Are you a bass, baritone, tenor, alto, mezzo-soprano, or soprano? Are you unsure what these terms mean? Keep reading to learn the classifications of the male and female voice, find your own vocal range, and find your own voice classification.
Why Should You Know Your Voice Classification?
The human voice is unique. The physiology of your vocal folds determine how high or low you can sing. Once you know your voice classification you can use it to find songs that suite your voice well or change the key of songs that are not in your range so that they fit with your voice.
If you want to sing in a choir the commonality is to divide the singers into groups that have the same vocal range so that you sing where you are strongest.
Match Pitches to Find Your Vocal Range
To find your vocal range start by warming up your voice throughout your range meaning as low as you can sing to as high as you can sing.
Then, follow along with the video below to match the descending pitches of the piano step-by-step. Once you get about as low as you can pause the video and replay that note again a few times while you match it.
If it sounds like a clear note that you would actually choose to sing in a song then it is your lowest singable pitch. If it does not sound good then rewind the video to the pitch before that one and sing than one a few times until you feel comfortable that you can sing it in a song.
The second half of the video plays the piano keys from C4 ascending step-by-step. Use it in the same fashion to find your highest singable pitch.
Standard Voice Classifications
Below you see a chart of the different standard voice classifications on the piano with Bass being the lowest and Soprano the highest voice classification.
Feel free to download a printable copy and color in your own vocal range. Voice Classifications (Free PDF)
Can I Increase My Vocal Range?
Yes you can. Your vocal folds are elastic and as you improve your vocal technique you will be able to increase your range, especially your high notes.
There are of course limitations because of physiology, a grown man will not be able to sound like a child and vise versa, but there are great potential when learning to use your instrument to its fullest potential. Check out some of the vocal exercises here in this blog to improve your technique.