Learning to Sing: What You Need to Know Before You Start

  • Jennifer Heath
  • Published: October 23, 2023
  • Last updated: Oct 30, 2023

Knowing the basics before starting your singing journey can greatly affect your success. Learning to sing requires not just genuine passion but also informed preparation. Whether you’re learning on your own or taking lessons, this guide will serve as a primer to build your confidence and set realistic expectations as you begin your singing training.

Embracing the Beginner’s Mindset

Starting your singing journey requires a realistic mindset. Every expert was once a beginner, and mistakes are opportunities to learn, so embrace them. While digital platforms like Tunelark offer convenient, tailored lessons, alternatives like in-person instruction or self-directed learning can also benefit you, depending on your learning style.

Beginner Singing Tips Everyone Should Know

  • Embrace Your Unique Voice: Celebrate the uniqueness of your voice. Understand that each voice has its characteristics and qualities that make it special. Instead of trying to imitate others, work on cultivating your style and embracing the distinct elements that make your voice uniquely yours. It’s this uniqueness that will set you apart from other singers.
  • Consistent Practice: Regular practice is your strongest ally. It helps reinforce muscle memory, improves vocal strength, and builds confidence. Set a dedicated practice schedule, and stick to it, understanding that each session helps you make incremental improvements. Over time, these small enhancements accumulate, leading to significant progress in your singing capabilities.
  • Don’t Fear Mistakes: View mistakes as opportunities for growth. Mistakes are an indispensable part of the learning journey, highlighting areas that require more focus and effort. Instead of getting discouraged, analyze these moments to understand what went wrong and how you can correct it. This mindset transforms errors from setbacks into valuable learning opportunities.
  • Seek and Welcome Feedback: Use feedback as a tool for improvement. Constructive criticism from teachers, peers, or even self-evaluation (by listening to a recording of yourself, for example) can reveal new perspectives and areas for enhancement that you might not have noticed. Being open to feedback, and actively seeking it, accelerates your learning process, providing clear direction for your practice efforts.
  • Explore Various Music Genres: Discover different styles and find what resonates with you. Experimenting with various genres can expand your musical understanding, exposing you to different vocal techniques and expressive possibilities. This exploration can be incredibly enriching, inspiring new ways of expressing yourself through song and even guiding you toward the genres that best suit your voice.
  • Prioritize Vocal Health: Ensure your voice is well-taken care of. This includes proper hydration, quitting or finding alternatives to smoking substances, avoiding activities that strain your vocal cords, and learning proper singing techniques to prevent injury. Your voice is your instrument, and maintaining its health is crucial for long-term success and continual improvement in singing.
  • Enjoy the Process: Find joy in every step of the journey. Singing, above all, is an expressive and enjoyable activity. While progress and technical improvement are essential, finding pleasure in the learning process itself can be incredibly motivating. It encourages a positive approach to practice and performing, keeping the journey fulfilling regardless of the challenges faced. Keep in touch with your intrinsic love of music and stay inspired by listening to and singing songs you love! 
  • Patience and Perseverance: Progress in singing doesn’t happen overnight. It’s essential to remain patient with your learning pace and persist even when improvements seem to happen only gradually. Celebrate the small victories: Every step forward is a success in your journey.

Understanding Your Vocal Baseline

For beginners, understanding your vocal baseline is about recognizing your unique starting point. It’s crucial to know your current range and tone quality, as these are the aspects you’ll work on enhancing. Various resources, from self-recording to real-time feedback from an expert Tunelark instructor, can provide valuable insight into your vocal strengths and areas for improvement. For those considering working with a coach, we recommend scheduling a single intro/trial lesson with an expert teacher. In even a single lesson, an experienced coach can offer an invaluable personalized introduction to ensure you get started along a productive learning journey. You can always schedule regular or one-off lessons going forward as needed. (By the way, here’s our official list of top affordable online vocal coaches in the U.S.)

Effective Practice Strategies

Developing your singing capabilities is an incremental process that requires strategic practice. Overstraining your voice is a common pitfall; diversifying your routine and incorporating comprehensive vocal warm-ups can significantly improve the quality and effectiveness of your singing practice.

Exploring Learning Avenues

Your chosen learning method should complement your lifestyle, budget, and learning preferences. Traditional lessons, 1-on-1 online lessons, self-directed learning via video tutorials, and workshops and classes each offer unique benefits. 1-on-1 online lessons, through a service like Tunelark, particularly appeal to those who want a flexible learning schedule and a personalized, structured learning experience.

Navigating Feedback and Progress

Constructive criticism is a guiding force in your improvement, pinpointing specific facets of your performance that need attention. For those who want to commit to a path of continuous improvement, 1-on-1 lessons offer a focused learning experience, highlighting precise areas for development after each lesson and helping students stay inspired and motivated as they progress.

Committing for the Long Haul & Staying Inspired

Long-term dedication is paramount in singing. Your voice will grow and strengthen over time, not overnight. Continuous learning, patient practice, and an openness to evolving will mark your journey. It’s also important to stay inspired. A teacher can be an incredible source of inspiration and motivation. But so can attending concerts, watching videos of singers, attending group singing events, joining a local choir, and listening to excellent music when spending time with friends.

Joining a Singing Community

Engagement with a singing community enriches your training experience. These community groups, be they local choirs, bands, jam sessions, school organizations, or groups of friends, provide a sense of solidarity, inject fun into your practice, and can offer various collaborative learning opportunities. They echo the sentiment that singing is not just a solo activity, but a communal one.
As you step into the world of singing, remember that your voice is uniquely yours, deserving of cultivation and celebration. Surround yourself with other music lovers, and let your love for music be the driving force behind your dedication. Opt for a learning resource that resonates with your learning style, and one that, like Tunelark, nurtures your inherent love for music and underscores learning as a joyful, personalized, and intrinsically-motivated journey, not a pressured pursuit of perfection. Your path in music is yours to define, so make it a fulfilling, enjoyable, and passionate expedition.

About Tunelark

Tunelark is a community of inspiring, professional music instructors. Our shared vision is to help our students connect with their intrinsic love of music and follow their curiosity to grow as musicians and people. 

Lessons take place over video chat so that students can learn from the comfort and convenience of their own home. 

Browse our community of expert teachers and pick the one who resonates most with your goals and learning style. As always, we guarantee a great match or your money back. 

If you’re ready to get started with 1-on-1 online music lessons, book your first lesson with a Tunelark instructor today. Your first lesson is 50% off!