You might be wondering if just any old person can learn how to sing, well, studies show that unless you’re part of the 3% of the population born with tone deafness (amusia) or have a barring vocal disability, you can learn to sing. So with that out of the way, here are 9 helpful tips on how to sing better.
1. Pick Your Style
So first things first, what do you want to sound like? Do you want to be a country singer? Metal? Pop? R&B? You need to decide what kind of style and tonality you want to have, this will help you figure everything else out. In doing this, you should pick your favorite artists of that genre that you want to imitate, not your favorite songs.
You need to build some consistency in your tone, so if you’re a female choose a female singer that you want to sound like, and the same goes for male. This doesn’t mean that by picking Ariana Grande you are going to sound exactly like her, but by choosing her it can help you learn the light, airy, tonality that she sings with.
2. Practice every day
If you’ve heard it once, you’ve heard it a million times- practice makes perfect. Many people don’t realize this also applies to your voice, they think because it’s not an instrument you can see (like a guitar or piano) that it doesn’t or shouldn’t require much effort to be good. We are here to tell you this is not the case, bad singers become good by practicing, and good singers become great by continuing to practice. This is the #1 thing that will teach you how to sing better.
3. Be Willing to Sound Bad
What? Sound bad? Isn’t the whole point to sound good? Of course! However, the same as with everything else, sometimes you have to be bad before you can actually be good. The best way to do this is to find somewhere to be alone to practice so you don’t have to worry about being heard.
Being self conscious about someone hearing you while learning is a sure-fire way to make it more difficult for yourself. You won’t be able to properly find your range, where your voice has power, or where your limit is on both the high and low ends of a scale or octave.
4. Don't Sing Over other Voices
One of the best ways to learn how to become a better singer is by not singing over top of other voices. Sure it may be fun, it may feel a little safer, but you’re hurting yourself in the long run because you won’t be able to properly hear yourself, and therefore make the needed adjustments. You might think the option then is to sing karaoke, but that can be equally as bad.
When learning it is very helpful to have the instrumentation behind you to keep you in the right key, note, etc. The best and easiest way to sing along with songs you love is to use Moises' AI Audio Separation feature.
Either through the Web or Mobile app, you can very simply use the vocal remover to take out the lead or background vocals to any song, creating a brand new track for you to practice with. Or if you’re wanting to grow your skills in harmonizing, you can isolate the background vocals to listen and singback what you hear - which leads us into our next tip.
5. Train Your Ear
Training your ear is the ability to hear a note and sing it back. For example someone plays an E on the piano, and you sing it back with the goal of matching the same pitch and tone. This trains your brain to associate that sound with that note, simultaneously teaching you what it doesn’t sound like, so when you sing flat or pitchy, your brain is able to tell you that something doesn’t sound right and you can adjust accordingly.
One of the quickest ways to do this is actually by learning an instrument. Because you have to train your ear in order to develop your understanding of music, or play along with other musicians, you typically learn faster. This is just one of the added benefits of playing an instrument.
6. Learn Breath Support
The importance of breathwork is astronomical, have you ever tried singing a song while jumping around or dancing? It doesn’t usually sound great, so how do professional singers perform during concerts? Simple, they work on their breathing. The main point is to learn to control your breathing so you’re not gasping for breath in the middle of a note.
Breathing from the diaphragm is a great technique to begin with. Place your hands on your belly to feel your stomach expanding, that is breathing from the diaphragm and not from your chest.
7. Practice scales
Along with using breathwork in your journey on how to become a better singer, comes practicing your scales. This is a great way to utilize several tips in 1, you’re training your ear, getting daily practice in, and using breathwork. While it may seem overly simplified, it’s a great place not only for beginners but to expand your range as well- meaning the notes and octaves you can sing before it becomes too high or low and your voice cracks. Below are a few examples of a major and minor scale vocal warm up.
8. Don’t force your voice
It may sound obvious but if something is hurting (your throat, your chest, etc) you’re doing something wrong. Unlike other instruments which can be played for hours and hours on end, your vocal chords can only take so much. Experts say between 30 minutes - 2 hours a day maximum, with the average being 1 hour.
So if you really want to grow your skill and talent you need to practice every single day but make sure you’re not overdoing it! You definitely don’t want to damage your vocal chords.
9. Try singing into a microphone
What some people don’t realize until they experience it is you will sound different than you’re used to when hearing your voice recorded. This is because when we hear ourselves talking, we hear a different sound than everyone else hears.
Sound travels in a straight wave, so when it’s coming from our mouth to another's ears they are hearing our true voice, whereas when you hear yourself the sound has to travel around your head to get to your ears, causing shifts in the frequencies. This doesn’t make it a bad sound, it just makes it different from what we’re used to. Singing into a microphone and hearing yourself recorded can help you hear what you truly sound like and adjust things accordingly.
We hope this gives you the confidence to believe that anyone can learn how to be a better singer, including you! Did we miss any tips or tricks? Let us know in the comments below!