How to Sing and Play!

June 14, 2018

Being able to play the keyboard and sing at the same time is an impressive skill to learn, and certainly a great way to add a new dimension to your performance.

Singing and playing on the keyboard might be unreachable to many but it is really not as difficult as what many people might think!

With some tips and techniques from Intune Music Director Aaron Matthew Lim, you can achieve this impressive skill quicker and easier!


Tip# 1: Practise Separately First

If you are a vocalist and wish to venture into sing and play, most of the time you will find yourself focusing more on your keyboard playing than singing, because you are more unfamiliar with the keyboard.

As such, your singing will usually suffer and your sing and play performance will be marred by your lowered singing standard.

We would recommend that you practise your keyboard playing and singing separately first, in order to gain a stronger foundation in your keyboard playing or singing (whichever is more unfamiliar to you).

Subsequently, when you are more proficient at both, you can then seek to combine them and it should be much easier for you to do so.

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Tip #2: Know What Both of Your Hands Are Doing

If you are a keyboardist or pianist, you would know that each of your hands have different roles to ‘play’.

The left hand is usually responsible for providing bass notes, bass lines, and sometimes full chords and the right hand is normally for chords, melodies or embellishments and counter-melodies.

Knowing the role of each of your hands in keyboard playing helps you to be more familiar with your playing, and also helps you to have a better idea of how and when you should be singing while you play.

For example, coinciding your singing with the bass lines of your left hand would be a good idea for simple songs with regular beats and lyrical rhythms.

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 Tip #3: Choose the Right Song to Practise

Knowing what songs to practise is also very important.

A lot of beginners tend to only want to play songs that they love to listen to. However, these songs might be very complicated in terms of chord usage and melodic rhythms and groove.

The easier way is to choose songs that are simpler for beginners to practise with, so that beginners are encouraged to continue their learning, after achieving success in the first few songs that they practise.

Songs like “The Scientist” by Coldplay are a good and easy introduction to keyboard sing and play as it features simple chords played at a moderate pace.

The song melody is also regular and has a simple rhythmic pattern, which makes it easier for you to anchor it to your left hand and right hand playing.

Also, many beginners tend to tense up while they are playing the keyboard while singing, loosen yourself up and enjoy the process. With sufficient practice and preparation and you should be able to sing and play smoothly!


Tip #4: Proper Posture When Playing

Having a proper posture will definitely help you play and sing better!  Also, knowing your most comfortable height of the keyboard stand is important regardless whether you are standing or sitting down.

When you have to bend your upper body downwards to match the position of your keyboard, it will definitely affect your vocal performance as it will cause strain on your vocal setup.

In addition, if you are using a microphone for your performance, do adjust the microphone stand to a suitable height so that it would not put a strain on your throat, and you will be able to sing comfortably while playing the keyboard.

Remember to also tighten the microphone holder firmly, because sometimes after fixing on the microphone, the microphone bar starts to slip lower because of the additional weight, and if this happens during a performance, that would be problematic!

Another added benefit of having good posture when you are singing and playing on the keyboard is that you will look better in videos!


Tip #5: Keep it Simple and Practise Regularly

When you are just starting your journey in sing and play, it is important that you choose songs that use simple yet popular chords such as C Major, G Major, F Major, A Minor, D Minor and E Minor.

This will make your journey easier at the start, and also allow you to feel motivated to keep practising and learn more challenging chords for other songs!

In fact, there are many songs that can be played with just 4 simple chords! This is demonstrated by many videos online, such as this one:

Just like any other skills, regular practice is needed to achieve mastery. Practise effectively for at least 20 to 30 minutes per day, and by the end of the week you should be able to sing and play at least 1 song.

If you are feeling stuck and feel that you are not achieving any progress in your playing and singing, you might be practising mindlessly! Find out how to stop mindless practising here:

If you’re not sure if you doing it correctly, join our Sing and Play Keyboard trial lesson, so that our instructors will be able to guide you personally and give you feedback on your practice, and you can then get properly on track towards being able to play and sing on the keyboard well!

Tori Kelly ‘s Paper Hearts by Zuo En and Si Ming Pomo Christmas Carolling

Start your vocal and keyboard lesson with us today! Our instructors are well versed in both vocals and keyboards lesson!

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For more information, visit www.intunemusic.com.sg or contact us directly friends@intunemusic.com.sg or 63360335 today!

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