How To Sing Acapella

How To Sing A capellaAcapella is a very interesting form of music as it does not involve the use of any kind of musical instruments.

In fact, the sounds of the musical instruments or rather, all the necessary accompaniments are produced by the vocals of the singers.

What does A capella Mean?

Often performed in groups, Acapella is an Italian phrase which stands for “in the manner of the church.”

The genre of music seems to have originated as a result of the popularity of gospel music or other religious musical genres, and seems to have been inspired by the congregational style of music.

How Acapella is Performed

Singing A CapellaThere are generally a lot of people in an Acapella band and they control various parts of the music and vocal sections which make the music.

To understand Acapella it is best to listen to a few Acapella groups and the music that they make to get a hang of it or to at least know how Acapella is performed.

How To Sing Acapella

Are You Ready To Try Singing Acapella?

Singing acapella can be a daunting task if you are a beginner to singing. That’s why you want to make sure your voice can actually sing properly.

The best way to do this is through a professional vocal coach – but they’re super expensive ($50-100+ per half hour session)

Luckily, we live in the age of the internet and an online vocal lesson program is your ticket to better vocal control, a smooth tone/pitch and ability to hit both high and low notes effectively.

Once you have control of your voice like a proper singer, singing acapella will be an easy task for you.

Here’s a great video by MetalWorks Institute on singing acapella:


Effective Acapella Singing

Acapella is best sung with a group of people. Although it can technically be done solo, it’s best to have accompaniment.

You need singers covering low, mid and high ends of the vocal spectrum

Bass / Low Notes

You need singers who have a bass-heavy vocal style – one that resonates well and can carry the bottom end. To do this you should find someone with a deep voice.

Make sure they have the type of control over their voice we talked about earlier.

Middle and High Notes

You’ll also need a singer who can really take a song to the highest scales out there – falsetto or otherwise. Again, you want to make sure the singer has full control of their vocal chords.

Finally, you need singers that can support the group as a whole – either through accompaniment, harmony or other background vocals.

In actuality, you’ll all be performing that role at one time or another.

Listen, Then Sing

If you listen to a lot of Acapella music made by Acapella groups then you will understand why the singers seem to be arranged like a choir.

The only thing Acapella is distinctively different from a choir is in the use of musical instruments. Acapella uses no instruments.

If you listen to enough of the type of music you’re trying to sing you will pick up the habits and styles of those performers. It’s always a good idea to emulate then innovate when it comes to learning a new style.

If you are composing an Acapella song then be sure to demarcate sections of the song to be sung by the singers.

The song might start with a bass section with mids and highs catching up, while the backing vocals set the mood the song.

The backing vocals give a feel and character to the song, without which the raw vocals might sound out of tune.

How To Sing In Your Head Voice

How To Sing In Your Head VoiceLearning to sing in your two different voices (head voice vs. chest voice) is essential to total vocal control.

These are essentially two different kinds of vocal tone that you can produce through your vocal glands or your throat.

The Chest Voice

The first “voice” you have is the chest voice. This vocal type comes from below your vocal chords. This is because we take in air and breathe out from the chest (i.e. lungs).

The Head Voice

Your second “voice” is a more compressed form of the chest voice because the air – although it does come from the chest or lungs – seems to be resonating in the area above your vocal chords.

This area is the upper part of your throat and the area in and around your mouth.

How To Sing In Your Head Voice Correctly

singing-head-voiceYou will understand how this works if you pay attention to how your mouth moves when you are yawning.

Open your mouth and try to fake a yawn.

You will realize that your mouth opens up wide and clear and your tongue is pushed down to the base of your mouth.

This leaves the upper part of your mouth to be used like an organ, where the air can resonate and create a sound with a deep and clear tone.

How To Practice

Now, how to sing in your head voice with this mouth position is easy.

Open your mouth wide like you would if you were yawning. Now your tongue should go down automatically as a reflex action.

Try to sing a few notes like “Do Re Mi…” – go up an down scales, progressively moving higher/lower in key. Make sure you keep your mouth position the as consistently like a fake yawn as possible.

You may also notice that the sound of the notes is almost vibrating in your head.

You will get the hang of it after a few months of practicing.

A Shortcut To Mastering Your Head Voice

If you don’t want to spend the months practicing and straining to know if you’re doing it right there’s really only one solution.

How To Sing In Your Head VoiceProfessional vocal training. Now, this doesn’t necessarily mean hiring an expensive vocal coach.

In fact, it’s much more efficient and effective to learn the fundamentals of singing through an online vocal lesson.

There are lots of great ones, but there are specific lessons on mixing your head voice and chest voice in a program called Singing Success.

I can’t stress enough how important it is to do the vocal exercises and lessons these online singing lessons have. You won’t find them for free online, but they are absolutely worth it.

If you want to be able to sing in your head voice and chest voice properly in a matter of weeks, not months, you need to pick up one of these programs.

This Ain’t Falsetto

Some vocalists confuse the head voice with the falsetto or the false-voice.

However, you should know that head voice is very different from the falsetto in the way they are created by your vocal chords.

The falsetto is almost like your voice cracking while singing some line and creating a very sensuous effect if done correctly, while the head voice would be mature, deep and clear with very distinct Major notes in it.

Vocalists can use both to give the necessary effects in a song. Sometimes singing acapella can help you refine your head voice. Read more about how to sing acapella here.