The microphone should be thought of as part of your instrument. A key to good microphone technique lies in distance and direction. The best direction for your mic is straight in front of your mouth or slightly below and angled up towards your mouth.

Generally, keeping a microphone between one half to one inch away from your mouth will help to capture the full tone of your voice. As you sing considerably louder, move the mic away slightly or move your head a little to the right or left. As you reduce your dynamics, move back to your usual closer position.

Note: If you hold the mic too far from your mouth, sing into its side or across the top, it won’t capture your voice well. This is not just a mistake made by amateurs. Judge John Legend pointed out this error to a contestant during his feedback in a May 2012 episode of the TV show “Duets.”

Don’t Be a Drifter

This is the singer who moves away from the mic while still singing the last part of a phrase or who randomly moves on and off mic by not having it follow their head movements. It’s distracting for the listener to hear a voice sporadically booming and then fading. The vocal quality will be uneven and the lyrics difficult to follow.

More often than not, the key lyric of a song phrase occurs at the end of the line. If you move your mouth off the mic as you approach the end of your phrases, you diffuse the impact of the most important lyrics and what you’re saying is lost to the audience. So keep the mic in front of your mouth all the way through the end of your phrases.