Do whatever it takes to get your mind and heart into the space that song comes from –says Jenn Bostic.
Studio singing used to be a fear of mine.
The magical moments of performing live for an audience were difficult to manufacture in a vocal booth staring at a studio microphone.
However, over the course of three albums and six years of growth, I have found joy in creating a vocal take that translates emotion and accurately represents what my voice can do.
Here are five steps I use to unleash a great vocal recording:
Sometimes things don’t translate the same way we hear them in our minds. Before going into the studio, I record practice sessions on something as simple as an iPhone to hear exactly how things are coming across. If there are any moments that sound strange, for example the harshness of a vowel, the pronunciation of a word or the tone I’m singing with, I work on them until I’m happy. Not only is this preparation more sonically satisfying, but it can also save money and time in the studio.
Own your session. It’s your song, your money and your studio time. Make the most of it. Yes, take suggestions from producers and others involved in the process, but if you hesitate it will come through in your vocal performance.
- Make it real
Whether you’re recording a song that means a lot to you personally or you’ve chosen a cover, connecting to the lyric and singing with raw emotion will make your recordings a cut above the rest. Do whatever it takes to get your mind and heart into the space that song comes from. I always prefer a vocal take filled with emotion to one that is technically perfect.
- Pre-plan background vocals
Background vocals can often be the last thing on your mind when preparing for a session, however depending on your style, they can be the extra glitter that makes your song special. If singing harmony isn’t your strong suit, experiment with hiring someone or asking a friend to try.
- Feel the pressure
This last piece of advice isn’t for everyone, but I work well under pressure, so when I remind myself that these recordings are going to last forever, it’s easier for me to take each step seriously and put my heart and soul into the recordings.
My Reaction to This Week's Singing Competition Entry
Amanda Stone - I'm Alive
Great stage presence Amanda! You really owned the stage and the confidence is obvious in your vocal. You have a beautiful clear tone that really carries. In the first song, my suggestion would be to try playing with the dynamics so the song has more of a chance to build. You have a great powerful belt, but if you wait to share that with your audience until about halfway through the song you might create an even more engaging performance. Great job on the second song, I wouldn’t change a thing.
Jenn Bostic is a singer songwriter who’s hit song “Jealous of the Angels” is making an impact worldwide. She won five Independent Country Music Association Awards, including Overall Winner, Best Female Country Artist, Best Musician, Best Songwriter and Country Music Song of the Year. Jenn’s new album “Faithful” is now available worldwide on iTunes and Amazon.