Cord Compression

Posted in Category Technique and Style
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    Aaron Zhu 2 weeks ago

    I'm a little shakey on this topic so correct me if I'm wrong. I'm pretty sure that vocal compression means that the degree of compression your vocal cords comes together such that you can start on a same note starting as breathy and eventually if you want to, squeeze your vocal cords together. This is also means that you don't have to start compressed to be compressed. Which all kind of leads me to two questions. Is what I said up there correct? Also, does that mean my falsetto can also have firm cord compression which means I start with pretty loose vocal cords but then I tighten it up a little bit.

    Thanks for reading this long message!

     

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    Camille van Niekerk 2 weeks ago

    Yes, you can increase compression as you sustain a pitch - that's partially how we get louder! But it's much easier to start a note with clean onset and then increase dynamic than it is to start breathy and end loud. 

    In a true falsetto, the vocal folds aren't making full contact - so it would be much more difficult to increase compression + volume. Falsetto is inherently more decompressed, resulting in a breathier tone. 

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    Aaron Zhu 2 weeks ago

    I get what you are saying in the first paragraph, but I don't get what you are saying in the second one though. I know they don't make full contact, but since compression is the degree vocal folds are coming together are you saying since higher pitches make vocal folds vibrate at a faster speed, but then can't we still make the vocal cords come together?

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    Camille van Niekerk 2 weeks ago

    Sorry for the confusion! I'm saying that falsetto, by definition, has a breathier tone and less cord compression. So if your aim is to start decompressed but add compression, I'd start in a connected but quiet head voice (rather than a true falsetto) and add compression from there!

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    Aaron Zhu 2 weeks ago

    Thanks for the clarifications!

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    Camille van Niekerk 1 week ago

    Sure thing!

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