Quick, what is the oldest instrument in the world? That’s right, it’s your voice. More specifically, it’s your vocal cords. It is the one instrument we all know how to use. Of course, not all of us know how to use it well. But we can all learn.
Learning to sing is a great pursuit for anyone. And it’s not that hard to do. You can find all types of singing lessons. There are online lessons, vocal coaches, full courses that you can download or listen to on CD and various levels of music instructors. Head here for an in-depth look at all the different types of music lessons.
The first step for anyone wanting to improve their singing voice is to figure out exactly which type of lesson is good for you. Most people’s first thought will be to get free lessons. There are tons of these available online. You can find sites that describe various exercises for improving your voice and, of course, you can find hundreds of YouTube videos that will teach you how to sing better, like the following one.
The next step up from that is to buy a comprehensive online course. Courses like these are usually made by well-known instructors, but you don’t actually have any contact with the trainer himself or herself. Instead, you just watch the videos and learn on your own. It is similar to the free lessons, except you get a structured course and you don’t have to find quality articles and videos. That actually takes a lot of time, since there are so many bad ones online. It is not easy to find the good ones among all the bad ones.
These online courses are great for beginners, but they don’t do much for advanced students. If you are advanced, you will want to get a vocal coach and we will talk about that next. But for beginners they could be good. But you have to be the type of person who can motivate themselves. If you quickly lose motivation without having an actual person pushing you forward, then these courses will not work for you.
And that brings us to actual live singing instructors. There are two types here. There are in person instructors. These are people who are in your area, so that you can take lessons at their music studio or have them come to your home. These are generally the most expensive type of lessons and they require you to be in an area where good instructors are available. You also need that instructor to have free time and you to have free time at the same time.
The other alternative is to get an online instructor. Is basically the same as an in person instructor, except they are not in your area and you take lessons via Skype or some other online webcam video chat tool. Generally these lessons are slightly cheaper, but that is not always the case. They are more convenient, since no one needs to leave their home. The instructor stays in their place and you stay at yours. They are obviously not quite as good as in person lessons, but there as close as you can get without actually being there in person.
As I mentioned above, for most people I would recommend buying an online course when you are starting out. The reason I don’t recommend free lessons, is that it just takes too much time to find good ones and to create your own lesson plan. Many of the best courses aren’t that expensive, so this is money well spent.
Once you reach a certain level, it will be time to move on to a live instructor. By then you will also have a good idea of whether you will want to continue learning how to sing or whether you would rather move on to something else. This is another reason I say go with the cheaper online lessons first. You don’t want to spend a ton of money on an instructor, only to find out a few months later that singing isn’t really for you.