Many would argue “What is good vocal tone?”
Let me tell you what my definition would be and see if you agree with me or not.
First off, I think good vocal tone should include a uniqueness, a signature of the person singing. I don’t believe good vocal tone should be bland or unengaging.
With that said, that doesn’t mean good vocal tone always needs to be loud, bright, distorted, have crazy range, and so forth.
If you take Luther Vandross, Marvin Gaye, Al Green, Steve Perry, Sam Cooke, Aaron Neville, Barry White, etc… The warm, silky, velvet-like texture to their voice is their signature sound, and it enjoys very seductive, romantic, intimate, warm tones that few singers can execute or deliver.
But I also wanted to discuss what many consider to be great vocal tone.
And that is the concept of distorting the voice or having a raspiness to the sound that also showcases character and uniqueness.
These are two polar opposite extremes.
However, in this video I discuss that the key is to understand how to develop good open throat technique with a nice, bright “ping” in their sound (Bel Canto refers to this as “Chiaroscuro”, the use of strong contrasts between light and dark color in the voice, or literally “Brightness/Clarity” in the center, with warmth around the sound).
I believe this should be the ultimate goal for any singer looking to sing with diversity.
And while these names I mentioned, such as Luther Vandross, Sam Cooke, etc. are incredible R&B singers, they would not really be able to attain a bright, big operatic sound, or a rock belting sound from that approach to singing.
Whereas someone that learns good powerful open throat technique with the approach of Chiaroscuro would definitely be able to add air and warmth to their sound while maintaining brightness and clarity, and sing in both styles as desired.
I explain this in more depth in this video and copiously explain and demonstrate this in my singing course.
Ken Tamplin Vocal Academy – Where The PROOF Is In The Singing!