The process and result of tuning is known as tuning. This verb refers to touch up, correct or improve something. The term is also used for action that seeks to increase the quality of a thing. For example: “We have to adjust the last details and the final tuning, but the machine is almost ready”, “In general, I write my books in a few weeks but then I spend several months in the tuning of the texts”, “We are close to reaching an agreement: we only have to refine some clauses ”.
The notion of tuning is widely used in the field of music in reference to ensuring that the instruments reproduce each of the notes that make up their full length according to a certain convention, as necessary for the pieces that you want to play. . This can be done in many ways; one of them, very common and practical, is to use a tuning fork as a guide. Some sentences that use the term in this context are: “The musician interrupted the concert on several occasions to proceed to the tuning of his guitar”, “Tomorrow the teacher will teach me how to develop the tuning of the bass”, “I think something is wrong with piano tuning ”.
The goal of a tuning system is to develop various frequency links between the vibrations generated by the notes that are part of a scale. These links are described based on the intervals between the notes.
The tuning of each musical instrument will vary according to its characteristics. The piano is usually tuned using the tempered system, while string instruments with frets are tuned by perfect fifths or fourths (ripping the strings in midair).
The famous but misunderstood La 440 corresponds to the note “la” that is located above the central “do” of the piano, and its name indicates that when played it vibrates constantly 440 times per second. This particular note is used as a reference standard when tuning an instrument today, unlike in the past, when the number of vibrations was lower.
Singing students are usually the ones who suffer the most when it comes to tuning, since, although there are other instruments (apart from the voice) that present similar difficulties, such as the violin, the fact that the vocal cords are Part of our body means that not achieving the desired tuning results in double disappointment.
For some people, getting a good pitch is a natural matter, requiring no conscious effort. However, vocal music can be very complex, and when a singer enters the field of coloratura (the most ornate sung music), any innate ability is insufficient to achieve acceptable or even pleasing results for the spectators. On the other hand, those who fight with their own voice systems to tune the notes of simple vocal exercises usually think that they will never overcome their barriers, which is not necessarily true.
Vocal music is riddled with myths, and it is just as possible for a promising student to stagnate when faced with a real challenge, as it is for a humble applicant with tuning problems to overcome them and fulfill their dreams. To tune it is necessary to educate the brain, provide it with information about tones and the different relationships and tensions that exist between the notes. This does not mean that we can all become great singers, but that the path is much more complex than is believed and that education often makes a difference.