Vocal Techniques for Singers: There are a huge variety of vocal techniques for singers that can help develop & improve all round vocal performance. Although you will achieve the best results by attending voice lessons with a qualified teacher, here are some simple vocal techniques that can be done daily or just before a performance plus some key dos and don’ts!
Many singers fall into the trap that they must do endless breathing exercises to in order to sing well but this shouldn’t be the case. Many of the breathing issues that singers encounter such as running out of breath before the end of phrases are far more often down to the internal muscles (the vocal cords & larynx) being made to function incorrectly & also how the air flow is distributed rather than the actual function of breathing being incorrect. It is however really important to get the basics right.
You should never sing at full volume without fully warming up first. Failing to warm up your voice can result in damage and will only hinder your progress in the long run.
This should sound like you’re mimicking the sound of a car engine. Support your face around your jawline with your fingers, squish your lips together into a loose pucker & gently blow a “buh” sound into your lips so they vibrate. Once you’ve mastered this, use scales, slides up & down as high & low as you can & even use them on the melody of a song you’re learning.
Make a “mmm” sound in your own spoken voice like you’re agreeing with something or have just had something tasty to eat. You should feel a gentle vibration in your throat & on your lips. Once you’ve mastered it & it feels really comfortable hum through various scales. Do this with broken up notes, 1 per note “mm mm mm” & also in 1 long “mmmmmmm” smoothly across the notes. Avoid starting on an “H” as this indicates you’re over using breath & make sure your tongue stays down & doesn’t start pulling to the back of you throat.
Vowels have major impact on anything you sing as they are the sounds that are sustained & showcase the unique tone of your voice so they need to be controlled effectively. Many singers find themselves modifying the sound & shape of a vowel dramatically to make it easier to reach certain notes or in some cases to copy the style of another singer. Practice the most common vowels found in the words you sing & work on maintaining a more consistent mouth shape to produce them naturally rather than manipulating your mouth, tongue & jaw to try to create them. A good starting point is a nice narrow O shape then work individually & in turn across the following:
EE as in See, OO as in Soon, EH as in Stare, Oh as in Snow, I as in Sky & AH as in Star
Use 1 sustained note & 4 or 5 note scales up & down. Again, careful you don’t add any “Hs” to lever the sound out & keep that tongue relaxed.
It’s vital an audience can understand what you are singing so make sure you don’t get lazy with annunciation. Add consonants into your vowel exercises to crisp up your diction, they also help with breath control as they will create stops in the air flow at different points within your mouth & throat. There are many variations to choose from but B, C, D, F, G, M, N are very effective.
Your voice is at its most relaxed when you’re speaking in your own natural voice so try bringing it together with your singing voice. Work on tricky parts of songs in shorter more spoken way whilst maintaining the melody. It will sound & feel rather soulless & formal but gradually you can start sustaining notes & adding more of your own singing style back in. You’ll be amazed how much easier it feels!
Check out our other tips for singers below and check out our singing competitions TeenStar 2015.
To keep up-to-date with other advice for singers, keep an eye on the TeenStar Facebook and Twitter pages:
Click the above buttons so you don't miss out!
TeenStar 2018 Audition Dates Now Released!
TeenStar 2018 audition dates are now released! TeenStar, the UK’s only singing and dance competition exclusively for 19 year olds and younger, have now released their 2018 audition dates! …
TEENSTAR CHAMPIONS 2017!
TeenStar have crowned Annabel and Scandalous Productions the overall 2017 winners!
TeenStar Champions: The national singing and dance competition TeenStar has found its latest winners! Joining a long line of prestigious …
TEENSTAR PRIZE WINNERS
Judges’ Top Scores and Sponsor Prize Winners Announced
The TeenStar 2017 Grand Final prize winners and judges’ top scores have been revealed! The national singing and dance competition TeenStar Grand Final took …
MUSIC COMPETITION OPEN MIC UK 2017 AUDITION DATES RELEASED
Music competition auditions dates for Open Mic UK 2017 have been announced!
Open Mic UK have announced their music competition auditions dates for Open Mic UK 2017! The Open Mic UK music …
TeenStar audition dates now released!
TeenStar audition dates are now released! TeenStar, the UK’s only competition exclusively for pre-teens and teenagers, have now released their audition dates! And new for this year it’s also open …
RACHEL ANN CROWNED TEENSTAR CHAMPION!
Future Music has crowned Rachel Ann as the overall winner of TeenStar 2015.
TeenStar Champion: The national singing competition TeenStar has found its latest winner! Joining a long line of prestigious …
MUSIC BUSINESS – TEENSTAR GRAND FINAL JUDGES’ TOP SCORES
Music business judges’ top scores from the 2015 TeenStar Grand Final.
Music Business: The TeenStar singing competition Grand Final’s judges’ top scores …
AWARD WINNERS – TEENSTAR GRAND FINAL WINNERS
2015 TeenStar Grand Final award winners.
Award Winners: The TeenStar Grand Final took place at The NEC in Birmingham on Saturday 25th July. The TeenStar grand finalists performed in front of a …
PLAYING THE GUITAR
How to use dynamics when playing the guitar.
Playing the Guitar: Dynamics are essential when playing the guitar as they help to spice up your playing, and also your songwriting. Using dynamics when playing the guitar …
Information on The Voice auditions.
Voice Auditions: The Voice is a British television talent show created by the BBC. There are two stages to The Voice auditions; the producers' auditions and the blind auditions.
TALENT COMPETITIONS – DEVELOPING CHILDREN’S VOCALS
Ways in which talent competitions can be used to help a child’s development.
Talent Competitions – Developing Children’s Vocals: Many singers choose to enter …
SINGING AUDITIONS – TIPS FROM MUSIC INDUSTRY JUDGES
Pointers on how to impress music industry judges at singing auditions
Singing Auditions – Tips from Music Industry Judges: Here are some pointers on how to impress the judges …
NETWORKING TIPS FOR SINGERS
Networking tips for the music industry
Networking Tips for Singers: Networking is the opportunity to speak and connect with people who you may have never had the chance to before. For musicians it’s an …
MUSIC PERFORMANCE TIPS FOR SINGERS
Tips to improve your music performance
Music Performance Tips for Singers: Being able to deliver a good music performance can often be something that sets your performance out from the rest. It’s …
SONGS TO COVER – MAKING A COVER ORIGINAL
How to choose songs to cover and make original when performing
Songs to Cover – Making a Cover Original: When songs to cover you want to stand out and be remembered, a good way of doing …
PERFORMING AS A SINGER
Tips on performing for singers.
Performing as a Singer: Performing is one of the most important parts of being a singer. Although the voice is important, knowing how to entertain your audience through your …