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Can't get rid of distortion when singing high recently... acid reflux?

RLVRLV Member Posts: 168
edited March 2022 in Vocal Health and Wellness
I'm not sure if it's from vocal strain, over singing, improper technique, recent acid reflux or what, but lately when I try to sing in my upper chest voice it's hard to get a clear tone, not completely impossible but vary hard nonetheless. Anyone know what I should do about this, hy it may be happening, or how to remedy this issue? Thanks.


  • Klaus_TKlaus_T Moderator, 2.0 PRO Posts: 2,404
    edited March 2022
    could be a mixture of all of them, assuming they apply for you (but why would you mention them otherwise).

    are you doing clean exercises? are you training daily? maybe you got too used to distortion from not singing clean often enough? clean workouts could help here.
  • RLVRLV Member Posts: 168

    Well I mention those as guesses to why this could be happening, though, I've been singing the same way for the past 2+ years and haven't had this problem before. I do know my acid reflux has been on the fritz here lately, that's my best guess. I don't really do the normal "training" like scales and such I just practice certain songs lightly in order to warm up for recording and so forth and I sing clean a lot while doing so, I'd say 50/50. I have been "training" like this since I started singing (taking the course) 2+ yrs ago and have never had this issue that I can recall. I'm really leaning toward this ferocious acid reflux I've had lately but idk. I thought maybe someone had experienced the same thing before? and could share insights?

  • Klaus_TKlaus_T Moderator, 2.0 PRO Posts: 2,404
    edited March 2022
    if you suspect reflux, i would get it checked by a doctor. i would also look into nutrition habits to address reflux. i can also recommend traditional chinese practitioners. i have no experience with reflux, but a few with other random ailments they could fix in a more natural way than modern medicine would attempt.

    the fact it went well for 2+ years is not an indicator it was guaranteed safe. long-term damage can come gradually and build up over time before you even notice, not only for the voice but with a lot of things (i think of cigarettes, for example). i would not worry too much, and i guess ideally you start with the normal scales, very lightly. if you are not doing the scales, you are not really doing the course, if you catch my drift :) i sent you a PM regarding the status of your account.

  • Klaus_TKlaus_T Moderator, 2.0 PRO Posts: 2,404
    edited March 2022
    i thought about your problem again while doing my workouts, and in fact in the past few weeks or so, i felt that sometimes the sound wants to go to a bit of a distorted sound while doing the scales. it then feels like i need to concentrate to keep it clean. i think what it could be is a bit of a "laziness reflex", as if the voice wants to resort to the distortion as a relaxation response, like as if it is just at times easier to not have a clean tone. i have been on the course for 3+ years and use lots of distortion (punk band), but always do clean scales, but it could be that there is a tendency to default to the crunch somehow. i am not sure if that makes any sense, it is just how i explain it for myself. i also noticed that i have a bit more mucus in the throat than normally, i feel that if it is slightly coated, it can sound like distortion as well, and clearing the throat (carefully) cleans it up for a while. it could be the dry air from heating, the cold weather, also i had a slightly worse diet than usually over the past weeks (coffee &sugar), so it's hard to say what it is, if not a combination. since i can control it by focusing on it actively, i wondered if that's what you mean by "it's harder to get a clean tone".
  • LennyLeeLennyLee Voice Repair, 3.0 Streaming Posts: 1
    I have this same issue, RLV. I tend to get mucus in my throat and clear my throat a lot. I'm also able to sing clean
    in the mid register, but when I want to belt in the upper part of my range, it's usually too distorted. Sometimes
    I'm ok with some distortion, but I'd like to be able to choose whether to keep it clean, or have the grit.
    This HAS improved some in the last few months since I began this course, but it hasn't gone away completely.
    I've also signed up for Ken's vocal repair vids, and I've taken his advice regarding diet, I avoid dairy, stay hydrated,
    don't smoke, take licrorice root, bee propolis and a couple of others, but I'm wondering what Ken's position is on
    Alkolol. It's a nasal wash and mucus solvent that moisturizes. It does seem to help, short term. https://amazon.com/Alkalol-Solution-Original-Nasal-Count/dp/B014UN3YS2/ref=sr_1_2?crid=1HOG06K0MLF3Q&keywords=alkalol&qid=1646867340&rdc=1&sprefix=alkolol%2Caps%2C79&sr=8-2

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