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Loss of the top notes in falsetto for singers, say, over 40

My falsetto (hooty disconnected breathy falsetto....like the Stones Emotional Rescue) used to go up to an E5 or F5 when warmed up without straining. Above the age of 40, my top has been limited to around a D5 in falsetto on a really good day (although lately I haven't bothered trying above a C or C#). It also usually requires warming up to sing in hooty/breathy falsetto, but when I was younger it used to not require warming up just to start singing in falsetto. (although maybe getting to the highest notes required warming up)

Just wondering if it is normal to lose the top notes in falsetto when older. I know there are other singers where this hasn't occurred, but is this common?




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    highmtnhighmtn Administrator, Moderator, Enrolled, Pro, 3.0 Streaming Posts: 15,359
    It's use it or lose it. If you allow it to atrophy, you'll have to work to regain it. Hooty falsetto uses a lot of air, which dries out the vocal cords, so it's not the healthiest vocal mode. You can close your vocal cords together and get a more timbral head voice that uses less air. But if it's the hooty sound you want, it should still be there.

    You can blow out your cords by singing too loudly. The falsetto is the first thing you lose if that happens. If you get a little bit of swelling in the cords, it's hard to get the open cords to phonate for falsetto.

    So, no. It's not normal to lose falsetto, unless you have been oversinging.
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    jaynewsjaynews Member Posts: 31
    edited June 4
    It's almost 7 years later and I still haven't gotten back the top notes in falsetto. I can get to a B4 (if warmed up) or sometimes eek out a C5 on a good day (very unreliably), but that's about it. Over the past 3 years I've been to two ENTs, two voice therapists, two vocal instructors with incredible vocal ability/range, and nothing I've ever done has increased the range of my falsetto.

    My connected upper regular voice range hasn't really increased either. I can get to around a Bb4 in a connected regular voice on some exercises lately, but can't sustain it, and can't get to a B4 to save my life. I feel that even though I can currently get to a Bb4 (but not sustain it) that it really has not done much of anything to improve ease of high notes when singing songs. My upper range is more or less what it was 7 years ago when singing songs. My voice may be stronger within the comfortable upper part of my range, but that's the most I could say (in my opinion).

    I realize my situation with limited falsetto isn't normal aging, because Mick Jagger still can get to an E5 or higher in falsetto at age 80, but in any case I would need to find an ENT that could conclusively determine why it is my falsetto isn't reliable and why I lost around a half an octave in falsetto, because I used to get to an E5 or F5 when warmed up when in my 30s. It's not a use it or lose it thing because I've been working on my voice for years with no improvement in falsetto range, and, if anything it's slightly more limited than 5 years ago, because I'm lucky if I can even eek out a C5 in falsetto now on a good day. When I'm not warmed up, it's difficult to sing in falsetto at all.

    I agree my situation isn't the norm. Would be nice to know the cause. One ENT said I likely have a mild paresis on one side. Not sure that explains why feels like my folds are stretched to the max at around a B4 in falsetto. Maybe something has caused my folds to not be able to stretch as much as when I was younger.
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    michaelmusicmichaelmusic 2.0 ENROLLED Posts: 267
    Can you share a video? ken has a very high range (past C6). Ken is a baritone and probably mid 60s in age. There is a technique thing happening here.
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