Laughter is the Best Medicine

Ep. 12 “Cracking”- Voice Lessons To The World

Hi everybody. My name is Justin Stoney and the founder
of New York Vocal Coaching here in New York City. Welcome to Episode 12 Voice Lessons to
the World the show we want to help you guys by answering your questions on
singing from all over the world. I’ll give you a chance to
ask questions later. But our question for the week comes from Tory G. in Utah. And Tori writes, “Dear Justin, Do you have
any advice on preventing cracking?” That’s a great question, Tori. And I think
that a lot of people are going to want to know about cracking, and the first thing I want to
tell you before I tell you some ways to not to crack. I wanna first tell you that cracking is
actually a great thing. Now obviously we don’t want our voices
to crack in the middle of the performance or
something like that. But let me tell you why cracking is actually a great thing. The
first reason is that you voice needs to crack. If it
didn’t crack you would actually hurt it. Because we’re trying to balance the
force on the vocal cords, the compression, on the vocal cords… (I’ll get to that in a minute.) But if you
were not able to relieve that pressure – to crack – your voice would actually get
hurt many more times than it does because it can let go and
crack. So that’s one thing is to protect your voice. The second thing is for developing your
mix I want you guys – singers out there – that are practicing a
lot, working on your voices to know that if you’re not cracking a
lotta times in your technique you’re probably not working on the mix
correctly – because you’ve got to be able to crack
as you’re working. You need to get to the place where the voice wants to crack, and work through that territory if
you’re going to develop a great mix. So cracking is a necessary part to your
vocal progress. You got it be in the area where it wants to crack and crack and crack a bunch of times if you wanna see progress. So cracking is
also a big part of your technical development. So now we don’t want to really crack all
the time. So how are we going to prevent it? Let’s talk about compression. Compression is the means by which you’re going to find the ability to not crack. If your chords come together really really hard like this this is a lot of compression its too much force. But then – this is the opposite of compression. I have I have air leakage through my vocal chords. But if I come together clean and solid a little bit of compression it sounds like a clear sound. Now as I go higher, my cords are getting tighter they’re lengthening out but they also have a tendency to
come apart and to relieve the compression. And it becomes a balance of how much compression we’re going to use as we go higher. If you use none – your voice will go – into complete had voice way earlier than
you want. If you use too much you’re going to be straining and
gripping the cords. So as we go higher, what we need, Tory, and all singers, is to develop the ability to find gradations
of compression. Not to much, not too little, but just right, and to fine-tune that as we go through our range. So that’s something that you’re gonna get. And again, if you don’t crack a little bit, you’re
not gonna find the head voice side of things, and if you don’t ever strain actually you’re not
going to find the balanced compression. We don’t want strain we don’t want
cracking. But we’ve got a have both of them to find that middle. So I’m gonna give you
a compression exercise. Your goal is not to squeeze it, and your goal is not to crack. Your goal
is to find something right in between. But I’m gonna give you a pretty hard
consonant as we talked about before, to give you a little bit of that
compression. Try this sound for me just say, “Gig gig gig gig gig.” Try that out. Now that’s good. Now compare that feeling to this feeling,
just say, “who-hoo-hoo.” It’s good. Now you feel that the “gig gig
gig” versus the “who hoo hoo,” “gig gig gig gig” gives you a little bit of a sort of tighter
feeling on the cords. Not a strain. I’s a big difference, a more compressed
feeling. One more time with, “who hoo hoo.” And now give me a, “gig gig gig.” It’s good. So you can feel that that’s a
little bit of a more compressed sound, the “gig.” Now we’re going to put this on pitches.
This exercise you probably be able to take higher without cracking than
something like a” who” or something else. So this is giving you a chance to balance
your compression and reduce the amount of cracking. So, guys are going to be down here. “Gig gig gig gig.” And ladies up here, “gig gig gig gig.” And again, we’re going to
go all the way up. You’re not going to strain it, gonna try
to not crack, you’re gonna let the “gig gig” take care of
your work for you. So here we go. Gig gig gig gig. Great. Nice job. Gig gig gig gig. Good. Good. Gig gig gig gig. Gig gig gig gig. Nice. Two more. Gig gig gig gig. Nice job. So something you might be able to go
even higher than that and some of you might have been cracking already. But
that hard consonant and that sense of light compression, a light feeling of the
vocal cords coming together not being two separate, not being too gripped,
that’s going to help you to find a balance and not crack as you go higher. That is actually one way of accessing
the mix. So that’s compression for you I just want to throw one more thing in
there about cracking. You also want to make sure that your
breath support is intact. We talked about that in the past. Okay, so you want to make sure you’re
breathing is down here – and not up here – because if you slam the air – the cords are going to say, “You know what
I just can’t deal with all this air that you’re throwing at me. I’m gonna have to
get out of the way of all that air.” So if you’re over breathing, if you’re
pushing the volume, if you’re getting louder as you go higher, the cords aren’t going to like that. They
might strain up and keep you from cracking for awhile. But eventually the
compression is going to be too much, the air is going to be too much, they’re
going to get out of the way. So you need to get the air deep in the body and you
need to make sure you have a steady kind of breath. Don’t slam that air or else you’re
probably going to crack more. So think about compression, do some
compression exercises to get the light closure and the balance closure. Know
that breathing is a factor as you work on this. And then finally, like I say,
cracking is a good thing. It protects your voice. It’s just your cords going to
a headier recipe then you wanted them to. You need to have it for protection and
you need to have it a bunch of times when you’re working out your voice if
you’re not cracking and you’re only straining you’re only working one side
of things. Don’t be afraid to crack when you’re
practicing. When you’re in front of your voice teacher, when you’re at home… The only place we don’t want you
cracking is out on stage. So do a lot of cracking before you get there. So I hope
that’s been helpful for you guys today. If you have questions you want to see
us answer on the show you can send an email to: [email protected] And we just encourage you guys to just keep practicing even if you’re cracking a lot
go right on through there. Don’t lose the joy. Don’t lose the
passion. Don’t let people tell you can’t sing, because we all know that’s just not
true. If you guys are in New York City we
encourage you to check out our website at: Get with a great voice to turn in your area. If you guys like these videos you can
check out: I’m Justin Stoney. We’ll see you next time. yeah yeah

100 thoughts on “Ep. 12 “Cracking”- Voice Lessons To The World

  1. finally! I always strain my voice while singing so it tends to crack when I'm trying to reach high notes -,- I also noticed that when I try to reach high notes, my jaw tightens giving me headaches and makes my voice sound like I am shouting, what should I do?

  2. watching your lessons is very inspiring. thank you. now my practice is more focused and less stressed. and I don't have doubts anymore. hope to take some lessons in NYC one day.

  3. Thank you so much for all your knowledge. I feel like my cracking happens in my chest, I go for a note and I cant get pass, my voice gets faint and I cant control what's happening. Its mostly the in between notes never on a high note. You ever heard of this?  ..I'm befuddled.

  4. What about a pubescent boy's voice crack? Now that's a whole new thing. Any info on that or was this the video for it?

  5. Hi Dear I am learning singing and doing practice for 3 months almost regularly every day. I spend about two hours daily as follows:  I drink 4-5 glasses of water and start practice with a VOCAL warmup using humming etc. for 15-25 minutesThen I start practicing scales for 30 min to 1 hour minimum.Then I sing my favorite songs for about an hour. The problem I am facing is that my voice is not getting stronger and it cracks a lot. I feel pain in throat every day when I start practice. Then after warm up it gets a little bit better but I never had a relaxed throat. Sometimes I feel some pain in the VOCAL CHORDS. I have tried everything I could such as Gargles, different types of  herbal tea with lemon, ginger and honey, different lozenges in the market such as, Strepsils, Thayers, etc., and also ASPIRIN TABLETS. I donot get a permanent relief and voice keeps on cracking when I sing. My questions are:How can I have a string voice without any cracks?What remedies would you recommend?Any medicines?Shall I continue practice? Will it improve the situation or it will get worse?Did you have any student like me in the past and how did he/she overcome this situation of sore throat and cracking voice. Some times I take a vocal rest for a day or two but still it stays the same when I start again. Your help will be highly appreciated.Very best regards

  6. I want to be able to learn how to squeak /crack my voice on purpose like Sia does especially in her song Alive… how can you learn how to do this or can you even learn how to?

  7. Hi, I have a pretty high voice starting from F5 and I have been facing problem choosing songs. I feel more comfortable in the middle and high Coloratura Soprano range. My head voice would be in between E6 and F7 while my whistle note would be at C8. I am a male singing student & my teacher thinks that I sing in falsetto instead. Please advice me. Thanks.

  8. i liked and subscribed today because ur videos are realy user friendly, clear, encouraging and nice. besides…i like ur voice…thank God for helping me discover u…lots of love.

  9. does this exercise help to increase my vocal range? i have trouble singing alot of songs because i cannot reach most of the notes the pop song have

  10. wow the mix is so frustrating sometimes. like I try not to get loud as I go up, but in order to keep compression as I go up, I end up with a sky high larynx. I will keep on trying though, maybe I'll have a breakthrough. my chest voice is fine, I'm getting the hang of my head voice, but my mix is always tight, and squeezed.

  11. hey justin i cant send email to your mail cause different doamin.. i dnt know why.. but i Have questin about Flageolet ..

    Dear Justin,

    I think Lord will Love you so much..
    cause you shrared the videos maybe every people who desperate with their vocal in singing
    will BIG thank to you.. and I'm one of them.
    but I have question how to find the flaggeolet coordination easiyl?
    please make a new video and answer me..
    thnaku u Justin

    Henry- Indonesia

  12. dear Justin: compression is really awesome for a singer and I think it's the missed part of reaching mixed voice for the first time.
    But sometimes my larynx feel uncomfort.
    Should I stop immediately?When this happen

  13. Hi my voice doesn't crack. I want to be able to crack because ive seen it to be very useful. i am not being able to use it. how do i make a my voice crack?

  14. My style is more operatic because I used was taught that way. I want to transform my style to how is used to be! I used to be able to crack and sing like Sia (hitting high notes and all) but now I can't crack my voice and I just sing the notes really straight! I'm trying to improve my voice slowly and this video really helped me find my voice again! Thank you so much!

  15. So I'll do a lot of crack before I go on stage from now on!
    But if that really helps, why are rappers still such lousy singers?

  16. Thanks so much Justin , your explanations are brilliant with the demonstRations of wrong and right usage of vocal chords

  17. Ok here's the thing i don't know how to describe this but my voice when i'm singing it's not like cracking but it is at the same time especially when I sing law notes it kind of brakes or sounds like vocal fry suddenly i'm not doing it on purpose it goes to vocal fry by it self, if am singing one not let's say F3 it brakes and i go from F3 to A2 or G2 suddenly and goes back again to F3 and brakes again, i just can't tell if it is a cracking or is my vocal cords just lose control, what do i need to do? My voice is the most comfortable signing from e3 to f6 idk were this a2 note comes from all of a sudden 'n why? hope you understood me, What's happening to my voice exactly and do you have any tips about this & Thank you 👍👍

  18. This has helped me to also understand where the mix is placed, hopefully I can strengthen it for belting. Thank you!

  19. So this is what leo has been doing since titanic haha anyway I'm 35 and I've been cracking my voice since my 20s whenever I sing to my ipod or youtube

  20. I've learnt cracking when sia was on the carpool karaoke show. She said then when you wanna push.. Just make your cords tighter.
    And when I did that.. And breathed in, My voice cracked… So now I'm able to talk with cracks. That was a good tip.

  21. I needed this. The "gig" helped me understand compression. I feel like I can use it and see how it changes my ability to hit higher notes. I'll start from the Middle Notes though!

  22. That with thing when you said that you have to crack if you want to progress actually changed my life. I tried not to crack and that probably was the case. Thanks Justin.

  23. I love how when you dont join in you just have a random guy sat at the piano saying complements to a camera

    Ok jokes over great video really helped me 😂

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