Singing is all about presentation. Be the character. Tell the story. If I tell you to make the song your own, what does that even mean? First of all, what is the song. What’s its energy? What does it have to say for itself? Is it more about the tune, the words, or the rhythm? Or do all the components play their own part? An even better question is who the heck are you? Do you have a style? Do you stand for something? Is there a story you need to tell?
The happiest of marriages between singer and song is when essence matches essence. That’s pretty easy to do when you are the songwriter, but that’s for another article. For right now, let’s just say there’s a song you’ve always wanted to sing. Why? Obviously you’ve heard it. Did you love how that singer sang the song? Was it all in their presentation or did aspects of the song leak out all through the performance. Sometimes a song just captures us because of what it is, regardless of any performance of it. It has essence, or personality to use a different concept. Yes, a top level singer can create a rendition of a song that takes your breath away, but that is their interpretation. That interpretation is not the song, only an artist’s version of it. You would never want to simply duplicate an existing rendition. There is no reason for it. The song has already been sung and recorded that way.
What we want to look at is how you and the song are in alignment. What about the lyric is something you’ve always wanted to say? What about the melody let’s your emotions soar? What about the rhythm makes your body want to move, or your heart to expand, or turn you thoughtful or introspective? I will say here that the very best performance coaches are incredible at helping you figure out the answers to these questions and more. Is the song something you want to yell from the highest mountain or whisper in your lover’s ear? Does it help you vent your anger or does it awaken you into being a better person?
When you know who you are, what the song is, who you are when singing the song, and how its story is one with your own, you are ready to start thinking about the arrangement (instrumentation and style) and energy you want to portray. A parade of people will come into your life whether you are a major label artist, record for a small indie label, or have a recorder in your basement, who can assist you and give insight into how the song can be recorded. Ultimately, how you sing your song is up to you. Hopefully, you’ve thought about what you’re doing.
If you need a performance coach who can help you find the silver lining in that song you’ve always loved, we recommend calling the Singing Lesson Expert.