#1
When you practice, what do you usually do (examples would be nice)?
How long do you practice?
What do you practice?
When do you practice?
Do you limit yourself to technical exercises, or do you sing songs too? If so, do you keep these two apart or do you mix them (eg. 30 min technical, 8 songs vs. 5 min technical, 1 song, 5 min technical, 1 song, etc.)?

Thanks for any tips. I'm absolutely clueless as to practice with vocals. With guitar it was easy, just do some technical exercises to train muscle memory and then jam. Vocals are more complicated, you need to warm up, get all your muscles relaxed, etc. before you can even start.


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#4
Same way you practice guitar. Scales, arpeggios, and songs. Try to sing scales first while playing guitar as far as your voice will take you without straining, then take away the guitar and sing the scales again. Same with arpeggios, but this is more to focus on vocal speed. Play along to a guitar or some audio of arpeggios in four or five notes depending on the harmonic complexity of the arpeggio, then gradually speed your voice up, trying to keep the notes distinct and separate, like you're sweep picking your voice. Songs are kinda self-evident, but remember to make the song 'your own', so put variations in the vocal line. Remember that the rhythm sections usually play the same idea over and over again, so its in the vocal (And sometimes in the harmonies that the guitar and bass play) that you find variations in the song.
#5
First before u do any of this make sure you've had enough water. Make sure u lossen up. Stretch out and become fully relaxed. Use ur diapeham. And have good posture. Always start with humming. To warm up. Then move on to scales.
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#6
I like to start with a nice warm cup of tea to help relax my throat, then jump into some easy humming and tongue trills to get everything ready, then some scales and vibrato exercises all together taking about 20-40min.

Only after you've prepared yourself to have good technique can you jump into some songs..maybe pick even a couple medium difficulty verses or lines and make sure you're doing everything correctly. If not, find a suitable exercise and do that technique properly adjusting your muscle memory. It's a lot of trial and error to find what works for you though.

Hope that helps!
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#7
Thanks everyone, so it's all about warming up properly and singing scales/arpeggios/songs?
#8
I know this is horrible, but I never warm up or do scales. I just find it really boring, so I don't do it. I pretty much just sing songs. The only thing I really do that "you're supposed to" is keep well hydrated. I've got pretty resilient vocal cords and stuff, so I never really feel like I've blown out my voice for more than an hour or so. That said, I'm probably a shitty example to follow with regards to maintaining great vocal health. My philosophy is to have fun singing what I want to for a number of years and then not be able to sing worth shit when I'm like 40 or 50, rather than singing conservatively my whole life.
#9
It should be noted that once you're "warmed up" you can stay "warmed up" for about an hour afterwards.

In practical terms this means that you can do your scales in the car driving to a gig, rather than excusing yourself to the bathroom to freak out other people with your vocal drills.

In terms of things I practice before singing songs, it would be major arpeggios, minor arpeggios and pentatonic scales. Each one I start at a certain note, finish it, then move it up a semi tone and repeat. Once I've reached the top of my range I'll refer back to the starting note and move it down a semi tone each time until I reach the bottom of my range. After both top and bottom are done, I'll move on to the next exercise. This ensures that I have warmed up my entire range.

The entire warm up doesn't take too long maybe 10-15 mins tops. These exercises alone will drastically improve your singing skills, just like how practicing scales on the guitar improve your soloing skills.
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