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How to find singing gigs

If you are part of a band you can always try local bars and private clubs. In some states such places will pay you a fair wage, and in other places you will only receive a small percentage of the earnings made that night—so it is not always worth your time. However, small, low paying gigs are still jobs you can add to your resume.

A woman I know spent many years singing and songwriting—it was her one and only passion. Local crowds loved her, but despite that, she did not get enough work to live off of and did not have enough money to get studio time to make a record or high-quality demo. Well, she worked and played whatever singing gigs she could get on the side until she had saved up enough money to record an album. In the midst of a discouraging divorce—she was uplifted only by her singing and songwriting. This emotional time, however, made her album all the more rewarding—the songs were her life and her feelings and she sang them with the deepest passion and enthusiasm because they were the embodiment of the changes she was currently undergoing and the challenges she was facing as a human being.

Shortly after she had recorded her album, she worked a few more random singing gigs until she was offered part-time jobs at two high-class clubs. Finally, she was able to “quit her day job” and work full-time as a singer. She was making just enough money to get by at this time, (not including album sales, which were a little extra pocket money) but she had realized her dream. I do not know where she is now, but knowing her passion and persistence I am sure her situation is better now than it was even then.

There are three keys to success as a singer: persistence, passion and, of course, talent.

A couple of tips on how to succeed as a singer are to get a voice instructor. Many people discover that they have a lot more talent than they realized once they learn breathing techniques, stylistic versatility and get some good coaching. Another way to find success as a singer is to participate in vocal competitions. This will help you find singing gigs, simply because it looks very good on a resume to have been so involved in singing.

If you want to move beyond simple singing gigs, and you believe that you are ready, aspire for the most professional gigs in the business and audition for a professional choir. My mother sang with the Saint Louis Bach Society for five years, this is the choir most often accompanied instrumentally by the Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra. It took her years of studying and performing music (mostly in recitals) to get to this place. She received her Bachelor of Arts degree in voice, and later, received her Masters degree in vocal pedagogy. Now she performs solo in her own recitals, judges vocal competitions, works in a clinic for voice therapy patients, and has many successful students.

As in all fine arts, it is hard to achieve an independent life as a singer. However, every popular, or well-known singer has had to face the same challenges you will, finding singing gigs, or even going further by creating albums and finding record labels, or becoming a professional in voice and voice-related fields.

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