How the Introduction of the Microphone Captured Vocal Depth and Nuance That Otherwise Went Unnoticed

Cheddar takes a look at the history of the microphone, specifically addressing how it was able to transform vocals from almost unheard to prominently nuanced when it was introduced during the golden age of crooning. Performers such as Frank Sinatra, Billie Holiday and Bing Crosby were among the first to use the microphone as an instrument to capture the wider frequency levels, depth and richness contained within their voices.

The introduction of the ribbon microphone in the 30s allowed for a much wider spectrum of vocal frequencies and singers started to experiment with different styles and nuance. Crosby was famous for his beautiful legato phrasing flowing effortlessly between notes …Billy Holladay was an innovator on the mic. She developed a tone and rhythm that sounded like she was speaking the lyrics instead of singing them. …Sinatra was a master of the microphone he tailored his entire singing style to take full advantage of the technology.