If you want to teach yourself how to sing, you are going to love this guide.
There are many great singers who are self-taught, so it is totally possible.
In some cases, sometimes it is even better to train without a teacher.
In this guide, I’m going to show you step-by-step how you can teach yourself to sing.
If you’re ready, let’s get started:
Step #1: Start with Your Speaking Voice
Your speaking voice and singing voice are all produced from one place – your vocal cords.
If you have a normal, healthy speaking voice, you probably can use it for singing right away.
Here’s how you use your speaking voice for singing:
First, choose a song and speak out the lyrics.
The reason for this is that people try to sound different when they sing.
Speak out lyrics with your normal voice. Don’t sing it yet.
Feel the vibrations and resonance inside your body when you speak.
Listen to the color of your natural speaking voice in a song.
Get used to how your speaking voice feels and sounds.
Second, sing the lyrics with your speaking voice.
Don’t try to sound pretty or do something funny.
Trust your natural voice and sing with it.
Sing the song in a key that you are comfortable with.
Even if the song is a little out of the speaking range, try to sing with the same feeling as you speak.
Listen to it
Finally, record yourself and listen.
You might be surprised about how you sound.
If you sing with your natural speaking voice without doing something funny, you might sound better than you think.
Speaking is the most basic vocal production we go through every single day.
We are familiar with how we speak.
Why not start there for singing?
Next, I will show you how to sound even better.
Step #2: Refine Your Natural Voice
After transferring your speaking voice to singing, it’s time to release vocal stress.
Every singer has unnecessarily vocal stress – popping veins, body tensing, etc.
Releasing vocal stress is the key to great singing.
Vocal stress happens mostly in the neck area.
Here are some ways you can release those neck tensions:
1. Shake your head from side to side while singing.
I know this sounds weird, but this will truly release vocal stress.
Shake your head like you’re saying NO while singing.
Try to do it 90 degrees on both sides.
If you can’t, that means there’s tension somewhere in there.
2. Massage your neck muscles while singing.
When you sing, you might notice your neck muscles tensing up if you touch your neck areas with your hand.
Give your neck muscles a rub all around your neck while you sing.
Keep rubbing until the muscle tension is loosened up.
The idea is to train your neck muscles to relax while the vocal cords are working to produce sound.
Watch vocal coach Jaime Vendera demonstrate this:
3. Do this everyday.
Don’t skip over this.
Releasing vocal stress is really important to your progress as a singer.
The purpose of vocal training is strengthening vocal muscles and releasing vocal stress.
After you learn to relax the neck and throat, it’s time to find your vocal placement.
Step #3: Find the “Buzz”
When you sing, there is a spot where you “place the voice.”
It is called the placement of the voice.
You want to feel a “buzz” at the roof of the mouth at all times.
If the buzz is there, it means the voice is produced properly.
This is how you find the buzz:
First, imitate the sound of an owl on a light and easy “OO-OO”:
Listen to it
Then, try to feel and maintain the buzzing feeling.
Finally, apply the buzz to everything you sing.
Step #4: Breathe and Support Low
Breathing is a much debated topic for singing.
I will share with you the right way to breathe and support the voice.
First, breathe in and allow your stomach to come out.
You will look like you’re pregnant or have a beer belly.
Then, bear down on your stomach while you sing, kind of like going to the bathroom.
Remember to focus on the buzz at the roof of the mouth.
Step #5: Vocalize Everyday
Apply the previous steps to the following exercises.
There are 3 kinds of vocal exercises you need to practice:
1. Falsetto octave slides
Falsetto is the light floaty sound in your voice.
Most people sing falsetto very airy.
Listen to it
The correct way to train falsetto is to get rid of excess air.
Practice falsetto as soft as you can, as focused as you can – on a “yeh.”
Listen to it
As you get familiar with this, practice with all five main vowels: yah, yeh, yee, yoh & yoo.
2. Falsetto-to-full voice tone
This is a very difficult exercise, so it’s normal if you’re all over the place in the beginning.
Before I explain why it’s so important, here’s how you do it:
First, start at middle C or C4 for both male and female.
Second, sing a tiny, clean falsetto on a “yeh.”
Third, slowly expand the falsetto to full voice on the same note.
Listen to the demo:
Listen to it
Go up in half-step increments, as high as you’re comfortable.
This exercise will strengthen the vocal muscles to come together for full voice.
It isolates the vocal muscles and trains them to become strong for singing.
So, it’s kind of like isolating just the biceps or triceps in weight training.
That’s the beauty of it!
3. Full voice octave slides
You have isolated the vocal muscles in the previous 2 exercises.
Now we are ready for full voice training:
First, start at C3 for male and F3 for female.
Second, sing a “yeh” and slide up an octave to C4 for male and F4 for female.
Third, slide back down to the original note.
Listen to this demo:
Male C3 – C4
Female F3 – F4
Fourth, go up the scale in half-step increments. Stop when you start straining.
In all of the 3 main exercises, the “buzz” at the roof of the mouth is your guide.
If you lose the buzz, you are not doing it right.
Also, remember to bear down on the stomach to support the voice.
Practice the 3 exercises every single day.
Next step, we are getting to the fun part.
Step #6: Sing Songs
Sing a couple of songs of your choice after the daily exercises.
Singing songs is the final part of your daily taining routines.
You want to apply what you practiced to real songs.
Come up with a list of 5 songs that you can practice singing for the week.
Enjoy this part of the daily training routine.
After all, this is what we practice for.
Step #7: Just Sing!
When it’s time to sing in front of people, just sing!
Don’t practice on stage.
You are now in performance mode.
Communicate the lyrics and deliver your true feelings to your audience, friends, and families.
Be the singer that you are!
What Do You Think? I’d Like to Hear From You
There you have it – my 7-step guide to teach yourself how to sing.
You can get great results if you follow this guide.
However, this guide cannot replace a good vocal coach.
If you have the time and budget, I’d still recommend you get into a good vocal training program.
Let me know what you think about this guide.
Is this guide helpful or not? Did I miss anything?
Please let me know in the comments. Thanks!