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This Is What Really Happened To Steve-O's Voice

Steve-O has been many things over the years — a stuntman, a clown, a comedian, and now, a YouTube personality. Throughout all of that, however, the jester of "Jackass" has maintained an unforgettable element to his character. 

No, we aren't talking about his self-endangerment or drug use. He (thankfully) kicked the latter of those years ago, and he still loves to put himself in harm's way for the enjoyment of others. Instead, we're talking about Steve-O's iconic voice. With a cadence that sounds like a packet of saltines being blended into a gravel smoothie, Steve-O has become almost as recognizable by ear as he is by eye. 

Most people wouldn't be surprised by this. Steve-O has been known for his excessive drinking, smoking, and vomiting (none of which are particularly good for one's voice) for the bulk of his career. However, you'd be surprised to learn that none of those things are the real reason that Steve-O's voice is so gravely. No, what really happened to Steve-O's voice is much more mundane than you would expect from such a wild personality.

Steve-O's voice is different because of ... how he talks

As it turns out, Steve-O's iconic rasp wasn't born from any illness or mistreatment. Instead, it sounds that way simply because he learned to speak differently from the rest of us. In a now-deleted video posted on his YouTube channel, Steve-O described how he spent years of his life looking for the root cause of his rasp. Eventually, a specialized throat doctor inserted a camera into his throat, and the medical professional noticed that Steve-O used a different throat muscle — instead of his vocal cords, like most people do — in order to form phonetic sounds (per Men's Health).

Oddly enough, Steve-O's throat is apparently in good condition for a man that has been using it incorrectly his entire life. Even so, Steve-O elected to hire a vocal coach to help teach him to use his vocal cords the way they were meant to be used. However, he also said he preferred his natural voice, as it is one of the many iconic things that helped him in his long and storied career. As Steve-O explained, "I don't even know if I want my voice to change. I kind of like getting recognized over the phone — and my girl darn sure doesn't want anything different. But I'm still going to give it hell because maybe I can use it in a more healthy way."