Singing Guide: Lady Be Good

Vocal technique, exercises, tips and relevant resources

Are you a beginner or advanced singer?

Lady Be Good Vocal Performance Tips

Lady Be Good is one of the most iconic jazz classics from the 1920s, and Ella Fitzgerald undeniably left her mark on it. Her incredibly rhythmical, soulful and playful voice is hard to imitate, but not impossible. We will give you some tips and tricks to learn how to sing like Ella, with a modern twist, and some of the useful Singing Carrots resources you'll need.

Vocal Range and Voice Type

This song requires a singer with a wide range, good vocal agility and control. You can test your voice range and find your voice type with the Singing Carrots' vocal range test.

Breathing Technique

Lady Be Good is a fast-paced piece. You should develop a breath technique that allows you to sustain notes and lines, as well as enable you to breathe quickly in-between.

Learn more about breathing technique and breath support in our blog. For comprehensive exercises, you can try the Farinelli breathing technique.

Rhythm and Phrasing

Ella's singing style is deeply rooted in rhythm and syncopation. To master the rhythmic complexity of Lady Be Good, start by tapping your feet to the music, and repeat small rhythmic phrases with syllables like “do-do-da-dap." Maintain this beat in your head as you sing and “swing”: accenting off-beats and playing with your voice timing.


Ella’s precision and clarity in the delivery of the lyrics played a crucial part in making her a legend. To improve your articulation, try the finger bite exercise, where you bite your fingers as you sing. This exercise helps you to achieve the clear diction that is essential to jazz music.

Pitch Accuracy

Pitch accuracy is fundamental to the success of Lady Be Good. In case you need to improve your pitch, try our pitch accuracy test, vocal pitch monitor, or sign up for Singing Carrots' Pitch Training - Educational Singing Game.

Emotion and Story-telling

Lasty, Ella's singing was not only technically perfect but also emotional, playful and vivid. Work on expressing emotions and communicating the story in a convincing and relatable way. Check out the article about singing with intuition, skills, emotion, and thinking and performing on stage tips for additional storytelling advice.


Lady Be Good has been attempted by several singers due to the challenging nature of its tempo and vocal range. With enough effort, practice and help from Singing Carrots resources, you can take on the task of interpreting and making it your own. Ella’s distinctive style is not easy to mimic, but with the right tools and mindset, it’s possible. Remember to have fun and enjoy singing!

Learn more about this artist vocal range, voice type and repertoire.