February 27, 2019
Finally, I’m proud to announce that the revised book of the Universal Voice Guide is ready and is currently being pressed. It took a very long time before the second edition was ready, I would like to share the reasons for this with you here.
About a year ago I had to decide to have a second edition printed because we were sold out within 6 months. The question then occurred to me whether I would do that with a few minor text improvements or if I actually wanted to make that version that I had been envisioning for a long time. After consultation with my colleagues and co-writer Guus Bok, I decided to go for a truly renewed version, a larger format, full-color, an improved structure and a more modern look and feel.
The updated version I wanted to make had to be easier to read so that everyone can use the guide independently and achieve their vocal goal more easily.
For that reason it is in the start guide a new part has come, the direction indicator. The most common forms of singing that are used in the Netherlands; musicals, gospel or oratorio are briefly explained here, indicating which chapter applies to you to start with and which warm-up goes with it.
After the start guide, we restructured the chapters in the form I work from practice and my singing lessons.
Thus, the sound characteristics are central to this new edition, as improving sound is always the goal. Hence first the 8 sound characteristics and what options you have.
Sound characteristics are produced by your anatomy, whatever the next chapter is, the 4 pillars. In layman’s terms you are taken along by the 4 pillars, posture, breath, vocal folds and sound space with which you make your sound. New and unique are the photos with doodles (drawn doodles) that depict what is happening in your body and where you are training at that moment. The first book in song literature that shows in such a simple and enlightening way how your voice works for a certain sound.
The next four chapters are about the 4 voice characters Speech, Belting, Whisper and Classical. In this second edition, basis and variations are combined. The reason for this is that you never sing an entire song in a basic character, you always add variations to it. In the first part of these chapters you strengthen the basic sound characteristics that make a voice characteristic with exercises, and then in the second part you start singing with variations, as happens in practice. For each chapter there is also a new Personal Voice Plan on which you can see what the basis and the variations are and in which sound characteristic you can train yourself to achieve your goal.
The training of sound characteristics within a voice character is leading, which sound do you have and which do you want to improve. If you want to learn to ring, first learn to what extent, pitch you have to learn to sing, then you learn that the sound must be loud and needs a certain sharpness to make you sing easier and so that your ringing sound is made in a healthy way. The 4 pillars are briefly explained and shown with photos with doodles. The exercises have a great structure and go from simpler to more challenging. You end up singing parts of songs in the basic character and then move on to the variations you want to add to your Speech, Belt, Whisper or Classical sound.
After the voice character chapters you will find a chapter on effects with again photos of singers singing the effects and on which doodles indicate which anatomy is important for the particular effect.
The last 3 chapters are a deepening of the first three chapters. The sound characteristics are explained via acoustics teaching and spectrograms so that you learn to see exactly what you are hearing.
The chapter anatomy shows you which anatomy you need and trains for the sound characteristics as you had already learned in chapter 3, the 4 pillars, in a simple way. With new full-color illustrations you can see exactly what is meant in the photos and doodles.
The last chapter is about physical and mental health. A healthy mind and body ensure a lifetime of good and great use of the voice.
The latter is why I use the Universal Voice Guide initially wanted to write, to make the whole world sing and speak better and easier and so on Getting the most out of your voice .
Have fun with the Universal Voice Guide
Alberto ter Doest