Head Voice Vs Chest Voice – Explained

Do you aspire to be a famous singer in the world’s most prestigious shows and movies or simply have fun belting out a song in your car while the radio is playing? The majority of individuals enjoy belting out a song from time to time throughout their lives. If your goal is the former, you most likely want to spend a significant amount of time polishing and improving your vocals.

This can be accomplished with the assistance of a vocal coach, scales, or simply through your practice. 

In the course of your research, there is a probability that you have come across some terminologies and phrases that have been thrown around but have not been completely clarified. The names “head voice” and “chest voice” being one of them.  

So, in terms of singing, how can you tell the differences of head voice vs chest voice? Let’s find out! 

What is a Head voice?

Higher notes are sung with the help of your head voice. The sound can also be heard at the back of your skull. It is possible to reach the high notes while utilizing your head voice since your normal voice is not stressed or strained. 

When you sing in your head voice, your vocal cords automatically shorten to reach the higher register.

How do I know if I’m singing in my head voice?

When you sing in your head voice, you don’t feel the vibrations in your chest as much as you would while singing in your chest voice. Instead, you may feel your head voice at the top of your skull, behind your eyes, and in the space between your ear drums. You may even feel it in the roof of your mouth if you use your voice correctly.

How to develop your head voice?

It is vital to sing in your head voice to achieve those high notes, but it is also important not to push or strain to reach a note within your range. 

  • Vocal instructors recommend that you allow the sound to travel to your brain organically. Some people believe that by slightly tucking your chin, you can actually sing better.
  • According to many vocal instructors, the head voice is the more classical of the two voices. When it comes to choral and operatic singing, the head voice is more often utilized than the chest voice, which is a good thing.

Discover your inner voice and practice interacting with it by participating in these exercises.

What is a chest voice?

The lowest to the middle range of your vocal range is referred to as your chest voice. It is also the range of tones that you employ while speaking. 

You may feel the vibrations of your vocal folds throughout their whole length when you sing in a chest voice; this is because the sound produced by your chest voice is more resonant and fuller than that produced by your head voice.

How do I know if I’m singing in my chest voice?

To determine if you are singing in your chest voice, there is a simple test that you may take. 

Take a deep breath and place your hand on your thorax. If you’re singing in your chest voice, you’ll notice the vibrations or mild buzzing in your upper chest if you’re doing it correctly. 

You may even test it out by just placing your palm on your chest and making a loud sound like “Ah.” 

You’ll be able to distinguish between a head voice and a chest voice by the vibrations you experience. 

When singing tunes that are lower in your vocal range, you’ll discover that your chest voice is the most natural choice for you. For example, consider edgy rock tunes that depend on a strong chest voice to carry the song.

How to develop your chest voice?

Every great singer wants a powerful chest voice that resonates across the room. Given that it is your natural voice, it serves as the ideal basis upon which you can develop your ability to perform. A weak chest voice is indicative of a lack of power in your vocal performance. 

  • To get a warm and robust tone while singing in your chest voice, make sure you have enough ventilation while doing so. In the absence of sufficient air, you’ll hear a low and gravelly tone that may waver or crack. 
  • If you get a coughing feeling, stop doing so since it may indicate that you’re too harsh on your voice. It can also be harmful to your vocal cords. 
  • Breathing exercises can be practiced to enhance your abilities. To warm-up, you can also attempt this chest voice vocal workout to strengthen your voice.

What happens when we sing?

Each time we sing, our body causes a vibration to occur at the vocal folds. The reason for this vibration is because a pressurized stream of air pulls the vocal folds together and blasts them apart in a regular cycle, creating the vibration.

Related Terms

  • Vocal Mechanism: The Vocal Mechanism is the mechanism through which vocal folds vibrate and produce sound. 
  • Pitch: Pitch is defined as the number of vibrations per second, measured in cycles per second.
  • Vocal Tract: When the vibration is magnified and molded in the area immediately above it – the neck and mouth cavities, together it’s called the Vocal Tract. When these bodily parts are engaged, each of them start sending messages to the singer in terms of the amount of effort required and the feeling of vibration experienced. While these feelings are beneficial to singers as monitoring devices, they are not the source of the sensations themselves.
  • Voice Quality: All of the sounds we produce have lots to do with how the vocal folds vibrate and how that sound is changed in the vocal tract.

Conclusion

Using your vocal break to distinguish between chest voice and head voice is just a matter of defining the range of your voice. Thus, you should never allow a coach to convince you that you are trapped within your present range because of your interruption. You just haven’t mastered the art of effortlessly shifting gears yet.

Make sure to go easy on your throat; all that counts is that you sing and have a good time.