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Posted: Saturday, September 23, 2017 2:19 PM


WWW.VOCALCOACH.CA 416-436-8063

SINGING HIGH NOTES – It’s Easier Then You Think - Article

Singing high notes is the ultimate of ultimate for singers and the music lovers who love to hear then so much! There really is no better feeling than to hit a sweet high tone cleanly and powerfully.

To really understand what takes place when singing high notes you first need to understand what pitch is. Do not think of pitch as a note. Pitch is a musical thought. It is a mental image. First, the singer gets a strong image of the note they wish to sing. You then sing the desired pitch mentally being guided by how the voice feels. You avoid the urge to listen to the music or to yourself. Musical cues within a song are meant to guide you but singing is a feeling and needs to be felt or heard mentally before attempting to sing the note.

Okay, let’s try it out! Think of the song Happy Birthday. Now, sing it silently in your head. Next, sing it out loud. The pitches you heard when you sang it silently in your head were probably the same pitch you sang when you sang it out loud. Hmmm interesting!

Singers believe a pitch is something to be reached or hit. While “reach” and “hit” is terminology used to direct a singer to sing a specific note, it is not what we actually do to produce the higher tone. The higher you sing within your range, the more difficult you perceive it to be. Nothing could be farther from the truth.

When we think of high notes as “up” we instinctively try to reach “up” to them. We tell ourselves that they are above the notes in our lower register. This will cause us to push or strain up to the note developing poor vocal habits that will cause the voice to cut off the air supply and tone, making it impossible to sing the note. High is the term used to explain notes that go higher up on the musical staff. When singing them, however, they in fact do not move up but rather are positioned and sung in the same resonating area as all the other notes within your range. The vocal cords, or larynx as it is also referred to, stays relaxed and in the natural position, without any effort from us, when the proper muscles and vocal co-ordination are used. The vocal cords stretch and thin as you sing higher notes but they in no way need any special co-ordination or breath to accommodate this. In fact, if we do attempt to sing high notes differently than lower ones the voice will develop a crack causing you to flip between your low notes and your high notes. It may quiver or pick up a harsh sound quality. Your larynx, often referred to as the Adam’s apple in guys, may rise up in the throat so much a lot of throat and jaw stiffness may be felt. You need to give up the urge to control the sound. When we realize that the larynx is to stay in the same relaxed position throughout your entire range, top to bottom, we can eliminate the fear associated with singing in certain areas of our range.

Is this causing an issue for your voice? Is your voice feeling too airy or weak? If you have been reaching up to notes or pushing excessive air through the vocal cords, you likely have over-developed muscles in the throat that are not meant for singing. The muscles on the side of your neck, as an example, are used for chewing and swallowing. As they are dominant muscles, the lack of proper tone co-ordination and control over airflow will result in these muscles taking over keeping you from singing in the upper area of your high register, or range. Any time muscles that are not meant for singing get involved in the process, the larynx will rise immediately cutting off the air supply, tone, and will keep you from reaching the correct pitch.

It seems like the higher the note is, the more head games a singer is likely to play on themselves. Spending time understanding what actually does happen when singing high notes and how that relates to your voice is enough to get you to do what is necessary to begin opening your high range. Nothing is more rewarding than hearing from students singing songs they never thought they could. Hearing their growth and watching them ‘go for it’ is awesome!

So stop worrying about what notes you are singing. Continue to nurture your gift and you will be amazed how much more you discover about your voice and singing. Experiment, get creative with the music and above all have fun!

To start working on your high notes call me at 416-436-8063 to get started. I think you will be glad you did!

Because of my background, my training is different from standard singing lesson style training. You definitely will make IMPROVEMENTS here.

Donna Flynn,
Vocal Coach & SVS – The Forefront of Voice Training, Author, Singer, Speaker

PS: BIO – My background is extensive so you get the best techniques for your voice. Don't miss out! My background includes:

1. Optimizing Technique 2015 – Vocalizing with Ease: Provincial Voice Care Resource program, supported by the Division of Otolaryngology, University of British Columbia and BC Provincial Health Services.

2. Comprehensive Assessment and Management Focused on Technique - Vancouver General Hospital Pacific Voice Clinic, multidisciplinary clinic.

3. University of Pittsburgh Voice Center - The Voice Group, Contemporary Voice Care Training

4. University of Pittsburgh Medical Center Training. Topics learned include but not limited to are:

5. WHOLE BRAIN LEARNING - Educational Kinesiology Certification: Educational Kinesiology helps students leverage their training and tap into more of their potential through the balance between the technical and creative mind. It helps with memory retention and recall, and is used to speed up learning.

• Edu-K is used in over 90 countries and translated in to over 50 languages for companies such as Reebok, Chapters-Indigo, Ralph Lauren Footwear, Berklee School of Music, York University, McMaster University, University of Waterloo and the University of Toronto Teachers Education Program, Toronto Public Health, Centre for Early Learning – Exceptional Children Unit, City of Toronto – City Hall, The National Ballet of Canada, Royal Ontario Museum, Ontario Massage Therapy Association, York University, Canadian Montessori Teacher Education Institute, Peel District School Board, Providence Learning Centres, Georgian College, Toronto District School Board, London Catholic District School Board, Adidas Group, Ontario Science Centre, to name a few. In Toronto it is practiced in a number of Montessori and private schools.

6. Additional Training: My personal voice training background has exposed me to all aspects of the human voice and all music genres. I have trained privately through the Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto, and have extensive training in several Singing methods.

Products Available:
- Creating the Sound in You Vocal Training CD:

- eBook Radical Singing – Break Limitation and Unleash the Artistry Within:

Call me today at 416-436-8063 and let’s start talking about you! WWW.VOCALCOACH.CA

What my students are up to:

Humanitarian and Artist: and

Singing For Fun -- Teen Hobby:

Soul Country:


Swing Band:

Donna Flynn
Vocal Coach, Author, Singer, Speaker
(near highway, ttc, and GO Transit)


SERVICES OFFERED: Voice Training for the Singing and Speaking Voice: Professional Vocal Assessment/Diagnostic, Public Speaking, Transgender Voice Transition (Feminization & Masculinization), Accent Modification/Pronunciation, Stage Fright, Stress Management, Voice Health and Maintenance, Kinesiology for Whole Brain Learning, Delivery and Performance Skills, and training products offered.


What People Are Saying:
"Creative and practical techniques that cater to your particular vocal needs and which evolve with your skill level. It is not an exaggeration to say she is making my vocal dreams come closer than I ever imagined." - Antonia (Smudgie) Swann, Award Winning Musician for her Original Music

"It's wonderful how you help people find their own style. I owe all my singing to you." - Loril Shannik, Celtic Harp & Vocalist --Multiple Award Winner

"My experience was absolutely incredible! She helped me to really sing the emotion of the song as opposed to "just singing". Donna has shown me how to get to my goals!" - Toyin Dada -- Award Winning Singer and TV Host of "African Gospel Vibes"

"We LOVED your sessions. . .. I felt that we learned more in our time with you than we had in the last three years!" - Boni Wagner-Stafford, Toronto Mendelssohn Choir

"I have worked with other vocal coaches but Donna stands out as someone who is as excited to work with her students as they are to work with her." - Dru Broda -- Lead singer for Reverse Grip

"You are the Charles Darwin of Vocal Training. You observe and map out the evolution of your students inner voices. Without you, this would not have been possible! You are Simply Amazing in every respect!!!! - Desiree Corso, Singer/Songwriter

WWW.VOCALCOACH.CA 416-436-8063

• Location: M2L 2R3, Toronto

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