Thursday, July 30, 2009

Free Singing Tips - Balance and Posture for Singing

Got Balance? By Mark Baxter

Singing live often feels like walking a high-wire without a net. With all eyes upon you, you negotiate through song after song with nowhere to hide should things get shaky. In reality, most of us would have a hard time walking ten steps along the broad side of a 2 X 4. If this is true for you, the problem may be hidden in your stance. If you’re young, posture is something your parents nag you about. If you’re older, the shape of your body seems forged by nature, unchangeable. The reality, though, is that posture directly influences the way we sing. Never mind how many times your mother told you to stand up straight, poor posture makes for poor singing.
Pitch problems, lack of projection and longevity can easily be linked to posture. Tension around the pelvis causes us to overblow, making notes ride sharp. Tension in the neck and jaw restricts the ability of the vocal folds to stretch, making pitches flat. Tension around the larynx also reduces the diameter of the throat, meaning less resonance to project the voice. Slouching restricts breathing and saps muscle strength. You may look casual, but your body is working harder than it should to sing. The result is not cool.

The key to posture is balance. Contrary to what you might think, muscles hold our bones in place. Without muscles constantly adjusting to the pull of gravity, our bones would fall in a heap on the floor. To relieve the stress, bones should be stacked one on top of another, like the wooden pieces of a Genji game. Imagine your legs as tall, slender cylinders bridged by a square block representing your pelvis. Rising from the pelvis are shorter cylinders, like the spools which hold thread, a piece of foam placed between each one to absorb shock. Balanced atop the column of spools is a flat board lying horizontally, forming the widest section of the pile, your shoulders. Your arms are cylinders hanging from each end of this board and your neck a continuation of spools crowned by a much larger skull piece. Keep this pile of odd shapes from tumbling down with a minimum of muscle activity and you win.

Muscle fatigue is brought on by seemly harmless, unconscious behaviors. Sit at a desk, a computer or even a piano for a number of hours and the body starts curving forward, placing stress on the back. Sitting for long periods also causes rear leg muscles to tighten while front muscles weaken, tilting the pelvis. The shoulder which bears the weight of a guitar strap, especially a bass, rises higher than its counterpart once the guitar is removed. Singing into a microphone with your head extended like a turtle tightens the neck. As the years add up, these posture related tensions become so reinforced that the body forgets how to turn them off. More force is needed to over-ride the restrictions. Breathing and flexibility, key components for vocal control, are compromised.

Hanging from a bar is a great way to flush out accumulated tension. You should try and hang out every day. Since gravity is the force which pulls us out of whack, it makes sense to use it to re-align things. When suspended, your bones will naturally form a straight line, just like wooden blocks dangling by a string threaded through their center. The longer you hang, the more your muscles relax. If it’s too hard on your hands and arms, address your body in sections. Drape your head over the end of your bed to release your neck, fan your ribs and stretch your upper back. Pushing yourself up on a ledge, the way you’d get out of a swimming pool, will take the weight off your legs and allow them to hang free. When you return your weight back to your feet, look to maintain that free-floating sensation. Like walking on tip-toes, you won’t weigh any less, but the point is to feel that way. Look for simple ways to suspend your weight throughout the day to keep your posture stress-free. Learning to maintain your balance while singing means never fearing another high-wire performance again.

P.S. We always appreciate feedback so please tell us how much you liked the singing tips. Please remember to share, like and post with your friends or anyone who is also looking for great free singing tips than you very much and look forward to seeing you back soon. 

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Free Singing Tips - Top Tips: Productive Vocal Practice

Studies have proven that a child who learns good study habits will have an easier and more rewarding educational experience. Did you know the same is true for singing? While it is important to exercise and work our voices often, when practicing song material it is not always how much or how long you practice, but whether or not your practice time is productive. How do you rate your practice time?

Many students practice singing songs over and over again in their entirety. While there is often some measure of improvement due to the repetition, this repetition can also be detrimental. If a singer continues to perform a phrase with an error, the error will then become a habit. Because our voice organs are made up of many muscles and membranes and much of singing is muscle memory, instilling the memory to continually sing a phrase a certain way can be a difficult thing to overcome. The best way to avoid these vocal frustrations is to learn the art of productive practice.

Here are some tips:

1. Always make sure you are properly warmed up.

2. Record yourself singing the song or the vocal exercise you wish to learn. Sing it as well as you can in its entirety (or as much as you can). This recording is to give you a reference point for monitoring improvement. Be sure to label the recording properly for easy reference later. We suggest a label such as "09-10-01 The Star Spangled Banner – Vocal Practice (First Run Through)." Get organized early and save yourself time later.

3. It is now time to dissect the song material and break it into manageable pieces. First analyze what you would consider the first phrase, first section or the "problem section" of the material. An analysis would consist of:

a) Listening to the recording.

b) Taking note (and making notes if you are a serious singer) of what it is you would like to sound better or different.

4. Once you have determined what you would like to sound different in this section, it is important to understand what it takes to accomplish your goal. This is where it can get a little tricky, but knowing the facts can make most vocal frustrations easy to fix with a little practice.

Consider that a singer is an:

Athlete - Fine tuning and conditioning of the vocal instrument (the body) directly effects singing and therefore makes each singer an athlete in their own right. If the performance skill or ability can be obtained from the development of muscles or muscular coordination it falls in this category.

Student - True musicianship requires a certain amount of music analysis and music theory knowledge, from proper phrasing to rhythmic execution. If the knowledge can be obtained from a book, it falls in this category.

Artist - Music is a beautiful form of individual expression. If the vocal ability includes the sincerity, creativity, individuality or the emotional content of the performance it falls into this category.

If you are working on a song in a specific style and the performance problem lies in a basic foundation technique like inconsistent airflow, then obviously studying rhythm patterns and listening to artist renditions of that stylistic song material will not help you. You see, the problem isn't with the Student or Artistic Department; it is a problem with the Athletic Department (as are most beginning and intermediate singer issues) and should be addressed as such. Specific focus should be placed on the individual athletic issue(s) involved.

Sometimes just recognizing the department and specific vocal issue solves the problem; and, rehearsing the section or phrase with concentration on this area is all you need. So practice it a few times and monitor your success rate. If you are satisfied with your performance, add the section or phrase back into the full song and start the process over. Be sure to compare your first recorded performance to your new one. The section you have worked on should show improvement on the recording.

If realizing the vocal challenge is not enough ammunition to conquer it or if you have multiple challenges in one section or phrase, we suggest the training singer strip everything back to the basics. This technique involves working with vocal exercises geared to develop the necessary skills causing the current struggle. If the underlying problem is with inconsistent airflow then do some basic foundation exercises geared to develop a consistent and strong air flow before trying the section again. In fact, repeating this process at least three times (exercise / sing / exercise / sing / exercise / sing) will help apply the concept to real world singing.

A word of caution: When working with this technique be sure to add the section or phrase you have worked back to the entire passage or song material. It is just as detrimental to learn to never complete a song as it is to learn to sing a song with the same mistakes.

So remember to keep your practice time productive and keep it simple. Review the song material providing the challenge and logically determine what simple steps are necessary to achieve your goal. Singing usually does take practice, practice, practice; but, knowing how to fill that time can make all the difference in the speed of your vocal improvement.

(© Yvonne DeBandi)

P.S. We always appreciate feedback so please tell us how much you liked the singing tips. Please remember to share, like and post with your friends or anyone who is also looking for great free singing tips than you very much and look forward to seeing you back soon. 

Friday, July 24, 2009

Free Singing Tips - The K.I.S.S Formula

Keep It Simple Singing. Having trouble singing a song? Don't just sing the whole song over and over again. Break it into sections and work with a productive practice attitude.

An easy way to give yourself confidence singing the song is to remove all of the words. You might be surprised what a difference it makes when you sing your verse or chorus on the syllable "Nay". Try it. Experience shows that where you were unable to hold notes on the words, you will be able to transfer your exercise knowledge to the song and develop more power -- not to mention more self-esteem and confidence. Try it for yourself.

Once you are able to sing strongly on one syllable, add the words back in and see how you do. This is not a one step process. You may need to practice your song with this idea several times. In singing, persistance counts.

(© Yvonne DeBandi) and provide a link back to this site (

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Free Singing Tips - More Breathing Techniques for Singing


Do you want to learn some of the best free breathing techniques for singing? If so you have come to the right place we have teamed up with singing expert Yvonne DeBandi to bring you the best singing techniques and in this first article we will be discussing how to improve your Breathing Techniques for Singing.



Breathing properly for singing is the most important foundation technique to learn. Each and every tone we create is carried on the airflow of our breath. The more control you have of the air flow, the more control you will have over your singing tone.

Imagine a kite flying high in the air. When the airflow is consistent, the kite will fly smoothly and steadily on top of the air current. When the airflow is inconsistent the kite will bob and dive with no rhyme or reason. Your singing tone is much like that kite. If you provide a strong steady airflow, your vocal tone will have the opportunity to ride strongly and smoothly to our ears. But if your airflow is uncontrolled and inconsistent your voice will break and waiver.

The purpose of this narration is to teach you to breathe properly. The purpose of the breathing exercise below is to increase your breathing capacity and control.

Before beginning this breathing exercise variation, please note that bringing more oxygen into your body than accustomed can sometimes result in lightheadedness or dizziness. Please take care to stand close to something that offers support should you need to steady yourself. Conferring with a physician is recommended before beginning any exercise routine.


To breathe properly for singing, you must breathe low into the bottom portion of the lungs, engaging the diaphragm. Your rib cage and back will expand. Your shoulders and upper chest will remain still and will not rise.
Try it yourself: Inhale deeply and exhale completely. Again inhale and exhale.
Now try it again, only this time inhale for four counts, hold your breath for four counts, exhale over four counts and then wait four counts before inhaling again. Let’s do three complete sets of that counting exercise. Remember to inhale deeply and properly for singing.

Inhale 2 3 4, Hold 2 3 4 Exhale 2 3 4 and Wait 2 3 Again.
Inhale 2 3 4, Hold 2 3 4 Exhale 2 3 4 and Wait 2 3 Last Time.
Inhale 2 3 4, Hold 2 3 4 Exhale 2 3 4 and Wait 2 3 4.

This basic exercise is an easy one you can do every day. Plain fact, the more you exercise your breathing, the more control you will have over your voice. With a little time and practice you will be a master of breathing control. As you make progress, challenge yourself to increase the breathing count to 8, 12, 16 and more. For best results mix and match the numbers. The size of singing phrase is never the same, so practicing all different airflow situations is ideal. Breathing correctly needs to be a habit, meaning you need to do it correctly without thinking about it. So in the beginning you really want to concentrate on the proper technique.

BONUS TIP: Are you sure you’re breathing right? If you are uncertain of yourself see if this little experiment helps. Sit in a chair and while keeping your back straight, lean over and put your elbows on your knees. Take a deep breath. Feel your back and rib cage expand? Now sit up and work to duplicate the feeling, only the expansion should be a ring around your entire body.

(© Yvonne DeBandi)

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Free Singing Tips - How to Sing With Your Whole Body


Singing consists of a lot more than using your voice, you have to utilize the power of your whole body. To do this you need to have a well-trained body just like most professionals do. In this short video you will Learn how to:

Warm up with your whole body

Warm up your voice with stretching

View Larissa's video on how to sing with your whole body Here

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Free Singing Tips - Singing Warm Up Tips

Do you want to learn the Singing Warm Ups you need to do so that you perform much better on stage? We have teamed up with expert singing coach Larissa Lam to bring you some great free Singing Warm Up tips Before Singing, which you can perform easily in a few minutes.

The list of exercises includes:

The exagerated Yawn Exercise

The Softball Throw Exercise

Larissa's final tips for performing these exercise include:

Do not scream

Do not Yell

Make sure you do not hurt your vocal chords:

View Larissa's Video

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Free Singing Tips - Breathing Techniques For Singing


In this video Larissa Lam talks to you in detail about breathing techniques for singing that you can use right away in the comfort of your own home:

View Larissa's Free Video Here


Sunday, July 12, 2009

Free Singing Tips - How to Not Over Sing Free video

By Larissa Lam Expert Voice Coach

Learn how to not over sing with this free tips video from singing expert Larissa Lam

View Larissa's Free Video Here

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Free Singing Tips - More Singing Tips


We have teamed up with Larissa Lam to bring you even more free singing tips.

Larissa Lam has almost 20 years of professional singing experience and has studied under top vocal coaches in Los Angeles. She has coached various singers for record labels and musical productions. She has also conducted vocal workshops for churches and schools across the U.S. As a solo performer, she has sung at world-class venues such as the Kodak Theatre in Hollywood and has shared the stage with artists such as Kirk Whalum and Salvador. She has also recorded vocals for projects for Disney and Nickelodeon. For more information,

View Larissa's Video

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Free Singing Tips - Learn to Sing Basic Tips

* Always loosen up your vocals with vocal exercises.
* To gain confidence sing a song you already know.
* Make sure to do breathing exercises each day and before singing.
* Inhale by pushing the tummy muscles down and out. Your tummy should come out as you inhale (your shoulders should NOT move up).
* Exhale by pulling the tummy muscles in. The tummy should go inward as the breath goes out.
* This may not be the way you breathe now, but it is the correct way to breathe and practice can make it subconscious.
* Before going to sleep each night practice this way of breathing.
* Any time you think of it, practice breathing correctly.
* To aid with the practice of this breathing technique, (which is also used for meditations) place hands on the tummy to feel the correct movements. A belt can also be worn to push against.
* Don't force breath out. Your breath should be flowing and sensuous