Singer-songwriters often reinvent cover songs to fit their individual styles and to further showcase their musical abilities. For those who are just starting out, it may be a way of exercising their performance skills, exploring their sense of artistry or simply for the sake of fun.
But aspiring musicians who are highly serious about pursuing a career in the business are always encouraged to pick tracks that really establish their range and put an original twist on them to create their own signature.
Style sets one apart from other existing musicians. Singer-songwriters are encouraged to browse through a list of artists and bands that have been their inspiration along the way to see if some of them possess the kind of sound they want to have in their music.
Blending multiple styles into one is a trick today’s artists tend to use, such as Gavin DeGraw, who incorporates a combination of rock, groove and soul both in his originals and chosen covers. Finding a distinctive sound can lead to a wider range of songs that fall within the person’s preference.
Focus on songs that can be easily related to on a lyrical and melodic level. Picking a track merely because it’s currently on the radio charts may help players gain instant recognition, but unless they can develop an emotional attachment with it, it does nothing to enhance their musicianship.
The main key lies in personal connection. As long as they can feel the song, the audience will see it when they see them perform live. Emotion plays a part in selling music.
Stylizing Creates Originality
The joy of stylizing can be found in rearranging the chosen song in a way that defines the singer’s unique sound but still with respect to the original artist. He or she has the freedom to improvise and tweak melodies anywhere in the song.
Playing around with genre can also be a worthy exercise to help him or her think out of the box. A jazz piece can evolve into a soft rock tune, while pop-R&B can take on the form of a simple acoustic version. It’s up to the musicians to put their own original spin to the song.
Aside from genre crossing, gender bending is also a common approach. Performing songs originally sung by the opposite gender often happen these days, and it works when the right formula is used. Youtube artists like Boyce Avenue have successfully attained fame by playing cover songs online.
Choosing cover songs that blend well with a singer-songwriter’s range and allow opportunities for creativity may appear easy. But if one hasn’t found his or her style yet, keep experimenting with different tunes to see what does or doesn’t work. A vocal coach can help out in identifying himself or herself as a musician. Performers will only get better with experience. In time, they will discover their individuality as artists.