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Be it short-term or long-term. Is it true that if you use your falsetto on songs for more than those typical "uuhhhhs" and "oohhhhs" to give it a more sentimental/breathy touch, you could damage your voice permanently?

I'm not talking about singing something extremely loud or high like a song by Whitney Houston or the Opera No.2 by Vitas... More like Stevie Wonder or Adele or Bruno Mars.

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I wouldn't think so. There are barbershop tenors that exclusively sing in falsetto. Also isn't the entire song Fantasy by Earth Wind and Fire sung in falsetto? –  Ulf Åkerstedt Sep 29 '12 at 9:09
    
No. Of course not. There are singers who sing in falsetto for their entire careers. These include classical/operatic counter-tenors, and heavy metal singers (but that's a different matter). –  Wheat Williams Oct 1 '12 at 0:34
    
I reckon Barry Gibb would say no. Reports that outlasting the rest of his brothers has anything to do with singing Falsetto are unconfirmed. –  Widor Oct 1 '12 at 11:08
    
Thank you for all the answers so far. It seems that if you know the proper technique and don't push over the limits, it shouldn't be a dangerous thing to do. Uhm, about the countertenor thing... I'm a little bit confused. I thought countertenors were men born with a rather feminine tone in their voice and their register was on the high side, while the ones who sing in falsetto almost (if not) all the time were called Falsettists O.o –  Kobu Oct 2 '12 at 23:01
    
Counter-tenor is a style of singing that is all falsetto, and there are schools where you can be trained to sing in that style. Counter-tenors are men who have a natural baritone or tenor range but learn to sing operatic-style alto and mezzo-soprano in falsetto. Now centuries ago there was also a type of adult male singer called a castrato (look it up) who could sing alto or soprano without falsetto. But the surgical procedure in young boys used to enable that kind of singing in adults has been illegal for a long time, thank goodness, and there have been no castrati for centuries. –  Wheat Williams Oct 3 '12 at 4:36

2 Answers 2

The actual mechanics of the act of singing in a falsetto voice should be understood for starters. This article delves into the specifics:

http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Falsetto

A reputable voice teacher would the wisest choice to develop a falsetto voice while minimizing strain or damage to the vocal chords. To better understand vocal chord structure and vulnerabilities, I've found this article to be very informative:

http://www.drugs.com/health-guide/vocal-cord-disorders.html

I don't know if you are asking in general or for yourself but I hope this information helps answer your question.

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Thank you for your help, miss Kristina. Unfortunately, English is not my first language and I couldn't understand well the first article :( On the other side, i understood most of the second one (let's say 70% of it) and wow, nodules don't sound funny. –  Kobu Oct 2 '12 at 23:06
    
Oh, i forgot to tell... I asked this for a friend since he likes to sing often in falsetto but his teacher(?) told him not to do it (without telling him why) –  Kobu Oct 2 '12 at 23:21
    
Oh wow! I guess the teacher had some concern about it. Best of luck, Kobu! :-) –  Kristina Lopez Oct 2 '12 at 23:24
    
So I told my friend about this and at first he laughed a little (about my curiosity for things) but he thanked me for asking that. Also, he told me that after his teacher told him not to sing in falsetto for third time, he asked the reasond and the teacher practically told him that he could become almost mute, and that such technique sucks because it is a fake voice. I didn't know what to say but I think that was a little extreme and rude as an answer. –  Kobu Oct 3 '12 at 0:52

It depends on how old are you, and how you sing.

Normally it isn't harmful. I know a few people singing soprano (falsetto) for 6, 7 years in boys choir (now they're >21 years old, and still their voice is not any worse). But it can- if singing like this make your throat sore, you'd better stop.

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Any references? –  Matthew Read Sep 30 '12 at 15:28
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Just own 8-year experience –  Jack L. Sep 30 '12 at 15:50
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So your throat got sore from singing falsetto and you permanently damaged your voice? Sorry, when it comes to health personal experience doesn't cut it for me. –  Matthew Read Oct 1 '12 at 18:11
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hey, I'm not an expert! If you have read my post carefully, you'd notice- "normally it isn't harmful". I do not say "It is always safe". If somebody knows HOW to sing properly, he would NOT ruin his voice. And if somebody's throat is sore, that means he/she sings the way he/she should not. –  Jack L. Oct 1 '12 at 18:44

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