Pop music and pop singing continue to appeal to many people.
People credit pop music’s melodies, lyrics, and inclination to convey what’s popular given a period as top reasons for its enduring legacy – despite people complaining about its apparent simplicity.
Pop singing is no walk in the park, though. While classical singing requires rigorous training and knowledge of music technicalities, pop singing has its own intricate set of styles that aspiring and seasoned pop vocalists must adapt.
In this article, we suggest making one’s singing pop better. For more ideas, you can check Ted’s List.
What Pop Singing Is
Almost like any other form of singing, pop singing is about communication.
However, as opposed to classical singing, when it is essential to note when to take breaths and when to observe dynamics, in pop singing, a vocalist can take a breath in between syllables or take abrupt cuts – as they deem fit for the song and the moment.
Pop singing is also known for adding inflections to give a song more expression.
It is also known for having singers use more resonance than classical singers’ twang (a bright and forward sound caused by a narrowed epiglottis).
Lastly, pop singing requires less vibrato and tends to be lighter. Pop singers also use their chest tone more often than classical singers, who have a head-dominant mixed voice.
How to Make One’s Pop Singing Better
If you are a pop singer trying to better your craft, below are the things you may wish to note. After all, pop singing techniques vary from one singer to another – some prefer full-belt pop singing while others do the breathy, quiet type.
1. Learn how to do a full belt.
Most people consider full belting a staple of pop singing, given that some of the most known pop vocalists are belters.
Think of belting as a way to increase the intensity of emotions in a song you wish to interpret. Pure belting is all about creating a sustained and powerful sound, almost similar to shouting to your siblings and asking them to hurry up on a school morning.
Listen to pure belt examples by some of the best pop singers like Whitney Houston. Almost all of her tracks employ full belting.
2. Mind your physical activities when you sing.
Others think that pop singers fail when they do not exercise proper breathing control. While there is a hint of truth in that statement, most of the things that set up a pop singer (or any singer) for success is knowing what to do with their bodies when they sing.
So that you can make your singing better, your shoulders must not be rising when you breathe. That indicates that your breathing is shallow, and rising shoulders only put a lot of pressure on your vocal cords.
When you sing, be mindful of how you breathe and how it starts much lower down in your body – your diaphragm muscles and stomach.
You’re doing it incorrectly if you start noticing that your stomach goes in instead of expanding while you breathe and sing.
3. Try various pop singing techniques other than the belting.
To embellish your pop singing with variety, try imitating well-known pop techniques like whisper pop and vocal fry.
Vocal fry is a technique when a vocalist intentionally makes one’s voice creak for dramatic effect.
Whisperpop is when one tries to sing and sound like they’re barely there but sings in a very light, breathy manner, making way for a balanced, relaxed sound.
4. Sing as close to your speaking voice as much as possible.
Another technique that beginning pop singers must note is that pop singing is almost synonymous with just using your regular speaking voice, but with styles and inflection. We all have distinct voices, making a pop singer’s tone unique.
Then, most pop singers usually prepare to sing with a relaxed speaking tone.
Given that our singing voice is an extension of our speaking voice, you’re off to a good start – after all, pop singing uses a lot of chest voice, which is our speaking voice.
Remember, there’s only one like you.
While it’s great to imitate known singers’ techniques, use that only as a springboard into discovering a sound that is yours and yours alone.
5. Study advanced pop singing techniques in detail.
Lastly, a great way to learn and sing better is to observe singers’ choices and the details in their song interpretations.
Listen to the choices that singers make; whether they bend up to the notes in the middle of a phrase or fall off the notes at the end, there is something to learn there.
You may also want to study how to do vocal runs to emphasize certain words in a song. You can do this, too, by building dynamics or elongating phrases of your choice.
This way, you get to play with the melodies, too.
The Bottom Line
There is no single rule book for pop singing, similar to how pop music styles change and adapt with the times (hence it’s called ‘popular’ music).
The tips above, however, hopefully, help in giving you some idea on how to improve pop singing and understand it better.
Remember, too, that singing, like other crafts, takes practice and time. Starting to learn pop singing on Day 1 won’t make you a Mariah Carey the next day.
It requires skill, patience, and effort to learn all techniques and, more importantly, find your distinct sound.