has increased by a whole step. So that's good.

Secondly, my highest screams, the mixed voice, has increased. I never remember being able to sing an A5 in full mixed voice. Probably a G5 was my highest. Now it's not that difficult for me. I have on recording me singing an A#5, just about being full mixed voice. Now of course, my falsetto can go higher than that now, though there's really not much use for it overall, since I don't like ultra thin falsetto vocals. But still, I managed to hit a C#6 in falsetto, just to see how high I could get. So both my mixed voice and falsetto voice has expanded by what seems to be about 3 half tones. That's good too.

The last category is the most important category for my personal goals, which is the belting chest voice. I'm pretty sure that prior to the program, the highest I could belt in chest voice was A4, MAYBE on my best day an A#4. This vocal register has increased probably only a half step. During my time recording vocals with one of my bands, on my best days I recorded B4s in full chest belting tone. That isn't on an average day though. On an average day I can belt an A#4 in full chest voice. So on average, this register has only increased a half step. This is where I am a bit disappointed, because for me, this is by far the most important part of my voice I want to increase my range in. Why? Because this is the most powerful vocal register. It is the loudest and most resonant register; the thick, full, operatic voice that I want to build.

My main goals were and still are to increase my range, and now that I'm more familiar with the different types of vocal registers, it's specifically my belting chest register that I want to build and make higher (assuming that it's physically possible, I don't know if it is or not). You see, in Ken Tamplin's scales and exercises, the idea is to sing softly and connect the chest with head voice smoothly. This I have done, and that's great! However, what seems to be lacking in the program is the development of that loud, thick, powerful belting voice. We develop and strengthen the passaggio by learning to roll the chest into the head, with only as much volume as needed to make the connection smooth. But what about training the voice so as to turn those passaggio notes into belting chest notes? I hope that this is possible, because that is my goal. Now that I have built a smooth connection and have experience shifting between the registers, maybe I can train to expand the chest voice in the future.

Now, I should mention that I have not looked at any of the "Pro Packs" yet, and so I have yet to see any of the ways in which Ken applies the vocal workouts in ways that sound good in actual songs. I have seen the Dio videos, and I noticed that he's applying a lot of strength of muscle into the performance which I never hear him doing in the vocal workouts. He does an excellent job covering Dio, and if he can help me develop that same type of singing voice than I would be ecstatic.

I should also mention there are other areas of improvement to my singing in general, such as the use of good support and holding back the air.

So that's my feedback on the program. Comment and let me know what you think.

Comments

  • 2 Comments sorted by Votes Date Added
  • highmtnhighmtn Posts: 10,879Administrator, Moderator, Enrolled, Pro
    edited December 2016 Vote Up1Vote Down
    Not a bad review, Kevin. What I would encourage you with, would be that, yes, a year can seem like a long time to get the results (or still be wanting more), but in the big, realistic scheme of things, getting to C5 in full voice and above should be something that you have plenty of patience for.

    While some singers may be able to come in and transform their voice to those heights in less than a year, realistically, it could take some 2 years or even more. We're talking about C5's and above in chest voice.

    As you said, many male singers long for the day they can sing above F# or G4 in chest. It's a slow go, up in the registers above what I often call "the G4 wall". I was stuck there for a very long time. It was a plateau that I only got past by continuing to do the program, thinking I might never get past it... and eventually that wall just disappeared, note by note. You aren't there yet. But you will be, unless you give up.

    You are a little bit of a doubter and a worrier, and that's OK, as long as you don't stop yourself from staying the course and getting to those notes that you want to be able to do. A little healthy skepticism never hurts, as long as you keep your eyes on the prize and have enough faith in yourself that you can see it through. Ken's methods work, but they are real-world results, and take as long as they take to actually accomplish what it is that you want to do. Everybody is a little bit different, and has to work through whatever obstacles may be holding them back.

    Because this is a physical growth process, as well as a mental training, simply being shown the techniques doesn't get you there, until you body gets the signals from your long-term training and adapts your voice to get to your target area, with your voice intact. Your voice is a living musical instrument, and it takes time to master techniques that are at the upper reaches of your most admired vocal heroes.

    Self-doubt can work against you, and some do give up before realizing their goals. You've come a long way, and have had to undo some incorrect previous approaches along the way.

    What I found, in my own journey, was that the new notes come on their own, sometimes almost unexpectedly, as a result of just hanging in there, paying attention, applying focus and effort, and continuing to do the techniques. My body was lagging behind... but now my voice has exceeded my expectations in so many very satisfying ways. Not just range, but tone, and freedom to sing just about anything I want.

    I think you're just around the corner from some of your goals. They do come a half-step at a time.

    :^)

    Bob
  • KevinGremKevinGrem Posts: 116Pro
    edited December 2016 Vote Up0Vote Down
    Yes, I can be worrier for sure, there's no question about that. My band told me that I'm WAY too critical on myself. They say that I'm a GREAT singer, and I really appreciate that. I don't know why I'm so critical on myself, to be honest. I was the same way as a drummer. Everyone told me it was just great. But in my mind, it just wasn't good enough. I just have big dreams. Huge dreams. I mean, I don't just want to be a great singer. I want to so ****ing good as to singlehandedly bring back classic heavy metal. The same way Rob Halford and Bruce Dickinson are considered Gods of metal, that's what I want to be. A ***king God. I want to change the world with my music. I want to show people that true metal is NOT going to die. It needs a savior. If I'm to be that savior, I bear a hell of lot of responsibility. To be the best, it is absolutely crucial to be able to sing high. Metal needs high, soaring vocals. I'm just not there yet. I'm getting there, but not quite there.
  • Hey KevinGrem,

    I wouldn't worry too much about reaching certain notes. Just simply put in the time for your vocal exercises, concentrate on them. Sing all the songs you can comfortably sing and slowly you will be able to sing more challenging songs. If a certain song is not working for you, try and cut back on the consonants (if you can reach the notes in general) and check if you are using your vowel modifications instead of powering through the sound. If that doesn't work, leave it for a while, but come back to it some other time.
    When a song simply contains notes you can't reach (yet), don't worry about it, pick another tune and have fun with it, master it, record yourself etc. and come back to the song after a while.

    Cheers,

    Ben
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