We all know that setting goals is an important part of music lessons. And as a singer, you’re working with a very delicate instrument (your voice!) – so you’ll want to set reasonable singing goals and work with a private teacher to monitor your progress. Read on as Buena Park, CA voice teacher Andrew C. describes the process…
We all have goals we want to achieve with our voice. Maybe you want to hit all the right notes in your song arsenal the next time you go to your local karaoke bar. Or maybe you have a very important singing competition coming up and need to focus on singing in tune. It could be you are the lead in a musical and need help with not losing your breath on stage while singing, acting, and dancing. Whatever the goal comes to be, we all have one thing in common… we want to achieve the correct technique to accomplish our goals. There are numerous ways to do this the right way, as well as the wrong way. For the sake of success though, I’m going to focus strictly on the right ways to do this.
One very easy way is to purchase a voice recorder and listen to your voice. You always sound different in an audio playback mode versus your ear to your voice during a live singing demonstration. (Note: no two recordings will ever be identical.) No money? No worries, use your phone. Most phones nowadays come with an app ready to record your vocals.
Along with playback mode, make sure you have a pen and paper. In order to critique your performance, you need notes. Listen to your playback again and again. Jot down your notes of improvement. Rinse and repeat. After you make your modifications, play it back again and compare it to your original recording. Did you improve or fix the problem? Sometimes we can still be biased toward our performance, so letting someone else critique your recording is always a good thing too.
Another valuable exercise is to get an actual audience of peers (fellow singers) to judge your vocal abilities. Sometimes the ear and sight of a fellow vocalist is just what it takes to correct errors and help us reach the goals we would like to achieve. Also, video is a super awesome resource and probably provides the fastest and most immediate feedback for you to view and correct anything flawed in your musical presentation.
Try to approach each rehearsal or voice lesson with one goal. That should be the goal you focus on for the duration of your session. Practice until you get it right. Once you achieve that goal, begin using that acquired music skill in song after song in your arsenal until you become comfortable with the technique. As the story goes, it takes about 12 times of repetition before the mind begins to retain newly-processed information. So get used to burning and engraving your accomplished singing goals into your brain for permanent use.
Andrew C. teaches singing, music recording, songwriting, speaking voice and trumpet lessons in Buena Park, CA. He received his degree in music and communications from Pierce College, and specializes in pop, theater and public speaking. Andrew joined the TakeLessons team in February 2013. Learn more about Andrew, or search for a teacher near you!
Photo by flo and me