Weekly Teaching Tip – July 3, 2017
by Tricia Grey
Using the creak (also known as vocal fry) is a good way to find “just enough and not too much” vocal fold compression. This can help encourage a coordinated transfer from TA dominant fold activity to CT dominant fold activity – in other words, a smooth, unbroken vocal line from the lowest notes to the highest notes of your range. In order to creak or fry successfully you have to be relaxed and you must be singing at a moderate volume. Singing too loudly or pushing air will cause coughing or tickling of the throat. To find the creak, think of the sound an old creaky door makes opening on rusty hinges. Then on MM, slide gently upward as if you are asking a question. Then, try exercises such as a five-tone “mum” starting in the lower register, first with some creak, and then do them again, eliminating the creak.
The creak is also used to add texture and emotion to singing.