Did you get anywhere with this? Loads of great feedback ideas in here.
I’m trying to address this myself. I have a few tips that might help and it might be useful if you’re still pursuing this to bounce ideas and feedback off each other…
So first thing I’ve found is Compression on the way in. I’m not printing it, but it just helps to keep things quite smashed on the headphones so that I don’t overreach when I get quiet. Its the perfect solution for the variation in volume. I got a UAD and put the 76 and 2a in line, plus the Pultec EQ. That makes a big difference because I can cut out the frequencies that again push and pull my voice and add tension, instead of letting me relax. I have other little personal tricks that help my shit voice to sound better in my chain. Tight reverb helps me personally as well.
The best way to find your personal settings is to take what you record and put the same EQ and Compression etc onto the recorded track. I don’t print the compression etc so that I can keep improving the sound to my ears. I’m looking for something that helps me give a better performance, so this is perfect to keep tweaking the inputs.
Getting the UAD for the live plugins was a game changer personally. There are ways to get similar results, by having like a dual input with one recording no latency and no FX and another with vst plugins that you can hear instantly. It has a small latency whatever you do, but you can get very usable results. I can’t remember exactly how to do it because I learned it after getting UAD of course.
For the energy, I did vocal lessons recently (before corona cut them off) and I was doing ‘Primal Singing’. What it sounds like you want to deliver is something along these lines. Generally you have your chest and head voice, plus the whistle etc. Primal focuses on the natural noises to understand these registers easier. Its noises that we would make in nature, so Whinging puts you in the chest voice. If you think about delivering parts of your vocal with a whinge it kind of accesses the power naturally and it sounds more honest I guess. Its emotional maybe? For head voice its Whimpering. So basically if you think about crying the lyrics, again its accessing the more honest part of your voice. Beyond these you can access Yelling and Sighing, lower and higher respectively and they’ll put you somewhere in the registers without having to learn to sing.
For engaging some more emotions, there’s little tricks like physical exercises. I find that shaking assertively can engage some emotions and energy. Particularly my arms. That’s hard to describe though and I haven’t worked out the best physical exercises to work on. Nobody seems to know either. I think that sit-ups might be the worst thing for vocals, because they end up tightening the diaphragm, but I just don’t know.
And other than that, scales are crap but they can help to warm up. You might find that you have limited time to get something out before these energies dry up, so you might need to keep practising to sustain them.
I probably have a heap more tricks, but I keep forgetting. This is where I think that working together in like a dual mentor type thing might help. I certainly need regular guidance and outside perspective with mine.