An understanding of the different parts of the throat, and what it takes to actually sing is essential to proper singing technique. The major parts of the voice include the vocal folds, the larynx, salivary glands, and the diaphragm. The vocal folds (commonly known as vocal cords) are a pair of bands of mucous membrane stretched across the larynx. They vibrate, regulating the flow of air from the lungs. The vocal folds are controlled by the vagus nerve which opens them during inhalation, closes them when holding one’s breath, and vibrates them for speech or singing. The larynx is called the voice box because it is a major source of sound in speech. The larynx generates sound when the vocal folds open and close letting air pass in and out. The air from the lungs passes over the vocal cords and the vibrations are modified by the tongue and lips to produce speech. The salivary glands are in and around the mouth and lay directly on the vocal folds themselves. When salivary glands are stimulated, the mouth starts to water and the vocal folds are hydrated and moisturized. When you eat or drink something this process of the moisture reaching and affecting the vocal folds takes about twenty minutes. The diaphragm is the thin, dome-shaped muscle that separates the chest from the abdomen. The diaphragm is the main muscle the body uses to breathe. When the diaphragm moves downward, the lungs expand and pull air into the body. When it moves up, air is forced out of the lungs. Breath is the fuel of the voice, so the stronger th...
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... of Singing: System and Art in Vocal Technique). He thinks that the same rules of eating healthy apply just the same. He also adds that singers should have the habit of high liquid consumption to keep vocal folds moist.
Although some foods and drinks may be better than others when it comes to the soothing of the throat, it seems that not enough scientific studies have been done to prove how it affects the singing voice. Richard Miller may be right that the ideas made by singers are merely superstitions, but it is a question of how much of it is actually true. The writers Dr. Barbara Mathis, Dan Parilis, and Roma Lightsey have drawn from their own experiences of eating and drinking before singing to provide the readers with information that they conclude may be true. Singers will continue to believe these superstitions until further research is done on the subject.
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