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> Singing While Playing, Any tips or secrets? :)
zen
post Feb 13 2010, 12:28 PM
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To those who sing while playing ... How do you do it???

Especially singing while picking different shapes of chord progressions ...

How do you separate or connect your playing from your singing in your head??

I only saw one lesson here but it's quite hard for me to sing while playing such picking patterns .. Where to start and how to develop it? Wish we had more lessons on this topic.


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Marek Rojewski
post Feb 13 2010, 12:41 PM
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I can sing and strum, but when more difficult fingering patterns or picking patterns are necessary, than I often struggle with it.
If it comes to strumming and singing, than I had no idea how I learned it, just started doing both things (well at first the chords and songs were few and easiest).

When things are more difficult You need to learn one of the things at first very good, and than try to do it along the second thing, or learn both things separately and then connect them.


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zen
post Feb 13 2010, 12:48 PM
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QUOTE (Marek Rojewski @ Feb 13 2010, 10:41 PM) *
I can sing and strum, but when more difficult fingering patterns or picking patterns are necessary, than I often struggle with it.
If it comes to strumming and singing, than I had no idea how I learned it, just started doing both things (well at first the chords and songs were few and easiest).

When things are more difficult You need to learn one of the things at first very good, and than try to do it along the second thing, or learn both things separately and then connect them.


Thanks man .. You are right .. I know one has to do both seperately perfectly first and then link em but it's just a bit hard and I'm missing that link to connect them together... im ok with simple strummin too but it all goes wrong when individually picking chord notes or when difficult riffs are involved. My brain is too used to focussing on only one thing at a time.


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Frederik
post Feb 13 2010, 01:29 PM
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if the fingerpicking pattern is tricky, then it takes a while to get down. try to know which word comes on what note. then itll slowly help
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Staffy
post Feb 13 2010, 01:51 PM
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Ummm.... This is a very hard topic..... Since You neither want to sound like a singing guitarist or a guitar playing singer, both must be in equal balance. The problem here is really that singers tends to squeeze the rhytm a little, eg. they are singing a little after or a little before the actual beat, and if You shall simoultanesly play guitar tight, its hard.... So I believe that a compromise must be made here, both in the singing and the guitar playing. For me, the ultimate goal is to make it sound like You're doin it in symbiosis - like Hendrix did for instance.
Personally I always tries to learn the guitar part first so I can play it in my sleep... (or at least THINK I can... tongue.gif ) Then its easier to put the singing on top of it. But its really a matter of how You prefer to learn things, one must really find his/her own way here.

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sted
post Feb 13 2010, 01:59 PM
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funny this topic should be brought up, our band has just taken on another guitar player because I was struggling doing the lead/rhythym and vocals, it really depends on the song too, we do a few Free numbers which are fairly easy because most of the vocals are straight on the beat (such as alright now) so its a natural movement as all your muscles are acting on the down beat including your vocal chords, so it feels natural. Other songs can be adapted too, for instance we do ZZ tops gimme all your lovin which has the riff going all the way through, what I do is just comp on the chord whilst singing then bring the rhythym riff in on the non singing parts, also you can get the bass player to take a more active role in filling out the guitar parts you're not playing.
the addition of a new player will open upa lot more complicated songs for us now but for you mate, as ever, its just practise!
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Sensible Jones
post Feb 13 2010, 02:02 PM
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If you're OK with strumming and singing then you're halfway there. Now it comes down to that same old, same old..... PRACTICE! biggrin.gif

As you already said, it's a matter of having both parts correct to start with and then super-imposing the singing on top of the playing.
smile.gif smile.gif


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Staffy
post Feb 13 2010, 02:10 PM
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QUOTE (Sensible Jones @ Feb 13 2010, 02:02 PM) *
If you're OK with strumming and singing then you're halfway there. Now it comes down to that same old, same old..... PRACTICE! biggrin.gif

As you already said, it's a matter of having both parts correct to start with and then super-imposing the singing on top of the playing.
smile.gif smile.gif


Off-topic: What are my former mother-in-law doin in Your profile Jones???? laugh.gif


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post Feb 13 2010, 02:17 PM
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QUOTE (Staffy @ Feb 13 2010, 02:10 PM) *
Off-topic: What are my former mother-in-law doin in Your profile Jones???? laugh.gif


laugh.gif laugh.gif laugh.gif


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Sensible Jones
post Feb 13 2010, 02:17 PM
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QUOTE (Staffy @ Feb 13 2010, 01:10 PM) *
Off-topic: What are my former mother-in-law doin in Your profile Jones???? laugh.gif

She's just there to keep an eye on you!!!
wink.gif laugh.gif laugh.gif


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djohnneay
post Feb 13 2010, 03:21 PM
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I guess it's a matter of finding your own way. Most of the time I try to get the words I sing in timing with the notes I play.
It also helps to play both separately on a metronome first, then together. Sentences are like guitar licks, they always have some pauses in between them. I recommend learning to sing Paranoid by Black Sabbath if you struggle, then maybe Smoke on the Water, which is kinda harder.


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Staffy
post Feb 13 2010, 03:37 PM
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QUOTE (Sensible Jones @ Feb 13 2010, 02:17 PM) *
She's just there to keep an eye on you!!!
wink.gif laugh.gif laugh.gif


Ooohhh noooo , trapped AGAIN !!!! laugh.gif laugh.gif laugh.gif


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The Uncreator
post Feb 13 2010, 03:49 PM
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Usually I TRY to write vocal melodies to fit the riff there played over, That works only about half the time though. When the 2 don't match together in any kind synchronicity, I just play it slow over and over, singing while playing the riff as wel (I even have a slowed down backing track)l. With normal playing, you can develop muscle memory, play something enough and you dont even think about it, right? Thats what I do with the vocal parts, do it slowly enough and get faster and faster with it and you will just become so used to it, it will be second nature.

Lastly, if your singing over something that is constant, like a riff that is 16th notes for the whole thing, then the trick is not to concentrate too much, All you have to is try to keep speed and try to just let the song flow naturally. There is such a thing as over concentration, trust me.

Anyway, this is how I approach it, hope it helps some smile.gif
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Daniel Realpe
post Feb 13 2010, 06:52 PM
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start with Nirvana!


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Crazy_Diamond
post Feb 13 2010, 09:37 PM
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I almost only sing when I play acoustic. But when I sing I always try to find some PUNCHES.. It means a moment where the guitar strum at the same time as the voice is doing something. I practice to get those punch in and it seems to work pretty well.



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Damir Puh
post Feb 14 2010, 03:21 AM
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Practice the guitar parts until you can do it in your sleep, let it become a second nature. Then you can just concentrate on the singing. I don't know if this is the best method, but it works for me when I do backing vocals in bands.


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methodseeker
post Feb 14 2010, 03:28 AM
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Funny this topic should come up today. This morning I took a break from my usual routine to try to sing over a fingerpicking part I've been working on for a while. It's a tune from a CD my wife plays for the kids a lot, so the melody is burned into my mind. After a dozen or so run throughs, for the first time ever I was able to play a non-trivial rhythm part on the guitar while singing an independent rhythm pretty smoothly. I had a strange sensation like I had two brains. Definitely knowing both parts well first helped in trying to put them together. For the most part my conscious mind just gave general stylistic direction, while motor memory did the rest.
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zen
post Feb 14 2010, 05:30 AM
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Thanks Everyone... these are really helpful tips .. I appreciate all your replies.. Keep em coming.
This is indeed a very difficult skill and I'll work on developing it.

Yes, everything boils down to practice.. and achieving that unison head of doing 2 things without thinking much about either smile.gif .. Ok, im begining to get a headache now laugh.gif

Based on everyone's input, I've developed this learning path, let me know what you guyz think or suggest any modifications etc.

Level 1-3. words change where chord changes and the chord strumming remains the same .. Yes, most of Nirvana is like this.. 4 chords and also as you suggested... Paranoid (perfect example of this) and some other acoustic songs (these are your usual songs that hot chicks with guitars like to sing .. they mostly play 4 chords and focus on singing... and also focus on looking HOT laugh.gif )

Level 4-6. singing on riffs ... rock/metal .. gallop riffs in maiden along with simple chord rings in their chorus can be a good practice for this level.

Level 7-8. Singing on picked notes. Starting with simple arpegios changes and humming over them. Once comfortable, with picking patterns and 'humming', substituting them with words and lyrics.. Then for the next level.... the start melody of this lesson is a perfect example to practice. Then for even harder level .. try songs like Creed - one last breath and sing over that intro picking.

Level 9-10. Songs and melodies where the start and end of words is not following the start and end of chords ... and singing with difficult riffs like songs from Megadeth.

Hmm .. those do indeed look difficult smile.gif

If I'm able to learn this technique (big IF smile.gif ) , I'll try to create a student instructor on this, just a thought.


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BM
post Feb 14 2010, 07:14 AM
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Many great responses here already but thought I'd offer a suggestion. I play rythm and sing for my band. Here's how I learn to play and sing.

1- Pick the song and isolate the rythm parts that you would be playing.
2-Play those bits until you can play them naturally (out of habit)
3-Listen to the song and memorize the timing between the vocals and the guitar
4-PRACTICE lol

It really is hard at first but this is how I do it and honestly the more songs you learn, the easier it becomes and after a while it'll take you no time to get a song down 100%.

Best of luck!

QUOTE (zen @ Feb 13 2010, 12:28 PM) *
To those who sing while playing ... How do you do it???

Especially singing while picking different shapes of chord progressions ...

How do you separate or connect your playing from your singing in your head??

I only saw one lesson here but it's quite hard for me to sing while playing such picking patterns .. Where to start and how to develop it? Wish we had more lessons on this topic.



I just noticed this reply that you posted and how you mentioned the riffs by Megadeth and I completely agree! They are incredibly difficult depending on the song. For a really good practice of how to play and sing with a song that has wierd timing, chords, etc, I highly recommend Holy Wars...The Punishment Due.

If you like I can send you a vid with a demonstration of how to do it.

That's only if you want though smile.gif

QUOTE (zen @ Feb 14 2010, 05:30 AM) *
Thanks Everyone... these are really helpful tips .. I appreciate all your replies.. Keep em coming.
This is indeed a very difficult skill and I'll work on developing it.

Yes, everything boils down to practice.. and achieving that unison head of doing 2 things without thinking much about either smile.gif .. Ok, im begining to get a headache now laugh.gif

Based on everyone's input, I've developed this learning path, let me know what you guyz think or suggest any modifications etc.

Level 1-3. words change where chord changes and the chord strumming remains the same .. Yes, most of Nirvana is like this.. 4 chords and also as you suggested... Paranoid (perfect example of this) and some other acoustic songs (these are your usual songs that hot chicks with guitars like to sing .. they mostly play 4 chords and focus on singing... and also focus on looking HOT laugh.gif )

Level 4-6. singing on riffs ... rock/metal .. gallop riffs in maiden along with simple chord rings in their chorus can be a good practice for this level.

Level 7-8. Singing on picked notes. Starting with simple arpegios changes and humming over them. Once comfortable, with picking patterns and 'humming', substituting them with words and lyrics.. Then for the next level.... the start melody of this lesson is a perfect example to practice. Then for even harder level .. try songs like Creed - one last breath and sing over that intro picking.

Level 9-10. Songs and melodies where the start and end of words is not following the start and end of chords ... and singing with difficult riffs like songs from Megadeth.

Hmm .. those do indeed look difficult smile.gif

If I'm able to learn this technique (big IF smile.gif ) , I'll try to create a student instructor on this, just a thought.



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zen
post Feb 14 2010, 07:29 AM
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QUOTE (BM @ Feb 14 2010, 05:14 PM) *
I just noticed this reply that you posted and how you mentioned the riffs by Megadeth and I completely agree! They are incredibly difficult depending on the song. For a really good practice of how to play and sing with a song that has wierd timing, chords, etc, I highly recommend Holy Wars...The Punishment Due.

If you like I can send you a vid with a demonstration of how to do it.

That's only if you want though smile.gif


Thanks for your suggestions man.
Holy Wars is one of my fav songs amongst many others from Megadeth but I would'nt attempt to sing it while playing coz it's way too hard and not within my range either.. I can play it's riffs, as long as i keep my mouth shut laugh.gif ..Gotta start from the simple stuff first and then build it up. But would love to see the video demonstration you talk about.. I can see your technique.

This post has been edited by zen: Feb 14 2010, 07:52 AM


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