Updated: Nov 18, 2020

There is such a thing as vocal color; it is the distinct quality of tone that gives color and personality to your voice. Every voice has it’s own unique timbre. Once you have established good vocal technique you need to add different shades of color. It’s like adding highlights to your hair.

Tone is the overall sound of the voice. If Christina Aguilera and Adele sang the same song, it would sound completely different because of their tone and shades of color they bring to the song. Tone will determine what a piece sounds like. To sing in a darker tone you will sing with an open throat and a high soft palate, the placement of sound (resonance is toward the back of the mouth). To get a brighter tone, you will sing with vocal cord closure and the placement of sound is toward the front, roof of your mouth and sinus area. If you put them together you will get a balanced tone.

Pop songs have a rather distinctive bright poppy sounding tone. This tone can be found more towards the front, using nasal resonance. An easy way to think of it is singing with a smile, the brain automatically translates this to bright tone when we speak and sing. You also want to make sure that the tone of your voice matches the style of music you’re singing. If you’ve ever heard opera singers try to sing pop music, you know that they sound funny; their tone is too full and rich when it needs to be more casual, not so formal.

The video is Audrey Diaz singing "Stay"; listen to the different tone and color she brings to the song.


How many concertmasters does it take to change a light bulb? Just one, but it takes four movements.

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