What Is Absolute Pitch?

by Frederik Nielsen, Mar 27, 2019 . 3 min read

What Is Absolute Pitch?

Are you able to sing an F note without hearing a reference tone first? Then you’re part of a lucky minority of people who have absolute pitch.

One in 10,000 people has absolute pitch, which is also known as perfect pitch. You’re in good company, too. Mozart, Beethoven, Ella Fitzgerald, and Michael Jackson were all thought to have absolute pitch.

Hassane Slaibi, one of the Roadie Tuner founders, is also in the absolute pitch club. His innate talent is one of the secret ingredients that makes Roadie 2 such a great tool for the rest of us mere mortals.

That’s why I thought we should take a closer look at the absolute pitch phenomenon to see what we can learn from it.

Can You Develop Absolute Pitch?

I came across an article with the sensational headline ‘How I developed perfect pitch in 30 days at 24 years old’, and thought there might be hope for me yet.

The author practiced his pitch for 35 minutes every day for 30 days. The result was the perfect pitch. Fascinating stuff.

My BS detector tends to go off when something sounds too good to be true. So I looked up some scientific studies on absolute pitch, and unfortunately, science says ‘no’.

However, the study, which involved over 2,000 participants, did suggest there might be a single gene responsible for absolute pitch.

Who knows? If we live long enough for designer babies to become a reality, then absolute pitch might become the norm!

Do You Have Absolute Pitch?

A YouTube video by Music Training Club allows you to test if you have perfect pitch. It’ll ask you to produce different notes and then reveal what they sound like afterward.

You’ll get a sonic palate cleanser in between each sound, kind of like sticking your nose in some ground coffee in between sampling perfumes.

Test your pitch here:

What If You Don’t Have Absolute Pitch?

It’s not the end of the world. It’s not impossible for the rest of us to develop a good relative pitch. It’ll probably come as no surprise that it involves a lot of practice.

The more you practice your instrument, the better trained your ear will become — and the quicker you’ll detect sounds that are out of tune.

Here are some ways you can practice your relative pitch:

Leave us a comment below if you’re a musician with absolute pitch, or know of a good way to develop relative pitch!



Get our free Alternate Tunings Guide!
Submit

Check out some other similar articles

Take advantage of our biggest backer-exclusive discounts and get your hands on this next-generation automatic tuner. Back the Kickstarter campaign today and be the first to receive the Roadie 3.

As a beginner, there are certain challenges you’re bound to encounter when playing the violin.

Rae Ragay
Nov 23, 2020 . 3 min read

To master rhythm guitar is to become a good guitarist. As a guitar player, you will be playing rhythm most of the time. Sorry to break it to you, but you won’t be soloing most of the time.

Rodrigo Sanchez
Nov 16, 2020 . 4 min read

Learning how to soundproof your music room is very important. It is also one of the most neglected issues when it comes to home studios. After all, soundproofing or treating your room is not as sexy as buying expensive microphones and gear.

Rodrigo Sanchez
Nov 13, 2020 . 3 min read

So many ask if you can really learn guitar online? The short answer to that question is yes, you can. You can also play soccer wearing sandals, swim with your clothes on and tell your boss that you hate your job.

Rodrigo Sanchez
Nov 9, 2020 . 4 min read

The five best websites for guitar tabs are a great resource. They contain thousands of songs, killer riffs, burning solos, and more.

Rodrigo Sanchez
Nov 7, 2020 . 4 min read

Choosing the best strings for acoustic guitars is a personal process. Just like most things guitar-related,

Rodrigo Sanchez
Nov 2, 2020 . 4 min read

Finger pain associated with playing guitar is a real problem. The same is true for joint pain, tissue pain, and muscle pain.

Rodrigo Sanchez
Oct 19, 2020 . 4 min read

Downpicking exercises are a must for many guitarists. Do you play metal? Better start working on that downpicking today. Do you like Rock? You will definitely be downpicking a while. Do you ever play power chords?

Rodrigo Sanchez
Oct 16, 2020 . 4 min read

There are so many famous pedalboard setups. Sometimes the same guitarist will have different setups for different situations. This is partly because of the seemingly endless amount of guitar pedals in the market. As a result, the possible combinations are endless.

Rodrigo Sanchez
Oct 12, 2020 . 4 min read

Do you know when you should upgrade your guitar? That is a very personal question that will therefore have quite different answers.

Rodrigo Sanchez
Sep 25, 2020 . 4 min read

The best recording software today will work fine for experienced engineers and beginners alike. In other words, there is no such thing as the best recording software for beginners.

Rodrigo Sanchez
Sep 14, 2020 . 4 min read

The best online jamming websites are a godsend. First, they are a great way to practice. Second, they are fun. Third, they are especially useful in a time of pandemic and limited social contact.

Rodrigo Sanchez
Sep 7, 2020 . 3 min read
We'll be bringing you recommended tabs and plenty of interesting quotes from guitar legends along the way!