0 Flares Filament.io 0 Flares ×

reggae singer in concert

I’ve recently been on a real kick to learn something new every month. Last month I got a houseplant and a grow light and learned how to keep an indoor plant alive. The light helps make up for the lack of daylight. Well, this month, I’m taking up a new challenge. I’m going to learn to sing reggae.

For real.

I’m not just going to talk about reggae in this site and listen to it, but I’m going to also create it myself. I’m sure I’ll never make good reggae, but at least I’ll be doing it at all. That’s a huge undertaking!

That said, learning to sing reggae isn’t really all that different from learning how to sing any other type of music. The same principles apply and all of the lessons and techniques are basically identical. And karaoke, as with other genres, is a great way to practice.

As such, we can follow the same procedures. This means that the first thing you should do is work on the fundamentals. So pop some reggae vinyl onto your turntable and let’s get started,

The fundamentals of singing basically come down to your posture, in other words how you hold yourself, and your head position. The position of your mouth and tongue is also important and of course breathing. In fact, breathing is probably the most important factor of all.

Let’s begin with the posture. In order to facilitate the proper airflow through your body and across your vocal cords, you need to stand up straight. To practice this, stand up against the wall with your back facing the wall. Keep your shoulders back and your head pressed against the wall. Imagine a hook hooked into the back of your neck, pulling you upward. That is how you should stand. You want your feet to be shoulder width apart and your center of balance to be right above your feet. Do not lean forward or backwards.

As mentioned, your head should be straight. It should not point upward or downward. Many people have a tendency to tilt their head upward while singing high notes, but this impedes airflow a bit. Without the proper airflow, you can’t sing properly. This is why your head needs to be straight. Your tongue also needs to stay out of the way of the air. This means that it should stick forward in your mouth. You don’t want to curl it up and block the airflow.

You probably noticed me say airflow about 10 different times. That is because airflow is vital. And that’s why breathing is so important when it comes to singing. You want to make sure you practice breathing properly. You need to be able to take quick breaths of air into your lungs during pauses in the song and then let the air out very gradually, so that one breath lasts a long time.

We also want to make sure you breathe deeply into your belly. This means you need to use your diaphragm to breathe. If your chest is rising and falling as you breathe, and not your belly, you are doing it wrong. Chest breathing is too shallow and will not provide you the proper airflow.

You want to practice as much as possible, but you also want to make sure you don’t overdo it. If you practice too much and never give yourself time to rest, it is hard on your vocal cords and can cause them damage. Another thing that can cause damage is a failure to warm up and to cool down. Before every singing session, you should do some brief warm-up exercises for about 10 to 15 minutes, to ensure that your vocal cords are properly warmed up before you use them to their full effect. Similarly, after your practice session, you should wind down with a few simple exercises.

Finally, it is important to take care of proper nutrition when singing. You don’t want to eat anything or drink anything that would cause your vocal cords to constrict or to suffer any damage. This means no spicy food, no alcohol, no tobacco and so on. It is actually pretty easy to know what damages your vocal cords, because you can feel it doing so when you eat it or drink it.

Follow these brief guidelines, and you will become a better singer in no time, whether you are a reggae singer or a singer of any other genre. Since reggae is the best kind of music, as any karmakonga fan knows, I’m going to assume that you’re practicing reggae singing. Why would you practice anything else?