Tuning to adjust to vocals


PDA

View Full Version : Tuning to adjust to vocals


Spay
02-16-2008, 06:09 PM
Okay, so me and my band have gotten most of our timing issues and playing issues down. And we're on the same page. But our vocalist has a very low voice, and is more often then not flat to what we're playing.

Is it possible to tune down maybe a half step and even tune to be intentionally flat, like tuning to 430Hz instead of 440Hz. Will this comprimise the sound of the music or make it more difficult for some reason, or even just plain old not work? Or can we do this and have it work?

BobMarleysGhost
02-16-2008, 06:11 PM
Your singing can still be flat if you down-tune. it'd be easier to get him to work on his voice. Sing an octave lower if he can't manage it.

freshtunes
02-16-2008, 06:12 PM
Tune down to Eb, half step.

Spay
02-16-2008, 06:21 PM
Well, it would only be a temporary fix. I just need to know if it would work. We've had him sing into a tuner and he's usually flat on most notes he holds, except when we calibrated it to around 430Hz. I know he'll have to get vocal lessons, but we have a gig coming up soon, and we just need to sound good.

emr_steelmech
02-16-2008, 06:23 PM
Don't change the Hz, that sounds like crap. It could help to downtune a half step, thats no problem as long as your singer adjusts.

axemanchris
02-17-2008, 01:27 AM
Don't change the Hz, that sounds like crap. It could help to downtune a half step, thats no problem as long as your singer adjusts.

Disagree, personally. Whether you tune to A440 or A410 or A475, nobody will notice.

I think it comes down to *why* your singer is singing flat. If it is because he can't quite reach the notes, then tuning down a few cents won't make a lick of a difference. Tuning down an entire half-step may well do the trick. You also might want to investigate doing the song in a different key to accommodate his range. Singing down an entire octave is enough of a change that audiences could have a hard time with it.

If the reason he is singing flat is just because he sings flat - lack of technique, lack of control, lack of an ear to recognize the difference, etc., then you've got a whole other problem on your hands that changing *anything* you do won't make a lick of difference. The only solution then is lessons and practice for your singer.

CT

shortyafter
02-17-2008, 01:34 AM
It sounds like more of a technique problem than anything. Keep practicing.

In the meantime, you can try tuning to Eb like the others have said. Or you could also have him sing an octave lower. If that's too low, use a capo to bring it up some. It's easier than singing the high octave and tuning down. Just don't go use the capo to go too far up, or the guitar will sound obnoxious and twangy (you only want that sound for certain types of songs).

Again though, keep practicing. That's the best long-term solution.

brooklynsoulja1
02-17-2008, 06:09 PM
hey i got a question with this...
i play alot of acoustic songs and sing too,is it alright that i feel comfortable singing a whole step down or is that to much?like it sounds good but should i keep it on half a step?and by me playing in e flat then standard wud this be like training my voice to reach higher notes?

axemanchris
02-17-2008, 06:43 PM
hey i got a question with this...
i play alot of acoustic songs and sing too,is it alright that i feel comfortable singing a whole step down or is that to much?like it sounds good but should i keep it on half a step?

Play it whatever key it sounds best for your voice. People don't care, really, whether you play it in the same key as the original artist nearly as much as they care about whether or not you can sing the song.


and by me playing in e flat then standard wud this be like training my voice to reach higher notes?

It might work. Try it. Worst thing that'll happen is you'll develop a repertoire that is all in Eb and you still can't hit a high A, B or C or whatever. Big deal.

CT

mh.666
02-19-2008, 03:47 PM
My band tunes down half a step to help with my vocals. I'd say give it a try.

Blind In 1 Ear
02-19-2008, 11:01 PM
Okay, so me and my band have gotten most of our timing issues and playing issues down. And we're on the same page. But our vocalist has a very low voice, and is more often then not flat to what we're playing.

Is it possible to tune down maybe a half step and even tune to be intentionally flat, like tuning to 430Hz instead of 440Hz. Will this comprimise the sound of the music or make it more difficult for some reason, or even just plain old not work? Or can we do this and have it work?

well that can help for sure. i do that because i play songs where i need to sing high like say bell bottom blues. i can sing it in the original key but its easier to hit the notes when its flat.

so if hes always flat, it could be because its out of his range or it could be because he hasnt worked on his vocals enough. try tuning flat and see if it makes things better. or even just try playing songs in different keys. if its still a problem, then its most likely that he just isnt experienced enough as a singer. and that just takes practice.

Hammerzeit
02-20-2008, 06:09 AM
Sure it works, Metallica tune down live to E flat these days because hetfield's voice has gotten lower. Good enough for them, good enough for you.

MadassAlex
02-20-2008, 06:21 AM
Sure it works, Metallica tune down live to E flat these days because hetfield's voice has gotten lower. Good enough for them, good enough for you.

Actually, they're tuning back up to E standard.

mh.666
02-20-2008, 01:25 PM
For the album, they are, although they'll probably tune down half a step for live performances.