Many guitar players want to learn how to sing and play guitar at the same time, and some think that this is impossible. The truth is that most people can learn to sing and play the guitar together. Your voice will get better the more you sing with your guitar. You take guitar lessons, so you can take vocal lessons as well. Here are some tips to help you play the guitar and sing at the same time.
Strumming and Singing
When you sing as you play guitar, your strumming has to be in sync with your singing. It's important that you start out with simple songs. This will allow you to strum the chords and sing along as you're playing them. You will fumble all over the place if you try something that is too complex, so I would recommend that you start with a simple blues song. This is normally three chords, and the pattern is quite easy to follow.
Don't worry too much about your vocals being in tune with the music. You need to practice getting the strumming and singing in sync with each other. This process will take some time so try not to get frustrated.
Know Your Chords
To sing and play guitar, you have to know your chords. You should have a foundation in at least basic chord playing before you try to sing. You need to be able to change chords in a smooth and rapid fashion.
Try to practice your chord changes without singing. Once you can make the change without any effort, add in the vocal part and see how it sounds. Get the chords down first before you try to sing anything.
Metronome and Strumming
Use a metronome to get your rhythm down.
You have to be able to play rhythm guitar well if you want to sing. Get yourself a metronome and practice your strumming, and make sure you can strum in an even and smooth fashion. This will make singing along with the music a lot easier. You want to improve your timing and rhythm before you start singing. Practice the song along with the metronome as much as possible, so you get the feeling for the song.
Using a metronome is the best way to improve your rhythm guitar playing. Once you can master the rhythm, you can add in the vocals. The metronome helps you keep the beat and is the best way to improve your timing.
Know the Vocals
To play and sing a song, you need to know the chords as well as the vocals. One of the first things you need to know is where the vocals land in terms of the chord that is being played. Try singing the song without any vocals - an easy way to do this is to listen to the song and try to sing along with it. Don't worry if your voice matches the song or not.
The idea is to get used to singing in the song. You will more than likely end up singing the song in your own style. For example, you may have to change the key to get the song into a vocal range that you're comfortable with. This is easy to do if you use a capo on your guitar.
Hum the Melody
One trick that makes singing easier is to hum the melody as you play the chords on the guitar. You don't want to sing the actual lyrics, just the melody of the song. This will get the feeling of the song in your brain. You will be practicing the chord changes of the song as you hum.
Once you're able to hum the song successfully, try adding in the actual vocals. Try to master the song one verse at a time - once you're able to master the first verse, add in the second one. You can then add in the chorus and the rest of the song. Play the song as slowly as you have to. You may not be able to play it up to speed for some time. This is where working with the metronome can help you.
Some songs are quite complex. They may have intricate finger-picking patterns, and you'll find these songs quite difficult to sing if you are a beginner. Simplify the process and play a simple strumming pattern over the finger-picking portion of the song. This will still give you the general feeling of a song, but it will be easier for you. You don't want to complicate the process of singing and playing the guitar.
Lots of Practice
You'll get better playing the guitar and singing at the same time with lots of practice. Singing and playing do not come naturally for most people, so the more you practice it, the better you're going to get. Start off slow and work your way up.
You do not have to have a masterful voice to sing and play guitar. You can take guitar lessons to improve your playing, and vocal lessons to improve your voice. Pick up your instrument, find an easy song, and start singing. The more you work at the process, the easier it will be for you.