How to be the Best Vocalist?

SongCast Music

, Inspiration

As Sam Smith’s recent meteoric rise to fame illustrates, there’s still plenty of room for great vocalists in the music business.  Ignore the nay-sayers who think everything is going all-digital.  People still WANT to hear great singing, and they’ll pay to experience it.

If you’re a lead singer, you’re the focal point of your group and likely the most-identifiable member of it.  That means a lot of the pressure is on YOU to carry the group.

Better vocals can take you a lot further in the music business.

Tips For Improving Your Vocal And Mic Skills

1 – Ditch the auto-tuner.

As far as I’m concerned, auto-tuning should only be for EDM and bands whose target audience is under 18.  If you can’t sing it live, faking it on a record creates all kinds of new problems… especially if you ever do want to sing it live.

A good example from recent years would be the appearance of fun. on Saturday Night Live.  Even though Nate Ruess clearly has some singing chops, the rampant use of autotuning for his high parts lead to significant criticism.

2 – Take classes.

Seriously.  Few, if any, singers are so naturally talented that a month or a year of actual training with a dedicated singing teacher wouldn’t help. You’re not admitting you’re a bad singer by taking singing lessons.  You’re showing that you want to be a better singer.

For that matter, if you train somewhere prestigious or under a well-known coach, that by itself becomes a selling point on your resume.

3 – Learn to talk, not just sing.

The ability of a lead singer to talk, banter, and otherwise engage with an audience is a highly underrated aspect of performance.  A singer might have an angel’s voice, but if they’re stammering and shoe-gazing in-between songs, they’re going to seem like a weak performer.

Stagecraft is about more than just singing skills.  Being able to truly engage the audience is one of the marks of a truly superior lead vocalist.

Superior vocal skills take you far in the music business.  What are you doing to improve?

Comment List

  • Milton 22 / 03 / 2015 Reply

    The first two are obvious, the Third should be in a separate list about being a successful performer, not being the ‘best vocalist’. Plus, the third is also not a necessity. Take for example Kurt Cobain. He wasn’t much of a talker, he didn’t really engage the audience as usual, in fact, he pretty much went against every convention that is associated with showmanship. Anyway, is there another list maybe for more ‘advanced’ vocalists?
    P.S.: adding to the first to – as in, as long as we’re pointing out the obvious – you also have to practice, as often as possible, no matter how talented someone is. There’s no free lunch in life. If you abandon your craft for a day, it will abandon you for 3, as the saying goes.

    • Milton 22 / 03 / 2015 Reply

      That should be P.S: adding to the first two. (Auto correct, see anything Auto should not be used)

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