Head voice is a mysterious part of the voice for many singers. Many singers refer to it as their “falsetto” voice, but the two are very different. Falsetto is an airy, weightless sound made by a very loose connection of the vocal cords. Head voice, on the other hand, is a weighted sound based on proper vocal cord closure. The main difference between head voice and falsetto is tone. Falsetto has little to no tone. Head voice can be full of tone.
When seeking to find your head voice, you need to approach it in this manner:
1) Understand that you already have a head voice – you just haven’t found the correct way to access it. Too many singers believe that they just don’t have a head voice at all. That is completely untrue! You have a head voice, you just have to “find” it!
2) Understand that it can take some time before you find your head voice. I was lucky and discovered mine in a few days. For some people, it can take weeks to months.
Now that you have a proper understanding, let’s start unpacking how to find your head voice.
I think the easiest way to find your head voice is by doing lip rolls. Lip rolls automatically aid you in getting the correct amount of vocal cord closure, allowing you to access your head voice in a relatively easy manner. I have placed a video of the lip roll exercise in an article about vocal weight – check it out to see the example.
Now many people go on to say the sound they make with lip rolls is too light to be head voice. However, the people that say this either have only: 1) just discovered their head voice, or 2) discovered their head voice and have not trained it. Keep in mind that your head voice will be weak when you first discover it because you have never trained it before! It will sound similar to falsetto at first, but trust me – with a few weeks practice you will begin to tell the difference between the two.
Another way to access your head voice with more vocal weight is to practice exercises using vocal compression. Vocal compression will bring up more energy into your head voice so that you can feel how it differs from falsetto.
Finding your head voice is relatively simple once you get down the proper techniques. Start with lip rolls and practice them – and seek to master them. They are a critical step in helping you find your head voice. They can also help you develop your head voice.
What are your experiences with finding your own head voice (or not finding it)? I would love to hear from you!