Here are six ways to greatly speed up your progress toward becoming a great singer.
I’ll get the obvious one out of the way first:
Practice almost every day.
At least a few minutes. (Your brain will chew on it overnight.) A day or two off per week. ‘Nuff said.
Slow down and focus on one thing at a time.
Did you come away from your last voice lesson with 3, 4, 5 different things to work on? Great! But when you practice, focus on only one of them at a time. You can’t really change more than one habit at once. Hey, you can’t even really THINK about more than one thing at once. (A study I read a while ago concluded that human brains can’t actually multitask; the best we can do is switch between thoughts rapidly, which is NOT the same as thinking about two things at once.) So, if you only have enough time to work on one of those 3, 4, or 5 things before your next lesson, it’s better to learn one thing well by focusing on it, than nothing at all because you didn’t give any of the individual items enough focus.
I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again. You can’t hear yourself like everyone else can. You need to learn what it feels like when you sound good to other people, and what it feels like when you DON’T sound good to other people. Especially when starting out, feeling like you sound good and actually sounding good are not always the same thing.
It’s humbling. But just start doing it. You don’t have to show it to anyone! Just videotape yourself at home alone, watch it, and burn the tape if you must! Like recording your voice, you need to see yourself the way other people see you. And it’s hard to do that in real-time.
Sing All the Time
Yep. Just sing along. To the radio, in the car, in the shower. Even humming keeps the vocal cords warmed up!
Get a Good Vocal Coach
You can take 50 lessons in a year with a mediocre voice coach and make very little progress, or you can take a small handful of lessons with a great voice coach and make lots of progress… with less time and money. Ask for references.
(c) 2009 Adrienne Osborn