5 Things great singers do EVERY day
There’s a reason why some singers rise above the rest to enjoy superstar status in the world of singing. Just like famous athletes, the world’s greatest singers all follow a specific path to success and adhere to strict rules that set them apart from those that just ‘sing’ and those that sing professionally.
I’ve noticed something in common with many of my favorite singers and have heard many a famous vocalist say they share a common thread in their daily routine that sets them apart and lets them rise to the top as one of the world’s greatest singers. Follow these 5 things great singers do EVERY day to set yourself apart from the pack and improve your singing overnight!
#1 – The voice has an internal clock, pay attention to it
Great singers understand that the voice has its own internal clock and circadian rhythm. Basically, the voice likes to be warmed up and used in a similar matter at the same time every day. If you spread your warmup through all different times each day you will build inconsistency into your voice. Over time your voice will develop natural muscle memory and you will be able to sing at almost any point throughout the day, but as you are building your voice, keep to the rhythm of your voice’s internal clock – many professional singers swear by a routine warmup and strict timing with their voices.
There’s a reason why many beginner singers struggle with ‘morning voice’ when they first start building their range. If they warm up for an hour one day and sing well, they often wake up the next morning expecting the voice to function in the same manner which is never the case. Your voice functions best with a specific routine and rhythm.
#2 – Treat your voice as a new instrument each day
Often a beginner singer will get ahead of themselves and try to sing as high and powerfully as the previous day, but without following the same warmup and routing – to disastrous consequences. The world’s greatest singers treat their voice as a new instrument each day and LISTEN to what their voice is trying to tell them instead of trying to tell their voices what to do and push their instrument before it is ready.
This often causes issues in seasoned singers who have been singing for 20 or 30 years. As their voice changes, they treat their voice as the same instrument they owned in their youth and eventually lose some of their control and prowess as a singer. If you treat your voice as a new instrument each day while listening for any changes or any signs your voices is giving you, you will keep a strong, healthy and happy voice your whole life.
#3 – Take care of your health
Guys like Chris Cornell and David Lee Roth were health fanatics and exercised thoroughly while on tour and did their best to eat well and stay healthy. Sure, the rock ‘n roll lifestyle is a circus of poor health and bad choices, but keeping healthy and strong will result in a healthy and strong voice. Drink plenty of water each day, stretch your muscles and relieve any tension before you warm up and treat your voice like the muscle that it truly is.
#4 – Downtime is key
Give your voice a rest, every professional singer knows this one well. I often meet beginner singers who are practicing for hours and hours each day, 7 days a week and wondering why their voices are tired and they’re not seeing any progress. Taking a break each day, and taking a full day’s rest from singing will give your voice the recovery time it so rightly deserves. Do marathon runners run 8 hours a day 7 days a week? Of course not. Like any athlete, you need downtime each day.
I like to encourage my own students to warm down with a basic post warmup routine. If they’ve been working on their high range or developing grit, or struggling with a tricky song, it is them important to get the voice back in working order and reset the basics in the voice to ensure your ongoing vocal health.
#5 – Practice the basics
Professional singers don’t just practice high C’s and soaring octaves, they start their practice routine with the basics of posture, breathing and foundation. Often intermediate singers get ahead of themselves and start to feel like basic exercises such as lip trills and diaphragmatic breathing are too simple for their advancing voices and drop them from their routines. Foundation is absolutely key to great singing, and I often have to remind my students that their singing voice is only ever going to be as strong as the foundation they’ve built it upon. Professional singers practice the full range of basic, intermediate and advanced exercises and routines each day, not just the extreme stuff that makes them impressive to listen to.
By following these 5 steps each day you will be following in the footsteps of many famous and accomplished singers. If you need help improving your voice and setting up good habits, the best place to start is the free foundations short courses available here at BVS, and then when you’re ready to take your voice to the next level with professional vocal training you can book a Skype Session and we’ll work on extending your range and building consistency in your voice!
If you have any questions about these 5 important habits that great singers do each day, feel free to leave any feedback or questions below!