The Basic Level has 10 Lessons that cover all the fundamentals in preparation for your singing career. This level will give you a better understanding of learning how to sing.

The Basic Level is divided into two parts. The first part (Lessons 1 to 5), covers the fundamentals of music in general. The second part (Lessons 6 to 10), covers the fundamentals of vocal music.

It is of utmost importance that you, as a vocal music student, understand not just all the specific vocal music terms, but also all the general musical terms in order to build a strong foundation of your singing career.

The main emphasis of the Basic Level is the comparison between the musical instrument and the vocal instrument.

Upon completion of this Level, you are expected to have learned that the vocal instrument is as important as any other musical instrument. The Musician and the Vocalist play a very important role in the entire process of music production.

LESSON 1: FUNDAMENTALS OF MUSIC

Can you imagine a world without music?

 

I think the world would be dead without music. As the quote goes “It’s the soundtrack of our lives”. In other words, music is very influential in the way we feel, think, and act.

The primary objective of music is communication. Music is the most effective way to communicate. People don’t have to speak the same language to make music together.

Music is also the easiest way to retain a memory. That’s why you never forget nursery rhymes, your favourite songs, or TV advertisements that have a catchy tune. People use music to communicate in a variety of ways everyday.

The second objective of music is entertainment. Like any other art, Music is here to entertain. Music entertains us everyday. Almost everybody has a favourite song that they sing along to.

Every country has its own unique style of music. People go to concerts and stage shows to hear, see, and experience the atmosphere of musical entertainment.

LESSON 2: UNDERSTANDING MUSICAL TERMS

A very important key to master any field in music is to understand the basic musical terms.  This lesson covers  three topics:

Topic 1 teaches you the basic musical staff and the musical alphabet as well as the treble clef, the bass clef, the grand staff, leger lines, bar lines, double bar lines, the bar or measure, and the time signature.

Topic 2 covers the different kinds of musical scales such as  diatonic and chromatic scales, major and minor scales. These topics are essential for you to understand the different vocalization techniques and exercises that you will be learning the the Advanced Level.

Topic 3 takes up the importance of understanding the octaves. This particular topic is carefully selected in order to prepare yourself for the advanced lesson on how to enhance your vocal range.

Also included is a basic lesson on note reading and musical theory that will serve as the basic foundation for your singing career. It is very important that you learn how to read notes so that when you are given a song piece to sing you can easily learn the exact melody of the song.
 

LESSON 3: MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS

Instrument accompaniment is a big part of singing. Most of the time when a singer performs, he or she is accompanied by one or more musicians playing musical instruments. As a singer it is important to have basic knowledge about musical instruments even if you are not an instrumentalist.

There are several ways to divide the different types of musical instruments. For our purpose here, I shall divide them by the way they generate sound.

  • Wind instruments - generate a sound when a column of air is made to vibrate inside them.The frequency of the wave generated is related to the length of the column of air and the shape of the instrument, while the tone quality of the sound generated is affected by the construction of the instrument and method of tone production. 
     

  • Percussion instruments - create sound, with or without pitch, when struck. The shape and material of the part of the instrument to be struck and the shape of the resonating cavity, if any, determine the sound of the instrument.
     

  • String instruments - generate a sound when the string is plucked, strummed, slapped, etc. The frequency of the wave generated (and therefore the note produced) usually depends on the length of the vibrating portion of the string, its mass, the tension of each string and the point at which the string is excited; the tone quality varies with the construction of the resonating cavity.
     

  • Electronic instruments - generate sound through electronic means. They often mimic other instruments in their design, particularly keyboards.

 

LESSON 4: MUSIC PRODUCTION

Music production involves five steps:

  1. Writing

    Obviously, music has to be written first. People who do this are called Composers. They are the ones who, through their creative imagination, make possible the harmony of different notes and convert them into music.
     

  2. Arranging

    Before music is produced, it has to be arranged first. Music arrangers are the ones responsible for the harmony and blending of the different musical instruments played by different musicians in an orchestra for example.
     

  3. Rehearsing

    Each instrument arrangement is given to the corresponding musician to study and rehearse. Then all the musicians come together and with the direction of the music director and conductor, they play the arranged music.
     

  4. Producing

    This stage has four steps, namely: (1) Recording - with the assistance of recording technicians, the musicians are now ready to record the music that they have been rehearsing; (2) Editing - this is the step where the music editor scrutinizes every aspect of the music and edits the undesirable parts; (3) Mixing - this is where the mixing engineer puts together all the music backing tracks so every instrument sounds in juxtaposition with the vocals of the singer and the song can be heard by the listener in the most pleasing manner; (4) Mastering - this is the last step where the mastering expert balances everything and determines the volume intensity of the music .
     

  5. Duplication or Replication

    This is the stage when the recorded music is ready to be produced into several copies  of audio materials such as cassette tapes, CD’s, DVD’s, etc.
     

Live music production obviously needs a lot of preparation because there is no second chance. It's a “one go only” opportunity. If you make a mistake, that's it. You have no time to "redeem yourself," so to say.

Recorded music production also requires a lot of preparation to minimize studio time. However, if you make a mistake, there's nothing to worry because you can go back and re-record the same part over and over again until you make it right.

LESSON 5: THE MUSICIAN

There are four groups of musician that I want to discuss in this lesson, they are:
 

  • the music composer

  • the music arranger

  • the music conductor

  • the instrument players


These are the people that make up the music team. These are the people that make the kind of music that we listen to on the radio, or on stage during a live performance.

Each musician plays a very important role in the entire process of producing a particular music. In the actual Course, I will further explain this important role that each musician plays.

However, no matter how many musicians  team up to produce a certain kind of music, there is one more role that needs to be played to complete that music, i.e., the role of the vocalist, or the singer.

LESSON 6: FUNDAMENTALS OF VOCAL MUSIC

Sometimes, we categorize music according to the instrument being used to produce that music. In other words, we may say that the music produced by the pianist is called "piano music." the music produced by the guitarist is called "guitar music", etc.

In the same manner, the music produced by a human voice is called "vocal music." So in this instance your voice can be considered as a musical instrument. As a matter of fact, your voice is the most wonderful musical instrument you have.

In this lesson, we are going to study the fundamentals of vocal music covering the following topics:
 

  • What is Vocal Music?

  • Vocal Music in relation to instrumental music

  • The Origin of Vocal Music

  • The Development of Vocal Music

  • The Power of Vocal Music

LESSON 7: UNDERSTANDING VOCAL MUSIC TERMS

It would be a very challenging journey in your study of vocal music if you come across some terms that you don't understand. So in this lesson you are going to learn some of the relevant terms that will help you understand how your own voice can be improved and enhanced which will be discussed in the Advanced Level.

Some of the terms that you will be learning are:

  • Head Voice

  • Chest Voice

  • Middle Voice

  • False Voice

  • Nasal Voice

  • Hoarse Voice

  • Airy Voice

  • Vocal Cord

  • Cord Abduction

  • Bridges

  • Muscle Memory

  • Larynx

  • Pharynx

  •  Unwanted rasp

  • Polyps

  • Strain

  • Swollen Cords

  • Chronic hoarseness

LESSON 8: THE VOCAL INSTRUMENT

The human voice, is an instrument in its own right. A singer generates sounds when airflow from the lungs sets the vocal cords into oscillation. The fundamental frequency is controlled by the tension of the vocal cords and the tone quality by the formation of the vocal tract; a wide range of sounds can be created.

In this lesson we are going to cover the following topics:

  • Your voice is your musical instrument

  • How to play your musical instrument

  • How to develop your musical instrument

  • How to take care of your musical instrument

  • How to maximise the potential of your musical instrument

 

At the end of this lesson, I expect that you will be able to understand how important it is to take good care of your own voice in the same manner as you take good care of your whole body.

LESSON 9: VOCAL PRODUCTION

In this lesson, you are going to learn several steps to follow in order to produce a good vocal sound:

The first topic alone will already teach you:

 

  • How to generate substantial amount of airflow

  • The right way of inhaling and exhaling air

  • What is the correct posture to adapt

  • How your voice box assists you in this process

 

In Topic 2, you will study the relevant body parts that help you in the vocal production process:

  • The Diaphragm & The Rib Cage

  • The Lungs & The Heart

  • The Larynx & The Pharynx

  • The Mouth & The Tongue

  • The Nose & The Ears

LESSON 10: THE VOCALIST

There are different classifications of vocalists that you will be able to study in this lesson. Also you will be able to understand the main difference between the male and female vocalist and why it is very important to recognize this difference.

The following topics will be discussed in great details in this lesson.

  • Vocal Classifications

  • The Male Vocalist and The Female Vocalist

  • The Mixed Vocal Group (SATB)

  • The All Male Vocal Group

  • The All Female Vocal Group

  • A Capella Group

 

At the end of this lesson I expect you to be able to rightly classify your own voice in preparation for the Advanced Level where you will be learning the different techniques and exercises how to improve your voice range and enhance your vocal quality.

STUDIO ADDRESS

9 Clais Street, Keysborough 3173

Victoria, Australia

CONTACT TELEPHONE

+61 448 006 768

STUDIO BUSINESS HOURS

Music Lessons are now conducted online via ZOOM until further notice

© 2005 Ben Noynay Music Studio

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