fbpx

What Are Backing Vocals ?

” Backing Vocals “

What does that mean exactly ? If you are starting to work in the music industry or you just like to take an interest in the music production process, you have probably already heard about backing vocals. Knowing what it is exactly can be very interesting if you like music and extremely important if you want to become professional in music.

Backing Vocals

In music, backing vocals represent one or more vocals that support the lead vocals by singing the same melodies and notes or incorporating harmonies. Backing vocals often give more punch and power to the lead vocals.

Quick History

The history of backing vocals is quite dark, in the sense that, in its early days, the world of backup singing was extremely exploitative.

The story goes back to the early 60’s, when the term “pop music” exploded and audio technology allowed more and more tracks to be recorded separately. The first people to get behind the microphone were black people, often exploited, poorly paid and uncredited.

They were often women, the best known of whom were Lisa Fisher, Darlen Love and Merry Cleyton.

For a long time, the backing vocalists remained women, which made it a still sexist environment. Afterwards, the world of backing vocals became more diverse. But it has remained a field in which singers are often underpaid.

Backing vocals

What are backing Vocals

As you may have read above, backing vocals are there give more punch and power to the lead voice by doubling the melody and rhythm sung by the lead singer.

Nowadays, especially in pop and hip-hop music, backing vocals are often sung by the singer himself and rarely by external singers as it was very often the case a few decades ago.

You can generally hear 3 types of backing vocals :

  • End-of-sentence support : Generally used in hip-hop, especially to call out the most important rhymes and words.
  • Whole segments : When a certain part of a song has to be highlighted, backing vocals become very useful
  • “Choir” : You have probably already heard it many times in some songs in which the artist or the group tends to imitate a crowd, an audience or a choir singing in unison. This type of backing vocals is obviously much more obvious and less subtle.

Do you know how to mix backing vocals? I explain everything here: How To Mix Backing Vocals ?

This is obviously not an official list, but simple points of comparison that will help you listen more accurately to the backing vocals of your favorite songs.

If you are a music producer or sound engineer, this will also help you to have much more precise artistic directions during the recording and mixing processes.

Conclusion

Backing vocals all have the same purpose : supporting the lead vocal by singing the same notes and melodies. But the magical thing with this type of vocals is that, especially in 2022, they can be used in many different ways. The important thing is to know where you want to place them in your mix, and to be creative!

If you have any questions about backing vocals or about anything in the field of music mixing, please contact me, I’m always very happy to help!

Related Articles:

How To Mix Backing Vocals ?
IDeez

IDeez (real name Gauthier Claude) is the owner and head engineer of IDeez Studio. He has been working as a mixing engineer in pop and hip-hop music for several years and collaborates with many artists and independent labels around the world. His goal is to provide quality online mixing services and to teach, through his blog posts, the principles and techniques of mixing in pop and hip-hop music.

Facebook
Twitter
Pinterest
LinkedIn

Do you have trouble mixing your music ?

With our FREE e-book, you will learn the basics of vocal mixing in 20 minutes only! Enter your address and take your voice to another level!

IDeez

About IDeez

IDeez is the head sound engineer of IDeez Studio. He studied BA and MA in sound engineering at IAD (Belgium) and has been a specialist in vocal mixing for several years, especially in pop and hip-hop music. His goal is to help artists, rappers and singers in their mixing process through online mixing services, tutorials, blog articles and e-books. Contact him for any information!

The basics of vocal mixing in a FREE e-Book

Free E-Book
Free E-Book

Improve your mixing skills quickly!

Having trouble mixing your vocals ? It can be very very frustrating… Hours of work lost, constant questioning, nervousness… You don’t need that! Download your FREE e-book now simply by adding your informations right below. You’ll receive your free e-book within a minute!

Bring your music to the next level

IDeez Studio is the most creative mixing studio in hip-hop and pop music. Our great specialty is vocal mixing. We don’t only mix vocals, we produce them, we create a solid universe around the artist, we do everything to take your voice to the biggest radio station of the world.

0
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x
()
x
0
    0
    Your Cart
    Your cart is emptyReturn to Shop
    Free E-Book
    Free E-Book

    Learn The Basics

    Of Vocal Mixing

    FOR FREE!

    Want to learn the basics of vocal mixing? Our FREE E-Book is for you! The coolest thing is that you’ll also get amazing promo codes and pro tips on vocal mixing in pop and hip-hop music. Like… really, you can’t miss it!