Is Youtube a Replacement for a Vocal Coach?
By Chris Glyde
We live in a world where you can get a lot of information, completely free, online (usually via YouTube or google). Many people insist that you can get any information you need on the internet for free. Now, I disagree with this statement, but for a second let’s pretend this is real. If this statement is correct and you can get all the information you need from the internet, do you still need a vocal coach?
We can start off with an obvious question: is the only thing you’re getting from a vocal coach information?
The answer, if you take time to think about it, is obviously no. You get so much more than just information. Let’s talk about the most obvious element of the coaching that isn’t present online. Support. When you’re in front of a vocal coach their job is to make sure you’re doing all the exercises exactly as needed. Oftentimes there are small mistakes that you can make that can damage the results you’ll get because you aren’t aware of them.
Application. The second step that’s useful is using all of the technical elements you’re learning together. Often you’ll get one exercise from one teacher on YouTube and another technique from another user, or the same person but on a different video. The problem with this is you don’t see these techniques as they’re applied at the same time. You also might not see how these techniques are applied to an actual song. With a vocal coach working with you in-person you can see them demonstrate these techniques in an applied setting, be it over exercises or with a real song.
Another thing to consider, which is related is to the application strategy, is that by going onto YouTube and looking for vocal advice online (outside of interactive apps such as Skype, which we’re not considering in this discussion) you will get different tactics from a bunch of different vocal coaches. These tactics may all work in each coach’s specific strategy, but that doesn’t mean that it works with everything else. This is why you’ll often find contradictory information online in just about anything you look up. All the information works, but it works within a specific context. If you try mixing strategies, you won’t get the desired effect. It’s important that when you learn voice you use the right tactics for the right strategies.
Another important aspect of vocal training is that working with a vocal coach will keep you motivated to work on the things you don’t want to work on. They’ll hold you accountable. This could vary from learning how to write great lyrics (if you desire to write music), learn how to sing within rhythm, learn to count, develop proper ear training, etc. The typical vocal student doesn’t want to work on most of these consistently. Being in front of a vocal coach would make sure you get this done. This is critical if you desire to be a great singer, or even to be competent in many cases. If you just desire to sing really loudly, but out of time and key then, by all means, don’t get a vocal coach!
We could go into even more detail about other advantages to having a vocal coach to work with, but the bottom line is that I have never met a single vocalist who was great that taught themselves. Many of you may be thinking of several singers who’ve never had vocal training and sing well. This is not the group of singers I’m talking about and there is a reason why this group of singers exist (which is a subject for another article). I’m talking about the people who can’t sing to begin with and have managed to train their voice from being unable to sing to becoming a great singer. It doesn’t happen.
About the author:
Chris Glyde is a dedicated Vocal coach bent on helping everyone of his students because great singers. If you’re looking to become a great sing check out the best voice lessons in Rochester.