A shower is a good place for a good song; I am always feeling like Rihanna. I assume there must be reasons why most of us like to sing in the shower; you probably sound right there, and less good in real sense. Well, it is a great way to get the ‘songbird’ out. If you are one of the showers’ musicians that would like to get the voice and confidence to sing pleasantly before masses, get ready because everything you will need for a start is here.
1. Your subconscious
Imagine yourself walking onto the stage, the crowd cheering wildly and expectantly, and as you take your place before the microphone, everyone is quiet, waiting. You do your stuff the way you know it. In the end, the crowd is on its feet, all applause. They were more than pleased. It was perfect.
So, what song did you sing? Was it pop? Or rock? Or jazz? The first way to get to your musical genius is through your subconscious. Don’t lose that picture that you visualized and deep down, felt right, like that was the real you.
2. Breathing techniques
Breathing is fundamental in singing. You want to take this journey a step at a time, so here is how to learn proper breathing to get to the dream vocals. A little exercise will take you a long way. Lay on your back with the knees bent, and with a book on the diaphragm.
Take in a deep breath and while letting it out, hum a note, ‘haaa’ repeat this humming different notes. You can also do the bilabial drill continuously, causing vibration of the vocal cords while humming notes from high to low and vice versa. Such exercises might look silly to do, but they help when it comes to breathing control.
3. The Correct Posture
Once you have learned the breath controls, work on the standing posture. Your standing posture will affect voice quality. Learning a singing posture is not easy and needs follow-ups. You can click here for some useful tips on how to practice. It is advisable to learn to sing while standing because the lungs would quickly fill up without much pressure on the other organs.
Keep the chin up and parallel to the floor, the shoulders back, knees straight and unlocked, and hands falling to the side. Do not lower or lift the chin when changing notes. Place a book on the head and turn it left to right as you take a walk, without dropping the book. You can also learn the right posture by standing against the wall with the backside, head to heel, touching against the wall. When you know your singing posture, you will know when your bad posture is getting in the way of your lovely vocals.
4. Your diet
You are aware that this beautiful voice we are working towards will eventually come out of you, right? It is that physical. So, the first thing we will focus on is your body. First, what do you eat? You need to eat foods that hydrate your throat, including lots of water and soup. You do not want to be friends with alcohol or smoke and avoid dairy products before singing.
Spicy foods are likely to irritate the throat while sodas and cold drinks would probably fill you up with stomach, making it hard for you to breathe and sing comfortably. Foods like honey, vegetables, and ginger tea would be great for the voice. While at it, gargle with salted warm water to keep the vocal cords in top shape.
5. Mouth and jaw work
Ever been to choir practice and heard the teacher insist that the members keep their mouths open as they sing? For good vocals, you will have to work up the jaw. Watch your jaw movements as you voice the vowels A…E…I…O…U. Your mouth would usually close at E and U.
Sing the vowels with two fingers in your mouth to hold the jaw down and observe the throat and tongue work up the sounds. Keep doing this, and you will get better. Do not stop there; keep up the exercise while incorporating different songs. You will get louder and clearer within no time.
6. Magical vibrato
With good breathing techniques and consciously practicing your singing, you will one day wake up, and, like magic, you will open your mouth, and you will have fantastic vibrato. Vibrato is when the voice changes quickly between two pitches, adding spicy and health to your voice. There is no quick fix for vibrato, but over time, it will come.
In the meantime, inhale deep breaths and exhale as if to silence a loud group. Keep making the shhh sound until you are entirely out of the air and give it a little more push feeling your stomach muscle engage. That plus other practices will activate your vibrato, and most importantly, keep singing, as you work out, as you cook and as you take a walk- keep singing.
7. Record yourself
Your voice, as you hear it, sounds different to other people. If you want to know how you sing, it is best to record yourself. Go ahead and criticize yourself, where you went out of tune, or where the pitch was too low or high. Any phone technically has a recorder, and should you want improved equipment, you can go ahead and get a USB microphone to hook to your computer and record yourself singing. You could even start learning some mic techniques with this.
8. Emotion and attitude
Music is food for the soul. That is because music is usually communicating, more so an emotion or attitude rather than words. As you keep practicing on your singing, learn how to put feelings into your voice if it doesn’t happen naturally. All it takes is to know the words and have an interpretation of the song, then feel and share it through your facials, gestures, and body language; the voice will follow suit. Be alive in your song. Go to a place of sorrow when it is a sorrowful song, and go to a happy place when the music is joyful.
Becoming as great a singer as in your mind is possible. As an artist, you may be tempted to push yourself to perfection, and that is alright, but do not forget to take in the small wins and acknowledge when you are getting better. Be consistent, practice daily, and allow yourself time to get to where you want to be. Most importantly, give yourself a chance. You will know when it is time.