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5 Habits of Successful Singers

5 Habits of Successful Singers
Here are the practices that professional singers embrace which help them from freaking out from a demanding singing life –says Lisa Popeil.

So you’ve run the gauntlet and have reached a level where you’re now a professional singer.

Whether you do 3 sets every Friday night at a local pub with your band or a 10-month tour of the US, Europe and Australia, you may have concerns arise about your voice.

Is that tickle you feel in your throat going to end in a cancelled show? Can you hit the high notes night after night?

Here are 5 habits that my professional singers embrace which help them from freaking out when living the life of a professional singer:


Don’t overworry about your voice

Though the quality of your voice can vary somewhat each day – the more you know your voice, the less out-of-your-control being a singer will seem.


Don’t panic when you must sing sick

Just have strategies to avoid getting sick in the first place and actions you can take to minimize the extent of the symptoms.


Plan on being a ‘vocal monk’ when performing a lot

That means minimal to no talking when touring and NEVER yell or scream.


Live healthy

Don’t expect that you can party every night or drink and eat anything. Work out, be fit. Treat yourself like an athlete prior to a game.


Be grateful

How many people get to sing well in this life? And don’t forget what a gift good singing is to all the people who can’t sing at all.

I’ve seen it often…all the hard work has paid off and a student is now ready for the big time.

Yes, it’s all very exciting but learning to manage one’s emotional stress is key. I recommend that singers create quiet time daily to recuperate and revel in the miracle of having this amazing opportunity to perform.

– Lisa

My Reaction to This Week's Singing Competition Entry

Corey James Corey James - City Of Fire

Terrific song and performance with intriguing, thought-provoking lyrics.  Your vocal approach is perfect for this urgent, story-telling style. I love the clarity of your diction too. When the words are worth hearing,  it’s great to be able to hear them! Your generous use of vibrato only adds to the overall sense of urgency and your pitch is dead-on. Nice!

With a song as good as ‘City of Fire’, I’d love to see you perform this in an evocative setting, anyplace but your bedroom.  A rehearsal studio or outdoors with a brick wall or tall buildings in the background would be inexpensive and effective.  Even if you’re singing to a recorded track, matching a background to the song would be the most effective next step.

My man, you have such a natural ability to move and be physically entertaining in the standing position.  It’s think it’s time for you to considering doing a whole set! Would love to hear how you would put a ‘Corey James thing’ on a cover tune. Showcase your special musical, vocal and performance gifts! And I look forward to hearing more from you soon :)


Lisa Popeil is one of LA’s top voice coaches. She is the creator of the ‘Daily Vocal Workout for Pop Singers’ CD download (for Male and Female) as well as the Voiceworks® Method and the Total Singer DVD, conducts cutting-edge voice research, lectures internationally and is a vocal health consultant. Lisa is a voting member of NARAS, the Grammy® organization, ASCAP, AFTRA and the National Association of Teachers of Singing. www.popeil.com