Updated: Jul 7, 2022
When you start your singing classes or are just beginning to learn singing, remember that your voice has the potential to be an incredible musical instrument. The greatest instrument in the world is sitting right inside you capable of producing a range of beautiful music that is melodious and can bring joy to not only yourself but to others as well.
As you learn singing, remember it is a skill that needs to be perfected by practice. Every day if possible. All those inspiring singers you want to be like, started out learning basic concepts in singing just like you today.
The ability to sing well is a wonderful gift. However, most people think that this ability to sing is something that you either have or you don’t. People assume that having a broad melodious vocal range or being pitch perfect is something you are born with.
Most of us think that singing is an innate ability that only some people have, and they would not be able to learn singing at all. A wonderful voice is not a gift given to only a few. Breath-taking sounds, ideal vocal tones, perfect pitch and strong vocal muscles aren’t always something you are born with. But rather this is a skill that you can build with practice and dedication.
Everyone is born with a unique voice and an different vocal range. The art of learning to sing and how to improve your own unique singing voice is learning how to work with the ability you already have. Working to improve your singing voice takes a mix of elements: breathing, posture, and the right exercises. As you begin to learn singing or even start off with singing classes, you will see an improvement in your vocal range and technique.
WHAT MAKES A GOOD SINGER?
First, you need to understand what makes a good singer. Let’s break down the skills a good singer has and understand what works to get compliments from an audience. Let’s unravel what is about these singers that works and use what we notice about good singers and apply it. It is important to pick these finer details, so we know what to work on and improve as we learn to sing or take on singing classes.
1) Control your Pitch as you learn singing
One important facet of being a good singer is the control you have over your pitch. Faltering or losing your ground on some of the difficult notes (especially the high notes) is a sign of a unsophisticated singer. Once you have control over your pitch, you can then begin the process of developing your voice.
2) Support your voice with exercises in your singing classes
You need to improve the support to your vocal cords. This will help you in building a wonderful melodious singing voice. You can strengthen your voice and vocal support through breathing techniques as well as through throat exercises. This will require consistent singing, breathing and vocal practise. When you sing, your vocal cords actually act as a breath regulator This of it as breath management rather than as breath support. This will not only add to your vocal range but building this support will help you sing much better.
3) Diction, volume and singing style
A good singer will always be aware of the kind of voice they have. They are aware of the volume and style of songs they can sing. When good singers sing, they also sing beautiful clean notes without any mumbling. They pay attention to their vocal style and the song that they are singing. So, do pay attention to identifying a volume and style that works for you and your vocal cords!
4) Self-Awareness about tune and pitch
When you are just starting out to learn to sing, you are constantly aware of your singing voice and style. This is something you should nurture and develop. Good singers are always attuned to their voice. They are aware if they are hitting the right notes, they are producing the right pitch and have a pretty good idea of how they sound.
They pay attention to their vocal cords and throat. If you are taking singing classes, your vocal coach will tell you to stop singing and rest your voice if your throat hurts. You need to be able to stop what you are doing if this happens. If you lose your voice and can’t sing or speak for a few days after your singing practise, do seek out professional help and work with a professional vocal coach, who will help you understand just what you are doing wrong.
5) Using Your Voice to sing
Kurt Cobain and Enya both have very different voices. They both sound beautiful and amazing. They have a different set of vocals and both learned to use the voice that they were born with and honed through practise.
Understand your vocal range and stay in your vocal range itself. Most importantly, listen to yourself when you sing. When you use your ears along with your voice to sing, you will be able to tell where you are going wrong. You can also record yourself while singing to better understand your vocal range by listening to yourself sing!
TIPS When you are just starting to learn singing
Now that you have an idea of what makes a good singer, let’s see how that applies to you in your singing classes.
Improving your singing is not a quick easy thing. You will need to practise with vocal exercises that are best suited for your voice. When you do these exercises, focus on pitch elements, the diction, and the intensity of your voice. Step by step, you can begin the task of hitting notes beautifully.
These are a few basic tips to improve your singing.
1) Understand your weaknesses
· The best way to know how you sing is using technology. It is very easy to find apps and software that you can use on your smartphone or your laptop which are freely available. All you need to do is sing and don’t forget to hit the record button when you sing.
Now that you have your own recorded version of a song, compare the song to the original singer who sang the song
Now it’s a simple critical exercise of understanding where you went wrong. Did you not breathe correctly, did you fumble with some parts, was your vocal range weak?
Note down these mistakes
Understanding your weaknesses will help you identify your problem areas which need work.
Focus on finding exercises that help you overcome these weaknesses
If you have a vocal coach or a singing teacher, do share these with them, so that they can also guide you through this process and you will be able to learn singing in a more structured manner that is more suited to your voice.
2. Daily Practice
Set a target for your practise. As you go through the journey and learn to sing, you should be practising at least twenty minutes a day. This does not include your warmup exercises. The best part about learning to sing, is that you can practise anywhere, on your way to work or even in the shower. Do ask your vocal coach or your singing teacher to create a practise plan for you in your singing classes.
3) Vocal Warm-Ups
Your voice is powered by a muscle and as such like any other muscle in your body, needs training. When you begin any excersize of your body the first thing you do is warm up the muscles. This is the same logic. So before you start working on your vocal range, warm up your throat muscles.
You can practise singing the scales, humming a few tunes or even repeat tongue and lip trills to warm up your voice before your actual practise singing lesson.
4) Begin with Breathing
Breathing exercises are a must for those who want to learn to sing and for those who want to improve their singing. When we breathe normally, we don’t use our full lung capacity. As sich there is a lot of unused potential at the bottom of your diaphragm. Tapping into this will greatly improve your singing voice.
Holding an “ssss” sound as you exhale will help you control your airflow. Try inhaling for 5 counts and exhaling for another 5 to keep your breaths nice and deep.
Keep your chest relaxed, shoulders low and breathe in and out deeply and incorporate this method in your daily singing practise.
5) Investing in Your Voice
Take care of your instrument or rather your vocal cords and voice in the case of singing
Do keep hydrated by drinking plenty of water through out the day. This will keep your voice healthy, and your vocal membranes hydrated.
Smoking, screaming or anything that puts undue strain on your voice is to be avoided.
6) Understanding your singing Posture
Having a good posture will significantly improve your singing. Do not slum and hunch over.. Even something as small as a tilted head can have an adverse impact on your pitch and tone as well as your ability to produce notes.
The best posture to develop your vocal range is to stand straight with your feet placed at shoulder width apart. Keep your stomach relaxed and shoulders straight. You can also tilt your chin down a little and this will help you hit higher notes.
An easy way to practice good posture is to sing while lying down. Your body is already in a straight line, and you can incorporate this posture of singing when you are standing up and singing.
7) The Art of Enunciation
Use a mirror to see how your jaws move when you pronounce the vowels in English. A E I O U. If you close your jaw while saying these letters out aloud, use fingers to prop your jaw open as you pronounce them. Keep practising as your naturally pronounce these vowels with your jaw open.
The more this is ingrained in you and if you master enunciating the vowels like this, your singing voice will have more volume and your notes will sound clearer.
8) Add a Metronome
If you are not sure about maintaining a steady beat while singing, you can consider incorporating a metronome in your singing practise. You can either buy a metronome or even use a free metronome app on your phone that will help you maintain that steady beat as you sing
9) Confidence in your singing
Believe in your voice as you sing. There will be failing notes, some pitch drops and a struggle with breath as you learn to sing. Find your own voice and don’t copy anyone else. A confident singer is always more pleasurable to watch.
10) Practise, practice practise
Yes, this tip is important enough to be listed twice. No singers sing flawlessly with out daily practise. Hone your voice and singing ability so that it is a joy for those who listen to you sing those notes perfectly!