Your Audio Guide to Idol: 'Pitchy' Explained
"When you add a sound system and a live band to the mix, very often singers aren't hearing enough of their voice," says Leonhart. "For a less experienced singer, they try to sing louder and that throws off the balance of the voice, which changes the pitch." It also doesn't help that the pressure on the Idols is fierce – and nerves can take a toll on the way they breathe. "Nervousness or excitement affects breathing. If you don't have sufficient breath support, the lack of air flow forces other muscles to work harder than they should – which can alter the pitch," she adds.
As the Idols cross their fingers that "pitchy" won't be uttered by Randy and Paula, Leonhart shows us how a verse from Aretha Franklin's "Natural Woman" should and shouldn't sound. Take a listen: