Archives par mot-clé : letting-go

highs and lows

The low pitch vibration spreads in the ground and in space from your posture stabilized on your roots, as if you were sitting on the sound source. Keeping concentrated on this balanced position, you release then your whole body at the very end of your exhaling, to let your spontaneous inhaling come in, maintaining this fat and low voice on a full vibrating pitch : you develop this fat and vibrating sound from practicing the overtones control, as recommended by Joe Allard and by David Liebman.

Next you quietly play upper and upper notes in the pitch range, reaching the higher register and the related overtones, still driving this low vibration from your heels, and above all, without modifying anything between your embouchure and your diaphragm : any unwanted alteration of the sound must be avoided by letting loose and relaxing down to your breathing center point, even reaching down to your heels !

Doing so, the high register sound can be kept rich and homogeneous by extending the downwards feeling to your roots : keep thinking low in the highs ! This way, and counter to some misconceptions, carefully dismissed by Alfred Tomatis in The Ear And The Voiceyou ensure the sound fullness by maintaining this body configuration of your air column and of your embouchure throughout the whole range from lower to higher pitch : among other benefits, this brings a gratifying comfort feeling and allows legato playing between the end-notes of the tessiture, as Dominique Hoppenot precisely describes it in her Inner Violin / Le violon intérieur.

Musically, you go up and down, but physically you must always go down. The pitfall is that a sound may look nice but not be a good one.

Robert Pichaureau, Favorite Expressions
(translated by Guy Robert)

Thanks to the work achieved (low and fat breathing, vertical pushing), you can now play much more backwards, so you can avoid playing your way up when you hit high notes.

(…) You are going to learn how to feel down in order to better go up. (…) But you should obviously never go back up !

Always pack down and vertically push down.

Michel RicquierTraité de pédagogie instrumentale
(translated by Guy Robert)

Low note articulation and tone production are two of the subtle challenges confronting saxophonists, as is the opposite problem of the tendency to go sharp in the high register. A saxophonist should not sound like he has a different tone for each register. The overtone matching process may go on for years.

David LiebmanDeveloping a Personal Saxophone Sound

find your voice without blowing

Thanks to your downward letting-go accompanying your exhalation, your flexible triggering of your inner vibration propels rich vocal harmonics, consuming very little air which you can imagine or feel like it were recycling within the body, at the diaphragm center.

The two lower vocal cords are drawn together and vibrate through emission. The vibration is caused by air passing across the cords. The volume of air is so small that it seems almost spontaneous and automatic as with speech. The brain essentially regulates the tension of the vocal cords to keep the flow of air at a minimum, so that the vibration corresponds to the desired pitch.

Whenever the thorax contracts prematurely, it prevents the diaphragm from functioning to its full extent.

(…) In order to avoid pushing when you sing, you need to notice certain proprioceptive sensations.

You must learn to conserve stored air and to give out the least possible amount, as if you were distilling the sonic flow in some way. (…) The more slowly and regularly the flow emerges, the less underlying tension results, and the more easily the larynx works.

The great art consists of not pushing, of remaining in a state of supple tension, and of avoiding undue muscular effort.

Alfred Tomatis, The Ear And The Voice
(translated by Roberta Prada and Pierre Sollier)