Every singer knows that frustration of gasping out the high note and praying it
doesn’t crack. You know you took a deep breath and dropped your jaw, stood up
straight, and still, that money note went out the window! What went wrong?
More than likely you subconsciously backed out of your commitment to it earlier
in the phrase. What do you remember about the very first word of the phrase?
Many times a vocalist will try to conserve the air after inhalation to have
enough for that high note but it doesn’t work that way. Good singing starts before
the inhalation. You must commit your breath flow (exhaling) 100% to that very first
note to have what you need for the high note and end of the phrase. Another
mistake is to “test” the first sound before you commit to the rest of
the phrase. What these tactics signal to the body is confusion about what you
want it to do. Would you drive your car lurching along by hitting the brake then
the gas and back to the brake? Of course not, so don’t breath that way.
If you think of breathing for singing like a continuous unbroken circle of yawning
(relaxed inhalation from the diaphragm), then deep sustained sighing (relaxed exhaling),
all kinds of tension issues should fade away. Your voice teacher can
help you monitor your posture, any body tension, vowel shapes etc., but only
you can teach yourself not to micromanage what the body can do naturally. By
letting go of control, you actually gain mastery of the techniques of making beautiful music!
You’ll learn to love and trust those high notes!