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Wouldn’t you love to know exactly which songs suit your voice the best?
We all know that moment when you’re singing in front of your friends, and all of a sudden you’re straining to reach notes that seem impossibly difficult.
On the other hand, some songs seem to come naturally to us.
This is all due to vocal range.
How would you like to know exactly what your vocal range is?
Today, we’re going to discuss what exactly is a vocal range, and 6 steps to finding what your personal vocal range is.
More than that, we’re going to discuss a fantastic tool that can actually help you expand that range.
Let’s get started!
Exclusive Bonus: Click here to download The 8 Secret Singing Tips, which is a PDF resource guide that covers some great advice to help you improve your vocals instantly.
Vocal Ranges: What Do They Really Mean?
To understand vocal ranges, we need to understand some basics of music.
When you’re looking at a piano, the same seven notes (A to G) are simply repeated over and over. Every time they repeat, that’s called an ‘octave’. For example, from the lowest A to the next A on the piano is one octave.
To identify which octave a note stands in, numbers are added. For example, the lowest A on the piano is also called A0, the next would be A1, etc.
The range from the lowest note to the highest note that a person can comfortably sing is called their vocal range.
Let’s discuss each of the most commonly used vocal ranges, from high to low.
We’ll see which notes they include, and relate it to some singers that you might be familiar with.
Soprano: B3 to G6
Soprano is typically the highest range for a female voice. A soprano’s highest note may be anywhere between C6 and G6, which is really high!
In this vocal range, you’ll find singers like Celine Dion and Mariah Carey.
Mezzo-Soprano (Alto): G3 to A5
Contralto: F3 to F5
This is the lowest female vocal range, and is actually somewhat uncommon. Examples of contraltos include Adele, Amy Winehouse, and Cher.
Tenor: C3 to B4
This higher male voice is typically a very small range, although not ever tenor fits into those specific notes. Some may be able to go lower, while others are actually able to reach higher.
You’ll recognize Freddie Mercury, Steven Tyler, Michael Jackson, and Justin Timberlake as well-known tenors.
Baritone: G2 to G4
This is the most common male vocal range.
However, that doesn’t make baritones ordinary by any means. Just think of Elvis Presley, Dean Martin, John Lennon, John Mayer, or Michael Buble.
Bass: D2 to E4
Bass singers can hit some of the lowest notes that are humanly possible. Some bass singers can even hit notes lower than a cello can play!
There are fewer popular bass singers, but some names include Johnny Cash, Louis Armstrong, and Larry Graham.
6 Steps to Finding Your Ultimate Vocal Range
So, now it’s time to find your ultimate vocal range!
Where do you fit in with the terms above?
Let’s find out!
1. Notice your natural speaking tone
We normally don’t pay attention to the notes we use to speak. However, that’s exactly what I want you to do right now. Say a few words, your name for example, in a normal speaking tone for you. Pay attention to the notes you use.
More or less, you’ve just found your comfortable middle note.
2. Starting in the middle, move up
Vocal exercises will seem silly. Get past that notion, and start this exercise.
Starting from the note you just identified, begin moving your voice up and down, almost like the sound a police siren makes.
Little by little, climb up on the notes until you find it noticeably uncomfortable for your voice. Don’t push yourself to go higher if your voice is struggling.
3. With the same method, go low
Go back to your middle note that we started with, and now start working your way down. Again, move your voice up and down like a police siren. Try to follow the notes on a piano, if you have access to one.
And, just like with the high notes, don’t push yourself to go lower than you’re comfortable with.
4. Try different vowel sounds
To truly test out your range, we’re going to do a similar exercise, but with different vowel sounds. Starting in the middle again, try humming the notes, then open your lips to make an ‘ah’ sound.
Now, start moving up each note individually. Go slowly, using this same humming to open ‘ah’ sound method for each note. If you’re having trouble finding the right notes, try using a piano or a piano app to guide your voice as you go.
After a few notes, change that ‘ah’ to an ‘ee’ sound. Hum to open ‘ee’ for a one or two more notes.
Now, change to an ‘oo’ sound. As you get to the top of your range, alternate between the vowel sounds, and see where you start to lose comfort with each one.
Once you’ve identified the top of your range, follow this same method to work your way down from the middle.
5. Find out what notes you’re singing
Once you’ve found your highest and lowest points, try to identify what notes those actually are. If you don’t have access to a piano, many piano apps will tell you the exact note. Make sure the octave number is included!
Record these notes: that is your vocal range.
6. Find the voice type that suits you best
Out of the 6 vocal ranges that we discussed above, which one do you find yourself coming closest to? Likely, the notes that you recorded above don’t fit exactly into any of the vocal ranges.
Relax. That’s normal!
Each individual vocal range is different.
So, find where the majority of your range falls in the categories above. That’s your vocal range!
Can Your Vocal Range be Expanded?
Now that you know what your actual vocal range is, the question is: can it be improved?
I’m about to introduce you to a fantastic tool that can not only expand your vocal range, but make you a better singer in general!
I’m talking about Christina Aguilera’s MASTERCLASS.
Within this course are 23 video lessons from Christina Aguilera herself. She’ll teach you how to sing better, protect your voice, and, yes, expand your vocal range.
I’m going to give you a sneak preview of this incredible course.
In lesson 5, Christina talks about range.
Within that lesson, there is an extremely useful tool called a ‘Range Finder’.
Using your computer microphone, you’ll be guided through the steps of finding your own vocal range.
Once you know the notes that you are able to sing, you get to download an audio file that is personally made for you.
Here are some screenshots of what the process looks like:
This warm up file will guide you through different vocal exercises, similar to the ones that we used above.
The purpose of these exercises?
To get you more comfortable in your natural range, and to expand it!
Some students of this course have reported increasing their vocal range by half an octave, or more!
So, are you ready to expand your vocal range, and improve your singing voice in general?
If so, I highly recommend you check out Christina Aguilera’s MASTERCLASS.
Let’s get singing!