Let’s face it – High notes are very important for singing.
High notes create excitement and climax in a song that makes audiences crazy for the singer.
Not a lot of people know that it is actually more difficult for men to sing high notes than it is for women.
Modern female singers could switch to falsetto in the high notes and easily disguise it as full voice because of their vocal colors.
Three hundred years ago, men used to sing falsetto in the high notes just like the women. It was widely accepted as the norm for the music audiences in Europe.
Technically, it is much easier to do, but men cannot do that anymore.
Now, men are expected to sing high notes in full voice, real voice, belt voice.
There are no switching to falsetto or even mixed voice except for stylistic choices.
I am a tenor who has been studying how to sing high notes all my life. I would like to share with you the top secrets of how to sing high notes for men.
Top 5 Mistakes Men Make When Singing High Notes
1. Scream and yell
This is when a lot of beginning singers, especially men, hurt their voices and develop nodules in the vocal cords.
Sure, you need to flex the vocal muscles more for the high notes, but there is a correct way to do it.
Yelling and screaming out the high notes can be very dangerous for vocal health.
The problem is some singers don’t know they are doing it.
Here is a good way to detect if you’re singing high notes wrong – it hurts every time you do it. If this is you, stop immediately. You’re doing something wrong!
Robert Lunte taught some brilliant exercises in his singing program for relieving vocal tensions.
I suggest you find out some of those stress-relieving vocal exercises and do them daily.
It only take a couple of minutes, and it will help you greatly for both singing and speaking.
2. Using too much air.
This is one of the biggest myths I want to clear once and for all.
Many people think you need a lot of air to sing the really difficult high notes.
In actuality, you need less air to sing the high notes than the low notes – a lot less!
The vocal cords are pulled together at a much higher tension than in the lower notes.
If you pump too much air through, you will end up hurting the vocal cords. You won’t get much volume out of it either. Just more tension.
3. Switching to falsetto or mix voice
This is actually not as bad of a problem as the previous two. At least you won’t hurt your voice while doing this.
However, technically and aesthetically speaking, it doesn’t sound good if men sing falsetto for high notes because it lacks fullness and edge in the voice.
Technically, men singing falsetto for high notes is generally viewed as cheating.
I know. I know. Justin Timberlake does it. That’s a stylistic choice that works for his songs.
However, if you want to get some really full and edgy high notes, I suggest you get started with some hard core training that’s going to get you to those high notes.
4. Avoiding the high notes by riffs and licks
Riffs and licks are the stylistic runs you hear a lot of R & B singers do usually with long notes – a lot of times they are overdone.
Many “natural” singers who are not properly trained are very good at riffing because they learn mainly by ear and have developed great stylistic taste.
However, I’ve seen too many “natural” singers who riff away from the high notes, disguising it as stylistic choices, when in reality it is caused by incompetence to hit high notes.
I’ve had a professional Jazz singer who came to me for lessons admitting to me about this practice.
Getting the right vocal training is the way to cure this problem once and for all.
You have to build real high notes.
5. Accepting the myth that vocal range is naturally fixed
This is biggest myth that stops singers from hitting higher notes.
You can expand your range through proper training. You can sing higher and higher.
I have heard Basses (lowest male voices) hit incredible tenor notes in full voice, not falsetto or mixed.
If you accept that vocal ranges are naturally fixed, you can be sure that you will be forever limited by that belief.
High notes and extremely high notes can be trained regardless of your voice types.
Ultimate Solutions to Sing High Notes
If you want to solve your high note problems once and for all, let me share with you the 2 most important approaches to get those coveted high notes.
1. Vocal Technique Training
Before you discard this point as cliché, let me explain to you what I mean.
Many people sing with unnecessary vocal tension, especially male singers, which inhibits them from hitting those high notes.
The most difficult thing to do is to relax the unnecessary muscles – the ones that have nothing to do with singing, while “flexing” the actual vocal muscles.
It’s a very tricky maneuver that takes technique.
One of the most important technique that you can use immediately is to keep the sound ROUND!
It is counter-intuitive and you have to be intentional to maintain the roundness in the high notes.
We naturally tend to spread the sound when we go higher. If you could keep it round, you will add natural resonance to amplify the high notes with no extra effort.
2. Vocal Weight-Lifting
When you get better vocal technique, it’s now time to build some serious vocal muscles.
The vocal cords are a set of intricate muscles. Although delicate, the vocal cords are still muscles that have to be developed.
In order to sing a lot higher, your vocal muscles need to be able to sustain heavier vocal weights.
The stronger your vocal cords are, the higher and louder you can sing.
But, you need to be able to isolate the “right” muscles from the wrong ones, much like training the biceps with dumbbells. That takes technique.
This kind of subtle technique is rarely taught, but after digging in the industry for quite a while, I found Robert Lunte teaching this.
The concept is – you need to do vocal weight training with good technique. That way you will get to those high notes quicker, because you are training the right muscles.
My Final Thoughts
I believe it’s absolutely possible for every voice to sing a lot higher than its natural range.
However, you need to be willing to put in the time and effort to learn and practice on your high notes.
I want to be honest with you – it takes a lot of work and commitment!
But it’s possible for every voice. This I believe with all my heart. And it doesn’t take forever.
If you commit yourself to intensively train your voice for high notes, you will see results in 2 to 4 weeks.
High notes are important. And it’s definitely worth all the time, effort, and money to training your voice for excellence.
To great singing,