How to Sing With Emotion 🥇 (Nov 2023)
In this article, we’re going to be discussing how to sing with emotion, which is quite a challenging task for many new and even professional singers.
Why do singers find this so hard, well, the act of singing incorporates two key elements, 1) singing technicalities, 2) capturing emotion.
Therefore, in order to incorporate these two concepts into a performance, a singer will need to refer to different skillsets.
Firstly, he/she will need to have the right technical abilities to sing the song, and these abilities will need to be as ingrained as possible into the singer’s muscle memory, or else too much concentration will be required, which will detract from the 2nd element (capturing emotion). These technical abilities are usually gained through repetitive singing exercises/scales to help condition the voice.
Additionally, as we suggested above, in order to capture emotion within a song, it’s important to not be focussing or worrying too much about the technicalities (vocal key, pitch, rhythm, etc) as this will distract you from being in the moment. It’s important to understand the song, by reading the lyrics beforehand, and even coming up with a rough outline of the movements and facial expressions that you want to convey to the crowd… Remember, less is always more, so don’t be too overdramatic here, nor overthink this part.
The easiest way to gain these technical/emotional singing skills is to simply learn from online singing lessons, and one in particular that we recommend as they’re both highly reputable and very affordable is 30 Day Singer, which just so happens to provide a 14-Day Free Trial of their service.
With that being said, let’s talk about the best tips and methods to sing with more emotion!
How to Sing With Emotion
1. Familiarize and analyze with the song
Similar to anything, familiarization with something simply gets you more comfortable. In regards to learning a song, it will allow for you to understand timing, rhythm, song structure, vocal style/tonality throughout the song, and finally lyrics. Making sure that you’re familiar with all of these aspects is crucial, so that you’re not overthinking whilst performing the song, as this will simply detract from you connecting with the song and providing emotion in your performance.
Additionally, a step further than familiarization is to analyze, and look more in detail about all of the aspects outlined above, such as timing, vocal timbre/style, etc. Ultimately it will allow for you to not only emulate the original singer, but personalize your performance, which naturally means that you’ll add your own nuances and emotional state to the performance.
2. Mastering the fundamental singing concepts
Going back to basics is extremely important, this means making sure that you have proper breath control, posture, cord closure, all whilst minimizing vocal strain. All of this can be done through regularly implementing vocal scales, exercises, and techniques, so that your voice is agile and in peak condition, just like an athlete does for their muscles.
Not only will this give you more freedom when it comes to singing, but it also provides mental relief, as you won’t need to worry about whether you’re capable of hitting certain high notes or replicating a specific vocal trill or arpeggio. Instead, you can concentrate on “feeling” your way through the song, creating that sense of emotional color when singing the lyrics, taking the audience on a journey.
Once you’ve gone about mastering the core singing concepts and familiarizing yourself with the song/songs in question, it’s then time to begin experimenting. Whether you’re making slight changes to the vocal melody, phrasing, key, or even the structure, what you’re trying to do is personalize the song, so that it’s easier to connect with it, and thus, it’s easier to properly emote the lyrics.
An example of someone who did this well was Chris Cornell with his cover version of Billy Jean, which was performed in a lower key, with an entirely different arrangement than the original song by Michael Jackson. This really fit Chris’ vocal style well, and allowed him to make the song his own and provide a darker, more organic sounding version than the original.
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We realize that singing with emotion can be challenging, but we hope that the outlined tips above can help you to approach it in a better way.
After all, singing with emotion should be the most natural process for a singer, so the trick is to master the technicalities and strategy completely so that it’s ingrained into your mind and muscle memory before you ever set foot on stage.
If you have any questions, please leave them in the comments section below.