Sing With Compression – Vocal Fry Singing – Gabriela Gunčíková – Ken Tamplin Vocal Academy

Hey guys welcome back again to Ken
Tamplin Vocal Academy where the Proof is in the Singing.
we got a lot of requests for this one it’s how to sing with compression and
vocal fry. Now it’s kind of an interesting subject for me because I’ve
been discussing compression for like over 25 years now and it’s interesting
to see that it’s finally come around on the internet now I don’t know if it’s
people that have seen stuff that I’ve, you know, talked about over the last at
least a decade, and they’re regurgitating that, or whatnot, but I think the most
important thing we can start with is that no matter where you get your
information, and especially on such a sensitive subject like compression or
distortion or vocal fry, make absolutely certain that that vocal coach themselves
can do it, and do it well, and that they demonstrate other students that do it,
and do it well. And I’m not talking about just one little line, or you know, a ditty or 10 seconds here I mean full-blown, three, four minute
songs, and preferably, I mean, that you’ve seen that they’ve toured and that they
can do this in sustainable 10 songs, 11 songs, twelve songs, four, five, six
nights a week for years on end. Now why I say this is because we have a lot of
people that have lost their voice in fact most people, especially in the 80s
and the 90s that used a lot of compression have lost their voices
completely for lack of knowledge of how to, how to do this correctly. So let’s
start there. But so how to sing with compression. Let’s identify first what
compression is, okay? It’s the concept of compressing air in the glottis. It’s
called glottal compression, or hyper-glottal compression. Now there’s lots of ways
that people go at compressing a sound and we’re gonna get into vocal fry in a
minute, because there’s some do’s and don’ts with that. But the very first
thing I want you guys to identify is, is that it’s not just that you can compress
air and squeeze off a note and sound like you’re singing through a straw or
something like that you actually want to be able to take
this idea of holding back the air and compressing that air, because the overuse
of air is the kiss of death to your vocal folds. It’s like taking a
flame thrower of air your vocal folds. It dries them out pretty quickly. Then they
become swollen. Then you lose good cord closure, and when that happens then all
of a sudden you start ramming more air just to get phonation or sound, and it
becomes vicious cycle that repeats itself, where
you find yourself going hoarse after three, four, maybe five songs, especially
you know depending on how heavy you sing this becomes exponential, depending again
on how much distortion or how much compression you want to use. So! But let’s
discuss what compression is so compression is the idea that we hold our
breath like I’m doing right now now you probably don’t realize I’m doing this
but I’m holding my breath and I’m talking to you at the same time now if
you’re really acute and keen you can really hear that it’s not like when I’m
talking to you like this and expunging a bunch of air. I’m actually holding my
breath back and doing this. So! You start on that premise, but it’s far from the
only thing we do, and let me explain why. By the way, I have a singing course. It’s
called How To Sing Better Than Anyone Else, and I cover all of this thoroughly
in my singing course. It’s not something I can cover all right here in one
quick tutorial, but at least you’ll get a flavor for what I’m talking about, so
that if you do decide to take your studies further, it will really help you
understand why this is important. Now so we have this this concept of cutting
back the air, and it’s not just that we can control or stop the air itself. It’s
that we worked in good open throat technique, or the idea of keeping the
throat open, the tongue dropped, the throat open, that we don’t literally gag
on our vowels, or, you know, start sound like we’re heaving up our vowels, or like
I said singing through some tiny little straw, or was pinching and squeezing and
choking off the notes. See, that’s what most people do when they sing, especially
if they start to sing loud or belt or want to sing heavy with Distortion. Cause they ehhhhh… and they just kind of pinch and squeeze and that. And that is a form of compression.
Not good compression, but it’s a form of compression. What you want to do is you
want to work in a daily regimen of scales that allow you different vocal
techniques or open throat techniques for vowel placement of
getting your vowels placed well first, with strong diaphragmatic support, and
then once those vowels are placed, you can gently start to lean into a sound or
kind of pushing into it a little bit to start develop, start to develop
this compression. Well this is also important too, because we don’t want to
go straight from a clean sound to a distorted sound. We’re gonna really hurt
ourselves. And this is this is kind of crazy guys, because, like
I said, I can’t express this enough. Be careful where you get your information
from on the subject. People can parrot things, they can read something on the
internet, they can see someone else’s video and try to regurgitate that. If
they can’t really do it effectively themselves and don’t have other students
doing it, run like your hair’s on fire, because this subject, it’s an extreme
sport, especially if you take it to it’s distorted components of it, and if you do
this extreme sport, and you light your hair on fire, and no one can tell
you how to put it out you could you could really seriously damage your voice.
Now, even in cases like Adele, she uses a form of compression and she’s going
through two surgeries now. The first one she’s had a while ago and now she’s
going through a second. Of course I know she smokes a lot, I know she drinks, and
some other things like that to contribute to that, but also, though, it’s
just from singing incorrectly. And we’ve seen a lot of surgeries lately as a
result of this. So, let’s get back to compression. So we want to have really
strong diaphragmatic support. Again, I can’t stress this enough. If you haven’t
seen my video on that, check it out. Again, it’s in my singing course in its hugely
expanded version of that. But what we want to do, is like I said, we want to
learn to hold back the air. Kind of like we’re talking underwater. Hey, man! How’s it going? Blooop! Pretty good. What are you doin’? Not bad! All right! Cool! right? But we don’t want to end it there because we don’t, like as in the case
of vocal fry’ where people go ehhhhh! Congratulations! All you did was choke
off the cord. Okay? Now I’m not dissing vocal fry, but I want to emphasize this.
Now, that might be okay to help understand the process of starting or
initiating wanting vocal distortion and you start with fry to kind of get the
feeling in the throat just hear how it sounds or whatever, and then you get away
from that sound, and you open up the sound. I want to give you an example of
this really quickly, because I think this might help you. One of my students,
Gabriela Guncikova, came to me many years ago. She was in a
band called Maryland, and she did a Nazareth song. She was a wonderfully
talented person on her own, however Gabby will be the first to admit that when she
came to me, she was losing her voice every single night, and only able to sing
about three or four songs. So I want to play this Nazareth clip for you right
now. Check this out. Alistair Birch from SBS Radio in Austrailia. Can you tell us a little about the influence of
Ken Tamplin on your music and… Half my range and my technique! It would
just work! I would I would be losing my voice, and that time I had a problem with
that I was I would sing for an hour and I would lose my voice. This is something
that’s not happening anymore, because I’m trained, and for rock singers especially,
it’s very easy, very easy to lose the voice when you scream and you use so
much of distortion. Okay, if you see you’d say the average person would say wow man
that was cool Ken what are you talking about? I love that Distortion! Well if you
get a chance and you go through all the videos that I’ve done with Gabby, and you
see how much I’ve opened up her voice to maintain wonderful distorted
sounds, wonderful compressed sounds, but the roaring lion of openness: Number one:
the ability to control the air. Number two, and the range that she was able to
get from not closing or clamping or crimping down, like I said “singing
through a straw”, you know, closing down and choking off the cords. All of a
sudden she has range that she never imagined she could have: that comes through a series of exercises
that I have in my singing course where you have to continually do on on all
your vowels, too. Do these different open throat techniques to first initiate open
throat, and then gently start to lean into this sound. Now. Back to compression.
So, within this compressed sound, we start out very light on the compression. I don’t mean light as in singing, I mean not using that much. So in other words if I go hey… Right?
I’m holding my breath. Hey… You know, you kind of hear me cutting back the air, right? Well,
there’s a there’s a deception in this in that, and I’m gonna talk about this when
I do a video on belting, as well, that there’s an idea that it sounds like when
people are using distortion or growl or anything, that they’re just… the blood is
coming out of the throat! of it’s like a throat bleed! Aaaah! Kind of a sound! Right?
It’s actually the opposite! It’s that we built up such quality resonance with the
voice. Quality resonance with the sound, that the voice has gotten bigger with
less volume and less air, okay? So, let’s do this again. So, you can do it with me.
Hold back the breath and go heeeeey… Haaaaa! HOOOO! Ooooh! Right? You can hear me compress the sound. Now, I could
use a lot of air and not compress at all. Hey…. Haaaa! Oh! You hear all that air that I’m using in
this sound. like I said that’s the kiss of death
it’s like a taking a flamethrower of air to your vocal folds and you only get
four or five songs that way. So anyway so as we start to compress this sound: Hey…
Over time, when we sing and we maturate the voice, and I don’t want you guys
doing this the first week, second week, third week, stuff. Come on, guys! Think
about this. It’s like going to a gym and working out. We’re growing muscle
structure here. You don’t get to be The Rock overnight. Right? You’ve got to go
into the gym you’ve got to work out, you’ve got to do this stuff correctly.
So you go: Hey… Then you kind of lean into it a little bit more… Heeey! Heeey! Heeey! Now!
The genius of compression is, is that it develops a beautiful tone, kind of that
whiskey kkk kkkk kkk kind of sound that happens around a voice of a singer that’s been singing
a long time. You say “man I love that guy’s tone! He just has that smoky, woodsy
lightly gritty, distorted sound! I want that sound!”
It comes from doing this, this way correctly. Right? Now you can end, up you
know, like a Bruce Springsteen, you know BORN In the U.S.A. I was… You know, have this overly distorted, really unidentifiable,
not, not sexy-beautiful, just kind of powerful middle-America kind of sound.
That’s one way to approach it. Or you can have a lot of versatility in the sound
with different layers and shades of this compression, like I’ve demonstrated over
and over and over again in many of my videos, where you can use certain amounts
as much as you want. You could be clean on the sound you could be a little dirty
on the sound, you know: HEEEEY! Or you could be, like, really dirty or even like with the growl videos I have, check
those out, where I’m just like, opening up you know, some of the false vocal folds,
relaxing those, and just really leaning into his sound, you know, to kind of
scream. Or do scream. So anyway, again you guys, thank you for joining me! Ken
Tamplin Vocal Academy, where the proof is in the singing, and I want to touch one more
thing of fry. i forgot to almost mention this, is that you can start with fry to
understand the concept of distortion. That’s okay. But! You don’t want to stay
in fry, because if you stay in fry, then you’re, again: squeezing or crimping or
clamping up: ehhhh! you got this really, instead of heeeey yeah
yeah! You have a really nice open thing that you can come alongside with a big
open throat sound, in order to give you what you’re looking for with compression.
Okay? Thanks again for joining me. Ken Tamplin Vocal Academy. Stop by my singers
forums, man, we got 11,000 people in there now, it’s growing like a weed! If you like
and you want to check out my course How To Sing Better Than Anyone Else. Ken
Tamplin Vocal Academy dot com! Check me out on Twitter, Facebook, I’m all over the
place! So until next time, guys! Peace. Out. Hey guys if you like what you heard,
please like and subscribe to my channel, and if you want to get notified when I
have a new cool video come out, you need to go to my channel and click on this
little bell icon, and it will actually notify you every time I have a video
come out! Thanks guys!


No matter how many times I watch videos like these, I just don't get it. I think even my vocal coach is getting slowly annoyed with me because I just don't understand those abstract ways of describing the usage of a certain body function.

Just wondering if your courses are online only, or do you offer in person lessons? If one lived near where you live. Great info!

I'm having a lot of trouble comprehending the basic idea of singing while holding your breath. Like – I hold my breathe and there just isn't any sound, period. Doesn't breath need to be going through the throat to produce sound??

wow i erased my comment well i were saying i used to do the same thing that gabby did and it was also killing my voice…so then i started to check your stuff and i got a vocal coach who teached belcanto…the thing is that you could feel phisically everynote…so it also relax you when you are singing even getting some distortion and stuff like that…i also play guitar while singing ( big John Sykes fan) so i needed to enjoy both to be a better performer and your stuff was always there for me and i want to say thanks…

After watch this, i just realized i was starting my singing journey stay on vocal fry. I didn't even breathing to sing! So thats the reason i lost 60% of my distortion while i sing with open throat and support. Now my mix voice damaged, i can't produce 100% clean sound in the mix.

Ken, in trying to in its most natural way, understand what it means to sing, only two videos I have watched of yours has shown me that it is okay to sing. Thank you for your genuine care of sharing knowledge of the sort in an understandable and comforting manner. You haven't opened my third eye, but you've helped me open my lungs.

What do you think of Paul Rodgers especially his Free days? Was that just natural talent or do you think he had professional lessons?

it is incredible how knowledge (and homework 😀) can improve dramatically an already talented person ! Ken is the Man! we love your passion and dedication Ken!

I've never had any formal training or anything, just came here because I am going to have to sing at my daughter's memorial in a few weeks and was curious about proper tech.

I find I am most comfortable with compression when I compress around my diaphragm and upper abdomen like I am giving birth than any other attempt at singing I have ever tried…no closure or tension of my throat happens or anything like that, but I also don't get an extensive distortion from it…I may sound a little deeper than just normal singing and it is less flat than my normal, but I get absolutely no throat straining with it…I kind of naturally fell into it from listening to a lot of grunge and bluesy music since I was a kid and trying to sing with it.

I am wondering when I will get a hernia or have a stroke from it, but so far so good…any advice?

LOL . . . "You don't get to be The Rock overnight" . . . . .Love every bit of the video and the info's ❤️ . . thanks for sharing. . liked and subscribed. .

David Lee Roth, perfect example the frying your voice it's really sucks to say but he has is good night's has bad night but then again he is 60 year old music

This is wonderful! Her first extract did sound a bit off.

I love vocal theory so much.
I didn't know this YT channel but it's really interesting. I like the way it's explained.
It makes you want to really work on your voice.

I love your videos! You have taught me so much even without having (yet) paid for your course. I can hear and understand exactly what you are saying and I can tell you my singing has improved immensely. ATM I am having some local lessons to tighten my notes and scales and then I plan to buy your course, then who knows, maybe I'll send you a recording some day 🙂

Singing is as difficult as playing an instrument. I am singing for 3 years and still have a lot to learn. But one thing I learned very early: If it hurts stop!

I am very impressed at Gabriela's before and after. The change was so great and she sings so effortlessly now but it sounds amazing.

It always helps me to imagine i'm breathing inwards while singing. It really helps me to prevent me from releasing to much air

Amaranthe has 3 vocalists.
Oh, so many good versions of this song, and the Nazareth version just kills.

In the old technique she was pinching a lot, and the new technique opened her throat so she wouldnt be pinching the vocal cords

Staccato singing is a good exercise for tones with good air control. Warm up with singing staccato on the piano, up and down, taking the halftones too. Once you master the staccato, you will have a much easier time with compression applications.

if only i had the resources i'd enrol in your class RIGHT AWAY…
I wish it'd become a reality that i'd become trained by you, sir Ken.

Wow, glad I found this. I haven't really been singing very long. But I pretty much need to stop, back up and start over. Just hope I haven't screwed my voice up. I'm not singing another note until I at least go through some more of this material, so I at least know what the hell I'm really supposed to be doing.

Ken, I was screaming some Chevelle a few days ago for about forty minutes and had to stop from eventual strain. Now my easy belted G5 has a scratch that sounds like strain to an outside ear. Do you think that will resolve if I rest for a week?

Man, first off I really love your honesty. One of the best singers I've ever heard and your students showed marked improvement. I would love to attend a vocal boot camp if you have such a thing & I could afford the trip to Hawaii hahah! I really dig how you're confident but not cocky, rare among us singers. I'm totally buying your vocal lesson package very soon since I came off a good span of overtime. I'm 47 yrs old & can still sing Led Zeppelin, Alice n Chains & other pretty powerful hard rock songs. I have noticed my range has diminished a little & that I sing better on Saturday night than I do on Friday night. I'm not going to ever make it but would love to a better asset to the cover bands that i sing for. Thanks for sharing the knowledge!

singing with compression, hiya ken, i think that's what iv been doing in latter years, though not with consistency and also not actually being aware that this is what i was doing at the time, , your opening salvo to this video, where you was saying something about could we detect you was holding your breath?, and i didn't notice at first, but when you changed to not holding your breath, i immediately noticed a distinction in what i can only term as less punch and less velocity (i may be defining this wrong as im no expert but always humble enough to learn) my point is, in latter years iv noticed that even though im biologically older and weaker in all ways to a degree, yet in spite of that sometimes my voice really BOOMS, and i believe that compression technique that your showing here is what iv been doing at times in the latter period of my life, it will certainly help now that iv identified this technique now, wonderful as ever ken, thank you kindly

ken you are a true MASTER at Vocal Teaching they need to call you Professor, I never came across anyone who teaches like you.. you are incredible!!! thank you

Thank you 🙏 so much for the student singer’s comparison! Wow! Compression is an incredible tool! I remember when I was at RRFC in LA Feb 2018, my fellow beginning singer (1st timers) was doing the high notes of Lou Gramm’s vocals better than l. It seemed he was going to destroy his voice and I could hear it. I told him not to belt full throttle until we go on stage & practice in a softer tone. I had pulled back on mine early & used a lower tone. But I was told by my counselor I could not change the key of the song. I used to sing along with Foreigner’s tunes without batting an eyelash. However, we are not singing along with the radio or CD, it’s incredibly different. So I have a feeling compression would’ve been the answer in this case. One of these years I’ll go back to RRFC and I’ll be ready to rock my band mates’, the counselors’, the audience and Fishof’s ears off! ✌️🤟🎶🎤🤓

You know that he’s a good singer because he’s a good speaker as well,
he uses those techniques while speaking ,even when it comes to when to swallow saliva without disturbing the listener ..
i don’t know how to sing yet , but i have the most sensitive ear that can catch every single detail
For all of this mastery of singing and explaining and this politeness to our ears i do thank you sincerely

Is gabriela still singing? She was getting popular here in Czechia in 2011-2013 but then we just didnt hear from her.

I just want to know… Can someone with great ears but no "pipes" learn to sing well? Nobody wants to tackle that question. I'm so jealous of people who sing. I have never been able to produce a tone that anyone would want to listen to though my ears can pick up intonation variation in fractions of a cent. Is there (really) any hope for me?

I heard about some professional singers (Bon Jovi, Tony Kakko, James Hetfield, Eddie Vedder…) who never had singing lessons (or at least that's what they say). They can sing very well. How is this possible? Is "natural talent" enough to sing as good as the "educated" singers?

Ken your knowledge is golden. Your course is a bargain too, but my issue is time and having to work so much. I have yet to actually practice daily all you have on youtube, but the material I have practiced and gone over has made a huge difference in my singing. I used to get vocal fry real bad, but now only when I practice all those higher octaves that I can barely reach in the female range. I've always had that heavy voice that sounds good singing something like Dio. Now I can sing a few Scorpion songs and working on incorporating some crazy powerful dynamics. I never dreamed in a million years that I would be attempting to cover Steve Perry, but even if I don't succeed in accomplishing those higher harmonics of Steve's it's taking me out of my comfort zone and pushing me to the next level. If you want something bad enough with every cell in your body you will eventually make it happen. This is not for lazy people you have to throw away your TV and any other distractions. I guess we all have our excuses and mine is a lack of time to devote to this love affair of music. We love your music Ken and your lessons/ tips you so kindly give us for free. I will eventually expand to your pay courses, hopefully sooner than later. Thank you n God Bless!

Hi Ken, I'm Brazilian and I have sang in choir for many years. Recently I haven't been working much on my technique because, beina mother of aa 3 year-old daughter and workin g full-time, I simply can't find the time. But I have been watching a lot of your videos and that inner passion that's been dormant is resurfacing. I was wondering if there would be a way I could become your student. With the internet and all, is there a possibility? .

Scrolling down for any opposing comments… either they're all deleted, or this gentleman's reputation is that good. Wish I had more time to practice singing on top of learning foreign language.

Thank you for this little bit of information I'm really trying to learn how to sing better, I wish I could buy your course but ty anyway

KEN IS THE BEST!!!!! However, a Woman Singing Iron Maiden "IS NOT IMPRESSIVE" at all.Gabriela, sounds Great. Let's See her Sing Whitney, Mariah, Ms. Dion, Christina.Sorry a Woman Sing in the Range of a Man is NOT an Achievement. Put her in the Range of Great Female Singers, a Range that is more Challenging!!A Manly Song in the Hands of a Woman is "CHILDS PLAY"!!!"I HAVE NOTHING" WHITNEY HOUSTON, After she does that maybe I might think Twice??? For now NOT IMPRESSED!!!

Ken, my bro Norm Savaadra (Marshall) has sung with Queensryche, Lynch, etc and has his cover band The Ryche Told me he almost feels like he is breathing "In" and that he had to learn how to sing well quietly first and build up the correct muscles and control. Is that kind of what you mean?

She has a amazing voice, love to hear her sing Babe Ruth or Renaissance. She would fit in with a Headpins cover band!!!! Thanks for the voice.

Can u teach students through like face time or something? Skpe, facebook etc? Im sure that u are soooo far away from me lol. U are a great teacher.

Very good tutorials! But it would be better if the videos were translated into Spanish for us foreigners, greetings!

a voice teacher told me to keep using more air when i was straining. i didn’t get it because every time i used a lot of air it would hurt like hell. thank you for confirming my suspicions. dont plan on doing that again

Every time I sing and I am not doing it correctly, I don't know why, 99% of the times is because I am not supporting well with my breathing. The thing is I know how to do it, but when I am thinking about compression, open throat, muscle relaxation, tounge and jaw tension, breathing becomes a secondary thing when it should actually be the first thing to remember to do. My hope is that one day muscle memory will take over and I won't need to think about it while singing

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