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Practice frequency I.E. When to take breaks?

I've been singing for a long time, but never had any formal training. I've just been starting to tinker around with ken's videos and starting with the "La" training. Prior to that, i never did any warm up of any kind, just went right into it. I tend to sing mostly rock music and some of it is quite stressful. I find i have trouble knowing when my voice needs a rest, and how long i should let it rest when it does. What are some people's practice schedules like (hours of singing per day/week) and some solid indicators of when the voice is damaged and needs a break (dry cough? odd sensations when speaking or singing? etc..) I can provide a sample of a loud song if need be. I know singing some of the stuff i do without having ever had a lesson can be dangerous, and some of my greatest influences are HUGE voices (mike patton, chris cornell) so i'm starting to worry i may be doing damage without realizing it. The problem is exacerbated by a high pain tolerance (i walked on a broken bone in my foot for weeks apparently without knowing it.... so...)

Thanks in advance for any info.


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    Furious_PhilFurious_Phil Moderator, Pro, 2.0 PRO, 3.0 Streaming Posts: 1,421
    edited December 2017
    @gravitygroove, if you really want to learn to do it right and safely, I highly recommend getting the course, as it goes through everything you need to know to get to self-sufficiency.

    Most people sing quite loudly, and will eventually pay the piper in the form of vocal cord damage... Adele, Celine Dion, Keith Urban, Mariah, Alicia Keys etc...

    Did you know that guys like Chris Cornell (RIP) didn't sing overly loud? Its part of the magic of the people who can sustain their vocal careers for decades... they are using something called glottal compression and hyper-glottal compression to minimize the airflow and keep the volume down! The microphone is what's doing the heavy lifting, so to speak.
    Its all to easy to hurt yourself if you do it wrong, just like weight lifting.

    Case in point: I have freaked people out by singing something like "Fell on Black Days" (Soundgarden) in hyperglottal compression with distortion at a volume that they were easily able to talk over me! But, put that in front of a microphone and it gets pretty huge sounding.

    One quick and easy vocal health test I got from my ENT, which I do every morning and before training in the evening is to lightly hum a note and try to hold it for about 10 seconds. If it breaks to just air or goes all flutey, I have issues and probably shouldn't push myself that day. If I can do it all the way up to C5 - E5, then I know I am in good vocal shape.
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    gravitygroovegravitygroove Member Posts: 7
    I watched the video ken did of him covering Cochiese and that scream.. You can't tell me that was the the microphone right? I definitely will look into this compression thing. Is this a technique or more just something intuitive some singers can do? The humming thing actually seems pretty smart. It does seem kinda hard to hold a closed mouth hum on notes for 10 seconds. I may see if i can use that as a baseline.

    Honestly i always though you wanted MORE airflow for volume type stuff (belting) not less, but again, i've never had a formal lesson in my life, so it's all very new to me. Thanks for the reply.

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    Furious_PhilFurious_Phil Moderator, Pro, 2.0 PRO, 3.0 Streaming Posts: 1,421
    Yes and no... Ken's volume actually comes from resonance, not from big airflow. This was a huge revelation for me... and the distortion is actually an illusion/trick of the trade.

    This all takes a boatload of time to fully develop (Remember that he's been hard at it for decades).
    If one were to attempt that scream full-voice, the concert would be pretty much over not long after.
    Something masterful is going on, as you hear him talking normally right after and his voice isn't all pooched!
    This is what we typically refer to as the "Holy Grail" of rock vocal tone
    I'll be the first to admit that I most certainly don't have that aspect locked down, but I've got pieces of it.
    Remember, Rome wasn't built in a day, and neither are spectacular voices!
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