FTM – How To Keep Your Singing Voice On T [CC] || Jeff Miller


Hey, everyone! It’s Jeff.
I hope you’re doing well. So three years ago I posted this video showing the evolution of my
singing voice from pre testosterone to almost two years on T. And since then, by far,
my most asked question has been: “How do I keep my singing voice on
testosterone?” So today, I’m going to cover my tips and
tricks for singing on T. [ Tops by Lincoln Jesser ] Before we even get started here’s
a little disclaimer: Everybody is different, so every body is going
to react to testosterone differently. I can’t guarantee what’s going to happen to you. I can’t see the future. I mean, it would be pretty cool if I could.
But then again, that would be a lot of pressure. So never mind on that. *laughs* So number 1, I operated under
the “use it or lose it” mentality. Like honestly just keep singing. You know, like Finding Nemo with
just keep swimming just keep.. *coughs* But like instead of swimming
switch it with singing. Right. *laughs* But number 1 leads really well into number 2 which is: Work with what you’ve got.
Work with where you’re at. So your range is going
to be changing obviously. Testosterone is literally changing
your vocal chords. Your vocal chords are lengthening and also
increasing in size and that’s how it’s lowering your voice. So you might need to transpose things to
work with the range that you have at that moment. You might try singing something and it’s not in
your range anymore and you could really do damage if you keep pushing it. If something hurts, don’t do it.
Don’t push it. Just take things day by day. Three: Stay mindful of your breathing. And this is especially important if
you’re using a binder. Your breath support is really important. That is what sets kind of the
foundation of your singing. So if you’re using a binder, I
would recommend another option of you know compression tops or sports bras.
Layering clothing. Anything so that you’re not fully constructed. You need to be able to have the expansion
of your diaphragm to support what you’re doing. Number four: Stop the comparisons. And I’m guilty of this, too.
So this is really for me as well. Stop comparing yourself to other
people with their transitional journeys. Again, testosterone affects
people differently. So someone who has been
on testosterone for two months might have a lower voice than someone
who’s been on testosterone for a year. But comparing yourself to that person
might make you feel jealous. Might make you feel upset
that it’s not working for you. You need to do your best to accept
where you’re at personally. To accept what your body
is doing. I know for me personally, when I was thinking of starting testosterone,
there weren’t a lot of musicians who were actually on testosterone and showing
how that affected them. And that’s why I made all these videos.
That’s why I continue to make these videos because it was a really scary
experience for me to be like my identity as a musician and as
someone who sings, What’s going to happen with that? Full disclosure, I started
as a second soprano and right now I’m probably at a baritone 1 or baritone 2. I’m not a tenor. I’m not a bass. I’m still kind of in that
middle ground. Something that was scary for me
for me was my vibrato changed. And I was like, “What is this?” But I’ve grown to love it
and that’s really what I can tell you. Love where you’re at. Love that there’s still things that you
might want to work on or that you might want to change in some way, shape, or form. But it is a process. I think probably around two years on T is
when my voice really started to settle and I’m close to five years now and honestly my range is still getting larger. Like, now I’m feeling more comfortable
with expanding my falsetto and trying to go for those higher notes. Because for a while I was
like I’m just gonna crack. Like the puberty cracks, those are real. Enjoy them. *laughs I think it’s fun. I don’t know. But your voice is going to
continue to change and it still is changing for me and I think
that’s pretty cool. So if you’re thinking of starting
testosterone or even if you’ve been on testosterone for a little bit
or a while, I hope that these tricks and tips
helped you out. I hope that they eased a little bit of
anxiety for you. Because, again, that’s why
I make these videos. For the people who, like me, were searching for other singers who were going
on testosterone and seeing how that affected them. I love my singing voice. I love sharing music.
I love sharing that passion. And I love helping out other people. So if you have more questions,
I would be more than happy to answer them. Leave a comment down below
if I didn’t cover something. And as always, you are valid. You are loved. I hope you have a wonderful week and
I’ll see you again next Monday! Bye! Hey, everyone. It’s me again. Look at this brand new endscreen!
I’m actually really really excited about it. So over there you can see
what I did last week. I did a cover of Goner by twenty one pilots.
You can check it out if you want to. But really I wanted to take this time to say that this
Thursday, August 18th, 2016 I will be having surgery. I’m having my total
hysterectomy/oopherectomy, So I’m not going to be super active on Youtube.
I have some videos that are scheduled to publish each week. So if you want to send me well wishes or
just check in and see how I’m doing, you can look at any of these social media links.
I’ll be more active on those. I hope you have a wonderful
week, month, whatever. I don’t know how long I’m going to be I guess off of Youtube. *laughs* But I’ll see you when I see you. Bye.

48 comments

Singing on T honestly felt like learning how to ride a bike again. There were/are bumps in the road, but it was worth it for me personally. I hope this helps!

These are not just good notes for people on T, but good notes in general. My friend Chris has hypogonadism, he's been singing with different groups his whole life and has pretty much gone through the same thing. He's on T.

Everyone should try and do their best with the range they have. For me, yeah, I try and do a lot of things that hurt my vocal chords but I just power through it till I eventually get it.

This was another amazing video.

Oddly enough my voice pre t was so shitty, and now, almost 7 months on t I can actually sing a lil bit. I'm not sure why though

Thank you for making this video! I'm so frustrated with the myth that you're automatically gonna lose your singing voice on T. It's not like there aren't any cis men that can sing post-puberty. It's all about practice 😀 Your advice was really good. Especially the binder part is something I feel. I've been at singing lessons and struggled with some practices (in a binder) and when I come home and take the binder off it's a lot easier.

Thanks so much for making this. It was really reassuring. I'm hoping to go into musical theatre- when you say that your voice is still changing, is that drastic, or really subtle?

Thank you so much for continuing to share this particular part of your story, it's really inspiring and I can't wait to find out and record how my (singing) voice will change once I start T! Take care 🙂

Love this! I specifically started on a very low dose and will likely remain that way. I've been having a hard time finding guys in my position. So thank you for this one. Perhaps you've inspired me and I'll start doing vids around this subject…

Thank you, great vids and yeh can't thank you enough and all the best! Healing thoughts headed your way and +1 skubscribe from Aussieland.

THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU FOR THIS VIDEO. I really want to go into musical theatre and I'm having so much anxiety about this.

I was so sure I had already commented, but can't find any comment from me. Hopefully this isn't a repeat!

I started on T about 7 months ago (shots every 12 weeks), and my singing voice is really changing. I sound like a 15-yearold cis guy… My sining voice is…interesting. But I've still decided to start singing in a church choir. First pratice is on Thursday. I haven't sung in a choir since 2005, when I was a contralto/alto. I've also sung soprano (ouch!).

Is that "XO" from Eden?
Holy shit, I really love Eden. Hahaha, before I even knew it I was singing out loud!
That just made my respect for you so much higher, dude. I look up to you.

I feel like the most important thing is to just be mindful of how your body is feeling. If you feel any kind of tightness in your throat or jaw, stop and take a wee break. Breath support is incredibly important so wearing a looser binder is probably a really good idea. I've been wearing looser binders because being able to breathe well is very important to me since grounding myself with my breath really helps me manage my anxiety. Great video.. I'm really enjoying my singing voice. I'm almost at 8 months on T and I'm just so happy that my vocal range is lower. It just feels so much better. Before I felt uncomfortable singing which sucked because I love music. Now I can take full advantage of my new and wonderful voice. =) Cheers!

Thanks so much for this! Singing is really important to me, so I'm glad to know that the main thing to do is to just common sense and not push yourself haha.

Great video mate. I'm pre-T but I'm fascinated by my voice in that even now at 26 I sound like a choir boy. Very crisp and bright with not much vibrato. I'm hoping that will help in that on T it'll flourish into a nice rich baritone voice or something similar.
I wanted to ask though, what's your opinion on T dosage? An idea I have which others have suggested is starting off on a slower dose and building it up over around 9 months. What do you think of this? Did you start off with a higher dosage or was gradual build-up what you did as well?

Thank you so much.

Hopefully I'll get my high notes back one day.

Yes, my will to sing high, and my likening for my high singing voice does not invalidate my vocal dysphoria that accrues when I talk.

Thank you for reminding me that one day it'll all settle for a new reality and that even though I like those changes it's legit to be scared of them because it's still changes and that's all new but one day I'll get used to it all.

One day at a time.

A friend of mine slowly worked his way from baritone E-1 – F4 and got his old mezzo soprano range back on his fifth year. Doubling what he had before reaching to D-1 to C6.

Now he will have his first hysterectomy. Which might change things again.
But since he was told his ticking time bombs where already squashed anyway. He is confident to get it back again.

He also learned how to false scream from the Zehn Of Screaming, and where to find his resonate areas, the mixed voice, and using good old handy whistle register for fun.

He told me his key was pretty much hitting the high notes as lightly as you can and learning control. And not worry about volume. A well build diaphragm is where all the power is.

Anyway it will be interesting if he can get it back.

i'm a soprano in choir but i can be stuck in tenor and alto spaces because of how flexible and how much control i have over my voice.. i fear starting T would totally just destroy it because i want to sing my whole life. i want to sing as a profession, i want it as my career but i am also very unhappy being a girl… oh lord, help me out.

Hey, I was wondering if you started T with a high dose, or a low dose that slowly increased? What your opinion is on starting high or low? I've heard starting low helps with singing, but at the same time starting low sounds painstaking, you know? Thanks for if you can respond!

im in a little bit of a dilemma with going on t, i've wanted to for over 2 years and just got the ok from my psychologist. however, i was cast as anatole for a small, student led production of natasha, pierre, and the great comet of 1812, and i already have the perfect vocal range (as in can comfortably do all the low notes and the infamous 'for petersburg' line), but it's in 2 years so if i went on t at any point between now and then, it would ruin my voice for the show. it's a shame bc i want literally every other effect, but i'm already a tenor (that can technically go up to sop 2) so i dont want my voice to get any lower. help??

Hi there. I'm Zen. I have been tossing around the idea of starting testosterone but I was so afraid I was going to lose the main talent I have, my voice…. I'm really glad I found this. Thank you for sharing. It helps a lot.

do you have any breathing exercise recommendations to help with singing when binding? I am in a situation where I am in an all male choir at my school, and although I do not bind everyday, I cannot imagine myself not binding on the day of a performance (due to dysphoria, fear of bullying, etc.) not to mention my current choir teacher has not taught us any breathing exercises, so my breath support is awful.

I'm not a good singer by any standard; but I've always loved wanting to learn. I sang in private pre-transition; and would love to learn how to sing. I don't know my range? I sign highish–for me? Or 'girly' for me, I guess. Any time I sang 'male parts' growing up, my grandmother stated i was going too low.

But thanks for your vid. I'd like to learn how to sing nicely. <3

okay so, im already a Tenor and i dont want to drop to a bass after T (im still pre-T) so should i still take testosterone?

Omg, Thank you so much! I haven't started T, and one of the main reasons I wasn't starting T is because I was worried about my singing voice. I want to be a famous singer one day, but I was really worried about this. Anyways, Thank you!

Pre-T, I was a tenor (or a low alto), so my voice was already pretty low. When I started T, it was easiest to tell that my voice was lowering because I could feel every single low note that I could finally reach. I’ve been able to adjust, but I hate that some songs I can’t sing like I used to so transposing has become a necessity. I’m 6 months on T. My falsetto can still reach a soprano, and I’m now a baritone (G2-G4) and I can finally feel happy and comfortable in my voice. I still need to work on my upper range strength, but I have been working a lot, especially since I am in the school musical (as a tenor, rip my voice). Honestly, I think my singing voice has gotten better. It no longer stands out as a feminine voice in an awkward range, it finally fits just how I wanted. I feel like once I have top surgery my voice will get even stronger because I won’t be binding, and I’ll feel confident, and that will translate into my singing.

Okay that’s my singing story, bye y’all

I am a high soprano and i know my voice will change but i dont want to lose my range or at least i want to lose as little as possible. I love my high singing voice and it doesnt make me dysphoric like my speaking voice does. Will practicing my higher ranges help me keep some of that range? It makes me depressed to think i will lose it.

I'm not on T yet (can't wait tho!!). And my signing voice is literally the ONLY thing I'm worried about. I took singing lessons for six years and I would call myself a decent singer, so… Wouldn't want to lose that. This video really made me feel better! 🙂

I'm sure that this won't be too hard for me…..Hopefully. I've had to retrain myself in singing multiple times before.

Due to a surgery gone wrong, I'm missing a bone in my palate and I had lost my ability to sing in the same way as it felt different. In two weeks, I was able to get a new style. However, I always stuck around the same genre in the end.

I'm sure that if you're very passionate with singing, it will be the same as training yourself to sing during normal puberty. Just try and hit lower notes you've always wanted to hit.

My hope is that I can go on T soon (hopefully come out in the next month, and get on T almost right after), and that way when I come back in the fall to college I will not only have a deeper voice but I can take voice lessons in the music department to help strengthen my voice and have someone teach me how to use a voice thats going through puberty

I'm about 5 months on T now. It's really challenging to not be able to access my head and even mixed voice because of the cracks. My lower range has gotten better so there's that but it's mentally taxing to be so limited

Im scared because I want to start T but the only reaosn I dont is because I'm so afriad of loosing my highest pitch. I have seven octaves and im a saprano. Will I loose it? Thats the only reason that is holding me back.

So I've been on T just over a year now, but I don't have any history of proper vocal lessons. I want to start learning to sing though…how should I approach it? Just standard vocal training or do I need to take any extra precautions?

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