Creating harmony parts is not that easy. In some tracks, harmonies seem invisible while in others, they compose the whole song. Our goal is to help you learn more about harmonies and the concept of the three parts harmonies.
The 3-parts include;
- LH (lower harmony)
- M (melody)
- UH (upper harmony)
Table of Contents
How to Sing 3 Part Harmony
If you are working with great singers, vocal harmonies can get fun and interesting. The main reason why you need three singers is to ensure that someone represents each and every part of the harmony.
Know The Music Theory
If you want to understand what notes that you can sing, learn more about the music theory and you will be able to perfect your skills on the three parts harmony.
When you look at music scores or the SATB (Soprano, alto, tenor, bass) on how they are arranged. You will discover that they do not follow a 3 part procedure. The melodies are used as the top note in soprano while the harmony is below.
Instead of creating the harmony on the fly, just have its parts worked out early enough. There are some singers out there who can harmonize easily, but most of them know how to sing their parts perfectly. While this can be a great thing to look forward to, we recommend singers whose voice is a second instrument to work out on their arrangements.
Guide for Lead Singer (Melody Singer)
A lead vocalist also known as the “frontman” is a singer who sings the songs melody in front of other musicians and takes the lead to control the band regardless of its size. The lead singer is usually the main singer of a band and the main focus of the audience, although there might be other singers providing harmony vocals. If you are a lead singer, it doesn’t matter how you sing your lines; you should have enough confidence and a good range that will enable you to present your song in a good way.
Depending on the chord structure, the simplest three parts harmonies are the ones with the minor and major chords (Gmaj is G-B-D) in 3rds.
Be imaginative and creative. Even if you can’t sing well, think about how the team can come up with a clear melody. The lead singer must not always lead the band if there is a nice instrument that can be played, use it to lead the band. Rehearse your singing parts without the help of anyone else to master your notes. By doing this, you will find it easy to present your music and lead a band or a group of singers.
You don’t have to be a good musician, but you must be good in tuning and timing. Any good lead singer has great skills in perfect timing and tuning. Flat vocals are bad for a lead singer to start with, and sharp vocals are even much worse, but don’t be afraid to take lessons and improve your skills. Regular breathing exercises and proper warming up will help you to stay relaxed and also do wonders for your tuning.
As a lead singer, you don’t have to choose between singing tenors and harmonies or singing the bass line, but you have to be careful with this, though. If a song melody runs counter to the chord progression, you will find yourself singing a sour note, even if the sound is matching well with the bass.
Guide for backing vocals (Upper & Lower Harmony Singers)
If you are arranging a band, don’t miss out on the chance of including backing vocals. They add richness, interest, and depth to your sounds. One of the best ways you can create good backing vocals is teaching your singers or vocalist how to blend. Teach them how to match starts, phrasing, stop, vibrato and volume tone. When you do background vocals, you have to be very creative in order to make good notes.
For lower Harmony singer you have to emphasize vowel tones and sing in a counter melody. Upper harmony singers should try to listen to the song and pretend that they a trumpet or saxophone. Practicing these techniques will help you to become a good singer of the three parts harmony.
A great backing vocalist should be able to come up with his or her lines. If you practice regularly to sing a particular song, you will be able to feel the music and create lines that make sense. If there are more than one backing vocalist, try to stick with your harmony part, and you will notice how the song gets easy to sing. For example, if you are singing bass, you should not try to sing lines of a soprano backing vocalist.
My Final Thoughts & Advices
If your three parts harmony singers are new to music, give them some practical’s that will help them to perfect their skills. This is one of the best ways; you can help your singers to become great musicians and vocalists.
One of the most important thing that you should learn from this articles is that the 3 parts harmony are essential to making good tunes, and modern notes sound great. If you take your time to give more attention on learning how to sing harmony at professional level, performance, and arrangement, you will invariably achieve better results.