Vocal tension is the #1 culprit of strained singing, vocal fatigue, burnout, and vocal problems! These 3 warmups will help prime you for relaxed, open, free singing.
Remember: if you're someone who experience lots bodily tension (like yours truly!), singing without tension is possible -- you just have to incorporate relaxation techniques into your vocal routine.
The 3 vocal warmups in the video below are:
(1) The Teapot Hiss - eliminates lower body, ribcage, and lower back tension that can creep "up the chain" and affect your voice.
(2) The Scary Lion's Yawn - busts jaw, tongue, neck, and throat tension, all in one!
(3) "Oh, Wow!" - a simple warmup to reinforce a relaxed jaw and open throat.
Try these simple vocal warmups and let me know if they help you relax and free up your voice! I'd love to hear from you in the comments section.
Also -- stay tuned for my vocal warmup series called "The Lazy Singer's Warmups," coming soon! Sign up for email updates to the...
Singer buds! Many of you have talked to me about the incredible amounts of tension you experience while singing, and I want to help!
I've been cooking up some cool warmups that (1) Relax you, (2) Open your voice, (3) Get you LOVING on yourself and feeling confident. :)
(I've been trying to come up with a title for these, I'm thinking "Let's Get Singer-High"?)
Anyway, I wanted to give you a short 'n' sweet preview of one warmup that will get you to:
(1) Open your voice and relax your throat and larynx
(2) Lift your soft palate while relaxing your jaw
(3) Look at yourself in the mirror and think HEY I LOVE MYSELF!
And here it is!
The sung line is "I LIKE LOOKING AT YOU" and the musical pattern is 1-1-3-2-1-1.
Here's the nitty gritty:
(1) Look in the mirror while you do this. It will help to make sure....
(2) You keep the back of your mouth open and relaxed the whole time, kind of like you're yawning. So you sing "I LIKE LOOKING AT YOU"...
There have been times in my life when I have not practiced my singing. Like, at all.
As with any long term skill, my commitment to singing has had peaks and valleys, especially for the past three years. Sure, sometimes I've felt jazzed, but more often than not I've been in a "bare-minimum-maintenance-whatever" mode. I practiced a couple times here and there, or not at all. :-/
My excuse was:
I'm good...enough. As long as my singing is decent, I can demo things in my videos and lessons. If I lose my skills a little, what's the big deal? It's not like I'm singing for audiences anymore.
(Ugh. Just reading those thoughts back to myself is hard. What an uninspiring point of view!)
And because I felt so uninspired, my singing suffered.
When it comes to singing, or any long-term goal, frame of mind is everything.
When I am not inspired, I lose momentum. When I lose momentum, I stop tending to myself and the...
Recently I looked at a video of myself singing that I had posted on YouTube about a year ago. For some reason I didn't think about one very challenging aspect of this: the comments!
I love reading your comments on my blog or my instructional videos because they include your ideas, reactions, and suggestions for future videos. But comments on my performances are quite another thing...
For some (not all) of these, I need a different mindset entirely :)
I found myself getting pretty worked up. But the weird thing was, certain negative comments STUNG, while other comments didn't faze me.
I wanted to better understand WHY certain online comments are so hurtful, while others are no big deal.
In this video, I'll talk about (1) how the negative thoughts we choose to hear reflect a shadow side of ourselves, (2) how it's important to witness and forgive the negative thoughts that we all carry around within us.
I'll also teach you an easy and effective meditation for overcoming fear...
Here's a thought... What if the qualities you believe make your voice less than, actually make it cool and interesting?
I've contemplated this question a ton as I venture into writing my own music. So far I'd describe my strange songs as a cross between: Grimes, Lana Del Rey, and Every Broadway Show Ever.
ANYWAY. My vocal background and training is musical theater singing, which means I'm hardwired to think: "These notes (high, low, whatever) need to come out cleanly, perfectly, and without any noticeable variation, damnit!"
And while I still love that I'm able to unify my chest, mix, and head voice cleanly (for the most part) -- and I believe it is important for singers not to be held back by any technical "holes" in their voices --
The truth is: for many genres of music, embracing our imperfections, or the reasons our voices are unique, can unlock a whole world of interpretation, variation, color, emotion, and interesting style choices.
Take it from the...
Here's a lil video all about microphone singing! My best 6 tips for knowing how to record vocals for optimal results.
My tips include....
1) Set levels so they're not too high; otherwise you'll max out and distort your vocal recording -- and, worse, try to hold back or sing tentatively to accommodate this too-high setting. Instead, aim for a lower microphone level. You can always boost it later.
2) Get your live monitor/headphone levels right! Singing with headphones always presents its own set of challenges, so I almost always leave one ear outside of the headphones as I'm singing to get some live feedback.
3) Don't forget your breathing DOWN BELOW! The microphone picks up what you're creating up top, however, the work and effort happens via the rest of your body. Don't forget your technique or become a "neck-up" singer in the studio.
4) Be mindful of how distance to the microphone affects the nuance, intimacy and volume of what you're singing. Closer = more intimate. Further...
This video is different than most of my videos, and to be honest, it was scary to film.
Watch to learn about a 15-minute meditation I use daily to face one of the strangest, elusive, and most overwhelming forces in life: fear.
So many of us deal with fear and negative thoughts when it comes to realizing our dreams, reaching our full potential or, really, just existing in a world that can feel negative and scary.
I wanted also to describe how to meditate (as best as I could) - the actual process - to help demystify the experience. Everyone's journey is different, but here's some insight into what I do.
I hope this meditation for fear is helpful for you. Leave me a comment to let me know your thoughts!
Lots of love,
Healing by Kevin MacLeod is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution license
About two months ago, I was singing some warmup scales, and my voice just STOPPED WORKING.
The higher I got, the more I felt stuck.
I took a moment, reset, and tried again.
Same weird thing!
Even worse, this second time through, I could feel my throat compensating, trying to push the notes up rather than feel them float out easily, effortlessly.
Crap, I thought. What the heck is going on?
Trying not to get too hard on myself, I took an inventory of my body and how I was feeling.
Breathing? (I took a deep breath and did a quick hiss exercise, counting to 45 seconds.)
No tension in my lower back? (I draped over in rag doll pose, and let my body hang.)
Tongue relaxed? (I opened my mouth and stuck out my tongue. Then I flicked my tongue back and forth like a snake tasting the air.)
Third time’s the charm…
I did the scale again.
What the f(*&$%(*???
Then, luckily, I remembered a tidbit from a voice lesson I had about 8 years...
Hi dudes! In today's video, I CONFESS! What do I do to warm up my *own* voice everyday?
But first, an invitation direct from me to you --
This Sunday, I'm republishing my free singing webinar series -- "Unlock Your True Singer Potential: Yes My Dude, You CAN Become a Good Singer!" Learn more here.
The series rolls out in 3 parts and includes almost 90 minutes of free lessons, all starting this Sunday, April 10 at 12pm EDT!
Follow-up lessons are Wednesday, April 13 @ 6pm EDT and Sunday, April 17 at 12pm EDT. If you can't make the live chat, it's cool -- I'll keep the replay link for the lesson videos online for about a week.
**HERE'S THE REALLY COOL THING: I'll be there on each rollout day to live chat with you in the comments section!!!**
**Editors Note: As of August 2017 Felicia is no longer offering Singing Transformation.**
And now, without further ado, here's my latest video entitled "How I Practice My Own Singing (Fel Confesses!)" Enjoy --...
Sharp singing is when you go for a note but land a little bit too high, which is a hurdle for many singers.
So today I will answer your question: “What do I do if my singing is consistently sharp?”
In this video, you will learn some powerful approaches that will help fix your pitch and make it much more accurate.
Notes are like circles, and your pitch can move up and down the circle. When you’re singing a note, you’re creating a tone that is round. If you’re used to landing sharp, aim at the bottom of the note’s “circle.” This will help “average out” the pitch.
Stay grounded. Literally, stay connected to the ground and remember your lower body! Pitch often reflects your energy and focus. If you're nervous or “floating up” into your head, your pitch can start to drift upward, too. Remember, singing involves your whole body!
Your breath support is your pitch buddy! Thrust your focus...