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question about tone/pitch of my voice.

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Joined: 15 years ago
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Hi everybody I was hoping to get some good answers for this question.

I'm a male vocalist and i have a deep voice when I speak so I got this kinda bassy low end to my voice when I talk (sounds very lazy and effortless). Before when I tried singing in Karaoke and stuff I would find any male average songs hard to sing because my voice tends to be lower than average.

I started speech level singing training 3 weeks ago and so far I'm enjoying it. What I found interesting about from my teacher is the difference between pitch and tone.

Before I took all these lessons, when I sing in karaoke or even in my car I would try to sing like the songs I hear on the cd. Definitely I know I'm on the right key / pitch with the song but because of low voice I find high parts very hard and I just strain myself. So when my teacher started to teach me how to sing some songs I do what I usually do and try singing the same key/pitch as the song. Instead, she told me I was singing an octave higher which I found odd.. I mean to me it sounds like I'm on the right octave and right key but she claims I'm singing an octave higher.

So when the teacher tells me to sing I sing in my speaking low tone voice now and of course then I find all the songs are easy to sing even the high parts because it sounds like im doing it an octave lower (my speaking voice) but she says im actually singing the same octave as the singer in the song but its just that my tone of my voice is low but not the pitch/key im singing at.

Like I said when I try sing at the tone of an average singer which she claims (for me, im singing an octave higher) i definitely strain when i go high and can't go too high.. my larynx definitely moves up..

But when I sing with my speaking low voice it sounds like i'm an octave lower than the original song but she said im on the right key/pitch it is just that my tone was born low.

I feel bored when I sing with my speaking voice cos its low and it sounds like an octave lower so I dont feel much emotions and feelings when I sing. And definitely i can blaze through all these high notes in my tone easily with my chest voice if I was singing with my low speaking voice.. cos it feels im doing an octave lower...

To really try hear if i'm singing the right octave is listening to some parts of a song where the singer uses falsetto or head voice. When I hear it and use my tone or speaking pitch to do it I can definitely hear I am an octave lower.. I dunno if its just me or its the teacher but I mean I'm confused cos the fact is coming out from a teachers mouth and shes also a SLS certified teacher so I wouldnt doubt her.

I was wondering if its possible to change this?... i mean i dont want to sound like im singing an octave lower even tho i'm singing it on the same pitch. Cos when I hear other songs that I want to sing e.g. R&B songs, when the singer hits some high parts it sounds like it has a lot of feeling and emotions to it but if i'm singing to it with my low tone voice (but right pitch as my teacher says) it sounds very... boring.. no feeling.. dull .. dead... i can blaze thru a song of all the high notes with ease on my tone of voice.... In karaoke i try choosing songs that arent too high now but ones that still allows me to use my so called (1 octave higher voice) to sing cos it really does sound more bright and more feeling to it.. not like a DEAD COW VOICE.

It's long to explain but I hope ppl get what im trying to say about my voice.

I was wondering if its still possible to sing and sound like im in the same octave as any other average singers?

Cos also keep in mind SLS is all about relaxing and keeping my larynx down and calm. If by time I get better with SLS do you I think I can sing with that high tone voice but keeping my larynx relaxed? Cos now when I try singing the same tone as average male singers i'm actually singing an octave higher (as my coach says) and of course i'd be pulling chest since i'm still in the process of correcting my bad habits.

I really enjoy singing at my so called (1 octave higher) voice because I really feel the song more when I sing to it.

>< hope someone can give me a good answer since im pretty discouraged by the tone of my voice.. i really want to be a good singer!

Famed Member
Joined: 21 years ago
Posts: 4459

Stupid guestion here but aren't these guestion a voice coach can tell you. Do you not like what your vocal teacher is telling you? I would think she would be the best person to assess your singing ability.

Have you asked her these same questions? If you have, is it just that you don't like her responses?

Sorry I can't help you although I would imagine changing your tone would be quite difficult if not impossible where as singing in the right pitch very doable.

"It's all about stickin it to the man!"
It's a long way to the top if you want to rock n roll!

Prominent Member
Joined: 20 years ago
Posts: 724

Most people don't like the sound of there own voice. But if you're going to be a singer you've got to be able to sing in pitch. If not you'll sound like a room full of squalling cats or maybe squalling cows. The tone or quality of your voice is not the same thing as the pitch of the music. You might try recording your voice singing the way you want to and the way your teacher says, then compare the two. Do you have confidence in your teacher? Do you want her to tell you what you want to hear or correct you when your wrong? Sounds like your hearing something from her that you didn't want to. I expect my singing instructor to tell when I'm off and then help guide me back on. Anyone can shout a song or bang on a guitar with emotion, but to do either well you need to be in complete control. It sounds like your teacher is trying to give you some control. I'd either listen to her or quit going to lessons.

Tim Madsen
Nobody cares how much you know,
until they know how much you care.

"What you keep to yourself you lose, what you give away you keep forever." -Axel Munthe

Eminent Member
Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 18

CAUTION: This reply is from someone whose voice training comes solely from a six-week continuing education group class and reading various articles on the net. Take it with a grain of salt, yo!

If you're straining to hit certain notes of a particular song, that's a pretty good sign that you're trying to sing outside your vocal range -- maybe that's why your teacher is telling you to go an octave lower. It's frustrating not to be able to mimic what your hear on the actual track. Trust me, I've been there. I've tried far too many times to sing Marvin Gaye songs at karaoke, and my range does NOT go as high up as Marvin's for darn sure, and it always sounded like crap.

As for your vocal range, let me say emphatically that there is no bad vocal range!!! Whatever your range, there are songs out there that are well-suited for you. For me, I know "I Heard it Through the Grapevine" in the original key is a no-go, but "Ring of Fire" is doable. Maybe you don't like your singing voice because the songs you want to do are all out-of-range??

So, I have three suggestions for you, dude....

1) Look at your vocal range and look for songs in that range. You might find something that really appeals to you, especially if you can sing along with it.

2) When you do karaoke, I think some DJs can lower the key of the song for you. Analyze the song you want to sing, compare it to your range, and figure out the key that'll work for you. No, you won't sound like the artist, but you will sound much better than you would trying his/her key.

3) My teacher told us that with regular practice we can extend our vocal range. I have absolutely no idea how much, though, and I suspect it's not terribly much. Ask your teacher about it...

Looking back on my suggestions, I see a common thread: match your vocal range to the song at hand. Now, I understand that you may not like your deep voice, but I encourage you to be open-minded and explore singing in your natural range -- sooner or later you will find material that'll you'll sound GOOD with! Who was that woman with the deep voice that sang "Unchain my Heart?" Barry White was her influence!

Good luck,