So, You Made a Singing Mistake…

Singing Performance
These practical tips come from singers making an impact with their music on social media.

We asked some artists we’ve enjoyed on Instagram how they deal with the inevitable mistakes that can happen when we sing – and while others are watching…

And we just love their answers!  

1. Get Perspective

Daisy @daisypmusic  Performing is always slightly daunting so mistakes can definitely happen, but I guess I just try to take things in my stride, since nine times out of ten the audience either won’t notice or won’t care. In musical theatre of course the ‘show must go on!’ And I think that definitely applies to any kind of performance. Recently, I was singing at a cabaret event and forgot the words to a couple of lines of my song, at the time I thought it was really bad but watching it back you can barely tell, so it’s definitely important to remember how much worse everything seems when you’re the one on stage!

2. Don’t Be Sorry

Ted Jameson @tedjamesonmusic Showing lots of confidence, and composure will always hide whatever mistakes that YOU will see, not the audience. And please, refrain from saying sorry after the song. If anything, if it was that obvious, joke about it! Banter with the audience, charm and interact. Just try and keep your energy up and remember that everyone that came is there to have fun. They came to be entertained, and you are there to entertain yourself to see how much better you can do from your last show. 

3. Stay on Track

Eryn Sharpe @eryn.sharpe Oh mistakes! An inevitable part of live performance. I have forgotten lyrics, flubbed a big note, missed my cue, experienced technical issues – just about any mistake you can think of I have made at least once. I was lucky that one of the very first and non-negotiable instructions I received in private voice lessons was that you must never let a mistake interrupt your performance. If you can surrender yourself to the idea that the purpose of singing is to convey the message of a song then you will struggle much less with worrying about what people think of you. That is making art. So to summarize: Mistakes will happen, don’t beat yourself up about it, and always defer to your role as a messenger of the song.

4. Seize the Opportunity of Mistakes!

Dían @bklynphnx I have learned to see mistakes as an opportunity to challenge my creativity, whether it’s making up lyrics, adding extra notes if I have gone flat, or scatting for a few bars. For example, during one performance when I forgot the second verse of Stevie Wonder’s “If You Really Love Me”. Thankfully, I was performing with an incredible band who didn’t stop playing. After a few bars, I cued the band and did a more stylized version of the first verse before continuing the song.  One of my rituals after a performance is to reflect on what went well and what didn’t. I know that no show is ever perfect, so I’m not too hard on myself if it doesn’t work out as planned. Even if I don’t think I managed to recover from a mistake gracefully, my rule is that if the audience enjoys a performance, I consider it successful. 

5. Review and Practice

ARI @aribry18  When I make a mistake performing I don’t stop to acknowledge it. I finish the song, keeping in mind what I messed up on. I’ll then go back and practice to make sure I don’t make the same mistake,  whether it be warming up more before a performance or simply keeping myself at ease so there is a less likely chance that I will mess up again due to nervousness.

6. Reconnect with Nature

Lorenzo Broggi @Psyke.artist Some days, it’s hard to show positivity in front of a audience, especially when I make a mistake. The negative feelings come through my mind, and the only way to continue to make music for me is to channel the sadness I feel and express it as part of everything, while aiming to stay inside the song’s dimension, dancing inside myself as much as I can. Sometimes it just doesn’t work; it’s hard to share powerful vibes when I feel empty and tired, and I just want to turn off the music to refresh the inspiration. Taking the time to connect with nature and focus on my inner power gives me the creativity, inspiration, and the strength I need to keep making music and art, sharing with the all world. 

More About Our Contributors:

Eryn Sharpe holds a Bachelor of Music from the University of Victoria (2018) and teaches voice through South Island Studio. Highlights of her career thus far have included feature performances in the Victoria International Jazz Festival, recording with Grammy-winning producer Joby Baker, and holding down a regular gig at Victoria’s iconic Pagliacci’s. See her song The Sun has Swallowed the Moon on YouTube.

Dían is an R&B/Soul and Jazz singer/songwriter from Brooklyn, NY. A huge fan of harmony, She is a founding member of NYC Soul Acappella group and has sung background for Melodie & Soulgasm. Dían has also been the lead singer/songwriter of the New Jazz Trio, The Greg Strong Experience, and her former band Remedy. She’s currently on hiatus but will be performing in this year’s Make Music New York Music festival on June 21st. Follow her on Instagram, Facebook, and YouTube.

Singer Ted Jameson

Ted Jameson is a Toronto singer/songwriter and member of The Muso Project. Ted is a music lover & creator. Check out his music on SoundCloud. Instagram: @tedjamesonmusic Twitter: @IAmTedJameson

Singer Daisy Peacock from Sheffield, UK

Daisy Peacock is a 15 year old singer songwriter from Sheffield, UK. In 2016, she gained a place in the final of the Song Academy Young Songwriter Competition with her original song ‘Beautiful’, earning her positive feedback from the likes of Tom Odell, Jamie Theakston and Tim Laws. More recently, Daisy’s latest song ‘2am’ caught the attention of new media company Media Legend which led to its music video release in May 2019. Daisy is currently working on new songs for her EP, while also posting covers on her Instagram @daisypmusic. Listen to 2am on SoundCloud and catch the video on YouTube.

Ari  - singer songwriter

Ari is a singer-songwriter based in New York City who has been writing songs since she was 8 years old. She plans to start recording and releasing her music in the future but in the meantime stays busy posting covers of songs that she loves on her Instagram @aribry18.

Lorenzo Broggi musician

Lorenzo Broggi (@psyke.artist) is a singer/musician with a passion for art and drawing. Lorenzo says , “I’ve been travelling, physically and spiritually since 2013, changing my life and receiving so much wisdom and inspiration. I love to share my feelings through art and music, connecting to people.” 

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