How do I know what voice part is best for me?

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How do I know what voice part is best for me? Choosing your part includes knowledge of your vocal range as well as the sound quality and timbre of your voice. Here are some considerations in choosing a voice part in barbershop harmony:

  • Lead - Lead is a mid-range voice part. Since the lead usually sings the melody, a lead should sing with authority, clarity, and a consistent quality throughout her/his range. Leads also sing with color and warmth since they are responsible for conveying the interpretation and emotion of a song.

  • Baritone - Baritones cover approximately the same range as lead, with the baritone harmony crossing above and below the lead notes. Baritones are flexible and must be very accurate.

  • Bass - Bass is the foundation of barbershop harmony. Bass singers should have a rich, resonant voice and be able to sing with as much authority as the lead.

Vocal Part Ranges for Young Women:

Part Ranges for Young Men:

WAIT! All that is TMI and I'm confused! Well, another effective way to choose your voice part is to listen to ALL of the learning tracks. Then just pick a part you feel you can sing well without straining to reach high and low notes. Easy, huh? Just do it!

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