Does Karaoke Improve Singing?

Here is a very good question that often gets asked: Does karaoke improve your singing?  Well, as a music teacher of over 10 years and a musician and singer myself, I must tell you – of course it does! 

My name is Dave and I’ve been performing in rock bands on and off for years now.  I love to sing all sorts of music and I am also a big fan of karaoke, which has assisted me in improving my own singing voice over the years.  Here’s me singing a karaoke version of Chris Isaak’s “Somebody’s Cryin'”…

I have my own karaoke system here at my house – an Acoustic Audio Bluetooth speaker with a stand, and a couple of wireless mics.  The karaoke songs which I use come from Youtube, which is jam packed with thousands of songs by companies like Karafun that are well done, and ready for you to use at any time. 

What do you need to do karaoke at home?

You might think that you need all sorts of stuff to do karaoke at home, but you really don’t.  You don’t even need a microphone, but it’s more fun if you do have a mic and a speaker to boost the volume of your voice.  A little bit of reverb on top doesn’t hurt either to make you feel like the real deal.  You basically just need a laptop and you can practice as much as you want.  Alternately, you can locate a “karaoke night” at a local bar or meet-up in your region, and attend that.  Of course, you don’t have to do any of that – you can just do it at home for now if you like.

Read our article reviewing the best home karaoke systems of 2017

Lack of confidence in new singers

From all my years of teaching singing, I’d say one of the biggest challenges new singers face is lack of confidence.  For beginners, or people who think they can’t sing or have been told they don’t have a nice singing voice, something like karaoke or writing a song seems like a huge challenge, and I can understand why.  I used to think I wasn’t very good at singing either, and my confidence was very low.  When I was around 10, I was in the choir at my school and my music teacher said I had a very nice voice.  Once puberty hit, my voice changed and suddenly it was harder for me as a guy to sing songs like I once did.  But I always wanted to be in a band, write my own songs, and sing.  Here’s a sample of one of my songs from the past few years which I wrote and recorded.  My favorite part is doing the vocals.

Karaoke does help to improve singing

In my 20’s, I discovered karaoke.  At first, I was skeptical that I would be able to do it, but it wasn’t long before I realized how fun it was.  Doing karaoke on my own or with friends was one of those things that slowly helped me to build my confidence, because there were times when I had to try to take risks, either singing hard songs, or in front of people who I thought might judge me (and sometimes did).  Overall, singing is like anything else – the more you do it, the better you get.  You just need to practice, practice, practice, and karaoke will help you do that as long as you like doing it.

Technical singing exercises aren’t for everyone (but they help too!)

The other thing that often is a challenge for new singers is the fact that taking singing lessons is both expensive and often boring.  Not all of my vocal students have been thrilled to go through vocal warm up exercises, or learn about the parts of their body that help them to sing, or do scales.  Even I don’t always feel like doing that stuff, and I am quite capable of doing it.

There’s a lot of technical information involved in singing that to some people is just too boring to learn, and so they don’t bother with it.  Of course, this is valuable information that will help them, but they just don’t have the patience to learn it.  I understand that too, because, when it comes to singing, I like to just sing, not spend hours warming up to sing.  I want to just do it ASAP – when I’m in the right mood.  That said, if your voice is sensitive or fragile, and you don’t warm it up, you can injure it, just like anything else.  Sometimes warm ups are necessary and I’m not saying you shouldn’t do them. 

My recommendation is to give karaoke a try, but don’t try anything crazy at first.  If you’re new to doing karaoke, or performing vocals in general, you can start with a really easy song just to warm up.  The karaoke can be the warm up, which is fun.  As you get better at it, you’ll probably realize that there are more and more songs you’ll want to try out, and, as long as you have the right attitude, you will get better at it.  In other words, don’t give up.

Focus on what songs you want to sing, and techniques you want to learn

One of the best things to do when learning to sing using karaoke, in my opinion, is choose songs you are highly motivated to sing, or vocal techniques you’re interested in learning.  This will definitely increase the chances of you grabbing that mic and trying it out.  Singing can be an intimidating process for some, but with karaoke, you can do it by yourself and whenever you want (as long as there’s no one there to complain).  You just need lots of time to experiment, but just remember not to do anything to crazy or you could hurt your voice.  This goes for songs that involve yelling and screaming, or even songs with a wide range of notes.  This is why it’s good to also learn the right techniques to sing properly. 

Here is a video I made talking about karaoke and how it can improve singing.  It contains most of the info I’ve explained here, but with a few extra things thrown in.  Enjoy!

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