Increase your Baritone Singing Range
Developing an extensive range when you are blessed with a naturally low Baritone Singing Range takes time, dedication and a practical approach to proper singing technique. Known for its rich timbre and booming low tonality, the Baritone voice is often misunderstood by singers and coaches who themselves possess a higher voice type. Quite simply, the baritone singing range resonates in an entirely different fashion to other voices and requires special training and a unique approach to developing range, power and dexterity.
This tutorial will show you how to increase your baritone singing range with ease in a few simple steps. Take your time, ask questions at any point by using the ‘leave a reply’ box below and remember, singing is simply a process of coordination rather than a muscular and forceful movement – if you’re pushing and straining, then you need to stop and only proceed again when you have developed a better approach.
No matter whether you are Tenor Baritone Bass or one of the various female voice types, this tutorial will show you the steps needed to build an extensive vocal range with power, consistency and free of strain.
Tenor Baritone Bass – What’s the difference?
It’s often said that singing is “A Tenor’s World”, and while this may be true for untrained voices, in that an untrained singer generally has a better aptitude for singing than an untrained baritone, the singing mechanism itself is identical barre from vocal chord length, weight and the individual resonators and resonant spaces that each singer has through varying anatomy and build. To learn to sing as a baritone, technically you need to develop the same techniques and elements of your singing voice as a Tenor, or Soprano, or Alto – but the issues and big difference in learning how to sing with a baritone singing range is the wider frequencies and thicker vocal fold mass in a baritone voice.
The Tenor Range
Starting anywhere around an A2 up into the 5th Octave, the Tenor range is generally one of the easiest to train, but is often accompanied by a thinner tone than other voice types. Often younger Tenor singers can seemingly ‘get away’ with making various mistakes in their voices that really don’t detract from their singing ability in the initial stages of their vocal development – this becomes evident in professional Tenor singers who perhaps haven’t developed their placement or register release properly as they age, and eventually lose a large portion of the range that made their voices so impressive. Even as a Tenor, it’s incredibly important to develop proper control of your onsets, middle register coordination and generally avert strain and tension in your voice to ensure your voice stays consistent, controlled and healthy as your singing progresses. Famous Tenor singers who have experienced this change in their voices over time include Jon Bon Jovi, Meatloaf, Sebastian Bach and others – simply developing control over placement and the middle register, even though a Tenor will often still sing perfectly fine without training them, is the only way to ensure a healthy, long life to the Tenor voice without range diminishing over time.
The Baritone Singing Voice and Bass register
Often thought of as a second class instrument in classical schools of thought, the baritone singer range is known for its depth and deep timbre, albeit a touch less rich than a bass and a somewhat more tricky to train than a Tenor. The initial stages of training a Baritone voice range involve intensive training and a much steeper learning curve due to the wider band of improper frequencies often created in the deeper aspects of the Baritone vocal range. Here’s an important technique list baritone singers should take time and care to develop in their voices for an extensive range and a consistent delivery:
- The middle register (coordination between the CT and TA musculature responsible for head and chest respectively)
- Placement – in essence, removing any improper frequencies while you sing
- Balanced onsets
- An approach to consonants like grouping
- Vowel shaping and subsequent tuning of each sound
- Proper control of the soft palate, diaphragm and vocal chords
Using this list, Baritone singers will have some direction and guide as to the issues they may be facing in their voices such as strain, a diminished range and problems articulating certain vowel sounds – all a result of the improper frequency production we Baritones often suffer from until our singing voices have been developed extensively.
Rich depth comes from a bright tone
A common mistake made in developing the Baritone singer range is the confusion of low pitch with low frequencies – sure, a low pitch IS technically a low frequency vibration in your vocal chords, but the surrounding frequencies in an untrained baritone voice often occur below the basis pitch, causing problems with proper intonation and obviously obliterating any chances of building your high range. I like to think of vocal tone as the contents of a shelf that sit ‘above’ the base frequency which makes up your pitch – brightening the tone while still allowing the rich depth associated with a bass or baritone voice.
You may notice that the greatest Baritone Singers often sing with a bright and open tone even on their lowest notes, from Jim Morrison to Johnny Cash, Nick Cave and Mark Lanegan – the rich and deep voice of a famous baritone singer is often carried, powered and accompanied by a pleasant brightness that is not immediately noticeable to the untrained ear. The rich depth that often makes baritone singers famous is also often the greatest issue with a baritone voice range – be sure to create the right frequencies to accompany your base pitch instead of trying to contort your wide band of baritone frequencies into a certain pitch.
Baritone singing lessons
It’s important that male baritone singers seek out a voice coach who understands the unique issues and challenges faced by the baritone singer range. I myself struggled as a student of the voice not because my baritone vocal range was unable to sing well, but because the Tenor and female classical coaches I was frequenting were unable to train my voice. This is why Bohemian Vocal Studio launched in 2010, due to the lack of resources and tailored coaching available for a true baritone voice. Since launching in 2010, BVS has increasingly grown in the premier voice studio for professional singing lessons and rock voice tuition online. Kegan’s unique approach to the baritone vocal range and personal experience developing a thorough approach to this unique voice type has made Bohemian Vocal Studio the fastest growing vocal studio in the world, helping students all around the globe reach their singing goals sooner and more efficiently.
If you’re ready to take your baritone singing voice to the next level with professional voice coaching by a seasoned baritone vocal coach who understands the unique issues faced by a low voice type and years of experiencing coaching ‘difficult’ voices and working with many various accents, you can book a Skype Session today and we can get started improving your voice and increasing your range today!
If you have any questions about the baritone singing range, please leave any questions or feedback below!
Kegan DeBoheme is Bohemian Vocal Studio’s resident vocal coach and voice expert. He teaches professional singing and voice technique to students all around the world and enjoys providing tutorials like this one on how to improve your voice.