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Sam Smith - Vocal Feedback from an IVA Master Teacher

We asked IVA Master Teacher, Linda Tomkinson thoughts about Sam Smith's acoustic version of Latch, here's what she had to say about his voice:

This is probably one of the most beautiful male voices I've heard, especially in the pop genre. I can honestly say I love everything about his voice. His emotion, his style, etc.

However, as a professional technical voice coach, I ask myself, "What would I do if this voice came walking into my studio?"

I may want to deepen his connection and even out his middle and top voice more to better match the bottom. For you IVA teachers out there, I'd call what he is doing in this song a gradual flip in the 2nd passage. In other words, I would tell him: You are thinning out too quickly as you ascend to your head voice.

How would I go about doing this? I would probably start with a bright (front) vowel like a bratty (pharyngeal) Nae to increase connection, then move to a dark (back) vowel like Nuh to add depth to the connection, the bright (front) vowel established. I would probably keep the Nuh slightly bratty (pharyngeal) for a little bit, then move toward finished sounds.

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