The BOSS/DGNA’s Vocal Analysis: Hyunmin

Vocal Range

G2 ~ Eb5 (2 octaves and 4 notes)

Supported Range

Bb2 ~ F#4/G4

Voice Type

Baritone

Strengths/Achievements

  • Strongest vocalist in The Boss
  • Lower range maintains support down to Bb2
  • Mixed voice produces very forward and full resonance
  • Support is consistent in his mix up to F#4/G4
  • Has been able to produce resonant G#4’s
  • Falsetto transitions can be done well
  • Able to sing with a natural steady vibrato

Points for Improvement

  • Tends to sing with aspiration and an overly raspy approach
  • Sometimes throat closes a lot in his mix
  • Inconsistent with vowel shapes
  • Lower range does not possess support on G2
  • Becomes throaty and shouty above G#4
  • Falsetto is underdeveloped and not explored
  • Unexplored lower range
  • Development of his registers is quite uneven

Registers

  • Lower register: Considerably unexplored and somewhat under-developed for a baritone. Does well down to C3 with consistency, well placed lower range in the chest but tends to sound unsupported below Bb2.
  • Mixed register: Very consistent and well-developed mixed voice for a baritone. Able to challenge more skilled tenors and able to sing within a tenor range with power and resonance. Tends to sound thick and shouted above G4.
  • Upper register: Most unexplored register in his voice. Tends to sing with a lot of airiness throughout his voice, but that especially becomes true in his falsetto. Transitions are adequate when singing in falsetto.

Agility

Most of The Boss’ repertoire does not require them to sing a challenging number of melismas. With the lack of material and live performance opportunities for them, Hyunmin rarely sings R&B or songs that are heavy on vocal runs. The few times they’ve sung songs with agility, however, he shows an impressive amount of muscle coordination and pitch accuracy, where he’s able to sing well outside his supported range in the center of pitch and still be able to control his voice up and down throughout runs, as heard in “Stand By Me“, “Listen.”

Overall analysis

Originally debuting as a third generation member of Xing, alongside Mika and U-Kiss’ Kevin in 2007, Hyumin went on to debut again in 2010 as the lead vocalist of DGNA, also known by their international name The Boss. Hyunmin’s voice is very thick and raspy, mostly comfortable at a mid-range, and quite heavy in weight. All these attributes earned him his stage name in Xing, Husky. Most likely to be classified as a lyric baritone, he is one of the two baritones in the group alongside Jay. Unfortunately, The Boss is less popular and lesser known internationally and in Korea than in Japan, so they lack a variety of performances in many Korean TV shows centered around singing.

Hyunmin’s lower range is very rarely showcased and seems to lack in development considering he’s a baritone. Mostly being able to showcase very good connection and chest placement down to C3, he maintains consistent support and projection throughout the third octave without much trouble. This can be heard in “Girlfriend” and “비상.” However, due to the repertoire that The Boss sings, Hyunmin mostly sings the choruses of songs and seldom sings the verses where he would be able to showcase the lower part of his range. There’s a good chance that he might be able to maintain support and control in his chest voice below C3. However, the only one time he sang below C3 was the G2 in “Summer Memories“, which lacked connection and became quite muffled. His voice in that one example of him singing in the second octave sounds less comfortable and less developed than desired, but the gap between G2 and C3 was still unknown. However with more material, like his cover of Big Bang’s “If You,” it is possible to hear that his A2’s could potentially be stylistically more whispered, but his phrased Bb2’s maintain very clear tone and ease.

His mixed voice is by far his most developed register and one of the best mixed voices amongst baritones in K-pop. He produces resonance consistently and effortlessly throughout a range in which even many tenors struggle. He’s been able to show that he is able to sing with softness and control of his volume even as high as D4, such as in “Angel“, and F4, such as in “Stand by Me.” Whenever he wishes to, he’s able to open up his mix and on the correct vowel sounds. He’s able to produce very full resonance even as high as G#4. This can be heard in the E4’s in “Dearest“, F4’s in “Love Story“, “Listen“, F#4’s in “We are Together“, “고백“, “Love in the Ice“, G4’s in “夢まであと“, “Listen“, “Lady“, and G#4’s in multipleperformances of “아무도누구도.”

The main issue with Hyunmin’s mix is the excessive push of air added to his natural huskiness, as well as the issues with vowel shapes and diction. The only times he’s been able to show resonance as high as G#4 were on “아무도… 그 누구도”, and many other times he tends to strain notes that high. He shows inconsistency with producing resonance or even keeping support around G4 and G#4, such as in “6.8.12“, “비상“, “Friends” and “Stand by Me.” This is most likely due to his inability to keep an open throat and a relaxed vocal tract when phrasing notes that high, usually only doing well on sustained notes and in the Ah (아) vowel. Above G#4, he’s never been able to stay relaxed and usually becomes very throaty and closed, as heard by the A4’s in “비틀비틀“, C5’s in “Listen” and C#5 in “청혼.”

The raspiness and airiness in his tone are to a degree natural, but he also tends to favor adding that breathy quality to his voice over allowing his vocal cords to fully connect. This causes him to many times lack tone and clarity in his mix and throughout his range. This becomes even more obvious when he transitions into his falsetto, one of his less explored registers. He tends to sing with a very soft approach, unable to produce a head voice. Instead, he only sings with a quiet airy falsetto that at times may be relaxed, such as in “Sad Story“, but as he reaches the top of his range he tends to push his falsetto out with his throat more and more, such as in “Love in the Ice.” This isn’t a problem that’s often heard, as he’d rather mix as high as possible instead of using his upper register.

Hyunmin’s overall musicality is quite well-used and developed. He’s not a vocalist who’s only able to sing loudly, as he’s shown multiple times the ability to sing softly and not push his voice out throughout his range. He’s able to choose the amount of softness and airiness he uses in his singing and tends to place his voice well most of the time. The main issues with his singing lie in the lack of unevenness throughout his registers. He mostly sings only in his mixed voice and rarely does he sing in his lower chest voice or head voice. He lacks connection throughout all his registers and has neglected to develop every single part of his voice equally.

Unfortunately, due to the range of most The Boss songs are written, Hyunmin is unable to show the true extent of his range and his potential. For future improvements, challenging himself to sing throughout a wider range and allowing himself to sing more like a baritone, instead of forcing himself to stay in a tenor range all the time would allow him to better showcase his strengths, as opposed to his weaknesses. For a baritone of his level, to be unable to handle singing in the second octave is very unusual. It’s very likely that he’s able to support lower than he’s shown, he’s just never had the chance to before. Hopefully, he gets the chance to showcase his true vocal ability through more solo work, in such shows as Immortal Song 2 and King of Mask Singer, so that he can establish his name as one of the more skilled idol vocalists in K-pop.

Musicianship

Harmonically, The Boss is a group that performs exceptionally in many areas of music. All of the members have a talent aside from singing, being able to play a number of different instruments. Aside from that, each member is able to hold their own parts in many acapella covers they’ve done. Usually Mika and Hyunmin take the lead, with Jay taking the bass, Injoon beatboxing, and Karam taking the middle or upper harmony. Musically speaking, Hyunmin doesn’t often try to add too many of his musical ideas to his vocal performances. He often chooses to sing the original melody of a song and focuses more on delivering the message of the song, as opposed to adding runs and complicated rhythmic/melodic changes everywhere. He is able to show his own musical ideas here and there though, such as in “Stand By Me.”

Label (Type of Vocalist)

HB Vocalists: High Range Belters

Best Vocal Performance(s)

Analyzed by Ahmin (Kitsunemale)

Advertisements

65 thoughts on “The BOSS/DGNA’s Vocal Analysis: Hyunmin

  1. OMG. I just noticed that most baritone vocalists you analyzed are strong. John Park, Hwanhee… now Hyunmin *^* So far, the only one who is not good is 2PM’s Junho but he is not weak.

    Do you know any other baritone vocalists, aside from KSY?

    Like

    1. Oh my god, you really use that ganteng word as a name? Hahaha

      It is hard to do when male and female as one. Better to differentiate between male and female vocalist

      Like

  2. You guys have been hard at work! Thank you so much for the new analyses. A Competent baritone… I’ll definitely have to check this group out.
    Would you mind giving a hint on who might be next..? 🙂

    Like

      1. Dalshabet is not even in the list and if ChoColat doesn’t make a comeback…considering Melanie is engaged to her boyfriend Matthew, I doubt she’ll have enough material for an analysis so ..she’s also not on the list either. So neither of those, keep guessing lol ;3

        Like

  3. Thanks so much for analyzing Hyunmin! I hope that through this post, more people can be introduced to DGNA. I feel as though they’re very underrated as a group.

    Like

  4. Looking at his registers alone reminded me of Taemin’s, but slightly better his weaker registers and has shown some musicianship. If Hyunmin showed showed down to A2 at least, would that be enough for him to be Competent to Good or even Good considering his mix?

    Like

      1. Oh my god I have been waiting for this! It’s so short so it’s hard to be sure of where his lower range support ends, but he is hitting Bb2’s and A2’s and I’m confident the Bb2’s are supported but the A2’s is hard to tell. I’m mad at myself for never seeing this! Good, now I can feel better re-rating him as proficient to good.

        Like

      2. Glad I could help :Di saw your comment here earlier today and searched through his entire Instagram to find something as a result LOL…was very excited to see this 😀

        Considering DGNA is a strong vocal group (with proficient/good Hyunmin and above average Mika), would you also consider analyzing Injun or Karam at some point? I don’t have as much experience as you, but I feel like they would be at least average…ofc I understand that your list of analyses to be done is getting really long, so no worries if you don’t have time!! (/maybe just tack them on at the end of the list if you do think they’re good?) I’m just curious since I feel like dgna is a great vocal group and unfortunately very under appreciated 😦 it’s nice how your blog recognizes great vocalists even if they might not be getting as much public recognition!

        Here are videos for Injun and Karam btw, to help you assess if they’re worth analyzing (if you think they aren’t, I would be curious to hear that too!)
        Injun: https://instagram.com/p/BeDT9iFFgYr/

        Karam:
        https://youtu.be/gS5BMx-0b-o (how is his high note at the very beginning?)
        https://youtu.be/qu_ApNN7oNA (E.g. his low notes at the beginning, and 2:15ish – sorry I couldn’t find more individual material for karam)

        Thanks! 🙂

        Like

      3. Actually it’s not like I haven’t heard Injun or Karam before and I have had thoughts about Injun, but Karam I ruled him out cause his support always sounded very shallow to me. Injun’s vowels can be closed, he doesn’t lift his soft palate much so his sound doesn’t round out a lot, so he doesn’t produce resonance. He pushes and strains on G#4 for sure. I’d say he keeps support up to F4, F#4/G4 I find questionable. When I say 99.9% of sub-vocalists in K-pop have not learned the basics of breath support, the 0.1% that I have in mind are DGNA’s Injun and former BESTie member Dahye.

        0:10 Bb4, falsetto, lots of tongue. Karam doesn’t sound too shallow but he’s more shallow than not.

        Like

      4. Thanks for giving thoughts, I appreciate it 🙂 Yeah I agree when listening to Karam that he sounds shallow a lot of the time, though he has his moments where I’m like “wow!”. For his falsetto note in Who, it sounded like he was straining at first, but it cleared up a bit later in the note? idk though

        And thanks for the thoughts on Injun! It’s cool to hear that he’s in the 0.1% of sub-vocalists 😀 I agree it sounds like he strains in parts of songs especially since I think stylistically he likes a lot of “passionate belting” haha. In the first instagram vid i linked it sort of sounded like he was running out of breath at times…
        I think I actually like this video of his more, since he shows he can sing more softly too:

        (does he produce resonance on the high head voice notes at the end at all? I’m still learning to recognize resonance :P)

        Also lastly, I’m wondering if these videos might help give more clarity on Hyunmin’s lower register?
        This one’s just studio, but he goes form A2 to G2 I think (it’s super short TT, after Karam’s part at 2:13ish): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T5wVEWi0XlQ
        And here’s a live of a different song at 2:00: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A2_zabym8ZM

        Anyways I’m done spamming haha!!! thanks for reading / listening to these videos
        / analyzing! And if you do end up analyzing Injun, I look forward to reading in more detail! 🙂

        Like

      5. Okay well we getting a little bit excited aren’t we? lol I’ll check the videos. Injun definitely supports, he just doesn’t place his sound or open enough. He also has a really pretty voice. I’m not sure what high head voice notes you were talking about? I didn’t quite hear resonance at all, nor really a head voice. This is what annoys me about using Instagram videos.

        I’m sorry but none of the songs have notes below C3 for Hyunmin.

        Like

  5. Irrelevant to the post but, would you guys analyze Lee Sun Hee? I’m curious if you guys agree with people regarding her as being one of the best vocalists in South Korea.
    Her most recent stages are:

    Like

    1. She’s in our Future Analyses list, redirect any requests to that page. ^ ^ She’s definitely one of the better vocalists outside of the idol world, but not being an idol doesn’t guarantee you being an Excellent vocalists. Soloists still range from weak to excellent, much like idols would. Baek Jiyoung, Navi and Kim Jongkook are examples of less skilled soloists, while The One, Lee Sunhee, Kim Bumsoo and such are examples of more moderately to well skilled vocalists, but I’ve never heard anything from any of them that’d place them at “great.” If that makes sense.

      Like

  6. Seriously, Ahmin, these analyses of yours are so good and thorough, and the quality of their writing keeps getting better, man. You and Frostprincess are so thorough that you spot things that the common vocal instructor would have missed. Some vocal instructors would have classified Hyunmin’s supported range as C3 – G#4 or C3 – G4/G#4, but you spotted Hyunmin’s recurring support and resonance on that one song and his other inconsistencies with G#4s in other songs and his G4s.

    Side note: Literally Taemin 2.0 because of a better mix, lower range and falsetto exactly comparable to Taemin. If Hyunmin was a tenor, his supported range would be Eb3/E3 – Bb4/B4

    Like

    1. If he were a tenor, he’d probably be a good vocalist because I’m sure he would sing below Eb3 and would support down there lol I swear, I’m sure he can support below C3, I just can’t give it to him if I can’t hear it but by the sound of his C3’s, there’s no way that’s where his support ends. It’s quite frustrating and exactly why I ask people to be patient when requesting analyses because material is very important for consistency purposes. I mean Yuju has literally one resonant F5, one resonant F5 won’t make her a good vocalist. Thank you btw, you’re always such a sweetheart.

      Like

      1. You’re so right. With such good technique, he has to support below C3. But like you said, material is crucial. It’s better to give him a rating with what he’s shown (which is documented), than to erroneously classify him better or worse than what he really is.

        Liked by 1 person

  7. What is the rating if a baritone has such analyses :
    1. so well developed with consistency down to E2 , effortless, well placed, actually trained as bass on choir so ya lol
    2. mixed well up to E4 with mask placement and forward projection but sound thicker, little bit shouty, strained above E4, but sometimes supports F4s, mixing with chesty mix and sometimes balanced mix, according to the style of the song (i think this is bad habit or more into style ? dunno) this area is still not that explored well, inconsistent placement on this area sometimes
    3. non airy falsetto and well placed up to E5 and sound thin above that, head voice supported up to C5

    musicality sometimes lack lol but just okay not that bad, run precisely on chest register, but inconsistent, sometimes sloppy, remains neutral larynx and never it high or low, stay on supported area and hate sounds strain lol, transition still on work but not bad, go flat or sharp issues sometimes
    thank u 🙂 actually this is the most well produced vocal analyses blog ever 🙂 so happy found this

    Like

    1. I mean I’d rather hear this said baritone to confirm that all of these things are true. Perhaps competent or competent to good? Awww Im glad you found us too

      Like

  8. Connection between registers is being able to get through each of your registers without any breaks like slide up and down easily. Why does it seem so hard lol?

    Like

    1. That’s one part of it, another one is evenness of tone. Sounding like one voice from the bottom to the top of your range.

      Like

      1. I thought one of Begonces strengths was that she sounded different throughout her registers like dark in her lower register womanly in her mixed register and bright in her head voice or am I confusing something.

        Like

      2. Who said that was true and a strength? I mean Beyonce’s voice is present in all registers and of course ull sound darker in your lower range and brighter in ur head voice, but she sounds even and connected throughout.

        Like

      3. It wasn’t you who said that I can’t remember but thank you clarifying also is it hard to do. It seems so

        Like

    1. I have not heard this new video, I didn’t know he posted this video. I’m glad he’s posting new stuff though. I had to download the video to watch it cause it’s blocked here. The thing is Lim Jaebum is also a baritone, so it’s understandable that they’d be similar vocally. It’s also REALLY frustrating to me how ignorant vocal instructors are about voice types and how they don’t teach it at all, or teach baritones to embrace being baritones.

      Like

      1. I believe the other member is a rapper, Jay, so yea he might likely be one. and oh i see, are Injun and karam weak?

        Like

      2. ok understood, but if one of them happened to be average or above you would analyze them like you did with shinee I’m i right?

        Like

  9. Since his supported range from C3 to G2 is unknown, do you think we found out that Hyunmin was able to support a bit lower than C3, like let’s say Bb2 or A2, would his rating go up to an extent?

    Like

      1. Okay thanks that makes sense now. Also I made another observation that I’m hoping you could explain. I see that Hyunmin is now in the same rating category as Chen but what I’m confused about is how is that so when Chen has a bigger support range. I mean on top of that chen supports lower while being a tenor and hyunmin a baritone. So now assuming you could provide me a fair and reasonable explanation would hyunmin be a bit better or worse than chen?

        Like

      2. The ratings have never had anything to do with the number of notes in a vocalist’s supported range. Hyunmin supports relatively higher than Chen in a baritone voice. Hyunmin has resonant G#4’s and consistently supports G4’s, that means Chen would have to be supporting Bb4 ~ C5 to match him in a tenor tessitura. Hyunmin’s range is good enough for a baritone but his mix is very impressive, while Chen simply has a very exceptional lower range while his mix is good, but not nearly as impressive for a tenor.

        Like

  10. Hey Ahmin I really do appreciate the responses as I’m trying to better my understandings of vocal techniques despite having no knowledge a couple months ago. I respect and impressed at hyunmin having consistent G4’s as a baritone but how much stock can we really put behind the G#4 when it was a rare occurrence in studio song and not any live sound that Im aware of? Also is the overall value of different components of a singers voice the same or consistent among vocal analyzers? For example how would we know what holds more value between all the registers no matter the vocal fach or do certain registers hold more importance/value depending on the vocal fach?

    Like

    1. I’m not putting anything on the G#4 actually. F#4/G4 can be parallel to a tenor with Bb4/B4 which is very impressive in my book, G#4’s are just a bonus that Chen never did. Although there’s something you’re wrong about and should re-read the analysis. The resonant G#4’s aren’t from studio tracks, they’re live from the same song performed in many different occasions but he only gets it right in that one song, which is written on the analysis. Vocal analysts here on this page you mean? No I wouldn’t say fach affects the weight of the registers but some vocal instructors might think pitch is the single most important thing in singing, especially if they’re jazz or bossa nova singers.

      Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

w

Connecting to %s