24 Sep Think You’re Not A Good Singer? Science Offers Good News For Those Who Are Out Of Tune
There is something about using the body’s own musical instrument — your voice — that evokes fears in so many people.
How many times have you seen people at church or a baseball games mouth the words to a song instead of singing it out loud? How many times have people avoided singing publicly by calling themselves a “shower singer”?
Here at The Music Junction, we firmly believe that a mixture of training and confidence can make any person a good singer. It just take times and practice.
Still, if you’re in need of an extra confidence boost, we have some news to inspire you. It’s called the vocal generosity effect.
According to a scientific study, people are more forgiving of singing errors compared to other musical instruments including the violin. Researcher Sean Hutchins asked test subjects to listen to a melody from a violin and one from a singer. They were then asked to determine if the last note was in tune or out of tune. When a singer was a semitone off — in other words, singing the wrong note — less than 50 percent of the subjects noticed. When a violin player was a semitone off nearly 75 percent of the people noticed. The laxness in judging the human voice also applies to those with music training. Although people with musical training were more apt to notice a note out of tune, the study found that they also favored the singer over the violinist.
What is the reasoning behind this? No one, including researchers, are quite sure.
However, PsychCentral reported that the researchers had one theory: “One possibility is that when we hear a human voice, our perceptual system moves in to a ‘vocal mode’ that pays less attention to pitch.”
You can listen to some samples of violin and vocal melodies that are in tune and out of tune. Go ahead and test yourself!
The Music Junction offers piano and voice lessons at our Burbank and Hollywood locations. Call us today to learn more.