World and Olympic high jump silver medallist Brigetta Barrett has an amazing voice, so SPIKES asked the six-foot American for her six-point guide to singing like an angel.
"Drink a lot of water. The body needs to be hydrated, so the vocal chords don’t rub against each other and create a restricted and bad sound."
Train your ear
"Training the ear is very important. When we watch reality shows like American Idol or Pop Idol, we all think it is funny when some people sound horrible – and that person doesn’t even know they sound horrible.
"Train your ear by matching pitch. Listening to a lot to classical music and humming along with the tune will help."
"To check how a note sounds, make sure you record your voice and play it back. Don’t be shy. Nobody has to hear it other than you. It is just for instruction, and sometimes it is best to record your voice to really hear your sound."
Barrett, lead singer of the SPIKES Girls, sings Amazing Grace in Moscow
"Work on your breathing and make sure you know the anatomy of your body and how it creates sound. Avoid habits such drinking too much alcohol: that will destroy the vocal chords. Smoking weed or cigarettes are also going to ruin the vocal chords."
"It is good to practise other people’s songs. I’ll sing to Whitney Houston to work on my range, but allow your body to discover your own voice.
"It is good to have your own sound, because a lot of people today are like karaoke singers. They sing the songs really well, but someone already sings it that way. It is important to find your own voice."
"If you remember, Michael Jackson spoke in a very high, soft manner. Speaking like this would cause no friction on the vocal chords. We often use our throat to emphasise words and sound louder – but that just irritates the voice."