Watch the SECTION 4 online guitar lesson by Karan Andrea from Guitar Player Wanted: Vocals A Plus
Alright, now that you know what's happening with your vocal cords when you are singing, I am going to talk about what goes on with your larynx. What should be going on with your larynx is - nothing. Really. It should not be moving up and down in your neck trying to accommodate pitch. You now know this isn't necessary because pitch is a horizontal movement in the cords. Your larynx should stay in the same position it's in when you speak in a normal, relaxed voice. This is simply an anatomical truth, but it is one that must be taught, since most of us don't instinctively sing or speak this way. So it is taught as a technique, which has been around for a very long time.
So, here's the deal - you have to be able to feel the difference between a relaxed, or low-larynx position, and a high larynx. Guys have a bit of an advantage because you have an Adam's apple, so you can actually see the position of your larynx. Women just have to learn how to feel where their larynx is and know what's right, but either way, it's not all that difficult.
When your larynx rises, you can feel your throat tighten up, and you can feel the bulk of your larynx partially blocking your air flow. With some basic exercises to help you train your larynx to stay in its natural position, you will begin to conquer your break, and you will be singing comfortably and correctly all the way through your range. You will find yourself hitting notes you never knew you had in you. These notes may not be very strong at first, but as you work at it, they will get stronger, with better volume and fuller tone.
That's it. When you combine these two concepts - the zipper (from Section I), and the natural larynx position - you have the holy grail of singing. Seriously. Once you master them, you've conquered what many, many singers - even professional singers raking in big bucks on major tours - haven't figured out.
Of course it takes some practice to get fully coordinated and build muscle memory, but this is the foundation for all the rest of it. You will have the foundation to blend your chest and head voice into a nice, strong mixed voice, which disguises and minimizes your break.
But remember, you are dealing with very small muscles and delicate tissues, so don't get all gung-ho and lock yourself in your room doing these exercises for hours on end. Just like building the dexterity and strength in your fingers, it takes time, but it will come, and remember that rest is just as important as practice. To build endurance, coordination and confidence, you may need to start slow. Maybe 10 minutes of exercise and 20 minutes of rest. Pay attention to your voice. If it fatigues easily, let it rest.
The cool thing is that you will experience some immediate improvement that, for some of you, may be all you want or need. Some of you may want to do more work, and that's great. There are lots of resources available - you can contact me directly, you may look for other training programs, or you may decide to find a good vocal coach. Whatever path you take, you already have the foundation you'll need.