What Do Singers Wear In Their Ears? Here’s The Truth

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Did you already experience attending a concert? Perhaps, attending by yourself or with your family and other loved ones? Or at least, watch your favorite musicians execute their piece live on television or on Youtube? Well if any of these is yes, I am proud and sure that you, as an individual, are already aware of the musicians wearing earpieces right?

But have you ever been curious about the music or the sound that they are really listening to through them? And asked yourself if earpieces are really that important and even asked yourself if they are necessary?

Too many questions but for me to reveal the answer, you should stay tuned because I provided the appropriate article for the topic today. So, what are you waiting for? Keep that burning music loud and alive!

What are earpieces?

To begin with, if you are in the situation of your favorite musician or performer, it may be really difficult for you to even understand the sentiments like the main example and the main event for today. Hearing through using earpieces! Especially if you are in the position of a setting that is live.

Earpieces have a source of sound that is direct
Earpieces have a source of sound that is direct

Given also if you are already a professional performer or a soaring one. But do not worry, as I’ve said, earpieces are there to help you!

In regards to its background, earpieces have a source of sound that is direct. Basically in its name, earpieces help in understanding the music more to perform well in front of a crowd.

Expert Tip: Earpieces protect the performers’ sense of hearing and allow them to adapt their stage mix and even personalize it.

When did singers start wearing earpieces?

As a person who likes history, I found out that earpieces did not evolve right away as the name suggests but traditionally, the wedge is the key to the evolution of earpieces.

Wedges are obviously loudspeakers (the name itself) and positioned to hype the crowd with the performers being on stage. Wedges face the performers with a shape of a wedge, of course. Performers with wedges really have great sound quality because of having better music and with this kind of information, they can already hear themselves well.

What are earpieces?
When did singers start wearing earpieces?

A very popular band way back 1960s first used the wedges because it was really undoubtedly impossible for them to hear the audience especially since they are scorching performers during their time.

The situation kept in continuing before with the wedges used until engineers for having great sound quality responded to various issues or problems regarding the health of their sense of hearing, the quality of the sound they are making, and the customized levels of the musicians that can be classified as the mobility of their sound.

As a solution, earpieces evolved and according to them, it is a great answer for the difficulties that rose at that time.

The first homemade earpieces that were used by musicians was in the early 70s. These were earpieces that people were aware were kind of earphones so it turned out negatively and even with the result, the poor sound quality was present.

More effective earpieces were effectively done by a great expert and better used by a famous singer way back 1980s. But even though it was effectively made, these did not solve the hearing problems of the musicians and therefore, did not protect the musician from the overwhelming background.

After years and years of searching for the one, Jerry Harvey together with his friend, Van Halen reinforced about making an effective and great earpiece. And with that, the lead singer of a popular band before decided to buy the custom in-ear. The works of the sound engineers now have evolved and improved knowing that their hardships paid off.

Why do singers wear earpieces?

Why do singers wear earpieces?
Why do singers wear earpieces?

Previously mentioned, earpieces help performers or singers in understanding the music more when they are executing their piece in a live setting. Earpieces help in protecting their sense of hearing and help in allowing them to adapt the stage sentiments and even make a version of it as long as it hits the harmony and it is in synchronized version.

With the information so provided, earpieces allow the singer to listen to the backing tracks and the click tracks that are usually the unheard things in a performer’s crowd. To keep you full here is the meaning of the backing tracks and the click tracks in music:

Backing tracks

These are mostly recorded in a studio to highlight the ones and the things that are playing. Thus, these are the recordings of instruments that should be with better harmonization and synchronization.

Expert Tip: Whether you are performing with a band or performing as a solo, these help you to add sections to your music even if it is impossible for your audience to perform it in a live setting.

Click tracks

These are beats in series in music. As a performer with a band or a solo performer, these help in maintaining a smooth tempo and in keeping the synchronization better and improved. Meanwhile, your audience cannot hear click tracks.

What do singers hear in their earpieces on stage?

What do singers hear in their earpieces on stage?
What do singers hear in their earpieces on stage?

To fill in your curiosity about the performers and what they hear in their earpieces, then here is the quick answer: They hear themselves by using their earpieces! Definitely. But in some scenarios, the performers also hear other performers on stage to keep track.

Backing tracks and click tracks are present here. The drummer in the band, if it has one, is the one who has a responsibility in backing tracks because he or she levels up the background making the performer effectively touch his or her earpiece.

Meanwhile, click tracks help with the choreography and with the best angles of lights and other performance elements.

Why do singers remove earpieces?

Why do singers remove earpieces?
Why do singers remove earpieces?

Things come with both advantages and disadvantages. Just like those things, music also has both of them. Music equipment like earpieces also has them. So, let’s take a look at why singers remove their earpieces even when they are greatly effective for them.

They remove their earpieces so they can hear the loud crowd

This is because they want to take in the atmosphere because earpieces have an off vibe when plugging in from the crowd.

They remove their earpieces so they can vibe with the crowd

This is because they still want to harmonize with the audience and make the levels mix so both the crowd and the performer are happy with it.

In this scenario, sometimes things never go along their way. Like the reasons mentioned above on why singers remove their earpieces, problem with the interference because of having one sound desk.

And the problem with the isolated sound making the singer uncomfortable because he or she cannot hear the audience because the singer also wants a direct connection with the crowd could really cause singers to take them out or not wear them at all.

After all, with both advantages and disadvantages regarding in wearing earpieces by singers or performers, can also be classified as good ways to have a successful concert. Personally, I think it will be okay because challenges are always there so you do not need to avoid them. Instead, face them and conquer.

Additional information:

Three exact reasons why earpieces work for singers

The Sound Quality is Great

Earpieces or in-ear monitors are exactly into the ears of the singer or performer. The ear canal and even the earpiece itself play a role in blocking the interference or the issue outside. Having said that, its meaning is way good also due to the fact that the music can be understood well because the singers hear it perfectly.

With this, it enables the singer or the performer to hear precisely the way it should be but also in a hard way possible when having low volume. Through this, point number two will rise. Read below:

The Health of the Sense of Hearing

Earpieces allow the performer to lower the level of their music
Earpieces allow the performer to lower the level of their music

This is already mentioned in the upper part of this article but to finish it clearly, this is not actually surprising because the great sound quality mentioned above headed us to read below for point number two, and here it is.

Given that they are in loud environments for like hours with the scorching love of the crowd, singers or performers have the highest chance to encounter and face the problem of hearing loss. Half of 100% chance to develop a hearing problem. Singers should understand the piece well so likely they have chances of damaging their ears.

They put themselves at risk just so they could give us a great performance. Meanwhile, earpieces allow the performer or the singer to lower the level of their music piece to also avoid hearing problems in the future or even now.

Mixes and Vibes of Various Individuals

Singers or performers have their own earpieces. With this, mainly the parts of the song are exclusive only to different singers instead of making it to the whole stage and the environment hear it.

Because of that, every individual that executes a performance has the freedom of having options when it comes to mixing the sound they want to hear with the audience cheering for them. The meaning of this statement is that he or she will kind of understand him or her in a more defined way in the mix without increasing the volume.

If you imagine yourself being a singer, it can also mean that you have the power in adjusting the music’s tracks involving the click tracks and the backing tracks themselves. No worries, the crowd doesn’t have a problem with it because they cannot even hear anything from these.

If you want a beautiful and detailed performance, try to check out that tip for you!


As a summarization, earpieces of singers have a source of sound that is direct and help in understanding the music more and protecting their sense of hearing. Wedges are the first things to evolve than earpieces. Sound engineers responded with the problems involving wedges so they came to a result of having earpieces for the singers.

Earpieces allow singers to hear backing tracks and click tracks. With this information, they hear themselves in their earpieces. Meanwhile, they remove their earpieces to hear the scorching love of the crowd and to vibe with their levels.

Having to imagine yourself as a performer or as a singer is a great embodiment for you because stepping out of your comfort zone is a good start. Feel free to ask questions if some things here in the article are not clear to you. As an individual, I am excited to have your feedback ready! I welcome each of you.

To make everything clear, personally, I do agree with singers to have earpieces with them because of the great sound quality when performing in a crowd and their freedom of them to level the vibe they are in. But everything should be in moderation. Disadvantages are always there, you will not experience danger if you do not choose risk.

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About Maggie Holding

Hello! My name is Maggie and I am a proud Editor/Author for PlayTheTunes. Coming From South Carolina, USA, my whole life I've sang and played the guitar and flute! I love music with a passion, and am ecstatic to help others in their own music journey!