It doesn’t matter if you are a solo artist or part of a 7-piece ska band. It is important to be prepared for your live performances. Artists may even use a superstitious approach to getting ready for important shows. This could include wearing specific clothes or listening to a particular album before they take the stage. You can decide if this superstitious approach is right for you, but these five pre-show rituals will help prepare you for your concerts.

Vocal exercises can help you warm up your voice.

If you are an experienced musician, this may seem like common sense. However, many musicians fail to do so. Your vocal performance will suffer if you don’t warm up before a show. It’s easy to learn a basic vocal warmup, and it will make a big difference in your live performances. You and your band must do this before each show, whether you have to run out to your van or take over the green room.

Reduce alcohol consumption to a minimum

Many venues have bars, and alcohol is an integral part of the live performance experience for artists and fans. Musicians are known to overindulge before shows and then perform poorly on stage. It’s understandable if you are young and have little experience. However, it is not an excuse for most musicians. People will spend their money to see you perform. A music venue has placed its trust in you and expects you to put on a great show. There will be plenty of time after the show if you like to drink. It’s a common, simple, and sensible pre-show ritual that keeps your bandmates, fans, and venues happy.

Plan what you will talk about on stage

Many musicians can be 100% confident on stage but are terrified of talking during performances. You might be one of these people. One of the best habits for pre-show is to make talking points. This includes knowing your main points, such as announcements and calls to action, like asking people to check your merch stand and the names and addresses of artists performing at the show. It’s always polite to thank other artists for playing at the shows. It will help you avoid stress and anxiety when talking on stage. Make a plan if stage banter isn’t something you do naturally.

If there is no line check, get a lay of the land of the tough situation.

Many developing artists do not get sound checks before performing. Once you have everything set up, it will be a quick line check before you go. You should not wait to address sound problems if you play with other musicians. You should check out the equipment and monitors before you start your set. This is best done online, or at least weeks ahead, with the venue staff via email. You need to trust that everything will work as you expect them to. It is essential to understand what your technical sound engineering perspective entails.


It’s normal to feel anxious before a show even though you have everything under control. Meditation for even ten minutes can help musicians calm their nerves and keep their minds steady. This can be done in your car, in the green room at the venue, or outside. You will need your breath and a timer (which you likely already have on your smartphone). Meditation is a great pre-show ritual.

You have so many things you can’t control during shows. These five pre-show practices will help you make sure things go as smoothly as possible.

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