Alright, Ive been playing for a while now and there are plenty of songs I know the guitar line and the lyrics for like the back of my hand, but I cannot for the life of me combine the two. Everytime I try to sing and play at the same time the whole thing just sort of craps out. Even when there's no picking involved and I'm just strumming chords. Any suggestions on how to fix this problem? I mean you'd figure if you could play the song without thinking about it, it wouldn't matter that you start multitasking.
It's kinda weird when you start doing them both at the same time. If I remember right, I tried to really divide my mind to have pieces on both of them. Hard to explain... I imagined the lyrics on one side and the guitar parts on the other. Your brain has to multitask for real. After that it becomes natural and you don't feel divided, but at the beginning it's like that, at least for me. Try to do something like that, picture the part divided.
"...I cried. Just for a second. Then I thought, 'I must rock.' "
- James Iha

Rock on y'all!

I used to have this problem, I used this formula:

Problem + Practise (and lot's of it) = No Problem
yeah bro, just practice and learn the instrumentals to the point that you dont need to think about playing, then just sing like you normally would.
It is like playing piano.. First learn the left hand, then the second!!

when you try to combine both, you'll have problems, but if you divide the hemispheres of your brain quite well, you'll notice the change.
This is actually covered in the MT sticky. Go there, and read the part on singing and playing. If you are having more trouble, go to the singing thread.
Quote by funkdaddyfresh
justin, that was easily the most inspiring, helpful piece of advice anyone has ever given me in regards to my musical pursuits.

Screaming Help
you have to keep your mind on 2 things, to a degree you already do so ,as one finger strums and the other is on the fretboard at the same time. I can't totally focus on both of things at the same time yet but always remember, vocals first! They are what the audience listens to the most and carries the melody (most of the time, some songs ARE guitar driven). but most basic answer, practice... what I do is to have my guitar part completely memorized so I can focus on the tone/pitch of my voice. and can someone helping on my screaming post, which I posted in the vocal sticky thread where this question should have went too :P
It happened for me completely by accident. I tried and failed for a looong time, and then one day I was playing Stairway, and the lyrics just jumped out of me. I've been able to do it ever since. The easiest way is to play the song at half speed or slower, and really get a feel for where the notes and vocals mesh together. Then you can speed it up. I have very little confidence in myself, and I thought I would NEVER be able to do it, but now I have a huge list of songs I can sing to. Just keep at it and it will happen.