How many octaves do you sing? Do you wish you could sing more notes? In this video, I’m telling you The Truth About Vocal Range.
THE TRUTH ABOUT VOCAL RANGE
In this video, I’m gonna tell you The Truth About Vocal Range. Well, what is My Truth and what can probably be yours as well. Vocal range, octaves, high notes, low notes, registers, voice types… It’s all in there. Woot, woot!
HOW MANY OCTAVES SHOULD WE SING?
One fact is that we are not equal. Our bodies are different, the way we function is different. The truth is that few of us have the ability to sing like Michael or Freddy or Mariah. It is true for their voice agility and it is also true for their vocal range.
Think about it, Michael 4 octaves and a few notes, Freddie 4 octaves and a few notes, Mariah 5 octaves and a few notes. I just wanna say Wow ! Don’t you ?
But what if I told you that singing 2 and ½ or 3 octaves was already great ? Yes, it is the truth, as long as you master those 3 octaves, you’re good to go. The majority of the pop songs won’t be more demanding than 3 octaves.
A UNIQUE SOUND
And in fact, one of The Truth About Vocal Range is that having a very unique sound and a strong vocal identity in your music is much more important than being able to reach an F5 belting!
The problem is lots of us wanna go higher. We wanna climb the vocal range ladder at no price and we feel very frustrated when we have to admit we can’t. Sometimes it is a matter of training our voice but sometimes it is a matter of what our body allows us to do.
A bass singer may not be able to sing higher than a D above middle C but think about that beautiful unique bass sound in the notes below C3! If you’re into Country, you can go and listen to Josh Turner or Barry White and Isaac Hayes for soul music… those low notes are incredibly beautiful.
LOW RANGE / HEAD VOICE
We forget about our low range. And it’s a pity because developing our low range can give our voice a few extra notes more to sing and, what’s very important, a richer sound.
Plus, we also forget about our head voice, oh, what did you say? Head voice? We tend to think that head voice is for classical music only. Well, think about John Legend when he sings: “And I give you ALL of me, and you give me ALL of you.” (The ALL is in head voice and it’s beautiful because the ears love when the voice changes from registers to rhythm to resonance to strength and projection).
So we all wanna go higher because nowadays it is what we hear, what is streaming on the radio. Sia and her Chandelier for instance. But did you know she sings in a lower key when she performs? Same goes for John Newman and his Love Me Again: in live he sings 3 half steps under the original!
Training our WHOLE range in chest and head voice and learning how to blend them and to do mixed voice will definitely be a big win, better than having 4 octaves range.
WE CAN IMPROVE
Of course, we can improve our range and win some extra notes in the low notes and, depending where we’re at in our singing, maybe a whole octave in the higher range especially if you’re not already using your head voice.
How do we do that? We gotta start in our middle range. This is usually the place where you speak. Because your vocal chords are much more trained in this part of your range. You feel good and it’s easy when you sing in this part of your voice.
So we start there and we sing scales, up and down our range and one half step at a time (semi tone). This is very important: take your time, don’t rush it. You wanna improve and make the best of your voice but you gotta respect it, you’ve gotta be gentle. If you’re not good to your body, it’s gonna react and you’re not gonna like it.
DON’T RUSH IT
Actually, if you wanna sing high and your vocal folds are not ready for it, at one point, it’s gonna hurt, your throat is gonna tightens up and the worst is that it’s gonna remember that when you’re singing that specific note, it has to tighten up. Muscle memory works both ways. It remembers the good gestures and the bad ones…
So you’re singing those scales, stop and go back one or two half steps as soon as you don’t feel comfy. Then, go up again, then go back down. The next day, do it again. Maybe it’s gonna take a few days (or weeks) before you feel comfy in this part of your range. Take all the time you need. Your body will thank you for that!
THE TRUTH ABOUT VOCAL RANGE
You see, The Truth About Vocal Range is that it is more about mastering the notes you’ve been given to sing and stop comparing yourself to others. Compare yourself to yourself from a point A to a point B. Remember your voice is unique, make the best of it.
- How to Sing LOW Notes | 7 Vocal Tips to Master Your Low Range (video)
- How To Know if You’re Using Head Voice? (video)