How to Record Vocals as a Vocalist

If you're a vocalist, one of your top priorities is to produce high-quality vocal audio for your listeners. The most successful vocalists use a bunch of techniques to ensure they have the best sounding vocals that will entice people to listen to their work and ultimately pay for their services.

However, if you've never recorded vocals, it can seem overwhelming. There are a lot of tools and knowledge that are needed to create quality vocals. If you're just starting out or have limited experience, it's essential to check out our following tips on how to record vocals as a vocalist.

 

Prepare Your Voice

Before attempting any type of recording, you must adequately warm up your voice. You'll need to use some practice exercises, as well as drinking beverages to keep yourself hydrated and your throat coated during the recording process. 

If you're unfamiliar with warm-up exercises, try these quick vocal warm-ups:

 

Find a High-Quality Microphone

No longer do you have to spend thousands of dollars to buy a quality microphone. For only a couple hundred dollars, you're able to find a bunch of great microphone options. You'll want to choose a microphone based on its polar patterns or the field of sensitivity. Different microphones will pick up sound from specific directions.

For example, a bi-directional microphone will pick up sounds from the west and easy while avoiding south and north sounds. On the other hand, cardioid microphones will record sounds from the sides and straight on but will reject sounds 180 degrees opposite of where the mic is aimed. Choosing the right microphone depends on what type of environment you'll be recording your vocals in. If you live in a noisy environment, consider a cardioid microphone.

 

Purchase Acoustic Treatment

Regardless of the microphone you choose, you'll want to create a studio-like vocal booth with your microphone. Unless you can record your vocals in a professional studio, you'll need to buy equipment to mimic it at home. By purchasing some type of contraption or acoustic treatment, such as a Reflection Filter, you'll be able to stop your voice from reflecting off the walls or creating an echo in your recording.

 

Reduce the Popping Sound in Your Acoustics

When we naturally say words with B or P sounds, there is a strong blast of air that is typically exhaled from our mouths. When you make these sounds, or pop your voice, it will clearly vibrate through your audio recording. The easiest way to avoid this from happening is to add a pop filter to your microphone, which helps catch and filter any pops from your while allowing other vocals to pass through. If you don't want to purchase equipment, the other option is to sing into the microphone at a slightly off-axis angle so that the popping sounds don't convey as much through the recording.

 

Keep Your Distance

Singers often want to record their vocals with their mouth as close to the microphone as possible, creating funky-sounding vocals. When you sing closer to the microphone, a low-end boost in the frequency will be noticeable. This frequency will grow the closer your mouth is to the microphone, which will affect the quality of your vocals. This can be avoided by using a pop filter, as suggested above, or investing in an omnidirectional microphone, which will naturally keep you an appropriate distance away from the microphone with its design.

 

Control Your Breathing Sounds

No one wants to hear heavy breathing on your vocal track, as it distracts from your talent and takes away from the sound's intention. While some genres of music will require breathing, most vocals will not. Make sure that when you need to take a breath, you turn your face away from the microphone so that it will not catch the sound of your breathing. If you don't do this, you'll have to digitally edit out the breathing sounds, which can take a lot of extra time.

 

Record Dry Vocals

Before digital editing was popular, it was common to record your vocal effects and reverbs live. However, there is no real benefit to this since you can add these effects after the recording is finished. Recording a dry vocal will give you unlimited freedom when you want to mix or add in your delays, reverbs, or echoes into your audio. If you don't like your mix, you can always start again if you're working with dry vocals.

 

Record Multiple Takes

It's easy to think you've recorded the perfect take and call it a day. However, you want to give yourself a lot of options because you're not going to be able to analyze each variation on the spot. The best practice is to record multiple takes until you find the perfect one. Then, record three to four additional takes, where you don't feel as much pressure. By recording various times, you'll have backup options and multiple options to choose from and mix for your vocals which will help you to create high-quality vocals.

 

What Happens Next?

Once you've recorded multiple takes, harmonies and perfected your mic technique, it's time to mix your track together. By using the tools presented in this article, you're sure to record stellar vocals as a vocalist. If you're ready to start selling your vocals for cash, you'll need to use a platform that allows your recordings to be exposed to producers around the globe. It's easy to sign up with Voqlr to start sharing your content while receiving our platform's benefits.

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