Justin Timberlake is considered to be a true entertainer by many people all over the world. Besides being an actor, dancer, and performer, Justin Timberlake is known for his vocal abilities. Despite his obvious talent, many fans want to know, does Justin Timberlake use autotune?
Here’s what I’ve discovered:
Justin Timberlake occasionally uses autotune on his recordings, but not because he could not sing in perfect pitch, but more of a production preference from the producers in how the vocals fit with the rest of the music. Timberlake does not use autotune live, nor does he lip-sync.
In fact, engineer and mixer Chris Godbey who worked with Timberlake on his 2 albums called The 20/20 Experience, noted that he would:
“tune the vocals using . . . Auto-Tune. It’s not so much to get Justin’s vocals in tune because he’s right on the money when he sings, but more because using Melodyne slightly sharpens and brightens all the vocal harmonies.”
Essentially, autotune is used in music to correct a singer’s pitch or, in some cases, to almost completely change the way they sound.
While this has been embraced by many fans, not every music listener is pleased with this change. It is important to point out that autotune is used by many artists.
When it is done in subtle ways, the listener may not even notice.
This article will explore Justin Timberlake as a singer, discuss if or when he uses autotune, as well as to what extent if he does use it.
Let’s jump in!
— Us Weekly (@usweekly) February 14, 2016
Is it hard for Justin Timberlake to dance and sing in tune?
It isn’t difficult for Justin Timberlake to dance and sing in tune. Fans can find many performances on YouTube where Justin is both singing and dancing while also being in tune. This is not an easy thing for most people to do, and it takes practice and proper breathing control.
One question that many people ask about autotune is if a singer can sing and dance at the same time.
Justin Timberlake has demonstrated several times that he can do this.
It is important to remember that before Justin Timberlake’s solo success, he was dancing and singing as a part of his former boy band, NSYNC.
While fans know that Justin can dance while also singing in tune, it does not mean that he does not struggle sometimes.
Just like all artists who incorporate dancing in their routines, there are some performances where there is a difference in his singing. In these performances, instead of sounding more similar to the recorded song, he sounds out of breath.
This does not mean he is bad at it. It just means that this is a difficult thing for most singers. Very few people can fully do both at the same time.
Dancing while singing in tune is hard because it is natural for a person’s voice to shake when they are moving.
We can even see this when it comes to people attempting to talk while also doing more than slight movements. People who are good at it have often trained for many years before perfecting this skill.
— ELLE Magazine (US) (@ELLEmagazine) November 6, 2015
How good does Justin Timberlake sound acapella?
Justin Timberlake is known for his impeccable acapella skills, and he got his start singing in the church without any major accompaniment. To get a sense of his vocal abilities without studio trickery, simply search Justin Timberlake acapella on YouTube.
Specifically, this video on YouTube is a great example of how well he can sing without autotune or a full band and backing vocalists. It’s not truly acapella as there is piano accompaniment, but you can clearly tell he’s an amazing vocalist who doesn’t need autotune.
When it comes to being a singer like Justin Timberlake is, sounding good acapella is important.
Acapella singing is essentially singing without the background and the music. This means that a singer has to be in top form to do it well. One way you know Justin is good at singing acapella if you have never heard it before is to listen to his falsetto voice.
Typically, if a singer sounds good singing with their falsetto, they will be good acapella singers.
There are many examples of Justin Timberlake showing off his acapella skills. He has done this in interviews before, and you can even hear the acapella version of his songs on YouTube.
The best source for this is to find full concerts where Justin has famously sung acapella for a few of his biggest hits. This is always a treat for his many adoring fans who attend his live performances.
A singer singing acapella is not a requirement, but it is often a special moment.
This is true because singing acapella truly shows the talent of the artist. Acapella singing does this because it is not about the instrumentals of a song, but it is all about them and their emotions displayed in the music.
Some hardcore music fans consider this to be the true test of a singer.
— People (@people) February 27, 2017
Does Justin Timberlake lip-sync at concerts?
Justin Timberlake does not lip-sync at concerts. While he often is dancing and singing at the same time, he prefers for the audience to hear the real him even if it’s an imperfect night.
Musical artists lip-syncing has been a long-time trend in the music industry. Many people have varying opinions about this.
But it has not stopped it from becoming more widespread in recent years.
However, Justin Timberlake has never been known to lip-sync. This decision is respected by many because it shows a level of integrity and artistic honesty. If Justin has done this, people were not aware.
Popular artists lip-sync for several reasons.
Some singers do it because they plan to incorporate dancing into their performances. Some do it occasionally because of being under the weather.
And some do it perhaps because the song is too intricate to completely sing live.
There have been times where Justin Timberlake has performed under some of these circumstances, but he still chose to sing live.
It is important to also point out the fact that there are different levels of lip-syncing. Many artists do it by singing to what is known as a backing track.
What this means is some parts of the song are sung live, but others are from the pre-recorded version. Again, this is done for many reasons.
But it’s mostly done when a song has too many moving parts to completely sing live.
A friendly reminder that Justin Timberlake is the most talented artist of our generation
— done with buddie (@Timberlakestan9) April 25, 2021
Did Justin Timberlake lip-sync at the Super Bowl?
Like almost all artists who have performed the Super Bowl Halftime Show, Justin Timberlake did lip-sync his performances.
Although Justin Timberlake is known for singing live and not lip-syncing, the Super Bowl is an exception.
Many fans who have watched the performance have pointed out that there are instances where you can be sure he is not singing live.
They point to parts of the performance where he talks over the song or even where he will start to sing live while the backing track is playing.
The thing about major productions like the Super Bowl is that many artists are told to lip-sync by the producers.
With the typical setting of the Super Bowl, it is pretty difficult to make live vocals sound good due to things like acoustics as well as the large crowd.
The producers of these shows want to deliver a great live show, and asking the artist to lip-sync is one of the ways to do it.
This does not mean that every artist who has done the Super Bowl Halftime Show lip-synced.
Lady Gaga famously did not because she has always placed value on live vocals. Many see the times where Justin included the live vocals during his Super Bowl show as proof that he also values live singing.
But he also wanted to do what the producers thought was best.
— billboard (@billboard) September 17, 2018
How to tell if an artist is using autotune
Some artists who use autotune are obvious such as Post Malone. Aside from making a vocal sound inhuman, a listener may also hear small glitches or pauses or unnatural glides between notes when listening to autotuned vocals.
However, used sparingly to just correct minor pitch issues, it can be hard for fans to notice the use of autotune. Knowing if an artist is using autotune is a tricky thing.
In some cases, it is obvious when they are.
This is because some artists use autotune to almost fully change how they sound on songs. There are many popular examples of this, one of the most well-known being Post Malone, as I mentioned above.
Autotune can often give a more robotic sound to singing when used in excess.
However, when autotune is used in more traditional ways, most music listeners are unaware of this. They would need to hear the song without autotune to see a difference. Even with this, many would not know the difference.
This is because autotune is traditionally used as a vocal or pitch corrector.
Justin Timberlake is known as a great singer by many.
He has gained this reputation due to his live performances, ability to sing acapella, as well as his typical commitment to not lip-syncing.
And as you’d expect from someone of his talent, while he may sometimes use autotune, it’s used sparingly, and not because he doesn’t have a spectacular voice.
Justin has been compared to many of the greats in terms of her vocal ability, and he continues to show why this is.
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