Singing Like a Star: 5 Steps to Discover Your Voice | Valerie Morehouse | Skillshare

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Singing Like a Star: 5 Steps to Discover Your Voice

teacher avatar Valerie Morehouse, Celebrity Vocal Coach

Watch this class and thousands more

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

    • 1.



    • 2.

      You Can Sing


    • 3.

      Identify Your Vocal Personality


    • 4.

      Learn About Your Voice


    • 5.

      Practice Basic Scales


    • 6.

      Roll Your Lips


    • 7.

      Smooth Your Vocals


    • 8.

      Create Your Singing Practice


    • 9.

      Take the Next Step


    • 10.

      Get to Know the Music Industry


    • 11.

      Reach for the Stars: Bishop Briggs


    • 12.

      Final Thoughts


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About This Class

Become the singer you’ve always wanted to be with the vocal coach to the starsValerie Morehouse.

Valerie Morehouse has spent the last two decades coaching the most successful recording artists of our time. Some of her clients include SIA, Britney Spears, Sam Smith, Miley Cyrus, and now YOU. From her studio in Los Angeles, Valerie will help you discover your voice, increase your vocal range, and build the confidence you need to sing your heart out. 

Using her signature coaching method, you will:

  • Identify your vocal personality 
  • Understand the sound-producing anatomy
  • Learn basic vocal techniques
  • Build a sustainable singing practice 

Plus, you'll learn the biggest secrets—and struggles—to being a successful artist. You’ll hear how singer-songwriter Bishop Briggs uses vocal coaching to keep her big, soulful voice in prime condition night after night, show after show. 

Your voice is the most powerful and emotive instrument you have. Join an epic list of recording artists whose lives have been changed by Valerie's coaching, and hit those notes you've always dreamed of hitting.

Whether you've been singing on stage for years or have never ventured beyond the shower, this class is great for anyone who is looking to understand their voice and improve their singing. All you'll need is a space to sing, a glass of water, a flexible straw, and an open mind.

Meet Your Teacher

Teacher Profile Image

Valerie Morehouse

Celebrity Vocal Coach


Valerie Morehouse is the go-to vocal coach in the entertainment business today.

Valerie created a method that not only increases the singer’s range and technical ability, but also keeps the voice healthy while maintaining the singer’s signature sound.

Valerie has transformed the lives of many successful artists working today including: The Chainsmokers, SIA, 5SOS, Jeff Bridges, Brendon Uri, Florida Georgia Line, Noah Cyrus, and Christina Perri, just to name a few. She also prepares actors’ voices for stage, television, and film, including Sally Hawkins (The Shape of Water), Tom Ellis (Lucifer), the cast of Nashville (ABC & CMT), and FOX sportscaster Joe Buck. 

From her studio in Los Angeles, Valerie mentors and coaches singers all ar... See full profile

Level: Beginner

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1. Introduction: Singing is powerful because it's very cathartic, it's very emotional. It's just another way for you to express yourself. Hi, I'm Valerie Morehouse and I'm a celebrity vocal coach. Some of the singers that I work with include Sam Smith, Britney Spears, Olivia Rodrigo, and many, many more. In this class, you're going to begin to build the foundation for your own voice so you can start on your own journey to singing success. Who I'd really want to impact in this class is everybody that just wants to sing. The mistakes are where the magic happens. I want to be able to create a safe environment for people to start something that they've always been too terrified to do. I really want to help you create a sustainable singing practice. What you're going to gain after taking this class is a great start to understanding how the singing voice works, warming your voice up, how to do basic scales. You're going to hear a little bit about the music industry. We're going to bring in a special guest, Bishop Briggs, and she is going to talk about her journey as a artist and what it takes to be in this business. It's very physical. The more you work the vocal cords, the stronger they will get, just like an athlete. So if you stick with it, you're definitely going to see those results. I've coached the world's top singers and recording artists, now it's your turn. 2. You Can Sing: [MUSIC] I wanted to welcome you to my class. I think this is going to be very eye-opening and give you the basics and the foundation of singing and not to be fearful of what you're about to embark on. You may not have known that 97 percent of the world can sing. I know that sounds like a really big percentage, but in all my years teaching, I would say that's pretty accurate. There're very few people in my 24 years of teaching that I've turned away. If you feel that you can't sing, the probability is that you probably can, so I would encourage you to stay tuned into this class and discover that for yourself. Singing is sharing your voice with the world. There's an awesome responsibility sharing what you have as a gift and as a talent and I think singing is so important because it does give us a chance to communicate with other people. Finding your voice is definitely not easy, but you have to put the work in in order to get to the gold at the end of the rainbow, if you will. You have to put the work in so that you're able to sing effortlessly and you're able to tell your story because if you're onstage or you're in your room or you're in the studio wherever you are singing. If you're thinking about singing and you're thinking about technique, you're not having a good time and you're not sharing your story with your audience, so it's very important to get through those fundamentals first, to put the work in, so that you can be creative and you can share in a very organic way. Oftentimes people think about singing as they have it or they don't and even though that can be true, the real truth about singers is understanding that the voice is a muscle, so the vocal cords are actually made of muscle. You can teach them to do anything you want them to do, like running a marathon. If you said you wanted to run a marathon and someone said, "You should just stick to five miles." You would look at them like they were crazy. You can train for a marathon. You can also train to be a singer. When you strengthen those muscles and you strengthen the vocal cords, you really see the outcome and so you're just putting the time in like an athlete. If you take those steps and you do that at home, you can start to sing. Singers find their voice in a myriad of ways. Some people think they sound good in the shower or good in the car, you discover your voice in all different types of ways, but this class is really geared towards taking it to the next step and really finding out what you can do with the instrument that you have and understanding that you might be a lot better than you actually think you are. Songs are very important to us as human beings; it lifts our souls, it lifts our spirits, it can bring us out of despair, it can change our mood, it can put us into a place where we weren't before. I think song is so important because when we can use music to lift us out of a certain place as a human being, it elevates us as human beings and it really does help us to grow and to feel certain way about life where five minutes before, maybe you felt upset about something and you turned a song on, and it lifted your spirits in some way or just shifted your mind. I really want to explore in this class the idea of how important a song is for everybody and for you personally. At the end of this class, you'll be able to sing a song you've always wanted to sing, it'll help you develop a toolkit to create a sustainable singing practice. All you need for this class really is just an open mind and some drinking water and then later you're going to grab a bottle of water and a straw to do straw phonation exercises. In this class, you'll see me break down the voice in two categories. Typically we have male and female, but I don't want that to limit you or put you in a box because I don't want you to identify as male or female, I want you to identify as the singer that you feel you are. I'm so excited to have you with us so far and in the next lesson, we're going to work on identifying your vocal personality. [MUSIC] 3. Identify Your Vocal Personality: [MUSIC] Traditionally, when singer starts singing may get boxed into one of two categories. If you're a male, you might have heard the terms tenor, bass, baritone. If you're female, you might have heard the words soprano, alto. That's not really how I work. I believe that with two vocal cords which are actually made of muscle and tissue, you can do anything, you can sing anything. Everybody can train and everybody can do what the vocal cords are meant to do. We want to identify that and show you that today. All singers are not created equal, but we don't like to put you in those boxes. We like to show you that you can sing way above that and beyond that. An example of that, when I look at a piece of sheet music, I don't look at it and say, ''Oh my gosh, this is too high for me to sing or this is too low.'' Because my voice is trained, I look at it with the idea that it's just going to be different. It's going to sit differently in my voice. It's going to sit differently high or differently low, but I don't box myself into whether I'm a soprano or an alto. That's very limiting, and you typically do not want to do that in contemporary music. If you're coming to this class and you've never sung ever in your life, but you've always had a passion to do it, maybe you're scared, maybe you tried to sing at the school play or you audition for something or even a parent might have told you not to quit your day job because that has happened before, I promise you that. Singers typically have these fears that are internal and innate. I want to bust through that for you today and show you that almost anybody can sing. They can be ear trained, they can learn to sing. I'm going to walk you through those steps so that you understand that if you're brand new to singing and you've always wanted to do it, I'm going to show you how to unlock that. Starting this class, I want you to take a moment to pull out a piece of paper and write down five things that you think singing is, that you have fears around singing. Five things that perhaps are scary or frightening to you as a singer, as a new singer, as somebody that's been singing for years. Maybe some of those five bullet points that you wrote down or perhaps maybe my brother is the singer in the family, not me. Maybe I was told in choir that I wasn't good enough to be in choir. Maybe I audition for a school musical and I didn't make that. All of those things that we have as human beings are fearful. Singing is very vulnerable and it's very fearful for a lot of people. My clients they're making millions of $ singing and doing this for a living, they're still terrified to go out on stage. So you're not alone, it's not just you. We all have those internal fears and I want to help you tackle those today. If you've written all those things down and you have your list, what I want you to do is l want you to rip that up into tiny little pieces. Once you've ripped all those up, I'm going to show you how to break down those walls and those barriers today, when we bring in two students and I'm going to show you some of the things that they have to go through as artists and singers. We're going to show their mess, if you will, and how they get to the other side. In my profession, I've worked with hundreds and hundreds of singers, probably thousands. But what I want to really process and bring to you today is the idea in its simplest form, that there are two types of singers. There are shades of gray, but there are pullers, which I call the type A, or they're flippers, which I call type B. What that means is when a singer comes in, if they're a puller, what that means is they're using too much muscle to hit the note. If you've ever tried to sing a song and you get to the bridge or the chorus and it's too high, and you're heaving up and you're struggling and you're pulling with muscles to try to hit the note, that would be a puller, so we need to give you exercises that are more aspirate. What that means is more breathy. We go to that part of the chart and we give you these breathy exercises that go against your tendency, not with your tendency. The other one that you may fall into is the flipper, and that's where you have too much air in the voice. What that typically does for a singer on the back-end is it causes a lot of airflow, perhaps too much airflow, and so the singing voice is weak. So you're either too heavy or you're too breathy. As a singer, we want to balance those two out. You don't want to have too much air in the voice ever, but you also don't want to have too much muscle in the voice. You want those two to be very equal. We're going to talk about how the neck and the anatomy bothers that process and disrupts that process and we're going to tell you how to get yourself out of it. But those are typically the two categories. You have the puller, which is too much muscle and too heavy, and you have the flipper, which is too much airflow. You're either getting too much power, too much volume, or you're getting too much air on the voice. Either one of those are not a good place for the singer to be. You'll never find balance. We're going to talk about how to find that balance in a little bit. Before we pull our recording artists in, I want to talk to you a little bit about song construction. Typically in any given song, you have a verse, you've a chorus, you've another verse, you've another chorus. Everybody writes differently, but that usually is the construction of a song. As we go through this, you'll understand how we're breaking the song down whether we're going through the verse or we're getting to the chorus. The components of a verse typically are, that's the beginning of the song. Verses are typically a little bit lower. The chorus typically gets a little higher. That's something where the lyrics are the same. You have the hook of the song. That's where it really gets going, and it's very emotive and it typically gets a little bit higher. When we hit the choruses for most singers, that's where they get the most nervous because that's where they have to deal with their tendencies. Their tendencies being puller, too much muscle or flipper, too much air in the voice. Again, we want to balance those two. Very important to understand, that's always the scary part for a singer, but we are going to identify that with our recording artists. I would like to welcome Casey Baer to the studio, who is a new and up-and-coming recording artist and she's going to help us out today, and we have Ethan Roche, who is also going to help us out today with some of our tendencies. What I want you to do now is think about if you were in this class with me here, what song would you want to sing? What have you been listening to that you've always wanted to sing? Maybe there's something you've been struggling with. I want you to choose something that is difficult for you and that you find challenging because I'm going to show you here with both Casey and Ethan how we break down the problems and how we glue their vocals back together in a really cool way. We're going to go into song selection and identify the puller and the flipper, and watch both of these singers do their thing and identify what that is for you at home, whether you fall into one category or the other. Casey, let's turn to you. What song did you select today? I picked Impossible by Shontelle. Awesome, high enough chorus. Let's start with that chorus and see what happens. [MUSIC] Nice, so that's a part of the chorus. That is a pull. You can hear sometimes when we pull, you're going off pitch a little bit, because the TA muscles are pulled a little bit. That would be an example of a puller. If you feel that you're doing that [MUSIC] that's using too much muscle in the neck and the larynx going up too high. You're pulling chest voice up too high without a mix. Now we're going to identify somebody that uses too much air, which we would call a flipper. Ethan, what song did you select? I thought it'd be fun to do Gold by Chet Faker. Awesome. Give me any part you want to start from, and we'll see what happens. We'll go right into the chorus. [MUSIC] If you hear that, that's a high note for him, the word, feeling. What he did instead of screaming it, getting himself into trouble, he flipped. The codes got a little bit further apart and he added more air and so that was a light breathy sound. At home, I want you to use either your own songs or the two that we've just demonstrated here, and keep practicing and trying to identify if you are someone that's a puller, using too much muscle to sing, singing too loud, over singer, and those are all pullers. Or if you're a flipper where you're using too much air, you're going into your head voice for female or head voice, falsetto, if you're a man, just using too much air in the voice and too much airflow that would be of puller. It's very important for you to identify which one you are because that is going to inform the rest of this class for you. Once you've identified what it is, we'll be able to walk you through some steps to fix it. If you're struggling at home, figuring out whether you're a puller or flipper, feel free to upload a video of yourself singing to our project gallery, and one of us will be able to listen to it and identify it for you. In our next lesson, we're going to be exploring the anatomy of the voice, which is very near and dear to me, because it's where most singers struggle and have issues where they don't know about singing. Please join us for that. [MUSIC] 4. Learn About Your Voice: [MUSIC] One of the most important things that I teach as a teacher is vocal anatomy. What happens with vocal anatomy is it really does pull back that curtain of mystery of how you use your voice. Because some people just sing straight out the gate. Other instrumentalists, they may play piano or guitar, but you have to practice, it's hours and hours of practice. With singing you can really have a nice voice, but really not know how to use it, and how to deal with it. I really want to go over the vocal anatomy with you today and talk to you about how the singer sings and how the voice works. We're going to be talking about what I call the SPA or the sound producing anatomy. It's all the chambers of sound, we're going to go into what chest voice is, what mixed voice is, what head voice is? We're going to talk about the vocal cords, what they're made of. Then we're going to talk about the neck muscles and how they can really hinder a singer's ability to perform. Vocal anatomy is very important because if you don't understand what you're dealing with as a singer, it's very difficult to find your pitch, to be on pitch, meaning to sing on key, so you're not singing off key because none of us want to do that. It also helps you find your balance as a singer and vocal tone. If you've never heard of the chambers of voice, there's a very specific term that we use as singers to talk about where the voice is resonating from, and what resonation is a sound and vibration where we feel the sound. There's three chambers of sound and three chambers in the actual body. There's chest voice, which is located here in the chest area. This is a resonating space. We have lungs and the back and it's very cavernous so we can feel it if we put our hands on our chest and go ooh, we can feel it vibrating from there. Then we have the second chamber which is mixed voice, that typically we want it to be located in the nose and the mouth, which is what you here maybe called the mask. This is where we want to vibrate and resonate from. Notice I bypass the neck, we don't want to feel anything in the neck. The third chamber of sound is head voice. We typically want to feel that in the top of the head and the forehead, that's again the highest part of your instrument. If you think of it like living room, dining room, kitchen, I want to go into your house and I want to knock down all the doors and I want you to have an open concept plan for your singing. One of the reasons that we can do anything we like to the cords as teachers and we can train you in such a specific way, is because the vocal cords are made of muscle. They're muscles with a little bit of tissue in there. The muscles can expand and contract, they can lengthen and dampen, they can do a lot of things that you don't know that they're able to do. They're very important to understand in part of your training. Talking about the vocal chords, again, they're muscle and tissue, they're sitting inside what's called a vocal box and they're in your neck. One of the things that we have to talk about is the larynx. The larynx is the part of the anatomy that gets in the way of all singers. If you put your hands on your neck and just go, you can feel it. If you put your hands here again, men identify it more easily as an Adam's apple and go, you can feel it hike. If you go, you can feel it lower. We never want to be too high or too low as singers, we always want to be neutral. The larynx is a very important part of our anatomy. One of the things that you may not notice as a singer, is you may not know when you're off pitch or on pitch. Really all that means is when you listen to a song, are you singing in the key that's written? Are you hitting the note that they're hitting or are you off slightly? Some people can be a little bit sharp. What sharp means is you're a little bit too high on the pitch or flat. Think of it flat, you're a little bit too low on the pitch. If you have a C, [MUSIC] you may be singing [MUSIC]. Can you hear that? That sharp, it's not quite a C sharp. It's still a C but it's a little bit sharp. It's driving a little high. If you hit [MUSIC] again and you sing [MUSIC] it's a little bit flat. Those are the differences between sharp and flat. There's a lot of conversations about pitch and people don't know exactly what it is, but I think even a beginning singer or even a non-singer can hear it. You can listen to other artists and hear when they're off key, they're not quite hitting the note whether it's a little bit sharper, little bit flat. Volume is very interesting for me as a teacher because louder is not always better. You have a lot of vocal coaches in your past, perhaps if you've trained before, they'll tell you sing louder. That's a big red flag. Louder is not better and it's not balanced. You don't want to sing too heavy and too hot. You want to use the microphone as a tool, not a prop. Just remember, louder isn't always better. Tone I think is something that we're born with. After all the years that I've been teaching, tone is hard to teach. I always say that I can deal with a student on a technical level, a physical level, and emotional level. But their tone is their tone. Tone is something that is very special and it's a very inherent, you may not be the best singer on the planet, but you have a really good tone and a good quality to your voice. That may be the thing that makes you a star. Tone is a certain quality of the voice. It might be a warmer tone or a more shrill tone. Maybe you like death metal, are you like heavy metal, are you like hard rock? There's a certain screamy, growly, gravelly tone they have to their voice or something they put on the voice that's typically tone, or if you're more of a classical, maybe you listened to a Katy Perry or an Adele. They have a certain tone to their voice that is very pop and contemporary. Some is warmer, some is colder, some is more shrill, is just the idea and the sound around their instrument. Breathing is a really interesting topic because I typically like to teach singers to balance the instrument and the anatomy first, and then add breathing. I'm going to use an example. If you're a weightlifter and you have a bar and a bench, if you have five pounds on one side and 50 on the other, and you try to bench press that weight, what's going to happen? It's going to topple over. That's exactly what happens to the voice. We have this breathing apparatus, which is our lungs and our back and a solar plexus. Guys it's not down here where your bellies are, sorry, it's up high. When we take a deep breath in, if we're really supporting our voice, but we haven't balanced the instrument yet, it will blow us out. The vocal cords can withstand a few pounds of pressure where the breathing apparatus is very powerful. If you start over breathing too soon, it can actually blow your voice out. The sound producing anatomy or the SPA, which is what I like to call it. I was always coming up or trying to come up with something that dealt with all of the anatomy, the chest voice, the chambers of sound, everything that you're going to be learning about in this class. It's all very important and technique is very important, but I don't really want you to lose sight of the fact that your anatomy is your own anatomy. Wherever your voice is, beginning, intermediate, advanced, whatever you like to sing, your tone, your style, your character is you, and only you can command that, nobody else looks like you, sounds like you, walks like you, talks like you. Really embrace that, the character of your voice, the sound of your voice, the tone of your voice, it's unique. You don't have to be a perfect singer. But if you really believe in your story, and you believe in your tone and your expressiveness, that's half the battle. Join me in the next lesson as we go through the scales. Basically what scales are is they're warm-ups, and how to use the voice and use the techniques so when you sing your live songs, you're placed and you're not pulling or flipping. [MUSIC] 5. Practice Basic Scales: One of the things that we have to do as singers is warm-up. It's really Scary not to warm up because you're not placed when you go to record a record or when you're on stage live, if you don't know where your voice is supposed to sit, the whole show is very difficult for the singer. We really want to understand what the warm-up is, how it's important. I didn't love warming up either when I was younger, but there's a reason that we're doing it just like athletes, we have to get the fundamentals down before we sing. Scales are something that we use on the piano and we take the singer through a myriad of exercises that teach them how to use the voice to how to shift, like a high-performance car from first gear to second gear to third gear, back to second, back to first without stalling their car. We want it to be as fluid as possible. It's very important to get that seamless sound that we warm up with the exercises first, which are the scales and then we add the songs next. At this point you should have a pretty good idea of what category you fit into if you're a polar or if you're a flipper. What we're going to do now, is give examples, with the scales and the warm-ups with both of our singers. One being a polar and how to identify it and fix it and one being a flipper, how to identify it and fix it. Scale is what we use to warm up the voice and typically with any student I start down, we'll say if this is a male singer, [MUSIC] it sounds like this. [MUSIC] I'm going to play that one more time that's called a running arpeggio scale. When the singer identifies it and is able to hear it and sing it properly, it gives you a running start and so it shows all your problems and that's what we want. We want it to show the problems because that running scale moves you from chest to mix to head voice and back down. If there's a problem in the vocal, we can identify it. This is again, what it sounds [MUSIC]. We make up a half-step. [MUSIC] Then we go so on and so on until we reach the singers break. The next one that we drew is a very short scale [MUSIC] and so on and so forth. I will take them on the exercises that we need to fix. If they are polar, I'm going to give them exercises that are more breathy, more aspirin that goes against their tendency. If they're flipping, I'm going to give them something like a Gee or Go that brings the vocal cords together, so they have a little bit more closure, so that they can sing with a little more intensity and intention and not be so breathy. I'm going to start by identifying the polar and the flipper in the arpeggio scale. This is how we would typically start a lesson and get a singer moving. Ethan, I'm going to start with you, we're going to start in the male key here. I'm going do it once. [MUSIC]. The reason that we do the arpeggio scale just to remind you, is because it shows all your weaknesses. Ethan's got it and we're going to start down here. [MUSIC] Excellent. [MUSIC] We're approaching that bridge. [MUSIC] He's flipping on the bridge now. [MUSIC] Give me one more. [MUSIC] You notice what he's doing when he gets up a little bit higher is the shoulders are going, it's that feeling of " no something is changing in my voice and I don't know how to control it." We use the arpeggio scale to identify that his voice started a little heavier and then it got a little lighter as we got to the top. If I'm really being specific, we have a dual personality here. We have a polar and a flipper. Ethan's actually a really good example of doing two things at once. He is pulling the TA muscles a little bit, but he's also using a little bit too much air at the top of his register. What I want to do is move to Casey. We're going to start in the female octave, [MUSIC] so I've got to move up a little bit. I want to identify, what's going on with more of a heavier pool where somebody's using a little bit too much muscle. We're going to take the arpeggio again, because you typically have more weight. I'm going to give you an aspirin exercise, which will be the Wee, it's got more air in it to create more airflow, so it's not so hard. Here we go. We. [MUSIC]. Good. [MUSIC] Awesome. [MUSIC] Good job. [MUSIC] It's getting higher. [MUSIC] It's getting a little bit higher. [MUSIC] Here we go. [MUSIC] Good job. [MUSIC] Give me one more. [MUSIC] Good. You'll hear a little cracks in the voice. That's good. I tell all my singers the cracking and being a little bit pitchy with the vocal cords when you're warming the voice up is a good thing. When you're trying to control every single note, nothing good is happening. The vocal cords are like muscles, like stretching. They have to warm up before you engage, so I encourage my students to do that. Not everything has to be perfect, especially in the warm-up, that's where we get to show all the mistakes. If you see what Casey did, she went all the way up the scale, but because I gave her a breathy exercise like a Wee, she didn't grab and she didn't pull and she actually did really well and she made it all the way up to those high notes. If you're a male singer, you're going to start with the arpeggio scaling, I'm going to help walk you through it. We're going to go to the bottom. We're going to start in the male octave down here. What you're going to do is if you fall into the category of being a flipper, then we're going to do exercises that are opposite of that. If you have too much air in your voice, you're going to do something a little harder, what we call Glottal. I like to usually, typically start with a Gee, so it's not breathy. It's [MUSIC]. You try it with me. [MUSIC] Then we're going to go half step, same thing [MUSIC]. We're going to go half-step higher. [MUSIC] One more. [MUSIC] Now, Give me one more. [MUSIC] You should have noticed if you were male singer that you have a problem there. That's the bridge, the F, F-sharp, 99 percent of all male singers have a problem on the F, the F sharp, that's where they do one of two things. Again, we talk about they're either too much muscle or too much air. If you have too much air in the voice, you'll feel it's heavier. [MUSIC]. You'll feel that as opposed to [MUSIC]. The gee will help you bring the vocal cords together a little bit in more function. Now, the other thing that you can do, shorten the scale. We're going to run through the short arpeggio. It's just a shorter way to deal with the scale. It's actually harder to do than the running arpeggio, but I'm going to show you what that looks like. If you have too much air in the voice, a really good exercise for you to do too, is above. It's very neutral, it's not too breathy and it's not too chesty or pulley if you will for lack of a better term. I'm going to walk you through it. I'm going to start [MUSIC]. Now, you go. [MUSIC] We're going to go up a half step. I'm going to go [MUSIC]. Now, you go [MUSIC]. We're going to go up a half step. [MUSIC]. Now, you go [MUSIC]. Another half step. [MUSIC]. You go. [MUSIC] One more. [MUSIC] Now, you go. [MUSIC] And Just start with that. You'll start to feel the strength in your voice and you'll get rid of some of that air that's escaping through the vocal cords. If you are a male singer as well and you have the opposite tendency. You're not singing with too much air, but rather you have way too much muscle in the voice and you're pulling up the chest voice, we're going to start a little bit higher. We want to get to the bridge, the F, F sharp where you really feel the problem. I'm going to demonstrate that with an exercise that gives you a little bit more air in the voice. We're going to go back to the Wee because it's very aspirin. You'll go [MUSIC] now, you go [MUSIC]. Now [MUSIC] now, you go, [MUSIC] now, you go [MUSIC] now, you go. [MUSIC]. We're going to do one more here we go. [MUSIC]. Now, you go. [MUSIC]. You'll find that that's the F, that's right where the man's bridge lives and sits. Beyond that's a little trickier, but just go that far and use the Wee to add a little bit of air to your voice, so it doesn't feel so heavy and so pulled and so much tension in the neck and that's the best way to approach that at home. Now, we're going to switch gears and we're going to move into the female voice. I'm going to move up a little because we have to start up the higher octave [MUSIC] for the female ear, so if you're a female singer, this is too low [MUSIC]. Sounds a little bit more [MUSIC] right for you in that key. What we're going to do is we're going to go up the same scale. [MUSIC] But we're going to deal with the female flipper. We're going to do a Go, [MUSIC]. Do you hear the hardness of that G? It's [NOISE] that gets your vocal cords together if you have too much air [MUSIC]. Now, it's your turn. [MUSIC]. Now, I'm going to demonstrate [MUSIC]. Now, it's your turn. [MUSIC] Now, I'm going to demonstrate. [MUSIC]. Let's keep going [MUSIC]. That's really past the bridge. A woman's bridge, again as an A to a B flat, I've taken you all the way up to a B. What that G does is it just gives you a little bit more cord closure, so the vocal cords are shut a little bit more, so you can feel the air leaving and you can feel the chest voice coming in a little harder. We're going to go back to the female voice now. We're going to deal with a polar. That's again, when you have too much muscle in the voice and you're just grabbing at everything and everything feels loud. We want to pull that back. We want to add an exercise. It's a little bit more neutral. We're going to go back to the Wees where we come in and you sing, [MUSIC]. You can already hear there's more air in the voice, it's more soft. It's not as hard and grabs. We're going to take that and you're going to follow along. [MUSIC] Now, you go. [MUSIC] Now, you go. [MUSIC] Now, you go [MUSIC]. Let's do one more [MUSIC]. Now, you go [MUSIC]. You're on the bridge again. For female, you're on that B-flat. That's the note where you're going to do one of two things you're going to pull or you're going to flip. You're going to have too much air, too much muscle. That's going to show you, you've got to the top of the bridge. The wee is going to help you have more air and the voice and more flow. It's not hard and it's not heavy again, going against your tendency. What I'd like you to do at home is practice some of those scales. Learn the running arpeggio scale. See if you can sing that on key and then practice the other smaller scale, which is a little bit shorter and see if you can help encourage whatever your tendency is, if you can go against that tendency. In this next lesson, we're going to talk about Lip Bubbles and why they're so important. [MUSIC] 6. Roll Your Lips: Two of the most basic exercises that most of us do as teachers is called the lip bubble and straw phonation. One of the reasons that the lip bubble is so important is because it disengages all the neck muscles, the TA muscles, the larynx, everything is relaxed and the only thing that's moving and vibrating in that moment when you do a lip bubble is the vocal cords. Guess what? That's exactly what we want to happen. If you put your hands here and just go [NOISE]. Try that at home. [NOISE] Now I want you to go a little bit higher. [NOISE] Try it at home. [NOISE] Notice where the sound is moving. In my body and in most people's bodies, the sound moves from here, here to here to here. It's moving up in your face. So all you can do is feel the sound and the resonance in your face. That's what we want to accomplish. Now that we've talked about the lip bubble, we're going to use an example with Casey and show you how this is done and what it looks like and sounds like and feels like. Casey, I'm going to start you a little higher. I'm going to have you grab your fingers and gently pull your cheeks up. We're going to do the running arpeggio. What that's going to do is not only give her an exercise to feel all the neck muscles relaxing and only the vocal chords moving and phonating, it's also training her ear at the same time. We're killing two birds with one stone. Here we go. [NOISE] Good. [NOISE] Awesome, keep going. [NOISE] Very good. [NOISE] Give me one more. [NOISE] Give me one more. Listen to how easy that is for her. It sounds easy. It feels easy. There's no tension in the neck. So that's exactly what we want to do is singers is get rid of the tension. If you can make a sound on that type of scale on the running arpeggio, that's half the battle and that's why I like to start with these. What did you feel when you did that? When we first started doing them, I always felt this tingling itchy tiny thing in my nose because of the vibrations. Because that's where you're supposed to feel it. But I've done them for so long. As I continue to do them, you either don't feel it or it's just not there anymore. I don't know the difference. But when you first do it, it's how you know that it's the spot. Yeah, you're in the right place. You're singing from what's called your mask, instead of all the intrinsic muscles in the neck which we're trying to actually just get away from. That's why we like the lip bubble. We're going to pick it up with Ethan here. We're going to do the lip bubble as well. One of the things that we do in the lip bubble is we pull the cheeks up as you saw us do with Casey. The reason for this is it makes the lips move. A lot of us can't do that out the gate, our lips won't move, they won't go anywhere. Typically the sound stops and so they can't get through the exercise. When you rub your cheeks and you pull them up like this, it just keeps the lips moving so that you can finish the scale. Let's try that. Ethan, Here we go. [NOISE] Perfect. [NOISE] Love it. [NOISE] Keep going. Give me one more. I lied. Again, give you one more. Now you hear how easy that sounds for him and how smooth the vocal is. We love that. There was a little issue in being a teacher, I have to address it. You're not quite getting up to that pitch. What I want you to do is give it a little bit more function. You can push one foot into the floor. [MUSIC] Make sure you get up there. [NOISE] He did it. That was amazing. When you push into the floor and you would take the tension off the neck and you put it into the quad muscle or body part that can handle that, all of a sudden the vocal cords function properly instead of the neck tensing up. Its magic. I want you again to try this at home. It's really important for you to experience this because I always tell singers, it's not about demonstrating as a teacher. It's about giving singers tools so that they can feel the sensations they need to feel on their own. If you're a male singer and you're doing a lip bubble, we're going to start you down in the mail octave. But what I want you to understand about it is why it's so important. It doesn't allow you to use any of the neck muscles at all. It just has the vocal chords moving for you and that's the function we want as singers. Again, not only can you deal with an ear training exercise, but you can deal with the anatomy moving the way that we want it to move. I'm going to start the male singer down here and I'm going to do it once myself. Then I want you to follow. [MUSIC] Now, it's your turn. [MUSIC] Your turn. That's just giving you a little introduction. That's again the F, that's the man's bridge. You'll find that whether you're a pole or a flipper, it doesn't matter with these exercises because it's not letting you engage anything in the neck. You'll feel that really nice, smooth vocal. We're going to move to the female singer. I want you to go ahead and take your hands and place them here. Again, [NOISE] just get the lips moving. We're going to add that arpeggio scale. I'm going to do it once and then you're going to do it after me. [NOISE] Now it's your turn. [MUSIC] Again, you're going to feel the ease and that sensation of ease when you sing, you're not going to feel any neck tension. That's why again, we love the lip bubble. Join me in the next lesson to talk about straw phonation. 7. Smooth Your Vocals: In this lesson, we're going to talk about straw phonation and why it's so amazing. It really just helps you only use the vocal cords, which is what we're trying to do. It taps out all the muscles in the neck. The TA muscles, the larynx, none of those muscles are working and moving. Only the vocal cords are the only muscle that's resonating and phonating and that's the outcome that we're looking for. This little contraption here is just a bottle of water and a straw. Usually I like straws that bend. They have metal ones, not a huge fan. I like things that are pliable and malleable. But what this does is it compresses the voice from the very get-go. When you're in the studio, if you were to sing on a mic and you sang something too loud, your producer would compress that vocal. Well, what this does is it doesn't again, like the lip bubble allow you to use the neck muscles, the TA muscles, or the larynx or anything else in the neck to sing. The only thing that vibrates and resonates are the vocal cords. That's how we strengthen them. It's isolating the muscle that's meant to work and getting the muscles that are not supposed to help out to tap out. Again, it's like doing the sit up, when you're not using your neck and your back to get you up, you're only using your abs and your core. I'm going to demonstrate what this looks like, and it's fun because you get to blow bubbles like you did when you were a little kid. I'm going to do this acapella. I'm going to start here from A. I'm just going to do [NOISE]. It's fun. I love this part. What it does is I can feel it's massaging my vocal cords and it's making them work without any tension in the neck. Casey, we're going to try this with you now, we're going to go all the way up. Here we go, water and straw. [NOISE] Awesome. [NOISE] Give me one more. Now one of the cool things about this is that Casey is already on an F. This is way above her first bridge and you're not feeling any tension, right? Nothing at all. What does it feel like when you're making sound through the straw? It feels super light, like you feel nothing here, which is exactly the point. You feel like a little bit of vibration up here in your mask. But you feel, like you were saying, like the massaging aspect, you just feel it. There's no tension. Yeah. Just the vocal cords are moving. Totally. What we can do later at some point too, is you'll take this and blow the melody of one of your songs into the water and straw and you'll be placed immediately. I want to try the male now. We're going to come down a little bit further. Ethan, here we go, try it. [NOISE] Awesome. [NOISE] Give me one more. [NOISE] I have to point this out. Ethan's on a high A right now where he was struggling a little earlier about right here. This is where he is [NOISE] with the straw. This is his first bridge [NOISE] this is where he is [NOISE]. You hear how much higher that is? Way higher in pitch. How did it feel? Relaxing. Yeah. No tension. My only focus was to get oxygen and then hit the pitch exactly without worrying about any of these muscles. Exactly, I love that. Okay, so now that we've done the straw and the water, what I want to do is demonstrate how easy this is to do in a song. Casey, we're going to take the song Impossible and you're going to just sing a little piece of it for us. You're going to sing it once, and there'll be a little struggle because it's fresh. Then I want you to blow into the water and straw. Then we're going to sing it again and we're going to see if we hear a difference. Cool. Let's just sing it out the gate. [MUSIC]. You hear where she's a little cold now, that's why you have to keep warming up, guys as singers, there's a little bit of a struggle. Now let's replace you, blow it into the water and straw. [NOISE] Where do you feel the sound? Up here. As opposed to where it was here earlier. Blow it one more time. [NOISE] Now, please sing the lyric and put the song there. [MUSIC] She's in her phase. Can you hear that? Can you feel that? One hundred percent. It doesn't hurt, it's not strained. No, it just immediately goes straight there. Exactly, and so you're just talking on pitch instead of singing and overworking. You're working smart, not hard. I want you to practice that at home. I want you to use your straw and your water, and I want you to blow into the straw and water the melody of the song, probably the chorus because it's the most high. Just do it 2, 3, 4 times until you start feeling the vocal cords balance and smooth out. Then start singing the lyrics and you'll find that it's going to change the voice incredibly and it's just going to make all those muscles that are tense and tired tap out really quickly and that's what we want. Try that at home, the next thing I want to move into is creating your own singing practice and what that looks like. But before we get into that, I want to thank Casey and Ethan for coming today. Thank you for being so brave and joining us. Of course. Thank you for having us. [MUSIC] 8. Create Your Singing Practice: [MUSIC] In this lesson, we're really going to figure out how to create your singing practice. Remember that the vocal cords are a muscle and they have to be carefully trained in a way so that they can function properly. Hopefully, at this point, you've been able to identify whether you are polar or flipper. We use the exercise as the lip bubble, the arpeggio scale, and the straw phonation to help you move smoothly through those problems. What I want you to do at home is find out now that you've identified polar or flipper, use the exercises that we identified for your specific tendency, whether they're the wheeze or the gags, you're going to figure that out on your own. You're also going to take the water and straw and the lip bubbles and continue on with those. As you get stronger each day, you can add more time. The first day maybe five minutes, the next day maybe 10 minutes. Then what I'd like you to do is move to your song. Once you get the song, make sure you use the straw on the water, blow the melody into the straw on the water, find out where your voice is supposed to be placed. You can actually feel it in the body. Keep doing that and then attack your song from top to bottom and see if you can make it through the whole thing. Once you've been doing the practice every day and you've built up from, say, maybe five minutes to 20 minutes, I'd like you to try to fit that into your schedule once a day, once every other day, and sing through a song, maybe 45 minutes. Once you're starting that practice at home, you may want to pick other songs, 45 minutes is a long time to be singing one song. As you get comfortable with the first song, maybe choose another song that you'd like to sing or something you'd like to tackle and go back and start from the top again. Warm-up, use the water and straw, the lip bubbles to sing on the melody of that song, the courses are a little harder to attack, and get comfortable with that and sing that song through top-to-bottom. If you don't have 45 minutes to sing, do what you can, warm-up for five or 10 minutes, then practice a song for another 10 or 15 minutes. Just make this a daily practice so that you're getting something in and you're constantly building. Because just like working out, you need 20 minutes to get your heart rate up, you need that 20 minutes to really build the muscle and strengthen it on a daily basis. Just like working out in the gym, singing is similar where you want to take some time off because the muscle is building and building and getting stronger, but it also needs some rehabilitative time. It needs a day or so in-between where you do vocal rest. I would encourage you to do the singing and do the practice a few days, but then take a day off. Let your voice bounce back, let your body bounce back, just like you would do at the gym because you'll come back much stronger. One of the things that I constantly talk about to my singers in my career is taking care of their voices. You need to take care of your voice. You need to understand that it's in your body and it's very delicate. The vocal cords are very strong when used correctly, but they can also become very weak when used incorrectly. I come across a lot of damage on a daily basis from swelling of the vocal cords or people have allergies or they have nodules or polyps, or just wear and tear. It's very important that you understand what's going on with your voice on a daily basis. If you're singing and you couldn't get through the scales that we demonstrated or your voice cuts out after two or three nodes, that's a red flag that something bigger is going on. By the way, you don't have to just be a singer to have vocal damage, you can also damage your voice by being a salesperson, being on the phone too long, talking with vocal fry all the time. I want you to really take that seriously and check that out. I want to leave you with some words of encouragement through a very quick story that I cannot get out of my head. I remember working on a TV show and I never could get my lead actor to come in. I had a whole cast of characters, everybody came in and sang, but my lead male was just dragging his feet. I couldn't understand why he wouldn't come in. Finally we got them in, we had to go through a bunch of music for the show. He comes in, I ran through some of the scales and he actually had quite a nice voice. I didn't know if he could sing or not. I gave him a compliment on his vocal and I watched him turn his back to me and I started seeing his shoulders go and I thought, oh my gosh, he's crying. What I learned from that moment was that he didn't want to come in because he was afraid of that happening in front of me, so that's why he was stalling. He'd had a parent and someone in his life as you tell him that he couldn't sing and he never forgot that moment and it was a traumatized moment for him. When we got through the fear of that and I actually told him he had a nice voice, he got to put that away and he started his singing journey. I want to encourage you that it's not just you, it happens to everyone. If you're feeling that way, then you have a nice story that shows you that you're not alone. Anybody can do this, but everybody is fearful. That particular client went on to get rid of the fear. He took the compliment and he ran with it and he was able to sing every day, do his warm-ups, he started getting better and better and better. Everything became more simple for him and he really started to enjoy the process of shooting a show that required singing. So I really encourage you to do that on a daily basis and grow your craft. I want to thank you for sticking with it so far and the work that you've put in. Even though I can't hear you saying I wish I could. I really want to encourage you to continue on. Join me in the next lesson to figure out what your next steps could be. [MUSIC] 9. Take the Next Step: As a singer, there's all kinds of directions that you can take. There's not one right path or wrong path. But one of the things that I often tell my singers is really commit to the process and not be attached to an outcome. Because as a singer, whether you're beginning or you're huge star, oftentimes, the idea wrapped around that is not to be worried about what's going to happen at the end and not having any anxiety attached to what's going to happen at the end, what's going to happen to your career and how good are you going to sing, how good are you going to be? It's really just being committed to your process and taking it step-by-step and day by day. One of the things that I would encourage you to do on this journey, if you want to take it a little further, I would really encourage you to find a vocal coach. If you do start on that path, make sure there's a few things that you really want to consider. When you're trying to find a vocal coach, having a big roster of clients or celebrity clients, funny enough, it doesn't always mean they're an experienced amazing teacher. There's a myriad of reasons why people go into voice coaching, but there's no certification process. Even a massage therapist has to have 600 hours on a person, on a body before they're allowed to get a certificate or a license. We don't have that in the vocal community. I really would encourage you to check out your teacher very carefully. find out who they've trained. Really make sure you do your homework. You always have to make sure that your teacher is a vocal teacher. A vocal teacher or a voice teacher is someone that understands anatomy. They probably have worked with an ear, nose, and throat doctor before, or maybe they've worked with many and they really have a vast knowledge of the anatomy and the anatomical ways that a singer has to sing and perform. One of the great things we have today's technology. We can do lessons on FaceTime or Zoom. We have these ways of teaching clients through the computer. It's quite clear, and if the client and the teacher has a nice setup, it does feel like you're in that personal experience and in that room with them. It's quite awesome. My recommendation, just starting out as a 30-minute lesson. A lot of teachers do hours, but sometimes it's diminished returns because as a beginner singer, that's a long time for you to be singing, going through scales and warm-ups and technique and singing songs. I like to start with 30 minutes just to diagnose the singer, get an idea of what you need, what's working, what isn't and why and maybe run through parts of the song so that you don't feel overwhelmed in that lesson and you're not over singing while you're still trying to strengthen those muscles. The average cost of a vocal lesson, depending where you live, can be as low as $50 a half an hour. But typically because of the clients that I work with and being in LA, it is a little elevated, so I'm lower than some and not as high as most. You're going to pay for a celebrity vocal coach with a great track record, anywhere between $200 an hour up to $700 an hour. If you resonate with me and with my style, I have two amazing associate teachers that work with me and work with a lot of my clients too. We're always accepting new clients. I never want to turn anybody away. It's why I created a associate program. I definitely understand that that is a cost commitment and not everybody wants to commit that. You may not want to pay those rates and I totally understand that. But what you can do outside of that is join a local singing community, maybe join a choir. There's musical theater programs. There's all kinds of programs that you can do something in a group. Sometimes you have to be very careful with warm ups in those groups because you can have your own tendency and you don't want to be doing the same warmups. But you usually can find somebody who gravitates towards somebody in that community. They can start to steer you in the right direction vocally. Some people just want to sing for fun in their home in their shower, but there are other people that might want to go, maybe you want to go a little bit further with this. What I want to talk to you now about is the music industry and what artists have to go through on a daily basis to be a star. [MUSIC] 10. Get to Know the Music Industry: [MUSIC] In the music industry, there's definitely a love-hate relationship and I'm going to break down what those two are. Let's talk about what people love about being in the music business. They love the writing process, they love seeing their songs come to fruition, of course, they love hearing the feedback or the fans in real-time, they love hearing a song on the radio. That's super exciting for me whenever my clients are on the radio and I'm like, oh, this station, here's another artist. That's exciting for us as musicians. They also love just the joy of communicating with fans and telling their stories on a daily basis, so all of that is very, very joyful for the artist in a good way. One of the misnomers about the music industry always being so glamorous is actually it's not glamorous, it's actually a very, very difficult lifestyle. The hate part is really the touring becomes monotonous. You have to do the same show, you have to be on every night. You have to worry about your voice and your vocals and losing your voice. You've got meet and greets where you talk to your fans. There's a lot of wear and tear on the body and it becomes very, very difficult to be on every night when you're just tired and sometimes you just want to go home, so it's not all it's cracked up to be. There's a lot of rehearsing and there's a lot of things that happen externally where these artists are working 24/7 and so that's really the hate part of the business. One of the things that's interesting about this business too looking from the outside in, is watching the struggle that these artists have to go through. There's always a struggle, there's never a good moment because you're either always struggling to make it, make the next dollar, make the next record, have another hit song, make more money, pay the label back. There's all these pressures and then the other side of that is that once you've actually made it as a singer, there's pressures to stay on top. There's pressures to pay more people. There's pressures to not fall off the track. There's pressures to sing and to stay relevant. No matter where you are as an artist in this industry, there's always a struggle. People always think that artists have all this money and they have all this fame and what a glamorous lifestyle. The money part of it is really difficult because when you're an artist, you typically sign to a small label, a large label. You have these deals with the label where they fund you all this money just to get your wardrobe and your music video done and maybe produce a record or try to fund tour. Oftentimes you don't see that money back for a very long time. They could fund you 300,000 to half a million dollars. Because you're not really selling records anymore, you're not making a lot of money from streaming. You're really relying on the live element, the touring element, so oftentimes these artists, it could be years before they see any money because they owe the label all this money that they have fronted to them on the front end of their career. One of the biggest secrets to being a successful artist is really loving the rigors of tour. You really have to want it. You have to love being on a bus. You have to love the excitement of being on the road, even when you're tired and even when you have done five cities and 15 or 20 shows, you really have to love that part of the business because I do have clients that love the lifestyle. But the touring can get a little monotonous for them and when they're on tour, sometimes they just want to come home and they want to rest. If you're going to be an artist, that's got to be a part of it that is really exciting for you. One of the things that's interesting about getting into the music industry today with all the social media, is that you really have to do a lot of your own work. I used to have a manager or a label do it for you and you'd show up. Now, the singer really has to put a lot of effort into marketing themselves, and so typically a label won't take you on because they just don't have the money they used to have. They won't take you on unless you have a built-in platform. The method to the madness is TikTok and Instagram. But oftentimes, unless you have hundreds of thousands of followers in a built-in platform, the labels will shy away. I had a client that had a very interesting story, very cool voice, she has some really good solid songs. There was a bidding war for her and when all three of the labels found out she had no social media presence, they dropped her. The realities of building a career today really does include social media and you really have to work very, very hard at building a platform, so it's not about just singing anymore. You really have to be a business person and you have to be your own personal manager. You have to love doing that. You have to love creating, and you have to love posting or making TikToks and getting out your music to the masses. That's a really important part of being an artist today. There's so many things that goes on behind the curtain in the music business from getting an attorney, building your team, finding a manager, managing your own career. There's a lot that really goes into that, but there's a lot of information online that you can find about those process. A record label, if you want to go with a big record label, maybe you want to be a big fish in a smaller sea, so people will go with an independent label. Nowadays people are so involved in their careers that they're really starting their careers on their own with platforms and social media, so that's very important to know starting out. A big piece of advice that I'd give you going into this is really again, be committed to your process. Don't be attached to an outcome. Because the second you do that, you're chasing yourself as a singer and as an artist. If you love what you do, if you like to write songs, find somebody that can write with you, write together. Find out what your creative process is and really just be in that process on a daily basis, you will succeed doing that. But if you're always worried about, will I be a star? Do I have enough followers? If you're really focused on the outcome of your career, you're not going to enjoy the moment and you're going to miss it and you probably won't get out of that lifestyle of what you need. You'll definitely get what you need if you just put one foot in front of each other, do the work, do the practicing, do the warming up, being the moment day to day, and don't worry about what's going to happen tomorrow or next year, let the universe take care of that. You just take care of yourself, take care of your voice, take care of your health, and have a really good time doing it and you'll be successful. In our next lesson, we're going to invite in the incredible Bishop Briggs. She's going to talk about her journey as an artist. [MUSIC] 11. Reach for the Stars: Bishop Briggs: [MUSIC] Today we have something really special in store for you. In studio, we have the incredible Bishop Briggs joining us. In a little bit we're going to get to ask her questions and talk about her career, what got her started, where she is now and her music history. In 2016, her single River went viral on Spotify. In 2018, she released her debut album, Church of Scars, and just a year later released her second album, Champion. She sold out multiple headlining shows. She's done Lollapalooza and Coachella. She's also performed in American Idol and she's been featured on The Tonight Show starring Jimmy Fallon. Bishop is not only an amazing singer songwriter, I also consider her a friend. She's a client. We want to welcome you to the studio today. Thank you so much for joining us. Thank you so much. It's so incredible to have you here. Thank you for saying such kind things. It's such an honor to be here. I feel like you have such big pipes as a singer. Often people will describe you as having this big, huge voice and you do a fair amount of screaming in your set as well. So that takes a lot of energy. It takes a lot of muscle. It's high octane. Yes. I think one of the biggest things that I remember working on out the gate was this mixed voice. Yes. This idea of mixed voice so that you're not pulling up from the chest. We talked in this class about pullers and flippers and those categories. You would have fallen into that category of being a puller, bringing too much weight to the vocal. Pretty much what our session was was a huge therapy experience because you're really trying to undo habits that you've done vocally your entire [LAUGHTER] life. Especially when I met someone like you, you really hone in on mixing that soul and that texture of the person's voice with skill. Making sure they're not straining, making sure that they have longevity when touring, so it definitely was a game changer meeting you. Something you introduced me to was just the tightness in my throat and in my jaw. I would tense up to reach the node and then I would widen the vowel and be trying so hard [LAUGHTER], drenched in sweat. When I met you, it was just a world of difference. That mixed voice that you were able to attain through your own music, especially on some of these high choruses, where you realize when you're singing live, you're singing with currency in balance instead of singing with volume and having to scream at everybody. But it's [OVERLAPPING] how you are able to withstand the career and go night after night after night. Yes. That was the big thing was the longevity and that's always been a huge goal of mine. With your experience and your crazy client list, the thing I've noticed is there is a longevity to the people that work with you. There are touring musicians currently, and that is something really important to me. What's the music that you create and how do you create it? What is your process? Well, I grew up listening to a lot of Motown music, a lot of Aretha Franklin, Otis Redding, Etta James and so I feel like that has really made its way into my writing process and just the music I'm drawn to. I also love Alabama Shakes. So I would say that I fit in this world of alternative and pop. Those gives you the fundamentals because I always go back to my clients that loved the classics. I find that artists that have that foundation, usually typically are just better writers and better musicians as a whole. I think also with anyone you listen to growing up, it does find its way into your spirit. I think my favorite thing about those types of artists too, was also their writing style. It felt so direct and there was no hiding. There's no hiding. There's no hiding. That's a big one. I love that. What do you love most about singing? Well, I'm sure you can relate to this, but I just feel the most alive, the most present in my body that I can be. I think on a daily basis when we see people and they say I'm fine. Who knows if you're feeling fine? There's something about being on stage and performing and actually even living room. I've done a lot of living room performances where I've just been alone. Even doing that, it does something for my soul. It makes me feel very present. We were talking about that earlier in the class where it's very cathartic. Yes. Why do people sing? Because maybe they are too afraid to go to a therapy and uncover something. They don't want to spend days, weeks, hours, months, years on, but they can get it out in a song. Yes. It's really interesting because that's a very common place for a singer. I don't know enough about chakras. I really don't. But I think there is something with the throat chakra, the third eye, the heart. There's something that we're igniting when we are singing that I feel like taps into those things. I could be wrong. Happiness, a memory, a thought of a song remembering where you were as a child. Yes. All of that for me personally, as an artist, as a person that used to perform all the time, but sings now every day with my students, so I love that. How did you get into the music industry? I have always been doing music. I don't know when the industry section of it really came in, but I was performing for many years just at anything I could. You name it, I probably have performed at. I was just remembering that there day I performed at a all male open mic night. Awesome. For some reason. [LAUGHTER] Believe it or not, it actually was a successful night because I stood out a bit. Of coarse. But when I graduated high school, I was living in Hong Kong and came to LA and I would say that's when my journey officially started. We talked in this class about this being a love-hate relationship. What do you love about being a recording artist? My favorite part and the thing I love so much about being a recording artist is I love building a choir with my voice. [LAUGHTER] I love that. The stacking? Are we talking about stacking? Yes. That's something very fun. For people that don't know what stacking is. Yes. It's basically creating every harmony you can think of, even ones that you think will sound terrible you try and find a way for it to fit. Then when you take a step back from the recording, you have this full choir. In that process you can have other people that are there join and do a gang vocal. Then you can sometimes do different versions of your own voice. But I think my favorite part about being a recording artist is that I get the ability to put my words into songs and have those live on. Maybe one day I can play them for my cats. [LAUGHTER] It's a cool thing. What struggles would you say you've encountered being an artist? Well, I came up before the MeToo movement, so I feel like I really have a taste of both worlds. I think there's still so many things that need to be fixed in that realm of equality, even something like having more female engineers and just more job opportunities for women on tour and women in festivals. It's still not where it should be. But I really feel like there is progress being made on that front. But I think the part that has been most difficult has been being taken advantage of with people that I've worked with or having situations where someone wants to take away your creative rights. A lot of the intricacies that come with that. At one point I think the dream of all of this became bigger than my voice in the room. That's definitely something that I've shifted and changed. But I'm curious if it is something that maybe even people in other industries can relate to as well. [OVERLAPPING] I think they can. I think that being a woman in business, anybody can relate to that. Where do you fit and where are the equal rights? Where do I get to keep my intellectual property and not have somebody steal it or take it away from me or not get paid as much? There's all those factors. If somebody in this class is watching and they want to know how to get started or what to do, how would you guide them? Well, I first think your bedroom is the place that you need to be. You can right there, you can even record. You can get garage band on your phone and start writing. That's where you can find what feels good when you're singing. You can find out more about, what do you want your bigger purpose in this world to be? Because I think that leads to longevity too. For me my bigger purpose is I want people to hear my music and feel less alone by hearing it. That's really the driving force. If I was tired on tour, it doesn't matter. I have a bigger goal than all this. It's bigger than you? Yes. It's always bigger than you. I think starting in your bedroom, that is everything. Then from there, venture out and do these weird open mics. [LAUGHTER] Then another huge thing that I really enjoyed was writing with friends. It took away pressure. It was just part of our hanging out. I think making it part of your weekly routine. Make it a special thing that you're consistently doing. I loved that. I want to know what's going on with you now and for the future. Can we talk a little bit about what music you have coming out. Yes. What you're doing right now. Yes. I just released two new songs. One is called High Water, and one is called Art of Survival. I'm hoping to release even more music, but that definitely represents what happened these past few years, where I've been, where I'm trying to go. I hope that people feel my soul when they listen to it. I love that. Well, we look forward to hearing all of it. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. You're going to help me sing them live. I'm going to help you sing them live. [LAUGHTER] Don't worry, I got you. [inaudible]. Gosh. Bishop, thank you so much for joining us. This was big. It's a big treat for anybody watching this class. It has been a treat for me and we really appreciate your time today. Thank you. I love you. I love you too. You're the best. Truly the best. Thank you so much for having me. [MUSIC] 12. Final Thoughts: [MUSIC] You've reached the end of this class and I really hope that I did my job and gave you the basics of what you need just to be a singer and if you want to go further, actually become an artist. I really want you to continue working on your singing practice. The more you do it the more you'll love it. I really want to give you some words of encouragement and let you know that no matter what you're doing in life, don't ever let somebody tell you you can't do something. I've always been so surprised by clients that didn't think they were good and they ended up recording and writing and so please continue on with the skills, the tools, the practicing, and don't stop because that's your creative process. There's only one you, there's only one voice that sounds like you and it's very special and we want to hear it. No matter where you are in this process, if you're still struggling or if you've found a song that you love and you think is pretty good, just go ahead and record it and upload it to our project gallery so that we can listen to it and look at it and all share as a community and give you some feedback. We've come to the end but I loved having you with me. So thank you so much for joining us today in my studio.