What are the characteristics used to determine if something is sung in head voice or if is falsetto?

If we take the line “No, I don't want to fall in love…” from Chris Isaak's Wicked Game, is this performed using true head voice or rather falsetto voice?

  • before this gets closed for being off-topic... it's not falsetto, so I guess it must be 'head voice' - though that's a term I've never got to grips with, personally. It's a song I sing often & I have no falsetto range at all, zero [if I can reach it I can reach it full voice]. It's just a controlled 'full-voice' as far as I'm concerned.
    – Tetsujin
    Nov 24, 2014 at 19:20
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    Edited to try make on topic. See also meta.music.stackexchange.com/questions/1008/…. Nov 25, 2014 at 10:03
  • To whoever will answer this question: please make sure to make a distinction between female and male voices. The two work quite differently when head voice and falsetto are concerned.
    – Lee White
    Nov 25, 2014 at 10:28
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    @MeaningfulUsername Thank you for your editing and your hint at the discussion on META! Nov 25, 2014 at 17:45
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    Why would this be off-topic? Jun 15, 2015 at 10:40

1 Answer 1


My inexperienced ears tell me the high sound is disconnected from the low. Plus, the high sound is pretty thin. Thus, I don't see it as head voice.

Going a bit off topic: Head voice is a tricky concept. I have just covered it with my vocal teacher and, to be honest, it's not something you should force yourself to do. It is something that comes naturally as you go up the scales if:

  • your throat is free (hard to achieve that)
  • psychologically, you do not think about having to reach to hit the high note

It's almost counter-intuitive that, the way to hit a high(-er) note in head voice is by not thinking/concentrating on the fact that it's high, but that's how it works.

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