Facebook Icon Flickr Icon Instagram Icon Linked In Icon Twitter Icon You Tube Icon Pinterest Icon Email Forward Icon Email Envelope Icon Language Selection Icon Institute for Vocal Advancement Logo Mark Institute for Vocal Advancement Coloured stripes in the IVA brand colours Padlock Icon

3 Singing Tips for Absolute Beginners

So you want to become a singer, but you have SO many questions about where to start! 

One of the first things you may do is start googling your questions about singing. (Sound familiar? Is that how you got here?) 

Your search for answers to all your singing questions has probably resulted in a lot of confusion (and a LOT of results in your search engine), which is why we’re so glad you made it here. 

Take a break from all that noise and relax! We want to start your singing journey with just three singing tips covering the most important aspects you should focus on.

1. Coordinate your ears with your throat

Make sure that you can find basic pitch and rhythm. Even the most beautiful voice with an angelic tone is no good if you stumble through a song and can’t stay on pitch. 

The first thing you want to accomplish is to match pitch, particularly with the piano. Start in the range of your speaking voice, then hit one note on the piano after another and try to sing with it. 

The next step is going for a series of notes until you are ready for an easy song. A good drill to start this process is singing the first five tones of a major scale (12345 / DO RE ME FA SOL), step by step, in various keys. 

Doing this will also get you ready to sing a melodically simple song.

2. Establish chest and head voice

From the start, it’s crucial to establish using both chest and head voices. 

If you make one of these overly dominant, you’ll face problems later on that you’ll spend a lot of time, effort, and money trying to fix.

When it comes to establishing head and chest voice, we suggest you start by working on the one you have a harder time controlling. If you’re insecure about both, start working with chest voice first.

You can train your chest voice effectively on sounds like BA (bad), GA (gadget), BAH (Bach, the composer) or GO in the low range of your voice. 

Try to inflect into the high part of your voice for training head voice using a WEE (weed) or WOO (wool) sound. It will feel a little bit like cheering at a concert or a football game. 

Once you have access to chest voice and head voice at will, try to move between them on a siren or octave scale.

3. Start to think about connection and the mix voice

Even as a beginning singer, start to study and practice mixing! Beginning to work on your mix voice from the start will save you lots of time and money later. 

Your long-term goal as a singer should be to develop a united, smooth-sounding voice from low to high. 

One way to approach this is to try to thin out the feeling of chest voice as you go toward the top of your range without completely losing your chest voice. 

A nasty/twangy sung “Nay” on an ascending octave scale can be helpful. Place the scale so that the top note is above the note where you usually experience a break in your voice. 

Another way to think about finding connection or a mixed voice is to try to thicken your head voice. 

Use an octave scale again and sing a “Mum,” but this time, add a lot of really sad, crying sounds to it as you approach the top note and keep that cry on your way back down. 

On both scales, the “Nay” and the “Mum,” you want to make sure that you start in a solid chest voice that matches your speaking voice.

Need help getting started?

Most beginning singers need some help getting started, and that’s where we come in! 

Start your singing training on the right foot by setting up a lesson with an IVA instructor. We can give you specific exercises tailored to your needs so you don’t need to second-guess what to practice on your own. 

Join our mailing list to stay up to date!

Get the latest news, events, and articles to your inbox.

Related Articles

Singing Teachers Summit

A free, online summit for music educators

As a worldwide leader in vocal education, we're excited to host a Singing Teachers Summit on January 20th and 21st, 2024. This free, online event features a fantastic lineup of guest lecturers to offer insight on a wide range of…

Stepping Out of Your Comfort Zone with Stephanie Borm-Krüger How Performing Under Pressure Helps Unlock Your Creativity Do any of your students dream of performing on a TV show like The Voice or one of the Idols singing competitions? Then they’ll want to…

Can gesturing help with your singing? Do you find yourself making certain hand gestures while singing or speaking? Do you feel this makes it easier for you to achieve key pitches? Could making these gestures during your lessons help improve your…