How To Sing Consonant Sounds
I know, I know - in a world of Vowel Modification, Cry, Edge, Twang, Modes, Overtones and Formants; consonant sounds really aren't that exciting.
And that's exactly why they're so overlooked as part of almost all vocal methods out there;
"Just slur through them!"
"Don't sing them!"
"Just barely TOUCH them"
"Just sing the vowel instead!"
These are all things that I was told in my early days of learning how to sing - and none of them really showed me how to sing consonant sounds effectively.
Either you just sound like an Opera singer singing one "OH" vowel the whole time - or, if you do try to articulate them any fuller you start straining and struggling and pushing; so how DO you sing consonant sounds correctly?
Singing consonant sounds clearly is actually VERY easy to do - and I'm going to show you exactly that in a moment, but first, you're probably wondering whether this is REALLY going to work for you, and why you should even listen to me in the first place, and there's a very good reason;
Not only is my Foundation vocal approach the ONLY singing method out there with such a detailed, comprehensive approach to consonant sounds in the world, my channel is regularly featured in Top 10 lists with some of the most famous vocal methods out there like Christina Aguilera's masterclass and "vocal coach to the stars" Roger Love - even other voice coaches with tens of thousands of subscribers and successful vocal studios say "Bohemian Vocal Studio is the only singing school to trust 100%".
Simply put - it just works.
And the important reason that I can so confidently say it works, is because I use it myself.
My students use it.
Yes, other voice coaches are using it too - some of my students even have their own voice coaching channels with tens of thousands of subscribers using the approach that I first showed them.
Now, I'm not trying to inflate my own sense of self importance here, I just want you to understand something so very important;
I wasn't a natural singer at all - in fact, I absolutely sucked at singing.
But now I'm the guy that other voice coaches go to for help with their voices.
And I'm not just a guy who sits in front of an electric piano doing scales all day without singing any actual songs - my first album with the Dead Spirit Communion band has received rave reviews and comments like "Meltingly Magnetic Vocals" and as we're speaking right now we're about 80% of the way through recording the second album - but don't just take my word for it either, here's just some of the incredible feedback I now get about my singing that I've mastered the approach to singing consonants that I'm about to share with you;
Now I could just keep throwing positive reviews and gushing comments from my students, fans and even other voice coaches out there who are using my approach - but you're really just here to learn how to sing consonant sounds better, right? So let's get down to business and fix 'em once and for all!
The Secret Key To Singing Consonant Sounds
I used to baulk at the idea that there was some sort of 'secret' to great singing, or there was some trick to it other than hard-earned vocal technique - but when you know something that most other people out there don't know; it really does seem like a magic trick. And the trick to great sounding consonant sounds?
More importantly, an informed and educated approach to singing each group of consonants;
- Open resonants (M, N, NG)
- Closed resonants (L, W, R, Y)
- Plosives (P, B)
- Sibiliants (S, T, X)
- Glottal (G, K)
Now the most difficult consonant sounds will probably depend on your speaking accent and the habits you've formed over many years of speaking in your local tongue and dialect (like my Aussie accent!) - but in general, the closed resonant sounds of L, W, R and Y are a sore point for most English accents, so that's the group I'm going to focus on in this tutorial.
Now with my Aussie accent, there's a glottal stop before each of those closed resonant consonant sounds - rather than a smooth "LLL" when I speak a word like "Love", it's closer to "uh-Love" with a hard glottal stop in front of the consonant sounds. The same goes for a "W" in a word like "Well", it's more like "uh-Well" with that hard glottal stop.
Obviously, this is kryptonite to your vocal health - you're going to blow your voice out in about five seconds flat singing those glottal stops in front of those consonants; so most singers and singing teachers will just leave them out or barely touch them, but even though they're "just touching" that consonant, the glottal stop is still there hiding in plain sight - they're just singing it quietly.
With this haphazard approach to singing consonants, strain and tension starts to build with each word they sing - and eventually they start having issues singing high notes.
Issues with consonants and onset really do make up at least 50% of the training I do with my students, especially when it comes to people who have done online courses before that give them the same dodgy advice that I was given like to just slur through them.
Have a listen to just how articulate you be with consonant sounds when you apply my approach;
How To REALLY Sing Consonant Sounds
Singing consonant sounds becomes super easy when you learn this simple approach to consonant grouping - we're going to focus on those Open Resonants like W, L, R and Y in this part of the tutorial, but there's also a matching approach for each group of consonants from plosives, glottal, closed resonants and those pesky sibilants.
Now W, L and R can be approached in exactly the same way, and we'll look at Y in a moment.
Instead of hitting that W really hard with the speechy glottal stop like we discussed above, instead if you actually sing a momentary OO vowel (with the middle of the tongue up and back towards the soft palate like the word "you") before leading into the consonant sound without a new syllable, and it's basically the same thing for the "L" at the end of the word. So, a word like "WELL" now becomes something like "oo/w-EH-oo/l" with a subtle OO just before the consonant. With time, practice and care - you can take out more of the OO from your consonants and really articulate them as clearly or stylistically as you like.
Now I left "R" out of that equation because this consonant can also be used to develop what some call the "yarl" - that 90's grunge rolled R that actually originated from Elton John's singing (listen to the way he sang "just a KID" in "Candle in the wind" - it's a Yarl!)
Now it's basically the same premise as the others with a subtle OO before the consonant (or, you can use a French OU vowel if you want a smaller consonant), so a word like "RED" would be closer to "oo/r-EH-d".
Are you following the process? It's pretty easy, right?
And how about the Y consonant? Surely you don't just throw an OO in front of that as well?
Nope - Y is an extension of your EE and AY vowels, so with a subtle EE moving into your next vowel without a new syllable, you'll get a resonant "Y" - so a word like "Yeah" would really be sung as "ee/y-EH" and a word like "Yam" would be "ee/y-AA-m"
With this dynamite approach, singing consonants is easy.
How To Sing ANY Consonant
Singing consonant sounds effectively is SO important to a great singing voice that I've built this approach into my Foundation vocal method - in fact, the Growth level course is the ONLY course that I'm aware of with such a comprehensive approach to consonants; and that's because I've designed this whole approach myself.
No one taught me this.
You won't find this in any other course.
Everyone else is just going to tell you to just avoid them - but now you KNOW there's an easier way, right?
In fact, this is SUCH an important part of my vocal approach that I've also added a bonus Consonant Bootcamp to the growth level course so you've got an actionable goal to work towards with your consonant sounds - with the indepth approach you're going to learn in the Growth course along with ongoing training with the consonant bootcamp warmup; you're going to learn something that few other singers ever actually master.
The Consonant Bootcamp is usually only available to my students who are working with me on a premium membership - but for a limited time I'm making it available along with the Growth 101 singing course at no extra cost.
But what about The Four Vocal Fundamentals, how can I learn them? Can I also increase my range, or do you just help people with consonants?
Actually, the Foundation & Growth courses are a fully comprehensive approach to singing that will take from from zero to hero with practical and actionable instruction and explanations and a streamlined warmup process - this isn't just 5 pages of vocal exercises with no clear goal in sight like many other courses out there.
In fact, I believe so wholeheartedly in this simple but effective approach that I'm just going to SHOW you how to sing with The Four Vocal Fundamentals right here, right now - no strings attached. Just watch the video below to learn more in <10 minutes than you've probably learned from YEARS of trawling through YouTube videos and google blogs looking for answers than never seem to materialise.
If you want to become a great singer, you absolutely MUST master The Four Vocal Fundamentals first;
Where To From Here?
Let me summarize exactly what we've been through today and what your options are.
Basically - you're having issues with consonant sounds.
I've shown you just how easy it can be to sing them when you've got a dynamite vocal approach designed specifically to help you articulate consonants.
The Growth level course is the ONLY vocal training course out there that has such an indepth and actionable approach to singing consonant sounds. I'm not only going to tell you how to do them, I'm not just going to show you how to do them - I'm going to take you through my special Consonant Bootcamp warmup to help you make this approach an ingrained healthy habit in your approach to singing.
Singing consonant sounds correctly is key to a great singing voice and an intrinsic part of developing excellent vocal technique - don't let those other coaches tell you not to sing them.
So at this point, you've really got TWO choices.
I like to call this the "red pill/blue pill" stage of the vocal matrix - where you can either move forward and become a MUCH better singer, or, you can just go back to where you came from and keep making the same mistakes and getting the same results.
Option 1) You can click off this tab, go back to your google search or the YouTube video loop of video after video after video.
After a few days you might even forget all about the Consonant Bootcamp, forget the Growth course and maybe even forget the simple approach to singing closed resonants that I've just shown you.
You keep struggling with consonant sounds.
You don't become a better singer.
INSTEAD of becoming a good singer, you keep watching other people sing well on YouTube, wondering what the true secret to their success is. You keep researching how to sing consonant sounds on google - but as you now know, there really is NO other approach out there designed specifically to help you sing them effectively; so unless you end up right back here again after a few months of wasted time that could have been spent actually singing better, you're not going to find the answer, and you're not going to learn anything about singing consonant sounds better other than "not singing them" or "barely touch them" and all those lame instructions that come from guys that simply don't understand what YOU now understand - that you really CAN sing consonant sounds with ease when they're grouped correctly.
And it's a total shame.
Especially considering you were just ONE CLICK AWAY from becoming a better singer and learning to sing ANY consonant sound with ease.
Don't let this be you.
Option 2) You INVEST in your voice like on a dedicated, serious singer would with the Growth level course and bonus Consonant Bootcamp.
It shows you everything you've ever wanted to know about onsents, consonant sounds and even increasing your vocal range outta' sight.
You learn about register overtones and vowel modification.
You learn about compression.
You learn how to sing in Mixed Voice.
You actually start working towards becoming a SERIOUSLY great singer - not just reading about it.
Consonants become easy. Your high range explodes. You've got endless power. You nail that recording studio session. You nail those gigs. You start reaching your goals - albums, tours, karaoke; whatever your goals as a singer are, you've now got a solid vocal foundation that you can carry with you for life as you continually grow and build your range, tone and style.
But I'll be honest.
It's going to take work.
It's going to take dedication.
It's not going to be easy - but, you're definitely going to become a better singer.
I know which pill I'd choose if I was still struggling with consonant sounds.
Here's what you'll learn in the Foundation & Growth 101 singing courses:
- Connect chest and head voice
- Release strain and tension
- Mixed Voice
- Place your frequencies
- Increase your range
- Improve your tone
- Improve your vocal health
- The right way to modify your vowels
- Vowel overtones
- Master the Four Vocal Fundamentals
- SO much more!
Master Consonant Sounds
With the Growth Pack & Consonant Bootcamp
Wait... You Want More?
I've shown you that there's a BETTER way to sing consonant sounds.
I'm throwing in the Growth level course along with Foundation 101 for just a few bucks extra - PLUS I'm even giving you access to the Consonant Bootcamp which is usually only available to my premium member students on a monthly subscription.
I've even shown you all of my cards by teaching you how to sing with The Four Vocal Fundamentals - not just talked about what you need to learn, but actually SHOWN you how to do it yourself.
That's more than you'll get from most paid singing courses out there, let alone a free article.
But you want MORE.
You demand MORE.
You want the ANSWER.
You want the PRO SECRET.
You want to see my "Before and After" and hear the singing I'm capable of now that I've mastered the Four Vocal Fundamentals
You want to learn the #1 Most Important Thing You're EVER Going To Learn as a singer
So here it is!
Watch the video below for my own "Before and After" - and yes, all that cracking and breaking is even after 5 solid years of weekly vocal lessons, as well as to learn how to sing with Register Overtones - aka The Most Important Thing A Singer Can Learn by Modifying your Vowels.
Sign Up To Your 3 Part Vocal Plan Below: