Do you want to learn how to sing riffs and runs? Are you trying to follow all the great singers? Do you want to sing with feelings and emotions? Are you trying to give your best in every song that you are singing? Have you ever feel that you got all the attention of the audience?
If you have any of these questions in your mind, then you are in the right place because I am going to show you the best ways, skills, and techniques through which you can sing the songs with runs and riffs.
There are many techniques and skills to use the vocal riffs and runs in your songs. But, first of all, you have to make sure that you are singing without any strain and pressure because it needs a clear and smooth voice. Before starting, you have to know what are the riffs and runs and how you can use them in your songs and vocals.
What are riffs and runs?
Have you ever heard any singer who has emotions in his song? Have you ever thought that from where these emotions are coming from? These emotions are what we say riffs and runs.
These are the vocals, feelings, and emotions which are used by the singers to extend their vocal intensity and put the emotions and feelings into a song, so a listener will always appreciate and he will be connected with the singer in a better way. These are used in rock music, jazz music, and gospel, etc.
The vocal riffs and runs are not something to show off but they are the special emotions that increase the enhancement of the song. If you want to sing these vocal riffs and runs, you have to make sure that you are master of it because you cannot use them until you are perfect in using them.
So, you have to listen and see many master singers who are using these riffs and runs in their songs very easily and you will be able to know that how easily they can connect with the audience and divert all their emotions and feelings into the song.
Now, coming to the vocal runs and let me show you what are the vocal runs. These are the melodic lines of a song that are very fast-moving and you can sing a song cleanly with the help of vocal runs.
This area of the vocal also requires some practice, so you should be ready to exercise and practice them.
The important things to know:
I am going to show you some important things which you have to know if you are trying to get the vocal riffs and runs because these things will tell you how you can use them in any song.
Know your notes:
Before you start using the riffs and runs in your songs and know how to sing them, you have to know which notes are embedded in your songs. There are two types of riffs. The first one is shorter riffs which are consisted of 2 to 4 notes and the other one is the longer riffs.
These are the collection of shorter riffs when they are sung together. After knowing this, you have to listen to the melody and tune of the song very carefully, and at this stage, you can ignore the words and vowels, but your focus should be on the melody. After that, you can pay attention to the words and vowels in the song.
It very important that you should learn the pitch of the song which you are going to sing because you do not know, then you sound maybe pitchy. If you are thinking that how this all you will be able to do, then I am here for the best solution for you.
All you need to do is to break the song or the melody into segments and fragments. First, you have to work on some primary notes and then you can move towards the next notes. In this way, you can practice the complete melody.
But, make sure that you are using the right tune at the right time. After practicing this, you will be able to sing the song very fast and in a perfect tune in a single tempo.
Know the right tempo for yourself:
The next step after you are done with the right notes and right pitch and sing them together is to know about your right tempo. Now, what is tempo? It is the timing, punctuation, and way of adjusting all the things into a song.
You can learn your tempo with the help of practicing on the keyboard or you can clap the notes out. If you know your tempo, then you will be able to use and sing the riffs and runs in your songs.
Learning your tempo makes you know on which point you have to emphasize, on which point you have to go up and on which point you have to low.
In this way, you can add the riffs and runs in the tempo when you are singing the melody.
Know the rhythm:
The very important thing that I need to mention here is that every step is linked with the next one. For example, you cannot learn your tempo, if you do not know the notes. So, if you want to know the rhythm then, it is very important to know the notes and tempo before doing this.
First, you have to master yourself and make yourself perfect in all the steps that are mentioned above.
After that, you can know the rhythm of the song by listening to the rhythm of the song and the pulse of the song. All you need to do is to fit the riffs and runs into the rhythm when you are listening to it.
Know the vowel sounds:
The next step you have to do is to learn the vowel sounds that are coming to the song. This is very important because the vowels and their sounds keep changing during the song and you know how to change from AA to EE in just milliseconds.
For this, you have to know all the vowels that are being used in the song so it will be very easy for you to enhance the sound of the song. You can also sing riffs just by extending the sound and phrase of the song. Only the vowel sounds can be used without any use of the word and it will create the same emotion in the song.
Know the musical cues:
If you are finding the starting note a bit difficult and you cannot take a good start, then you have to work on the musical cues because these are very important in the music and tell you about the exact time for the starting note.
You have to know how to use the musical cue and this can be done with the help of practice. Every musical cue has a specific pattern of rhythm. Once you are done with singing the riffs, the next step is to determine that if you are using the musical cue and rhythmic cues at the right time and right place.
Techniques to use runs and riffs
If you want to be a master in using the riffs and runs, then I am going to show you some techniques and tips. You have to practice them and I assure you that you will become a master.
Variations in speed:
If you want to use runs in your singing, then you have to know that it means to slow the song down up to the zero. For this, first, you have to practice with the help of the piano and after that, if you thinking that you can do that without the help of the piano, then do it.
You have to practice every note on the piano and after that remember the note. You need to do the same with each note. Once you know how to sing each note, you will learn that and will be able to sing that in speed. Just make sure that you are singing slowly at the start and giving it a speed.
You have to make sure that you are not just speeding up, but you are also speeding up with the quality. Try to do every note without music and you will get the speed gradually. Speed up when you think that you are now a master in pitch, tone, runs, and other aspects.
Practice to increase flexibility:
If you are having any strain and blockage while singing the vocal riffs and runs, then it is your voice’s flexibility that is stopping you. So, you have to work on voice flexibility and master it. You can practice by using ”Mm” and ”Ng” again and again until you think that you have enough flexibility in your voice.
Flexibility gets disturbed because of improper use of vocal register. With the help of this exercise, you will be able to sing the runs and riffs with ease, without any strain and crack.
Make the best use of the piano:
If you want to improve your runs and riffs, then you have to make sure that you are using the piano. All you need to do is to select your favorite melody from your favorite singer. You have to begin slowly and start going up gradually with time.
You can use also the instrument named metronome which can measure your tempo and will show you which one is the best tempo for you.
Try to increase 3 to 6 bpm every time you are practicing. With the help of the piano, you will be able to note down the major and minor scales of the melody. It will also help you to easily shift yourself between the scales and notes.
Some rules to sing riffs and runs:
Here are some rules and points which you have to keep in your mind if you want to sing the runs and riffs in your song.
This is the very first rule to sing the runs and riffs. Flexibility is very important if you want to shift from one note and scale to any other with ease.
For this, you have to do a keen and serious practice. You have to invest your time in the vocal flexibility and you will be able to shift your notes and make your every song with full of emotions.
Do not afraid of baby steps:
If you are starting to work on this thing, you have to keep in mind that you should not be afraid of the baby steps and you have to take some very small steps at the start.
This practice and hard work will lead you to the master and perfection in your vocals and you will be able to generate your vocal riffs and runs. If you are looking at any R&B singer, you can see that they all started from scratch but now they are the motivation for everyone around the world.
Open your creativity doors:
If you want to develop some unique and special characteristics in your singing, then you must know that you have to do many experiments with the music. The more you play, the more you will be able to get to know about the music.
Once you pick your best note, no one can stop you from moving forward and rock the stage. You will be able to develop confidence in yourself. You have to build your style and this can only be done with the help of practice and experiments.
Conclusion: How to sing riffs and runs?
You have read all the points and tips, now it is your duty that you have to use them in your life, in your practice sessions and your singing. If you need some motivation and encouragement for this hard work, you can imagine yourself rocking the stage and getting praise and compliments from the audience. So, what are you waiting for? Start from now!
Hopefully, this guide on how to sing riffs and runs was helpful to you so you can become a better singer and only move forward.
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