How to Sing and Play the Guitar Together!
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There are so many guitarists who find it very difficult to sing along with playing the guitar. Don’t let anyone tell you that this is uncommon. After all, playing the guitar requires concentration and speed. Trying to sing at the same time can take away some of that concentration. As a result, you may miss chords or fall out of rhythm while strumming. And if your concentration remains focused on playing the guitar, then you may mess up the lyrics, forget words and lines altogether, or just muddle the entire song up.
Whatever happens, the result is not good. You’re left looking like an inadequate performer and your true skill and ability levels are underestimated. So how do you rectify this?
We spoke to some of the most beloved and well known guitar teachers and experts of San Francisco and asked them to shed light on this problem. What they told us was that almost all guitarists face this problem. While beginners might face it while learning any and every song, even most experienced guitar players face the same problem. The only difference is that the most experienced ones face it for a shorter duration, and generally only while picking up a new song that they haven’t worked on before.
However, they state that the problem is pretty commonplace. And its rectification isn’t too difficult either. You need to simply follow a pattern of steps to ensure that you can play the guitar confidently, even if your attention is not entirely on what you’re doing. This is the only way you will be able to sing too, thereby successfully splitting your concentration on the two tasks. Below are the steps you need to take to master playing the guitar and singing – together!
Listen to the song
The first thing you need to do is listen to the song numerous times. Not once or twice, but more along the lines of five to ten times. But don’t listen o it superficially. Pay attention to the song, its tune, its rhythm, the way it flows, and the emotion it evokes. In fact, try and absolutely absorb every aspect of the song. This helps to settle it in the deepest part of your mind which aids in making the entire process more automated.
Learn the guitar and make it a part of you
Now that you know the song really well, spend a good amount of time on learning the guitar part. Focus only on the playing part and not at all on the singing. Master the chords, the strumming, the changes and everything involved in replicating the guitar of the song. Now that you’ve done that, play this as often as you can. First, play it while focusing on the task. Next, start multitasking and try to maintain the tune and rhythm. For instance, have a conversation with a friend as you continue to play. This will help you develop at automated style of playing and teach you to split your concentration without your guitar playing suffering.
Go back and listen to the song again
Go back to listening to the song numerous times. This time, though, focus more on the lyrics, the words, their meaning, and their emotion. This aims to imbibe that emotion within you so that you not only sing and play the guitar, but evoke the same sensation in your audience as the song evoked in you. So, listen to the song – on repeat if required – and really absorb the lyrics and their meaning.
Study the lyrics
Now, take time to really learn the lyrics. A good way to do this is to listen to the song and writing the lyrics line by line. Sure, you can simply go online and find them. But writing them will make it easier for you to memorize them. And in the end, that is exactly what you need to do. Write the lyrics, and read them as you listen to the song until you’ve got a good handle on the entire song.
Sing the song
The next step is to sing the song. To begin, sing along with the recorded song. Practice the change in tone and pitch. Focus on the speed and make a note of when it increases or slows down, and where all the gaps and pauses are. Sing along to ensure that you mimic the singing of the original song, as much as possible, but in your own unique voice. This will also help you memorize the lyrics. You can do one verse at a time, repeating it until confident, before you move on to the next one. Or you can do the entire song and repeat the whole thing again. Choose whichever is more comfortable, and practice using that technique. You can also sing along with the help of the lyrics you’ve written until, over time, you can sing along with the recorded song without having to refer to the written lyrics at all.
Recognize chord change points
Now that you know the tune and the lyrics, pay attention to the points where the chord changes take place. Don’t focus only on the words that mark the change, but their exact syllables too. You can even make a note of this on the sheet with your lyrics.
Play and sing – but slowly
Now, combine the two activities, but do so slowly. Keep your strumming slow even if the song calls for a faster strumming action. Sing along as you strum and play the chords. You’ll even be able to work in a foot tapping as you play along. Go verse by verse or try the whole song – whatever works best for you. As you progress, you can pick up the pace to the rhythm required.
Play and sing that song!
Now that you’re ready, simply go for it. Don’t over-think or stress yourself. The guitar playing is now a part of your movement memory which means you’ll play it almost on automated mode. You already know the lyrics, so just feel them and sing along. And you’ll be giving that performance you’ve always wanted to!
So there you have it – a few easy steps that will help you sing and play the guitar at the same time. You can learn this, and even more, with the right guidance. In fact, the San Francisco guitar teachers who we spoke to went on to explain how a personal guitar coach can help you to master the guitar like you want. They stressed how the right guidance can be instrumental in turning a guitar student into a guitar pro and that is exactly what we offer at LocalMasters.com.
These guitar experts will come to your home, office, studio, or a local center at a time and day convenient to you. They will provide you with completely customized and personalized lessons that take into account your ability, skill level, previous experience, final goal, and even genre preferences. With each session with our personal guitar coaches of San Francisco, you will find yourself closer to achieving that guitar playing dream that has thus far been so elusive.
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