How to stop “scooping” or reaching up to high notes.


Stop reaching for high notes!

Here’s a simple solution to stop scooping or reaching up to high notes. Practice first by putting an “m” or “n” in front of an open vowel too which you are scooping. Tune the “m”, and then open to the vowel.

For instance, if you’re scooping up to a note on the word “outside”, then practice first singing “mmmmoutside”. The key is to be sure that your “m” is in tune before you open to the “ah” sound of “outside”.

Get in tune quickly on the “m” or “n”. Try to shorten the time it takes to tune up the “m”. Work your way to singing “ON the pitch” (no scoop) on the “m” or “n”.

After you get rid of the scoop on the “m”, then try going straight to the open vowel (“ah” in the case of this example) in tune, ON the pitch.

Your listeners will be grateful!

Happy Singing!!

Eric Bruner


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2 thoughts on “How to stop “scooping” or reaching up to high notes.

  1. anonymous

    I was browsing through your website and this blog and wanted to ask you a very specific question. To give you a bit of my background, I am mostly a self taught singer. I have been purchasing and experimenting with various vocal programs and books and I have been doing a specific nice book called ‘Set your voice free’ by Roger Love which helps in accessing the ‘middle voice’ that is supposed to have a thicker sound to it. However, even though I can sing in middle voice, I feel my voice doesn’t have that power and range I am looking for. That ‘belt’ sound. Middle voice helps me hit higher notes with lesser strain but not with more power, if you understand what I mean. How do I take it from here and develop a more powerful tone? Middle voice is semi-falsetto and semi full voice, in my definition and from what it sounds like. How do I make it full- full voice? And also, if you could suggest some ways to improve head voice range.

    Thanks a lot and keep writing these great articles.

    1. Sing With Power Post author

      Building strength in the voice is more of a stamina process than a push process. Specifically, you will want to do isometric exercises to build strength, which for a singer means holding notes out – usually best done with a well-balanced vibrato.

      You mentioned that you were getting some good balances in the middle voice, but no power. Try spending a little time in the middle by holding out notes with vibrato. BE SURE you’re holding the notes out with a comfortable, free sound. It doesn’t have to be loud at first. Let it build over time. Let louder or bigger notes flow out, don’t push them against the throat.

      Here is a page from my website which has a video about a couple of topics, including singing with power:


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