Some people believe that singers should stop using autotune when singing, as they feel they cheat with their voice. This has led to the question, why do singers use Autotune. People think autotune isn’t needed when it comes to making good music.
Autotune has been very important in the music industry since it was first introduced, and any singer can overcome the difficulty of repeating a bad pitch sound.
Correcting an artist’s flat or sharp pitch is why so many artists use autotune when singing, and this is a good way of saving cost and time as singers might not be up for spending so much time in the studio when making music.
Using autotune takes away the stress of re-making the same music repeatedly, and artistic purpose might be the reason why people use autotune when singing or recording music.
Some artists enjoy hearing that robotic tune when singing, and this is what we refer to as robotic purposes, but this isn’t all we have to talk about in this post today.
Today, there is a notion that autotune is negative and shouldn’t be encouraged.
What Is Autotune?
Invented by Dr. Andy Hilderbrand, Autotune has been used for a very long time. However, autotune gained popularity in the ’90s when many artists used it to their advantage.
The likes of artists like Drake, Snoop Dogg, and Kanye West were the artists that made autotune very popular regarding modern-day music, and Cher is also another artist that made good use of autotune.
We refer to autotune as the software used to correct an artist’s pitch when singing, and a phase decoder is something producers use when using autotune as an artist sings.
A phase decoder works by singing with the microphone while playing an instrument. It is used to adjust the voice to match the instrument being played. However, autotuning has three key aspects that you need to take a look at;
- Retune speed
- Input type
- Key reference
Setting the key reference the autotune refers to makes sure an artist’s instruments or vocals are well corrected, and not doing this means you will find it difficult to autotune a track. But, again, this is because you have nothing to compare them to to get the desired sound or voice you want.
Input type refers to determining what you want to autotune, and there are certain options you can choose from when working with some autotune plugins. For example, it could range from guitar to piano or vocals like alto to the soprano.
You set the speed or pace you want the autotune to have to correct and identify notes. For example, when you set autotune at 0, you have set it at its fastest speed, while setting the speed between 20 to 150 makes autotune less noticeable.
Why Do Singers Use Autotune
The answer to this question is simple. YES, using autotune will make you sound better since using it is to correct notes and flat and high pitch sounds.
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There are limitations to how better using autotune can make you sound, but one aspect of being a great singer means you will have to be in tune with a track and ensure that a perfect pitch is being maintained.
Other aspects make you a better singer, and these are;
- Breath control
- Lyrical articulation
- Emotion when making a song or performing a song
- Stage presence
All we are trying to say is that making use of autotune to correct notes and pitch sounds will make your song sound better.
You should not forget to note that you will end up sounding like a robot if you overdo it. Of course, this can only be allowed when you want to achieve robotic purposes, but sounding like a robot when making music isn’t good for business.
Can Using Autotune Be Considered As Cheating In Music?
Seeing autotune in music as cheating is one of the people’s negative ideas about autotune in the music industry. But unfortunately, people have trained their minds to look for authenticity whenever an artist puts out music.
The only time you are allowed to use autotune too much on a track is for intentional and robotic use, but so many artists have ended up being shamed for using autotune when making music.
Artists will be slandered for using autotune in their songs because so many people are after an artist’s raw voice, but autotune was never kept as a secret back in the ’80s when few artists like Madonna agreed to make use of them.
Autotune is one aspect of music that artists will make use of in the future, and it seems impossible that artists will ever stop making use of autotune in their songs.
It doesn’t mean artists won’t make music with their raw voice, but not all will take the same line. However, when it comes to making great hits, autotune cannot be overlooked or ignored, and it is also a way to bring out the creative side of artists and producers.
It can feel really good to hear the raw voice of any artists you love. Still, we all have to admit that presently, the world of music has witnessed the invention of good software and technology that you can use in making good and better musical songs.
How To Tell If An Artist Uses Autotune
This will depend on the sound engineer working on the song, but it is easy for anyone to detect bad autotune.
You could detect the robotic feeling in the singer’s voice, but it will be very hard to notice if the autotune was done by a professional.
Below are a few signs you can look out for when trying to find out if an artist used autotune in his song;
- Emotionless tracks
- Robotic vocals
- Muddy sounding tracks
- Barely understandable lyrics
- Camouflaging music
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Autotune has come to stay in the music industry no matter what anyone thinks about it, and it will continue being used by so many artists under different musical genres.
Several advantages come with using autotune when making music, but there are limitations to what you can get out of using autotune as an artist.
One misconception people have about using autotune is it automatically makes you a great artist, but this is not the case.
You will need more than having a good pitch for you to be a great artist, but there are other things you need to have like good diction, a great voice for singing, and translating your emotion into songs.
Hopefully, you have gotten all you need to know about autotune, and autotune will always yield good results when used the right way despite people’s negative thoughts and ideas about it.
My name is Johnson Lewis and I am a music coach, producer and Blogger. I enjoy writing about music, instruments, music equipments and I love helping people become better singers.