Hi everybody! My name is Justin Stoney and I'm the founder of New York Vocal Coaching here in New York City. Welcome to episode 80 of Voice Lessons To The World, the show where we want to help you as singers by answering your questions from all over.
And I'll give you a chance to ask questions later, but our question for this week comes from Jakob B. in Vienna, Austria. And Jakob writes, "Dear Justin, I liked your videos on the O vowel and the I vowel. I'm wondering if you can do a video on the OO vowel."
So let's look at some characteristics of the OO vowel. OO is a very extreme vowel because it's the headiest of all vowels. It promotes flexibility and helps us build our range better than almost any vowel can.
The reason for this is the resonance is so contained in the head. We've got the narrowest embouchure. The most in the way of the mouth and a pretty high tongue position as well. Two things blocking the exit so that the sound can resonate up in the head.
For you formant fans out there, it's the lowest F1 and the lowest F2. Making this vowel a closed vowel and a dark vowel. All of these factors together make it such a head dominant vowel and help us build our range.
Now in a more pop or R&B setting we don't want to do "yoo" right? We don't say "what's up YouTube", we say "what up YouTube". As a pop star I cannot be bothered to use my lips that much. So with, "With You" by Chris Brown we get something like...
We really drop things down. Another kind of time we would drop it down is when we want to open that embouchure. Maybe even in a legit song, a classical song, one of my favorites "If I Loved You", at the end...
And that smiley, snarly, more nasally resonant OO vowel sometimes happens as well. So that's not all the OOs but just some ideas of how not every OO is created equal. There's a lot of different variety.
And later we're going to do an exercise that helps you to do just that. To extend your vocal range and to build greater flexibility. Because this vowel promotes great flexibility and also maximizes that head resonance. It also builds the headier gears and the lighter qualities to the voice.
So there's so many benefits, but there's also some limitations. Sometimes people's voices are too light and the OO vowel is not the way to go. It's got the least compression of any vowel. And so you might struggle because of that.
It's also the hardest vowel to belt because it's so closed. This is one of the reasons that we have to sometimes modify it a little bit more open on certain occasions. It's just the least powerful vowel overall.
And the idea here is we're going to keep the embouchure the same in that puckered OO all the way up and down. Now I know there's times where we we'll want to modify it but not with this exercise. You're going to stay consistent in the front and then the resonance is going to also stay consistent from top to bottom. That's going to help you even out your registration and also build range up top.
Fabulous work! Way to stay consistent across your range.
So Jacob and all, I'm glad you're enjoying these vowel videos. I know we're going to have some more vowels to come in the future, but today it was awesome to explore head voice's best friend the OO vowel. [Dog howls] [Justin howls at dog]
Or if you'd like to sing in the comfort of your home you can look at our Voice Lessons To The World Vocal Course. This is a 12-part video course that takes you on a singing journey from beginner to master. Hundreds of vocal exercises that you can do at home, or in your car, anywhere you may be. check it out at www.VoiceLessonsToTheWorld.com.