Rihanna, Mariah Carey, Sam Smith, Bryan Adams all have one thing in common – their phenomenal range that helps them belt out hit after hit songs. Summer of ’69 has reached cult status and Christmas is forever associated with Mariah’s angelic voice permeating the air. These people were all born with a talent rivalled by none, yet even they had to go through vocal training to strengthen their voice. Hiring a music coach isn’t all that you will need, should you choose to pursue this field. It’s important to take care of your voice and so here are 10 basic tips to improve your singing voice.
1) Drink up to 10 glasses of pure water every day
Water thins the mucus in your throat and lubricates your vocal cords the way oil lubricates a car engine. Thick mucus tends to cause friction and trauma to vocal cords. The more water you drink, the less friction causing less trauma and therefore, a better voice. Drinking water doesn’t just have vocal benefits, it’s good for your all-round health as well. Hydrating your body will ward off lethargy and give you a fresh mind and body. Your skin will clear up making sure that it’s not just your voice that glows. Consuming caffeinated or aerated drinks does not count, so do not count that in your 8 glasses.
2) Warm up your voice regularly
One of the most important tips to improve your singing voice is to perform regular vocal warm up exercises. Simple warm ups are recommended, especially for auditions and performances just like how runners warm up for a marathon. It would be even better to take a classical music approach: do glissandos which are descending scales and staccatos which are punctuated breathing exercises and messadivoce which involve controlling the intensity of your volume.
3) Take vocal “naps”
Your voice needs to rest, just like you do. So, find quiet time every day–you can try meditation and breathing exercise. Avoid screaming, shouting or any other unnecessary straining of your vocal cords. Sometimes silence is the answer to a tired voice. Spend a couple of hours a day giving your voice a much-deserved break, and watch how it rewards you with an improved range.
4) Get adequate sleep
Why stop at vocal naps? Your voice could benefit from a good night’s rest too. Sleep off the lethargy and awaken the next day with a renewed and re-energized voice. The more sleep you get, the more more energy you’ll have to put up a good show. Sleep is also extremely important for good mental health – your music will reflect your emotions, so you need them to work in your favour. Moreover, studies have shown that decreased sleep leads to an increase in frequency of acid reflux. It goes without saying that an acid reflux is most damaging for your vocal cords.
5) Do not smoke anything
We all know that smoking is bad for your health. So, it should come as no surprise that it’s bad for your voice as well. Cigarette smoke is an irritant that swells and roughens your vocal cords. Its best to avoid passive smoking as well – there’s no need to stand next to someone who smokes. Passive smoking is just as bad, if not worse than active smoking. Its terrible for your lungs and vocal cords so its for the best to stay away from such vices.
6) Use your microphone
There is no need to shout to the back of the room. Let the microphone carry your voice for you. Using the microphone prevents straining your voice. Before practicing or during rehearsal, adjust the volume and get comfortable with your mic. Don’t blow into it or stand too far or near from it. Its really easy to use it once you learn the ropes of it. Use a stand if you want to free your hands or else hold it in hour hand sing your heart out.
7) Have good monitors
You need to hear what you sound like for vocal feedback. Self-awareness is an excellent teacher – if you don’t like how you sound, then who will? Use an ear monitor to be aware of what you sound like, what your range sounds like. You may be singing louder than you need to and inadvertently straining your voice. Record yourself singing and play it back for yourself. Note the changes you would like to hear in your technique and apply it to your singing style. You can even experiment with different styles and ranges and see what suits your voice best.
8) Develop good singing technique
Vocal training is not used to change your style. It will strengthen your singing voice and allow you to sing longer, louder, more often and without tiring out. Vocal training will help make you a vocal athlete, with better skill and stamina. There are several different types of techniques followed by popular celebrities just a click away on the internet. Rihanna sings or hums the letter M and Beyonce likes to sip honey to improve their singing voices. If it works for them, then it will certainly work for you as well.
9) Develop a speaking voice to go with your singing voice
Did you know that you speak 99% of the time but sing only for 1%? A poor speaking voice will often lead to vocal strain and that will carry on into your singing voice. This is true especially when giving radio and other media interviews. Your speaking voice needs to be improved and brought at par with your musical singing voice. It’ll not only improve your singing voice but will also boost your confidence.
10) Listen to your voice
Like with any health condition, you will usually be the first to know when trouble is starting. If you voice hurts while talking or singing then immediately back off. Give your voice some rest and drink water. Try consuming lozenges or sipping honey to ease the irritation. Once you feel better, consider changing your song set. Chose songs that you can sing without straining your voice.
So here are some of the most useful tips to help improve your singing voice. But help tips aren’t enough to make it into the field or even to learn the true art form of singing. You will need real coaching from trained singers who are willing to go the extra mile to give you the best guidance you need. At Unluclasses we have none other than the esteemed Monali Thakur giving you the best coaching to improve your singing voice and also to teach you how to sing.