The user unacceptable love asks: How do you avoid singing through your nose?
“I sing really good. I’m doing a recording soon actually! But I tend to sing out of my nose and it has a “nasaly” sound to it. So how do I avoid this sound?”
The bottom line is that your swallowing and/or bearing-down muscles think they’re helping you sing, so they are closing your throat and thereby sending the sound into the nasal cavities… but you want to know what to do about it, so…
Because you’ve got the recording coming up, I’ll give you a couple of temporary “patches” to help get those swallowing/bearing-down muscles to let go, which should then give you a less nasally sound. The things I’m going to suggest aren’t necessarily going to give you perfect finished sounds, but they should at least get you into the ballpark. Habits are hard to break, but we have to start somewhere!
First of all, if you drop your jaw into the higher notes, that will deactivate the swallowing muscles quite a bit, so that’s an easy fix on the high notes, especially on the high notes that are held out.
The next thing you can try is to make a “dopey” sound, almost dorky (like Barney the dinosaur) but say a dopey “gug” “gug” “gug” sound. It will sound a bit tubby. Now, the places in the songs that you think you sound especially nasal, practice by replacing the words of the song with that dopey gug sound, so you’ll sing the song but you’ll change all of the words to gug. Do this so that you get the feeling of singing with a lowered larynx (voice box). Once you get used to this lowered larynx feel, sing the words again, keeping in mind the more stable position of the larynx that the gugs gave you.
Finally, try plugging your nose when you sing. Sometimes plugging your nose will give you some immediate feedback as to how the sound is being directed there. Just try not to sound nasally when you sing with your nose plugged. You’ll probably feel the tone shift to coming out of the mouth like when you speak, instead of going into the nasal cavities. For some people this works quite well.
Hopefully one or more of these will give you a little help until you can find a good teacher to work with long term.
Eric Bruner Vocal Studios