By Randy Moomaw & Brett Manning
At Singing Success, our coaches work together, having frequent team building meetings, to refine exactly the ‘whats and hows’ of building success, healthy singers.
An obvious starting place is to get THE most complete, systematic, effective vocal training course available. My internationally best-selling Singing Success 360 course has the testimonials of it effectivity.
However…. that’s only a part (although crucial) of the picture. Here is a quick checklist, but remember this, you do not necessarily NEED everything on this list. Some of these are wants. But if you want to get better, you’ll consider them important. If you have paper near you, check off how many of these you own or follow:
- A vocal coach/support team
- Daily practice habits
- Vocal health regime
- A decent practicing room where you can sing loud when you need to
- A home recording studio or some kind of recording device
- A PA system for live performances
- The ‘right’ microphone for your voice
- You play an instrument or instruments
- A keyboard or piano
- Acoustic and/or electric guitar
- A band or at least a musician or musicians who can perform with you
- A performer or professional singer who is an example of your goals
Why Do We Need a Perfect Singing Tool?
Contrary to a lot of popular opinions, there’s no gifted folks who start singing for the first time and Voilà…Presto! Your voice is glorious and natural. Perfect high notes, not need for pitch correction……
The art of singing is an actual skill and we all have this in common:
‘We all start at the beginning.’
Regardless of how much propensity or ‘natural’ talent you may or may not have, the audience may never really know. Unless they are familiar with you, they will probably think you never needed a teacher, because you sound effortless…if you are competent, confident and in control.
Also, the world out there is listening to voices exponentially amplified and refined through a pretty decent microphone. This is another instance of ‘perception = reality.’
Really, the better the equipment, the mic, the market (don’t sing opera at a honky tonk or a music venue) the better your singing will sound.
It’s no mistake that my own performances that were praised the highest—almost without exception—are the ones where you could hear a pin drop in the venue. The audience, the mic, the band, the sound man and the overall vibe (yeah, I’m tired of that word too…) is magnificent!
Perfect Practice Makes Perfect
You’ve heard the phrase “practice makes perfect,” right? Well, in fact, practice makes habits that may or may not be to your advantage. So, think of the phrase as being: perfect practice makes perfect. In other words, if you’re following the techniques and vocal exercises for warming up that are presented in Singing Success 360, you’re on the right track in becoming a competent singer.
Make sure you follow the exercises as instructed in Singing Success, Mastering Mix, or a Top 7 program, to ensure that what you are learning will make your perfect your perfect practice.
Singing Tools of the Trade
The following is an expanded understanding of the checklist mentioned at the beginning of the article.
Get a Piano or Keyboard
There are a number of tools to keep on hand as part of your routine. To make sure you are pitch-perfect, it’s recommended that you use a keyboard or a well-tuned piano. Plus, piano gives you a laid out chord reference that is more visual that guitar. And…you don’t have to tune it every time you play it. If it’s a keyboard, you never have to tune it. And…. a grand piano is an inspiring piece of furniture to accompany yourself on. 😉
Pitch Perfect with a Pitch Pipe
A dozen years ago, when we first wrote this article, a pitch pipe was a necessity for any a cappella performance. But now…. you can download keyboard or pitch pipe onto your smart phone. Solves that!
Use a Metronome
A metronome is recommended as well for consistency with tempo and staying with the beat. It will make you aware of any shifts that may occur when you lose focus or are attempting more challenging passages in a song or exercise. Learning to sing in key is crucial, but singing within the tempo is essential. Also, metronome’s are on smartphones.
Record Yourself and Review It
A voice recorder is useful as well. You must record your practice sessions and review them for issues with pitch or rhythm, and to gauge your progress. Video recordings can be helpful as well. They can be studied for issues with physical mannerisms, stage presence, and image concerns as well.
A mirror is a must for practice sessions. You can check your posture and proper positioning as you work through coordination and exercises. You’ll also become more aware of how you move when you sing. This will help you know when you’re being over the top or too cheesy!
A Pen and Pad To Write Notes
And you’ll also want to keep a notepad (or keep notes on your smart phone) on hand for making notes in your practice session or on music charts. You also want to assess each session, citing progress, things to work on, and specific goals for your next session. Keep these handy for periodic review so that you get a sense of how far you’ve come. It will also serve to remind you of things you may need to rework.
Tips to Keep the Singing Voice in Shape
Whether your voice teacher or vocal coach is every week or once a month, nothing should dull your singing skills if you are practicing your most recently recorded session with your coach or warming up and working out your voice systematically with one of our Singing Success courses.
Don’t be held back!! Using a coach and a course helps you to learn at your own speed.
Even better, become a Singing Success VIP member and maintain the highest level of vocal health as we update you continuously on the latest voice science.
Warm-Up With Goals
Remember that practice requires discipline with a focus on knowing what you are trying to achieve with each session. The same goes for your warm-up. You know how your voice feels when it is properly warmed up. Do not compromise!
Every practice session must start with a warm-up. A good vocal warm-up will protect your voice from injury or strain.
Avoid Strain on Vocal Cords
If you’re a beginner, keep your initial practice sessions short and regular. It takes time for your muscles to build up strength. If you practice too long at a time or try to push too hard, it could easily damage your voice.
Learning straw phonation with your vocal coach is one of many examples of a ‘safer’ way to avoid strain. Beware though, because straw phonation has become the latest fad and there are singing teachers who teach only this method.
Increase the Vocal Range
One of the first things many singers want to do is increase their vocal range. This should only be done by strictly following the vocal techniques and great tools that actually reduce strain like the ones our coaches and courses teach and not by attempting to extend your range by choosing songs that are out of your range. Stick to the exercises or you may be inviting injury to your voice.
Learning to sing is about finding your own unique voice. Don’t concern yourself with imitation or trying to sound like somebody else.
And remember, you shouldn’t need to go louder to sing higher. A singer needs the right microphone for your voice type.
To develop a more discerning ear, and to broaden your awareness of singing styles, devote at least an hour a day, three days a week, to listen to different genres of music performed by a variety of singers.
How to Boost Your Singing Career
Getting the right vocal care with, preparing your voice to be performance ready requires consistency with your vocal coach, recording session and accountability with your peers.
You’ll transform from a regular singer to a true performer when you take your singing career seriously.
Take Vocal Lessons with a Vocal Coach
Proper vocal training makes you aware of how to use your vocal cords effortlessly and efficiently. It reinforces proper breath control, muscle memory, and coordination.
Singers need to develop and strengthen head and chest voice, along with mixed voice.
Coaching can help with live performance skills, style, pitch, endurance, tone quality and vibrato, and will help polish your performance.
Check-In on the Forums to Keep Accountability
Use the forums here as a Singing Success VIP Member to check in with others on challenges they are working through with their practice routines.
Connect with others to create an accountability board of review for sharing your progress in learning how to sing and evaluating your level of commitment. Encourage others to engage in perfect practice.
By investing becoming a VIP Member you’ll be committing to a disciplined approach to perfect practice, you are well on your way to realizing the full potential of your singing success.
Ultimately the Best Tool for Singing Practice is Up to You
You must be able to bounce back after disappointment and press on through the plateaus when you feel like you’re not making progress quickly enough. You need to be critical but not beat yourself up. Any feedback from others and self-criticism must be constructive and translated into something that can be applied while gauging perceptible positive results.
Final Thoughts | Conclusion
I’ve repeatedly said that it’s great to start young. Or 10 years ago. Or 30 years ago if you’re 50, etc. But time doesn’t move in reverse. So the very BEST time to start is now. You can immediately begin streaming our courses as an ‘all-in’ VIP Member or start singing with our main course Singing Success 360 and experience a vocal freedom and quality you may never imagined possible. Join the 10’s of 1000’s of satisfied singers! This WILL create the life you want!
Book with a coach immediately on our web site or by calling
or email us at
or….. join the best and do both!