#9 My Top Ten Mistakes as a Songwriter The Vocal

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If you are the songwriter in the band you will probably also be the vocalist. You might think, if I wrote the song I don’t have any problem with performing or recording it, right! Wrong, this is not just a mistake it’s a BIG mistake.

You would think with all the tuning and tricks they can do in a studio now, that this would not be an issue, but you can’t turn a dog’s breakfast into caviar no matter how hard you try.

On this point I can only give you my own experience. When I decided to step up to the front of the stage and become the vocalist, I had loads of confidence, because I did sing, but usually on backing vocals with the odd solo spot. The strangest feeling at first was not having my guitar I felt so uncomfortable, it was exactly the same when I went in to the studio it felt weird and this influenced my vocal performance in bad way. I have worked on my vocal ability a lot and it’s not possible to give you all the areas of vocal performance that I’ve had to work on, so I will just direct you to what are probably the most common faults.

1…After doing a lot of live gigs sometimes 4 a week I started ease myself into the style of music and eventually getting a great reaction from the audience, so with my own songs I just applied the live style to the recording session, it didn’t work, one song for example had to be lowered a tone and a half and the whole song was recorded again. Recording is different from performing, in the recording studio every phrase needs to be rehearsed and listened to before you make an attempt at recording it in the studio, remember you haven’t copied a song from another artist, you are laying down what will be the definitive version.

2…Experiment with different keys, put a capo on, or transpose the chords and find a vocal range that suites you. When I switched to the crooner style, I didn’t really know what the chest voice was, when I eventually did discovered it, that is when everything started to happen for me as a vocalist.

My Dad got me piano accordion lessons when I was 13 years old until I was 15 years old, since that time I’ve had no more formal education,  everything has been by trial and error and learning from my mistakes, I often considered some tuition but being my usual brash self, I got into the way of learning on my own, and thought I didn’t need any. This was my next mistake and I will explain why in the next blog, mistake number 9.

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