How can you increase your vocal range?

You don't push, you don't force, and you don't concentrate on your vocal cords. Support, and control from your diaphragm Proper breath control. Practice doesn't help if you're practicing wrong. Find a vocal coach. We don't all charge $70/hr. Go to places that let people sing. Talk to the people, and listen to different voices. You'll start to hear whose hurting themselves when they sing, and what a good clean open voice sounds like. Sing into your own ears with headphones. Practice a clear open tone as soft as you can. Don't do just scales, practice 8 bar sections of the song you're working on over and over without the lyrics, exercises of different intervals (space between notes) Don't force! I feel head voices and chest voices are incomplete. Any note you can sing in those voices you should be able to sing in full voice. That should be the goal.

Increasing Your Vocal Range

Here are ideas and recommendations from FAQ Farmers:
  • Basically, just practice all the time. Practice with songs that are in a higher pitch and some that are lower. Listening is a key factor when playing any type of instrument, including your voice. The more you listen, the more it helps your voice to become in tune with songs and singing in general. I, too sing so I've found this to help! Also, practice with a piano, (especially because its the easiest).. or any instrument for that matter (and make sure its in tune)... after a period of time, the notes will be almost "programmed" in your head. Good luck .
  • I think practicing scales is very important to ensure accuracy over the extremities of the voice's range. For many years I had a much bigger range than I would dare use; because I did not have confidence in the lower / higher notes I would never sing them live. Practicing scales, particularly ones that span the gap between the "chest" and "head" voice, has given me much more confidence, and that in turn has improved my singing in the higher / lower extremeties.
  • Sewjazz says "I'm a male of 33 now and I can hit low E, when I was 20 my lowest note was about a G so I think the bass end of the voice becomes lower with age perhaps, although I don't know if this is the case with women? I've always been able to squeek up to nearly two octaves above a middle C, but whilst at 25 I'd struggle to hit a G above middle C in my chest register, practice and particularly working on scales has enabled me to reach Bb, although sadly still not that elusive top tenor C! My transition to head voice is much smoother now though, and I can happily sing some Roy Orbison pieces, going acceptably into falsetto for the highest notes." When singing scales, make sure you repeat with a full range of different vowel sounds, and always have a tuned instrument to use as reference. And, most importantly of all, BREATHE OUT SLOWLY! The control of air flow is the most essential technique of all. One final word of warning - if you can't sing a note quietly, you shouldn't be singing it at all!
  • Gidday ive just started singing, hmm bloody puberty and all :( i used to be able to sing around 3.5 octaves, now im down to just over 2 it sucks but Now ive started just doing scales... you sound absolutely BATTY doing them but hey, after a year you'll notice a HUGE difference, to me it was well worth it
  • Learning to sing lower is almost, if not downright, impossible. This generally happens as you get older, but there's not much you can do to influence it yourself. However, you CAN learn to sing higher notes. I'm 16, and I reckon I've gained at least half an octave over the last few months. The key is this: Try singing songs that are just outside your range WITHOUT going into falsetto. Just try and force your normal voice up that high. You will find that over a few days, firstly it will get less difficult to hit the note, then you'll find that you can reach it without being ridiculously loud. Once this happens, go a little higher. You'll be amazed, in a few weeks, at what you can do. An example is the song "city of blinding lights" by U2. A month ago I wouldnt have even dreamed of trying to get the "oh you look so beautiful tonight" bit at the pitch he sings it, I'd just drop an octave for that part. I can now sing it with complete ease, and thats normal voice. I think there's probably a limit to exactly how high you can go, but remember that every note you gain in your normal range is also a note gained in falsetto, so it really is amazing just how high you'll find yourself going. Hears a tip though. Don't measure it day by day, just to what I did and pick a song that just about hurts to try and sing, and sing it. Another tip: ALWAYS stand when singing really high songs, I don't know the mechanics of it, but for some reason it's a lot easier to go higher when you're standing upright. Most importantly, in order to make it happen fast, ENJOY it. Don't make it a job, or a chore, just do it for the sake of doing it. You'll find that time flys if you do it like this.
  • Whoa whoa WHOA!! Now if there is one thing you should not do when aiming to sing higher songs, it is to force your voice, in fact, you should not "force" your voice to do anything! I've thought this for two years and realised i could sing a few songs, but it was causing me tension and strain. The professional singers who are singing with 4 or 5 octave ranges have been trained in order to do so, but the exercises involved in that training are actually very simple! Singers from James LaBrie of Dream Theater to Madonna and Michael Jackson have practiced using these, as they can set your voice free! your voice when you start out as a baby is perfect, did you know? I've never heard a baby go into falsetto! Only with years of speaking, muscle development around your larynx and not knowing the technique, you create a falsetto voice, it is actually a defence mechanism to stop you going too much higher and damaging yourself. Range is restricted by lack of knowledge rather than lack of talent. Basically there are 3 registers to your voice, they are: Chest voice: Named this because of the resonance occurring in your chest cavity, it is usually lower notes. If you sing a low "ahhh" and place your hand on your chest, you can feel it vibrate; Head voice: Higher notes, like if you were to impersonate Mickey Mouse or something, the note resonates mainly in the chest cavity. It is not quite as strong as chest voice, but as a singer develops their use of "resonators" in the head cavity, it gets louder and more powerful; and Whistle voice: usually present in women, but loads of men can use it too, the highest recorded whistle voice is by a guy called Adam Lopez. Say if you scream like a girl, that's using a kind of whistle voice, i don't advise you do any screaming though, in time and with patience and practice, it can be accessed. A trained voice will go higher in pitch not by pulling up chest voice and tightening the muscles (as i guarantee a lot of guys can't go past F above middle C without having some real difficulty) but instead, the intrinsic muscles in the vocal cords will help the cords "zip up" as it gets higher. In the end, a singer with the right knowledge and practice can sing notes up to and above high (tenor) C (or Soprano C if you are female) with the same ease as your speech! That is a technique known as "speech level singing" and to be honest, sounds a lot more comfortable than just belting out your songs, which is tiring and can take days to recover from, and also, does NOT feel easier over time, in fact, if you belt all the time you can cause some real damage to your cords! One other thing, the way that pro vocalists sound like they are making one consistent voice all the way up to the high registers, even though their voices are actually "changing gears" as they do so, is because they develop a "mixed" voice. When I say mixed I mean at the notes above middle C their chest voice blends with their head voice, almost like there are two voice techniques mixing in with each other, they get to retain the power of chest voice, but their head voice takes the strain off the note! Isn't that great!? Developing a Mixed voice DOES TAKE TIME AND CONSISTENT PRACTICE. About 45 minutes to an hour a day is good enough, and a singer should get plenty of sleep too, to prevent edema (a condition that causes swelling in the throat and is attributed to lack of sleep). If you are interested in using these training exercises, there are E-books and Audio Programs on sale that can help you develop your voice and master your technique, however, you must keep consistent practice and look after your voice. Things involving shouting like cheerleading and stuff are not options for a serious vocalist. Useful sites include: www.singingsuccess.com - Singing Success, a program by reknowned vocal coach Brett Manning (who has trained Grammy-Winning artists such as Keith Urban). Brett started out awful, but ended up with a 5 octave range! He has a friendly, understandable and enjoying approach to teaching voice, and is definitely a recommended coach. I have his program myself. www.thevoiceconnection.com - Rock vocalist and voice coach Jaime Vendera is known for being the first recorded man to shatter a crystal glass with his voice without amplification. He has a 6 octave range and is a powerful vocalist, not to mention a good coach. His e-book "raise your voice" is well recommended www.jeanniedeva.com - Another reknowned vocalist, Jeannie Deva has her own audio books such as the "contemporary vocalist" series also, http://p102.ezboard.com/bjessenemitz - A forum with a vocal technique section. Some good vocalists online there with plenty of useful info on singing technique and practice, not to be missed! Oh and one last thing, I'm no god of vocal technique myself, I'm actually a 17 year old student, but I've been using Brett Manning's technique and it's well worth it! For all you serious singers out there, never lose hope, look after yourselves and keep practicing!


      July 20, 2008 at 8:52 PM

      Hi Lionel,

      Thanks a lot for the post. I thought it was very informative and thought provoking. There are a lot of people who sing very well but are restricted because of their vocal ranges.I bumped into your page as I was looking for voice training techniques, your recommendations have given me a jump start. Iam an engineer from India who is trying to get back into the competitive music arena. Good luck to you!

      singing courses

      July 31, 2010 at 7:15 AM

      This is a pretty nice post. I like the way it was written. Increasing one's vocal range is something that is pretty hard to do.