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The singing journey II

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How to be a student. There are a lot of factors in choosing a teacher or training program. The style of singing that you want. Let's say that you want a raspy blues thing. Going to a teacher who sounds like an opera singer and seeks that in students may not be the best fit. Or maybe it would. Your mileage may vary.

There are advantages to using a training system at home. Most of these include a book, sets of exercises, and some, like 4 Pillars, a gargantuan library of tutorials video and otherwise, that you can re-play and repeat until you fall asleep at the computer or whatever media player, from shear exhaustion. For digital is forever. If you have to play the breathing vid 5 times in a row, no problem, you are at home and can put it on auto-repeat if you want, like a meditation exercise until it seeps into the brain by "osmosis."

And yes, it will cost some money. It took time and effort to create the stuff that you see and hear. First off, designing the lesson and arranging its presentation. I ran into that in teaching electrical trade. What do I need to talk about and in what order? How best to describe this to teenagers who have not my decades of experience and esoteric lingo found in the world of electrical work? Without using all the actual technical terms? The idea is to train them to be competent as electricians, not necessarily electrical engineers. Same with singing, I think. The time and space to film and record. Time, space, and equipment for editing the product. If providing hard media, such as a dvd or two, there is the cost of the production run. Publishing houses do not work for free. And shipping. The various delivery services do not deliver for free.

Same thing with digital download. A hosting service has to use valuable memory to house these files. That costs money and time.

The advantage of the home study course is that the cost can be averaged over time, if you can afford it initially. Let's say that you get a system and become a really good singer. Pro, selling and recording albums and making lots of money. Has the system then paid for itself? Over how many years?

Or, if possible, you can pay for lessons, which is cash upfront, of course. Unless you use a credit card, which is also a possibility. Anyway, let's go with cash, the universal language. Why pay a teacher for lessons?

Because he has to eat, too. And have a roof over his head. A busy singing teacher does not have time to go out and dig ditches, or gather carts at Walmart, or be operations manager at a company, ventures of time and expenditure of energy that result in receiving money. You, the student, yeah, you - let's say that you are a plumber or electrician and you dig ditches to install pipe underground. Do you do that for free? No, it took your time and energy to do this thing. Same with singing teachers.

And here's the important part. The quality of your singing is not in how many lessons you have had. Or how much your teacher charges for the lessons, generally. But it is totally in how you apply what you have been taught. For this will require your intense concentration. Are you ready? Here is the question.

How many times do you have to be told the same thing before you learn? Ideally, once. The teacher teaches it, you hear it, understand it, apply it. The rest is on you to continue doing this or that thing correctly. Do you need the teacher to count your reps? Are you paying for a babysitter, in so many words? So, the best way you can receive the best value for your money is to pay attention. And that can be the hardest thing.

You came in with preconceptions. You may not always agree with the teacher. That's fine, it's your money to spend. You might think lessons are too expensive. For one thing, who says you have to spend x amount of dollars a week, ad infinitum? The idea of singer training is consistency, which has no time limit.

In addition, if you are paying for lessons with a teacher, listen to that teacher, first. Others a distant second. You are paying hard-earned money to a pro to teach you to sing. And worrying about what the rest of us amateurs think should be far down on your list of importance.

And teachers are not perfect. If the teacher you have is not bringing you results that you like, find another teacher. It's the same reason that I have been a more effective electrical trades teacher than others. Some students learned more with me than they did with previous instructors at the institution where I taught. Which doesn't make me a better person. Just more effective for that student.

And maybe you don't think you need lessons. That's fine. Don't get your feelings hurt if someone thinks otherwise. Go out and be a rock star. Prove them wrong, if you can. But if you are taking lessons or using a training program or both, get the biggest bang for your buck. Really apply the concepts, even if they seem odd. You will see improvement.


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