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H!P Member Vocal Nodule List/Discussion A conversation about throats and professionalism 18 replies to this topic Started by TicTacAnyone , Nov 22 2016 06:03 AM · 

#1 TicTacAnyone

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Posted 22 November 2016 - 06:03 AM

I figure this is a better discussion to have separately than in release and news threads. I will keep an updated list of H!P members (past and present) who have had vocal nodule surgery sometime in their life after beginning work with H!P.

 

 

Morning Musume:

 

Takahashi Ai, April 2013. (Continued performing in musicals after H!P)

 

 

C-ute:

 

Okai Chisato, June 2016. (Was active in H!P at the time.)

 

 

Angerme:

 

Funaki Musubu, July 2019. (Was active in H!P at the time.)

 

Juice=Juice:

 

Takagi Sayuki, November 2016. (Was active in H!P at the time.)

Inaba Manaka, December 2018. (Was active in H!P at the time.)

 

 

Berryz Koubou/Country Girls:

 

Tsugunaga Momoko, October 2015. No surgery, just acknowledgement of polyps and a short rest. (Was active in H!P at the time.)

 

 

 

What are vocal nodules?

Spoiler



#2 Farrah

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Posted 22 November 2016 - 12:17 PM

Add Momoko to that list I believe.  Can't remember when she got it done but it was this year.

 

I know wota and H!P don't give a crap about talent but it's in these girl's best HEALTH interests to get some better vocal coaches and teach non-damaging techniques.  The fact that I even have to specify a coach needs to teach healthy techniques is bizarre but I've already seen clips of H!P's coaches advising things that damn near no one with a license would be advising.

 

I also think a huge part of what's causing this is girls being forced to sing too far out of their range - note that all of these girls are pretty decent singers, all of their techniques are not bad!  Sayuki and Chisato especially do a lot of things really well when it comes to placing their voice, having a healthy vibrato, etc.  But when they're going for those high belts, oh boy... I mean people acted surprised when Takahashi got nodules but I heard that coming for awhile because girl was sounding straight up strangled any time she was in her higher range (which was pretty much constant since she and Reina basically split those duties).  

 

These girls are not being trained to mix their voice at all and that's a big part of the issue, imo.  Mixing your voice is when you mix some head voice (also known as falsetto) into your chest voice.  It thins it out and takes weight and strain off of your vocal cords when singing high notes.  When you hear the big names belting (Mariah, Whitney, Christina, etc) - that's a mix.  Sometimes a very chesty mix, but a mix none the less.  Nothing will kill your voice faster than hitting all your high notes with a full chest voice.  Even a natural soprano has no business hitting anything above a C5 without some mix going on but you will constantly hear H!P girls literally SCREAMING them.  I have noticed Airi trying to employ a bit of mix in her voice for the last year or two but she is literally the only one I see purposely utilizing this extremely crucial technique.

 

Idols are not considered to be advanced singers, but idol music frequently requires advanced singing.  It's usually very high pitched for moe factor, a lot of songs in this particular era of H!P have very little time for breathing, there are lots of rapid transitions between vocal registers. It's basically asking for vocal damage to throw these girls out there singing some fairly complex music without complex training.  

 

I mean, it's tough - just because someone is trained to do something it doesn't mean they'll "get it".  Even talented singers struggle to control the muscle and make it do what they want it to do. It's not like learning to do push ups.  You're learning to manipulate a body part you can't even see from the outside.  H!P probably sees it as a waste of money.  They don't want to spend years paying for vocal training that shows incremental improvement when they only plan to get a few years out of a girl anyway.



#3 arcobaleno

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Posted 22 November 2016 - 01:55 PM

I have noticed Airi trying to employ a bit of mix in her voice for the last year or two but she is literally the only one I see purposely utilizing this extremely crucial technique.

 

Same here. If you listen to her solo version of Kanashiki Heaven that's on..... one of the singles, you can hear how her belting on the highest parts of the chorus (and even in general) has a bit of that soaring-esque quality that a voice with some mix has. It actually took me by complete surprise when I first listened to it, because while Airi is already basically the best singer in H!P by far, I didn't think she had actually advanced that far, to even know or do mix.

 

But I was impressed. She wasn't even doing it was well as she is now.

 

Honestly, T&C were the last great group, vocals-wise. You had Atsuko, who was extremely well-rounded, and then goddamn Dragon Slayer Belt Queen RuRu, who no one has been able to match since.

 

But T&C weren't even what I'd consider an idol group at all. If anything, they were just an actual girl group, focusing on the artistry, much like how MM started off as.

 

Anyway, I just wanted to comment on that part in particularly; overall, I 100% agree with the rest of what you said.



#4 Thea

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Posted 22 November 2016 - 03:14 PM

Add Momoko to that list I believe.  Can't remember when she got it done but it was this year.

 

May have been last year.



#5 Farrah

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Posted 22 November 2016 - 03:45 PM

 

Add Momoko to that list I believe.  Can't remember when she got it done but it was this year.

 

May have been last year.

 

 

My perception of time continues to be terrible LOL.



#6 Myst

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Posted 22 November 2016 - 05:49 PM

Didn't Ayaya have it too?

#7 Zoe

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Posted 22 November 2016 - 06:22 PM

Didn't Ayaya have it too?


She had TMJ.

#8 TicTacAnyone

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Posted 22 November 2016 - 10:42 PM

I forgot Momoko had nodules! She didn't end up having surgery on them, but I added her to the list with a note. I imagine she'll have to use her voice a lot as a teacher (especially a stronger voice for younger kids), so she may still have this surgery in the future.

 

Thanks all!

 

 

I think, Farrah, you made a point I just realized yesterday. It's about more than just their singing.... it's literally their health. H!P is becoming a patient factory for these surgeons.



#9 Meikochi

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Posted 24 November 2016 - 01:34 AM

Didn't Ozeki Mai also had problems ?

#10 TicTacAnyone

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Posted 26 December 2018 - 10:28 PM

Manaka has just been announced to have nodules and had surgery... so she's added to the list!



#11 Myst

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Posted 27 December 2018 - 07:28 AM

Why do I feel like someone else has had it since 2016's last post?

Karin maybe? I know she had bells palsy but she had a rough mid 2017- mid 2018. I know there was something else the matter with her.

#12 Saya

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Posted 27 December 2018 - 04:02 PM

Didnt Karin have a foot thing?

#13 Farrah

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Posted 27 December 2018 - 04:54 PM

Why do I feel like someone else has had it since 2016's last post?

Karin maybe? I know she had bells palsy but she had a rough mid 2017- mid 2018. I know there was something else the matter with her.

 

Karin didn't get nodes, but she got a form of vocal fatigue called functional dysphonia.  It causes a whispery, hoarse voice that can't be projected or pleasant to listen to.   It's usually hard to pin down what causes it, but in Karin's case the doctor's diagnosed her with vocal cord inflammation.  Honestly, she doesn't have terrible technique from what I've heard, so I'd bet on it being a result of overuse of the voice since this happened mid-tour.

 

That's one element with the H!P girls that I think plays a huge part in this - they tour so much and very frequently do both a day and night show at each stop.  Even good technique often can't stand up to such an exhaustive schedule, your vocal cords are a muscle so using them (even using them correctly) means you also have to rest them or they'll get inflamed.  

 

Manaka doesn't surprise me - the combination of jpop idol style singing (which is inherently bad for vocal health, regardless of how you feel about it) + asthma is a lot, a lot, a lot of strain on the vocal cords.  Listening to Manaka sing, I'm not surprised she got nodes. 



#14 DonJuan

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Posted 10 July 2019 - 11:30 AM

Add Funaki Musubu to that list. http://www.helloproj...com/news/10657/



#15 TicTacAnyone

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Posted 03 August 2019 - 03:07 AM

Add Funaki Musubu to that list. http://www.helloproj...com/news/10657/

 

Thanks, added to the list.

 

I'm surprised Maa-chan hasn't developed nodules with how her voice has been sounding lately. Anyways, it's always sad when you have the "good" singers get these. in fact, it's pretty much only "good" singers... 



#16 Farrah

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Posted 03 August 2019 - 09:45 AM

I'm surprised Maa-chan hasn't developed nodules with how her voice has been sounding lately. Anyways, it's always sad when you have the "good" singers get these. in fact, it's pretty much only "good" singers... 

 

I feel like a big part of that is, well, beyond H!P's trainers and studio guys encouraging flat out bad singing techniques, the good singers end up doing SO much heavy lifting.  When only one or two people can handle the difficult lines, those two people get run into the ground.  It's no wonder girls like Erina or Ayumi don't get nodes - they have horrible vocal habits, but their lines are short and easy so they aren't putting their vocal cords through the grinder.  I really think every group should have at least 3 or 4 decent vocalists so the weight is more evenly distributed, but that's never going to happen lol.  Platinum-era with Ai/Reina/Gaki/Eri was the perfect balance imo.  I'm glad Ruru was added to J=J because I feel like that has made life a lot easier for Karin and Sayuki.



#17 DonJuan

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Posted 03 August 2019 - 10:55 AM

Platinum-era with Ai/Reina/Gaki/Eri was the perfect balance imo. 

 

Yet Ai still got vocal nodules. But that aside, I totally agree. I'm surprised neither Reina nor Sakura got them, though. Reina has had a weird technique for pretty much all of her career and after Ai's graduation she carried the group vocally for 3 years. Sakura is still in and I wouldn't be surprised if she developed them as well.



#18 Banana

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Posted 03 August 2019 - 11:30 AM

There are other factors besides poor technique that can lead to the development of nodules (singing too much outside of one’s natural range, for example). Also, some people may simply be more delicate and become damaged more easily than others.

#19 Farrah

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Posted 03 August 2019 - 01:08 PM

There are other factors besides poor technique that can lead to the development of nodules (singing too much outside of one’s natural range, for example). Also, some people may simply be more delicate and become damaged more easily than others.

 

And god knows they like to keep these girls in the tippy top of their range (or beyond) at all times lol honestly, a lot of idol songs feel like they're written for a totally different type of singer than ends up singing them.  And unfortunately, they don't seem to get much advice on how to sing these uncomfortably high songs without screaming their lungs out.  No one's voice can withstand that type of abuse when it's happening at a constant rate.

 

I was never surprised by Takahashi's nodes because she was always straining out of her range and screaming.  It's really a shame, she had a pleasant vocal tone that really defined the Platinum era but she abused the hell out of her instrument.  You listen to this and it's like... yeah, not surprised lol.  Ai could've turned out a lot better if she'd ended up in a Avex girl group or something.  The bare bones of a good singer are there but the talent wasn't fostered by H!P at all, and a lot of bad vocal behaviors were encouraged.