What does it mean to learn to sing naturally? It’s a great question for one, but it also raises another question – why would you want to sing naturally, and what happens if you don’t? Also if you can sing naturally, then you also must be able to sing unnaturally as well!
The word “naturally” is used in many ways to convey something good, and in singing it is no different. If you can learn to sing naturally, then you should enjoy a lifetime of singing.
You don’t have to lose your voice or have your range reduced as you get older.
In this article, I want to explore what it means to learn to sing naturally and how it can help with vocal longevity. Let’s get started…
What is Singing Naturally?
Singing naturally means that you make sound the way nature intended i.e. that you use the muscles involved in singing along with the vocal cords as they were intended to produce sound, and no more.
Let me explain further – the job of the larynx and vocal cords is to create the pitch as, that is their natural function. Many singers use the larynx and vocal cords not only to create the note, but also to keep the vocal tone as big as they can as they sing higher. This is called “driving the voice”.
This practice is not singing naturally as it is asking the vocal cords and the larynx to do more than they need to when singing.
The job of keeping the vocal tone nice and fat is meant to be done by the resonating chambers.
In fact, when you close the vocal cords naturally and then combine that with the power of resonance by learning to keep your resonance chambers open, then you will not have any need to drive the sound as it will already be nice and big due to it being amplified by the correct resonance chamber.
You can compare this with any wind instrument. if you suddenly shortened a bassoon etc by cutting off or blocking part of the instrument (the resonating chamber), it most likely won’t sound very good.
This is the same with the human voice as it is basically a wind instrument.
To summarize this section – singing naturally means using all the parts of the body that are meant to produce sound in the way they are meant to be used and no more e.g. the larynx closes the vocal cords but should not be used to keep the same tone or volume when singing higher.
Let’s now quickly explore the concept of interference…
What Is Interference?
Interference is what happens when you use muscles in a way they should not be used while singing. Let’s continue on with the larynx example used above.
If you use the larynx to manipulate you vocal tone as you sing higher, then you will need to employ the swallowing muscles to make this happen.
The swallowing muscles are definitely interfering muscles and should be needed at all when singing. In fact they should remain completely relaxed while singing.
How do you know if you are using your swallowing muscles? The main indicator is a high larynx.
Stand in front of a mirror when you sing, and if you see your larynx move upwards rather than downwards, then your swallowing muscles are interfering with your singing, and you are not singing naturally.
This really is not a sustainable way to sing, and could lead to vocal damage and expensive surgery to correct it.
Learn To Sing Naturally
My advice to any singer would be to take the time to learn to sing naturally, by either finding a good teacher, or finding a good online singing course that teaches correct singing technique.
You really can’t put a price on an investment like this, because i can tell you from experience that you will sing for a lifetime. My singing teacher is well into his 70s and he can belt out high Cs like there is no tomorrow.
I hope you enjoyed this article and gained some valuable information while reading it. Please feel free to comment or share via Facebook, Twitter, Google+ etc.
I wish you success in all your singing endeavors.