Because I really do not want to use a music stand, read lyrics at a gig, and I'm the new singer, been working like a dog to get the lyrics in my head... I find it fascinating. It seems so daunting when you just THINK about starting to memorize 20 or so songs that it's easy to put it off, etc. But once you actually start, MOST of it goes pretty quickly. Some tips that work for me (and some warnings about what doesn't): - It NEVER works for me to have the lyrics in front of me, while playing. Seems like this is the worst way to memorize, because just having them there (even if you only glance at them once in a while) is totally different than closing the book (removing the page) and trying it. I don't know why...I noticed this also when learning things from TAB... it just plain never happens that "if I do it enough they will get ingrained". - Write out the lyrics on PC or paper. This helps, but especially if you just think about (not hard) what the lyrics are, what they do, if it is some kind of story, what the story is. Later on build images...of the words. - NOTE: lyrics that are cryptic, tell no real story, or such are harder by far. Also lyrics that are very similar from verse to verse, but change slightly can be. - It helps a lot to download the lyrics to your telephone for one example, have them at hand, and from time to time during the day (driving, whatever) try to sing one of the songs, when you get stuck DON'T sing it wrong and move on, but when you get a chance check the real lyrics and note what it should have been. - Also helps to sing along with the recorded version (when there is one) but be VERY aware that you sing ON the beat...often we don't even know we are doing it but we listen for the first syllable the original artist did and clue in on that...if you sing even just a little ahead of the recording, better. No notes. - Look in the song for clues you can hang on to. Some songs, mnemoics... for the first lines in each song (all of these "tricks" are just until you really learn a song, when you do that, you won't need them, they are just temporary). Some examples from my setlist... "Wind Cries Mary"... I've always heard this song, but never had all the lyrics down. First thing for me, the KEY...was to remember which "Wind XXXX Mary" in which verse. This was pretty easy as the wind "Whispers, Cries, (then solo), Screams, then Cries again". For some reason that was the foothold I needed to get me into it. After that, the beginnings of first lines helped: After all the jacks, A Broom, (solo), The traffic lights, Will the wind ever remember (that last makes sense too...as it sums up!). "Maybe I'm a Leo". I was never a big Deep Purple guy...so this song was actually new to me. It kinda sorta tells a story, but really doesn't. It's only THREE small verses, 4 lines each (how I have it laid out)...and yet, one of the harder to remember. Here again (must be the way I think) the endings of each I mix up and therefore I need my foothold... so I think (all of this is from memory, Wind Cries mary also..hope I didn't have it wrong !) first two verses end in "Where is she now?", last one "I want her now". The only thing that helps, visualizing someone "Peeping round the door" (don't need the whole line, "I get a big surprise" comes naturally as long as I have the first part of the line) next line "Couldn't see a thing but, open skies" makes no sense. Hard to remember but ok. (If you can't see a thing BUT open skies...what is that?) "They" took her away.... Next verse, wishing she were her, maybe she'd laugh, understand, but then "Why was I so cruel" and the ending (where is she now). The ending, suddenly "Acting like a fool" "make her cry", "Maybe I'm a leo" is the title, so easy to remember here, but then I ALWAYS get lost... he's "hurtin oh so bad", then wants her now. Just a MESS... - Of course, "Come Together" is also one real headache to remember. I haven't found the key to remembering it yet, but find, strangely, that it still sort of works...but I have no faith in doing it right and not mixing up the lyrics, partial mixed verses. Lots of other songs, it still seems remembering even just ONE THING about each verse that is unique, helps a TON for remembering. Usually the first thing the first line concretely mentions (i.e. not "the" or "I was" or...but the subject of the first line each verse). This sounds harder than it is, but also...immensely helps when I have idle time just going quickly through the verses...when I get stuck, whip out the telephone and check.