How To Sing Like Prince (5 Brilliant Tips)
Prince was an American singer, songwriter, record producer, and instrumentalist. He was a perfect description of a multi-talented musician.
He is very popular for his high-pitched screams that brought him into limelight back in the day.
Interestingly, this multi-talented musician had some pretty amazing musical qualities that are worthy of emulation.
If you’re interested in finding out these qualities, keep reading.
What Are The Steps Needed To Sing Like Prince?
1. Develop Vocal fry
Prince did a little bit of vocal fry here and there when singing. This technique spices up your singing.
Vocal fry is the lowest tone of your voice. It sounds deep, creaky, and breathy.
That creaky sound is produced as a result of relaxed vocal cords and restricted airflow in your vocal cords.
This in turn produces slower vibrations that ultimately result in the lower creaky sound.
This creaky sound can also be produced when you talk without taking enough breath and your vocal cords begin to rub together, resulting in a creaky, hollow sound.
This creaky sound is basically what we know as vocal fry.
Vocal fry can also be said to have occurred when insufficient air is forced through the vocal cords.
There is a lot of misconception that vocal fry is a bad singing technique. However, this isn’t true, vocal fry isn’t bad if done properly and in moderation.
It’s a great spice to your singing when added.
I’m sure you’re wondering how to develop vocal fry, well, the only way to develop vocal fry is by engaging in vocal fry exercises often.
Here are some exercises you can try;
- You can do a vocal fry exercise by singing a low note, and then lowering it as much as you can. Soon you will reach a point where you can’t sustain a full tone, and your voice will go into vocal fry.
- Then you can also do the Ahhhh exercise. Say the word “Ahhhh” using as little air as possible. This is one vocal exercise that works a lot.
Note that vocal fry shouldn’t be done excessively hence it loses its beauty.
2. Build a High range
Prince had an incredible range. His pitch was so high that you could mistake him for a female singer.
Every singer has his or her unique features that come to them naturally. Even if you do not have a naturally high range, it can be worked on.
However, it’s good to have an idea of your natural range as going way above your range can be harmful to your voice.
Every singer has his range and finding yours is a step to improving your voice.
Nonetheless, here are some tips that can help you develop your vocal range;
- Right posture: You can’t hit a high range with the wrong posture, and the correct posture is standing up straight. As ridiculous as it sounds, it’s a key way to increase your vocal range.
- Breathing technique: Ensure you breathe from your diaphragm. This is one of the easiest ways to increase your vocal range. This is done by inhaling and exhaling air.
Air is inhaled through the mouth silently. Ensure you allow the air to expand in your stomach. Then you can exhale at this point.
- Relax: Ensure your jaws are relaxed as you sing. Relaxing your jaw is a very easy way to reduce tension in your singing so that you can achieve higher notes. You can try singing ooh from a low note to a very high note.
- Vocal exercises: The most common vocal exercise for building range is the vocal siren. This is one of the simplest vocal exercises you can do to expand your range.
In this case, you can try singing the vowels “ooh” or “ee” from a very low note all the way to a very high note and back down.
3. Build vocal compression
Prince had incredible vocal compression. His control over his airflow was way out of the world.
In case you are still confused, vocal compression is simply a controlled balance of airflow and air pressure.
Vocal compression aids in the development of a stronger, more confident voice.
You may be wondering how to improve your compression at this point. Here are some steps that will enhance your compression ability;
- First and foremost, you need to control the height of your vocal tracts. This can be done by simply opening your throat while singing to the act of singing while opening one’s throat.
This technique that expands the pharyngeal space while retracting the ventricular vocal folds to increase the resonating area in the vocal tract.
In simpler terms, opening the throat entails the following steps;
- Lifting the velum
- Lowering the larynx
- Assuming proper articulation postures
- Shaping the mouth and facial muscles
- You have to cultivate a mixed tonality. This simply means the ability to sing in a group with multiple voices. Singing with a combination of chest and head sounds is required. It also implies a proper balance of the TA and CT muscles.
- Ability to sustain your resonance. This is quite an easy one to do. Here’s how you do it
- When singing, try to sing on long, flow-connected phrases.
- Ensure there are no interruptions to the resonance as much as possible at all times.
- It is preferable to use speaking syllables or to push air and pressure between syllables when singing. Simple, isn’t it?
- You have to learn how to sing with forward placement. To sing with forward placement in a balanced manner is quite easy. You just have to maintain height in your vocal tract while singing forward to add pharyngeal resonance and room for your vowels.
Learning voice compression will be much easier once you’ve mastered these vocal principles. However, while vocal compression is an excellent musical skill, it is recommended to use it sparingly when singing.
Here is an article I wrote on how to sing like Bruno Mars
What Voice Type Does Prince Have?
Prince was a perfect description of a high tenor singer. Due to his high pitch, he was best described as a countertenor singer.
A countertenor is a type of classical male singing voice whose vocal range is equivalent to that of the female contralto or mezzo-soprano voice types.
This voice type generally extends from around G3 to D5 or E5 although a sopranist (a specific kind of countertenor) may match the soprano’s range of around C4 to C6.
What Makes Prince’s Voice So Unique?
Prince had an extremely unique voice. Prince was particularly known for his high-pitched screams.
He had a vocal range that couldn’t go unnoticed because it was very high.
He also had amazing falsetto and vibrato that made him sound so different from every other singer. Prince also had an awesome way to keep everyone engaged during his live performances.
Can Prince Actually Sing?
Prince is an amazing singer with a good range.
He uses different vocal styles in singing different songs. Interestingly, he knew what type of vocal technique that’s a best compliment for a song.
He also implemented vocal techniques such as vocal fry, incredible range, and vocal compression.
How Did Prince Start Singing?
Prince had music in his genes. He inherited his musical talent from his parents who were music lovers.
He developed an interest in music and started creating tunes when he was just seven.
He also taught himself how to play the piano, guitar, and drums. He became a professional singer and performer as a young man and earned much popularity with his EP album ‘Prince.’
Also check out this article I wrote on how to sing like Mariah Carey
What Is Prince’s Vocal Range?
Prince had a vocal range between A1-C7. For a male singer, his vocal range was quite high. This is why he is classified as a countertenor singer.
However, his vocal range is solely based on his recordings and live performances. There is a possibility that he could either singer higher or lower than this vocal range.
What Is The Highest Note Prince Can Sing?
The highest note Prince ever sang was C7. His lowest note so far was A1.
What Are Some Classic Prince Songs To Practice?
1. Purple Rain
2. When doves cry
3. Call my name
Prince was a multi-talented musician. He wasn’t just a singer but a songwriter, record producer, and instrumentalist.
He had amazing skills that are mind-blowing such as his high ranged voice. He had other skills like vocal compression and vocal fry.
This countertenor singer set the pace for a lot of upcoming singers.
His countertenor voice enabled him to reach a voice range of C7.