E3 ~ G5 (2 octaves, 1 note and 1 semitone)
Bb3 ~ A4/Bb4
- Strongest vocalist in 4Minute
- Support is an understood concept in her voice allowing good legato to happen
- Able to keep a relaxed sound within her supported range
- Mixed voice has support up to A4/Bb4
- Chest voice shows support down to Bb3
- Able to properly harmonize well when confident with her song choice
- Vocal placement helps projection in the voice
- Transitions to falsetto can happen with a certain degree of smoothness
Points for Improvement
- Vocal registers are uneven and disconnected
- No vocal register is developed well
- Nasality is very present throughout her registers
- Unable to keep a relaxed sound above Bb4
- Inconsistencies happen even within her supported range
- Her throat is often very closed and pushing happens early on in range
- Falsetto is airy and often throaty
- Voice is not agile and often struggles with vocal runs
- Pitch can be an issue and inconsistent depending on the day
- Tongue tension is very present in her upper mixed range
- Lower range below Bb3 often becomes airy and unsupported
- Lower register: Not a well developed nor explored register. Her voice generally becomes airy and lacks projection in this area of her voice, but she at least does not try to force her larynx down to create tone usually.
- Mixed register: Her slightly more developed register where her voice shows most support and the best projection. Good placement and support are lost early on in range around Bb4, where her voice becomes throaty and pushed.
- Upper register: Although a relaxed register, it is generally airy, disconnected and lacks in terms of dynamics. Transitions can at times be sloppy and pitchy.
Possessing an underdeveloped breathing technique, it is no surprise that Gayoon’s lack of R&B-flair also shows in her general attempts at vocal runs. Generally her voice lacks the full help of a developed full sound and due to the lack of breath control, Gayoon seems to struggle to keep a steady control of pitch when attempting vocal runs. Her few attempts result usually in pitchy and sloppy runs where not every note is hit accurately and there is no real connection of flow or rhythm throughout, such as the runs in “길에서“, “24/7“, “Halo” and “Because Of You“.
Debuting in 2009 as a main vocalist of the group 4Minute, Gayoon earned her title as the main vocalist by successfully developing her skill to keep her as the strongest vocalist within her group. A very bright, girly and light voice that generally shines more in her mid to higher range, Gayoon’s fach would best be described as a Light Lyric Soprano.
The lower portion of her chest voice is generally quite relaxed and not strained. Gayoon is not a vocalist who artificially tries to alter her tone in her lower range by pushing down her larynx and instead accepts that her voice naturally gets quieter and softer in sound as she descends in range. The support of her lower range is usually limited to B3/Bb3, where her voice still keeps a certain amount of stability as well as tone and support, such as in “애국가” and “님은 먼곳에“. Below Bb3, her voice begins to lose tone and support, resulting in a more shaky sound and airiness generally takes over with a lack of true projection, such as the A3’s in “늴리리야“, G#3’s in”If I Were A Boy” , F#3’s in “Yuki No Hana” and and the E3 in “님은 먼곳에“.
Her mixed voice range is where Gayoon’s voice finds most comfort, projection and stability. Within the range from C4 ~ A4/Bb4, her voice generally projects well and she’s able to keep support with a considerable amount of a relaxed sound output. She has shown in numerous occasions that she can keep a supported sound up to the top of that range, such as the A4’s in “No. 1” and Bb4’s in “애국가” and “마음이 다쳐서“, where her voice is mostly more opened and with little to no pushing, she’s able to maintain her larynx stable and throat relaxed. She has also shown that this might not always be a consistent occurrence and at times she may push her sound out with her throat even within her supported range, such as the A4’s in “Why Not“. Above Bb4, it seems that Gayoon does not fully understand how to keep her throat opened and generally pushes the sound out by closing her throat around her larynx and keeping tension in order to produce to sound. This results in a very constricted, less projected and inwardly placed voice as opposed to an opened, resonant and amplified sound. Examples can be heard in the B4’s of “늴리리야“, C5 of “24/7“, C#5’s of “거울아 거울아” and “Heart To Heart“, D5’s in “미쳐 (Crazy)” and E5 in “Pinocchio“, where her throat becomes very tight and the sound loses tone, color and the tongue generally tightens up the back of her throat, creating a compressed and limited amount of volume output.
One of her least explored registers is her falsetto register. Differently from a well trained Soprano, Gayoon did not develop a fully connected head voice throughout her training years and instead resorts to a more disconnected and softer sounding falsetto instead. This usage of falsetto generally results is less projection and more air, with less dynamics to work with. The excessive air present in her falsetto register can potentially irritate her vocal cords and does not allow for her to fully control the upper part of her voice, such as the E5’s and F#5’s in “추운 비” and the G5’s in “12:30“. This airy approach to the upper part of her voice can often sound pretty but neglects a fully developed voice able to perform in many different sounds and dynamics, limiting the full potential of a truly developed and connected head voice. The airiness can also result in sloppiness when it comes to transitions and cause her to become pitchy and lose her stability, such as in “얼음꽃“.
Apart from her generally underdeveloped voice, her placement is mostly located in her nose, causing her sound to lack true amplitude and resonance and become muffled and blocked. Her inconsistency in breath control can also result in pitch issues throughout performances as well as issues with transitions and control. Gayoon can at times, within a reasonably narrow range, produce a desirable amount of support in order to control her voice, but when taken out of that range she’s unable to create different dynamics with her voice, losing power in her upper mixed voice, volume and projection in her lower range and connection in her upper register. These flaws in her vocal technique could eventually lead to vocal damage and cause her to lose range and not be able to sing with the same instrument as she does not, causing potential health risks for her vocal cords.
Perhaps not debuting as a member of a vocally centered group but more of a dance-pop group kept Gayoon from fully developing her craft and technique over the years. Perhaps not being given the right amount of time, training, focus or even opportunities to develop herself as a solo vocalist also took a toll on the final result of her as a vocalist today. Whatever the reason might be, Gayoon’s main focus in order to keep a long career as a vocalist and entertainer should be to go back to the basics and focus on breathing technique as well as relaxing and allowing less tension in her voice to truly develop her voice to its full potential.
Although not heavily influencing her overall skill as a vocalist, Gayoon is not a very risky vocalist. She does not attempt hard vocal runs, melodic changes or tries to make songs too different from the original. She generally simplifies songs as much as possible and sticks to the original melody line as she attempts to sing through them as opposed to focusing on making it overly different. Her best vocal skill is that she is able to control her pitch and keep a substantial amount of vocal dynamic control and an ear for pitch by harmonizing well with others when confident about her vocal part, such as in “If I Ain’t Got You“.
Label (Type of Vocalist)
M Vocalists: Mid-Range Vocalists
Best Vocal Performance(s)
Analyzed by Ahmin (Kitsunemale)