Ep.5: Why Singing Lessons Sometimes Don’t Work

Often we blame ourselves if we’ve taken voice lessons but still can’t sing like we want to.
Inside this video, find out why the problem may be with your teacher!

Even more often, since we don’t know what is possible, we don’t know…. what is possible.

If you don’t know that you can actually sing higher, or get a stronger less breathy sound, or eliminate the crack or break, then voice lessons too often just reinforce our ignorance about our voices.

Why didn’t your past singing lessons work?

We continue not knowing what’s possible. We go to voice lessons to have our teacher tell us what is possible with our voices, what we should be able to accomplish as a singer.

If the teacher doesn’t know how to identify the specific problems in your voice and fix them, then they don’t know what’s possible with your voice and you never learn your true potential! You continue not knowing what is truly possible with your voice!

Your Singing Teacher Must Know the Problems in Your Voice

If you don’t know the problem, you don’t know the solution and the success that awaits you!

For example:

I took voice lessons in high school so I could improve my voice. I didn’t know exactly what my problems were. The fact of my voice was I couldn’t sing very high and I had no vibrato. I learned this by comparisons to my friends who could sing higher and they did have vibrato.

I didn’t know I could sing much higher than I was doing. I didn’t know I could develop vibrato.

My teacher had her masters degree in singing from a university. She recorded an album. She was a great singer. She had everything I thought I needed in a teacher.

But after 2 ½ years of voice lessons, I couldn’t sing any higher than before, and I had zero vibrato in my voice. I still didn’t know it was possible to do both!

In fairness to her, she did no harm. She helped me breath from the diaphragm and I think my confidence and tone improved somewhat.

Because I didn’t know what was possible with my voice….that I could sing higher…much higher and with vibrato…I continued believing I wasn’t capable. I continued believing that I simply wasn’t born with the abilities others had to be a really good singer.

I believed my genetics were the cause of my limitations as a singer. My lack of singing progress in my voice lessons reinforced this error in my belief about my voice.

My teacher wasn’t negligent. She wasn’t being mean by withholding important information. She actually didn’t know either.

But she didn’t know she didn’t know, so I thought there was something wrong or incomplete with me.

The Problem with Gifted Singers Who Teach Singing Lessons

This is often the problem with gifted singers who start teaching, who were born with a gift to sing. Because they’ve never had to overcome real limitations in their singing voice, they don’t know how to teach students who do have some limitations…like I did.

There was a very popular professional singer where I live who had a remarkable voice. He had been on broadway and now performed in regional professional productions. He also taught some voice lessons.

His accompanist told me his lessons were essentially telling the student to: “Do it like this”. He’d sing and would try and get the student to mimic his sound. That’s how he taught others…”Do it like I do it!” Imagine how you would feel as a student if you couldn’t make the sound the teacher was demonstrating? It reinforces your belief you can’t do it…that you are limited.

Your own voice teacher can contribute to building a false belief about your voice, that you can’t learn to sing really well!

A Degree Does not make a Good Singing Teacher

Have you had singing teachers who had university singing degrees, who knew all kinds of music and genre’s, who played the piano really well, who were fantastic singers, who were well known with great reputations but when you were done studying with them you still had the same basic problems? (And you did practice and put in the time?)

Your teacher’s’ failure reinforces your belief about your voice that you can’t do it. That you don’t have the right size vocal cords, or the right head structures, or the right lungs, or an ear for music…or whatever.

The teachers aren’t doing it on purpose, generally. It’s that they haven’t been taught, or they’re not open minded to being taught how to do it or they don’t realize there is a way to help you. Too often they are just guessing with exercises and hoping something works. If it doesn’t you feel like you’ve failed.

Obviously this is not true with every teacher. There are teachers out there who know how to help you sing higher into your head voice without cracks or breaks, with more power and beauty in your voice.
5:32: Seth Riggs studied with some of the finest singers in the world…


7 thoughts on “Ep.5: Why Singing Lessons Sometimes Don’t Work”

  1. Thank you so much! I founded me in your storry 😀 . But i learned and
    learned by myself then and still learning…

  2. Same, I found myself into the story… that’s the truth and it’s so sad.
    This “masters” make you loose your joy of singing and also your natural
    sweet voice, instead of an artificial created timbre. You are doing so well
    MR, thank you !

  3. I have been teaching privately for a little over 3 years based on my twenty
    plus years of experience and diligent research. watching your video was
    encouraging in that it’s ensured me that I am on the right track as an
    instructor. Your videos are entertaining and very informative. subscribed!

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