From Kanye West to Britney Spears to Ashlee Simpson, there have been countless Auto-Tune scandals surrounding pop vocal artists. So does the pop giant known for having an astounding voice, Adele, use Auto-Tune?
No, Adele does not use Autotune. In this day and age, it sometimes seems impossible to tell the difference between great recording equipment and Auto-Tune. And Adele has continuously denied rumors and accusations of her using Auto-Tune.
You can read more about Auto-Tune, music recording, and Adele’s feisty feud with an Auto-Tune critic.
What is Auto-Tune and How Does it Work?
Auto-Tune is an audio processor that can measure the pitch of a voice or instrument and then automatically tune it to be in the correct key. It first hit the markets in 1997. It’s original patent said, “When voices or instruments are out of tune, the emotional qualities of the performance are lost.”
The processor has ended up doing one of two things in the music industry today: distort voices to sound robotic or make bad singers sound good. This has resulted in a lot of fans being incredibly disappointed that their favourite artist sounds nothing like their album when on stage. The software used to enhance emotional qualities now became the ticket to fame for any person with a little money and a good PR team. It seemed that Auto-Tune was cheapening the real talent.
High Quality Recording Equipment Vs. Auto-Tune
Although Auto-Tune has been able to create a lot of very interesting distortions to voices, it has also had a very negative impact on vocal artists. This is mainly because fans now constantly wonder if an artist used Auto-Tune to sound better on their albums. Can these artists even sing in tune on their own?
Add to that the fact that recording equipment has developed along with Auto-Tune. It may seem like an artist is using the audio processor when, in reality, they are not. That’s just how amazing their voice sounds when under the microscope of some of the best recording microphones in the world.
As the user music and movies put it in this post to the Steve Hoffman forum, “The microphone is a transducer; it captures the voice and sends the signal to a high-quality, very expensive mixer. Vocals going through there are going to sound better.”
It is because of this that heavily produced music, generally pop, can be misconstrued to sound like Auto-Tune has been used when in fact it wasn’t.
How Can You Be Certain Adele Doesn’t Use Auto-Tune?
With the incredible voice that she has, how can we be absolutely certain that Adele does not use Auto-Tune? Well, the first reason would be that she has vehemently denied the use. In fact in 2016, David Bowie’s long time producer, Tony Viscont, said to The Daily Star that “We know Adele has a great voice but it’s even questionable if that is actually her voice or how much has been manipulated.” Adele fired back at the man, in true Adele fashion, with a vengeance.
At her next show in Paris, Adele told her fans “Some d******* tried to say that my voice was not me on record … Dude, suck my d***.” This prompted Visconti to formally apologize to the singer.
Other than Adele’s denial of ever using Auto-Tune, you can watch her live performances. Of course there are always issues that can arise during a live performance. One example would be that the artist is unable to hear themselves singing in their feedback and end up singing off key. By looking at Adele’s live performances and comparing them with her albums, it seems pretty clear that she truly does have an incredible voice.
You can watch Adele perform her song Hello live at the NRJ Awards by following the below YouTube link.