very high notes

How to sing Very High Notes

We’ve spoken about How to sing High Notes. Now on to the next level. What about those notes right above what is considered high? Really going right up into the stratosphere!

Why would you need to sing really high notes?!

For a lot of singers, singing high notes alone is enough. As long as you can comfortably hit all the notes in a song, you are happy.

For some singers, using the full extent of your range can provides a thrill for your audience and truly opens you up to some amazing vocal opportunities. Imagine you are recording a track and want to harmonize above the highest notes in a song. Alternatively, you are performing a rock song and want to belt out a super-high ending note as a climactic end point to a concert. Or you’re an opera singer and want to be able to conquer pieces that demand a huge upper range. With mastery of really high notes, you can achieve all of these.

Which voice type?

Though the concepts here apply for all singers, regardless of voice types, most singers who will be pushing the range boundaries will generally be tenors and sopranos, however the concepts remain true for any singer who is singing at the extreme end of their upper range.

Choir in a cathedral

In a choir, acapella group or operatic ensemble, tenors and sopranos alone will have the opportunities to sing super high notes. If you are a Baritone, you might
use falsetto as an approach to sing very high, but the vast majority of Baritones wouldn’t be aiming to sing above the top of a tenor range in full voice. (There are some Tenors with Baritone- like qualities – check out the Heldon Tenor.

What do you consider a really high note?

For a Tenor (highest male voice) we are looking at C#5 through to F5 or F#5.

For a Soprano, (highest female voice) it’s C#6 through to G#6.

How do we do sing really high notes?

The 4 key elements that apply to singing high notes, apply here too.

They are:

  1. Mental approach
  2. Throat & Jaw
  3. Support
  4. Vowels

Check out the link above for a detailed explanation on each one.

But, there’s an important caveat. When we sing in this range, the sound can often sound different to us. Almost softer, like it is resonating behind our head. Don’t push more to create more volume! Often when we listen to ourselves on a recording our voice sounded just fine, and not at all quiet. When sound is produced in these registers, it resonates differently. For example, some people feel more vibrations on the top or back of their head. Since they feel less resonance in the face or mask, it can sound quieter.

The key is not to over-compensate because there is less frontal vibration. Listen, listen and listen. Keep recording yourself and compare your volume in the rest of the voice to these super high notes. More often than not, you’ll be surprised at how powerful and resonant these high notes sound.

Also, though they may not always be so enthusiastic :), ask your family member or roommate to listen. Let them verify the evenness (or lack thereof) of vocal volume as you ascend into the stratosphere. from the middle voice.

Use Sparingly

very high notes

These guys just don’t care what note you are singng!

Singing really high notes requires a lot of energy. You don’t want to over exert yourself and sing a lot of really high notes and then be too weak for the rest of the song or performance. Remember, the audience doesn’t know what note you are singing. They are not sitting there with a keyboard measuring your pitch! They only care if the song you are singing moves and excites them. A really high note can be an additional tool that propels their excitement to a new level, but only in the context of an all-round great performance. Nailing endless high notes and then cracking on the way down just won’t cut it.

Exercise Examples

Well, enough chatter – let’s hear some seriously high notes!

  • Make sure you are properly warmed up before attempting any of these
  • If you find a note challenging, do the exercise but instead of sustaining the top note (C, D etc), just touch it for a second and then come down the arpeggio. Next time you vocalize, try and sing the sustained note arpeggio.
  • Don’t attempt each arpeggio more than once. If you mess up, go back and try again. But we don’t want to overdo it even in practise.
  • Don’t forget to record yourself. Play back after each arpeggio to a) give yourself a break, and b) learn about how you sound so you don’t overcompensate or push.
C

This note is technically within the normal range of what is considered a high note. An Opera Tenor would be expected to be able to sing this note even if it isn’t included in every piece that he needs to sing.

D

This is a little beyond what is required in the classic world. You’ll hear some Opera pieces with a D, but it is pretty rare. Rock has some of these super high notes.

E

This note is really up there. Rarely used in both classic or contemporary singing

F

Even higher…

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