January 16, 2024

About the Author: Stefan Joubert

Passionate manager of LSI. Discover your voice, regardless of age or talent. Contact now at enrol@londonsinginginstitute.co.uk to start your singing lessons in London or online!

Singing is like a magical language that everyone can speak, connecting people from different places and cultures in a special way.

It’s not just about singing our favourite songs; there’s much more to it than we might realise.

In this journey, we’ll explore seven interesting things about singing that might make you see it in a whole new light.

So, let’s dive in and uncover the hidden sides of singing – from the brain’s dance to our shared history with birds. There’s so much more to discover beyond the tunes we love.

Brain and music notes

1. The Brain’s Symphony

Singing goes beyond just using our voice; it involves a noteworthy collaboration within our brains.

Picture our brain as a cohesive team, including the auditory cortex, motor cortex, and cerebellum, working together seamlessly like a well-practised musical ensemble gearing up for a noteworthy performance.

This collective effort doesn’t solely focus on hitting the right notes and maintaining rhythm; it also ensures the appropriate use of language during our singing.

Exploring this harmonious teamwork provides insights into the remarkable sophistication of the human brain, gracefully manoeuvring to present the captivating singing experience.

2. Vocal Range Extremes

Humans possess this remarkable ability to create a variety of tones using their voices, and some individuals take this talent to extraordinary levels.

An exemplary case in point is Tim Storms, a vocalist who has earned recognition from the Guinness World Records for achieving the broadest vocal range known to date.

Tim Storms possesses an awe-inspiring vocal range that spans eight impressive octaves, from the remarkable G-7 to the deep G-1.

His singing abilities depict a superhuman-like talent, allowing him to navigate a diverse array of tones and pitches effortlessly.

Storms’ voice symbolises the limitless possibilities within the human vocal apparatus, emphasising the extraordinary diversity and potential for expression.

His achievement reflects individual prowess and highlights the boundless opportunities for exploration and celebration within the scope of human talent and dedication.

Birds singing with music notes

3. Language of the Birds

Birds are renowned for their melodic tunes, but did you know that humans share a common ancestor with birds when it comes to singing?

The FOXP2 gene, known for its vital role in human language development, is also notably involved in the vocal communication of birds, suggesting a significant parallel evolution in vocal traits.

This discovery transforms the examination of avian singing into an intriguing exploration of our shared biological history.

Over time, the necessity for effective communication has independently spurred the development of advanced vocal abilities in both birds and humans.

The FOXP2 gene acts as a common link, connecting avian and human lineages, prompting reflection on the deep interconnectedness of all living beings and the reverberations of our evolutionary past present in the surrounding songs.

4. Singing and Emotional Well-being

Singing goes beyond being a mere auditory delight; it holds therapeutic potential for emotional well-being.

Engaging in singing triggers the release of endorphins, those delightful hormones that alleviate stress and elevate mood.

Choir singing has been associated with heightened feelings of social connection, offering emotional and psychological advantages.

This amalgamation of physiological and social benefits positions singing not just as a musical endeavour but as a comprehensive practice that resonates harmoniously with both the mind and soul, providing a unique avenue for emotional upliftment.

5. Power of Harmony

Harmony in music is a captivating fusion of physics and art, where the interplay of frequencies, overtones, and wave interactions creates a rich and pleasing sonic tapestry.

The fundamental frequency, harmonics, and overtones of musical notes contribute to the complexity of sound, while consonance and dissonance evoke stability and tension.

Wave interference, whether constructive or destructive, plays a pivotal role in reinforcing or attenuating sound, influencing the overall texture of a musical piece.

Timbre, the unique sound quality, and the combination of different timbres further enhance the complexity and depth of harmony.

Understanding the scientific elegance behind harmony allows musicians to consciously manipulate these elements, resulting in compositions that resonate with aesthetic beauty and emotional expression.

The power of harmony lies in the seamless integration of these physical principles, creating a magical blend that elevates the art of singing to new heights.

Woman singing with eyes closed

6. Vocal Prints

Just as fingerprints are unique to each person, our voices hold an exclusive signature – a vocal fingerprint. This distinctive auditory identity is crafted from pitch, tone quality, and vibrato.

Modern voice recognition technology has evolved to a point where it can distinguish and authenticate individuals solely based on these nuanced vocal patterns.

Researchers have unravelled the intricacies of our vocal distinctiveness by exploring the nuances of speech cadence, intonation, and unique timbre. Pitch, tone quality, and vibrato contribute to the complexity of this audio signature, shaping a symphony of individual identity.

This era of advanced technology has transformed our voices into keys for secure access, from unlocking devices to safeguarding confidential information.

It emphasises that our voices are not just carriers of words but distinctive soundscapes, akin to the uniqueness found in physical fingerprints.

As we navigate this technological landscape, our vocal fingerprint becomes a symbol of the marvels of individuality, echoing the melody of personal identity in a world attuned to the subtleties of our distinct vocal signatures.

7. Cultural Voices

Singing is a vibrant cultural cornerstone, with societies worldwide cultivating distinctive vocal traditions that paint a diverse tableau of human expression. Across the globe, unique practices echo the rich heritage of various communities.

From the mesmerising throat singing of Mongolia to the intricate vocal patterns of Indian classical music, each tradition contributes to the global symphony of voices.

The haunting melodies of Tuvan throat singing, where harmonics are produced by manipulating the vocal folds, contrast the rhythmic complexities of Carnatic music in Southern India.

In the Far East, Japan’s ancient art of Noh theatre incorporates stylized vocalisations that convey emotions and stories in a captivating manner. Meanwhile, the Maori people of New Zealand weave their cultural narratives through the art of waiata, traditional songs and chants.

This global exploration of diverse singing practices underscores the universal nature of music as a language that transcends linguistic boundaries. Singing becomes a conduit for profound connections and mutual understanding between cultures.

In harmonising these varied vocal traditions, we find a shared appreciation for the rich tapestry of human expression, where every note carries the echoes of cultural heritage.

A man singing in a band

It is a thrilling journey!

Singing is more than an art form; it’s a thrilling journey blending science, emotion, and culture.

Venture into the neural dance of vocalisation, where the orchestra of vocal cords and the rhythmic symphony of the brain create the magic of melody.

Beyond the lab, explore the cultural kaleidoscope of singing traditions worldwide, from soulful folk tunes to indigenous chants, reflecting the diverse hues of human emotion.

Each note becomes a universal language, transcending boundaries and connecting us all.

So, the next time you catch yourself humming, revel in the extraordinary fusion of science, emotion, and culture that makes singing an exceptional and deeply resonant experience.

Unleash your inner singer! Explore the power of your voice with lessons at the London Singing Institute.

Discover the nuances of your unique vocal print and embrace the diverse cultural symphony that music offers.

Enrol now and unlock the joy of singing you never knew you had!

Related article: 10 Interesting Facts About Singing

Tags: Singing Tips, 7 Things you never knew, Singing bits and pieces, Vocal know-hows

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Tags: Singing Tips, 7 Things you never knew, Singing bits and pieces, Vocal know-hows