Freddie Mercury Scientifically Proven to Be Awesome
A research team recently attempted to delve into the physical particulars of what made the legendary frontman's voice so special, and the results are now available to peruse in the published paper "Freddie Mercury — acoustic analysis of speaking fundamental frequency, vibrato, and subharmonics."
"Freddie Mercury was one of the twentieth century’s best-known singers of commercial contemporary music," explains the paper. "This study presents an acoustical analysis of his voice production and singing style, based on perceptual and quantitative analysis of publicly available sound recordings."
As Consequence of Sound reports, the study was more in-depth than that initial explanation might suggest. After using recordings of Mercury's speaking voice to determine that he was most likely a natural baritone, the team brought in a singer to imitate Mercury's singing and filmed his larynx while he performed.
"What they discovered was that he likely employed subharmonics, a singing style where the ventricular folds vibrate along with the vocal folds," writes CoS. "Most humans never speak or sing with their ventricular folds unless they’re Tuvan throat singers, so the fact that this popular rock vocalist was probably dealing with subharmonics is pretty incredible."
All this research, in a nutshell, seems to prove that Mercury was doing stuff with his voice that suggests physical capabilities even Luciano Pavarotti couldn't match. We've all known about Mercury's greatness for decades, of course, but it's always nice to be validated by science — and it makes for pretty interesting reading besides. Check out the Consequence report for more in-depth analysis, or read the complete paper.
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