Your natural singing voice is what sets you apart from other artists. No two people’s voices are the same and finding your natural sound will help you optimise your range and resonance. Your natural singing voice is much more powerful than an emulated voice.
It can be tempting to imitate the style of your favourite artists – you might even do so without realising. But finding your natural singing voice is what will really unlock your potential.
Does everyone have a singing voice?
While everyone can sing, it can be hard to find your true voice. Everyone has a natural singing voice that is unique to them, but how your natural voice sounds might be harder to recognise than you think.
External factors and influences can make you subconsciously change your voice over time. You’ll never lose your natural singing voice, but you might have to go back to the basics to rediscover it.
Test your singing voice online
If you’d like to test your natural singing ability as it stands, you can take a Tone Deaf Test online. The test has 3 stages and will identify if you struggle with your pitch, tone, and rhythm.
You can also download lots of different apps to review and improve your singing ability. Vanido, Pocket Pitch, and Vocalist are some of the best free apps for coaching your voice and running through vocal exercises.
How to find your speaking voice
Finding your natural speaking voice is the ideal place to start when you’re discovering your singing voice. Learning to use your natural voice will put the least amount of strain on your voice and vocal cords and give the best audio results.
Your speaking voice might seem like an easy thing to find; after all, it’s the voice you speak in every day. But the voice you use in day-to-day conversation isn’t necessarily your natural speaking voice. Without realising it, you might be emulating the vocal habits of other people around you, or your idols and influencers.
There are two tests you can do to find and restore your natural speaking voice:
1 The humming exercise
- With your lips shut, make an“mmm-hmmm” noise with your voice.
- Repeat this hum several times – if you feel your lips and the ridge and sides of your nose vibrate while you doit, you are using your natural voice.
- Next, practice doing this hum while you count from one to ten. Alternate between making the “mmm-hmmm” noise and saying a number aloud. It should sound something like this: one, mmm-hmmm, two, mmm-hmmm, etc.
- Pay attention to how your voice sounds when you say each number out loud between the hums – this is your natural tone and pitch.
You can do this exercise any time you want to remind yourself how your natural speaking voice sounds.
2 The diaphragmic breathing exercise
- Stand and take a deep breath as you normally would. If your chest expands and your shoulders rise, you’re breathing from your chest, not your diaphragm.
- Try speaking and raising your voice while you breathe from your chest – your voice might sound weak or strained.
- Now take another deep breath, this time focusing on keeping your shoulders still and routing the air into your lower stomach. If your abdomen expands instead of your chest, you’re breathing from your diaphragm.
- Try speaking and raising your voice while you breathe from your diaphragm. Compare how your voice sounds compared to when you were breathing from your chest – it should sound fuller and have more resonance.
Learning to breathe from your diaphragm rather than from your chest will allow you to access the full power of your natural speaking voice.
Do you sing with your talking voice?
Not everyone sings with their natural talking voice – some people may put on an accent or imitate popular artists when they sing.
But you can learn to sing with your talking voice and doing this will unlock your natural singing voice.
There are lots of benefits to singing in your talking voice. Everyone’s voice is unique, so singing with your talking voice is a sure-fire way to create a distinctive sound.
Singing using your talking voice will improve your tonal quality and make your lyrics sound more authentic, too. Using your talking voice as a foundation is the best way to find your unique, natural singing voice.
How do you find your singing voice?
To find your singing voice, you have to get to know your voice beyond your natural speaking register.
Familiarising yourself with how your singing voice sounds and what your voice’s strengths and weaknesses are will tease out your vocal ability.
Here’s how to find your singing voice in 3 steps:
Establish your vocal range – practice some singing scales, starting with the lowest note you can sing and working up to the highest note you can reach. You can do this using a piano (or an online piano) and travel down from Middle C to establish your lower range, and up from Middle C to practice your higher range.
Work out what your tessitura is – once you’ve established your vocal range, you can find your tessitura (the range you feel most comfortable in.) Repeat your singing scales and look for the range where your voice sounds its best. It should be in pitch and shouldn’t feel strained.
Experiment with songs and styles – when you’ve found your voice type, range, and tessitura, you’re ready to start experimenting with different songs to find what music genre your voice lends itself best to.
What is a natural voice?
You might wonder what your natural voice is and how you’ll know when you find it. You’ll easily be able to recognise your natural voice by looking out for these three qualities:
- It’ll feel comfortable and easy to produce
- You’ll be able to sing in this voice across a range of keys
- You’ll feel a light buzzing vibration in the sides of your nose and lips
How to find your singing voice type
To put a name to your voice type, you’ll need to work out what your vocal range is. Once you know your lowest and highest note, you can identify your voice type by comparing your range to this classification system:
- Soprano: C4 – C6
- Mezzo–Soprano: A3 – A5
- Alto: F3 – F5
- Tenor: C3 – C5
- Baritone: G2 – G4
- Bass: E2 – E5
Other factors like your timbre and tessitura can affect your voice type, so you might find that you don’t fall squarely into one category, which is normal.
How do you find your natural singing key?
The best way to find out your natural singing key is by working out your vocal range and what your highest and lowest comfortable notes are.
If you want to double–check you’ve found your natural singing key, you can pick a new song and try singing it in full in three different keys. The version that feels most comfortable and natural is most likely to be your natural key.
You can also try recording yourself as you sing a song in different keys. If your voice sounds fatigued or you notice yourself missing notes when you play it back, you’ll know this isn’t the right key for you.