Vocal Range: E2 – A4 – Bb5 (3 octaves and a diminished fifth)https://therangeplanet.proboards.com/thread/1641/ed-sheeran
Vocal Fach: Light Lyric Tenor
Vocal Rating: Singer
Analysis: Since his debut in 2013, Ed Sheeran has grown from a modest singer-songwriter to one of the most successful recording artists in the world. While he is best known for his songwriting, his voice has garnered significant admiration and praise for its passion and range. Sheeran began his musical career as a singer in the church choir at age four and began playing guitar by eleven, helping to develop his musical ear at an early age.
Like many men in Pop, Sheeran is a lyric tenor, but with a slightly lower tessitura than some of his contemporaries. While he is sometimes identified as a baritone, he seemingly lacks the belting technique that would clearly reveal him to many as a tenor. Sheeran has a natural ease that carries him up to his first bridge around F4 and beyond, along with the youthful, boyish timbre indicative of the fach (“Shivers”). While other Pop tenors like Justin Bieber or Shawn Mendes have a brighter sound and the capacity to belt up to C5, Sheeran’s peak is around A4, but with a stronger lower register. Given that his voice picks up distortion with push, his vocal output and weight are equivalent to that of a light lyric tenor.
His signature style is created with tight vocal fold compression, a buzzy or “squeaky” sound, and a closed, perhaps tense, jaw.Sam Johnson, Amateur vs Pro: Ed Sheeran – Perfect Sheeran’s lower register is strong and masculine, reaching well into the second octave with ease. As he ascends, his voice picks up his characteristic wispy timbre, maintaining this throughout the rest of his voice but also picking up a slight grit approaching his first bridge around F4. This delicate and balanced sound pairs well with both his intimate songwriting style and his falsetto in his upper register.
Notably, Sheeran gives his voice a more nasal placement as he reaches the top of his chest voice, which helps release some tension but also gives him a more polarizing timbre. This, along with his more narrow and closed vowel choices,Adam Mishan, VOCAL COACH reacts to ED SHEERAN singing PERFECT suggest some degree of tension that could likely be mitigated by blending his chest voice with his head voice. As he reaches at or above F4 with his belts, the shortcomings of this approach begin to show, as he loses clarity and picks up distortion, although he’s shown that he can repeatedly ascend up to A4 with his natural ease in “Thinking Out Loud.”
Overall, Sheeran is a storyteller who values the emotional impact of his (self-written) songs over technical perfection. While he certainly has room for vocal improvement like most, he’s rightfully respected as a multi-talented musician and singer.
What do you think of Ed Sheeran’s voice? Would you add anything to our analysis? Let us know by commenting below!
Ed Sheeran’s vocal range is approximately three octaves and a diminished fifth, spanning E2 – A4 – Bb5.
Ed Sheeran is a light lyric tenor.
Ed Sheeran’s highest note is a Bb5 in his “Give Me Love” performance at O2 Shepherd’s Bush Empire in 2011 or an A5 in the recording of “Castle On The Hill.”
Yes, Ed Sheeran is a light lyric tenor.
|↑2||Sam Johnson, Amateur vs Pro: Ed Sheeran – Perfect|
|↑3||Adam Mishan, VOCAL COACH reacts to ED SHEERAN singing PERFECT|