To Sing the Right Notes, You Need the VPI Skill
(The Vocal Pitch Independence Skill)

Have you ever sung a song with the original singer's recording, then sung with a karaoke track or chords and felt totally lost? You're not alone...most beginning singers need to learn the Vocal Pitch Independence Skill, or VPI for short. 
Check out the video above to see how the VPI skill works, and a simple (although often challenging) exercise you can do to build it. 
Also check out the videos below:

Isn't this just ear training though? 

No, because there are lots of piano players and other instrumentalists that know music very well, can repeat accurately on their instrument what they hear, but can't find a single one of those notes in their voice. You have to have both the skill of ear training AND know your voice well enough to quickly locate a particular pitch in your voice without help from the piano (besides your first note to get you in the key). Then you also need to be able to sing the right note while hearing other notes or chords while you are singing (think karaoke). I imagined there would already be a term for this but couldn't find one, so my rather ungainly term is the "VPI" skill. 

Isn't this just sight-singing though? 

No, because sight-singing requires that you know how to read music. For various reasons, it may or may not make sense for your particular situation to also learn to read music. However all singers MUST learn or already have at least some VPI skill to perform a song. 

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