I came across this online singing course when I was reviewing the high-quality piano training course Popular Piano with Hugh Sung produced by ArtistWorks.com.
I was so impressed with the piano course that I thought I’d do a review on one of the singing course presented at ArtistWorks.com.
To be honest, I thought Bluegrass was a special singing method developed by Grammy-nominated singer Michael Daves, but it’s actually a music style that’s similar to country music.
So, Bluegrass Vocals with Michael Daves is an course that teaches people how to sing Bluegrass music, much like people learn how to sing Jazz.
Bluegrass Vocals Review Summary
Product Name: Bluegrass Vocals with Michael Daves
Description: Bluegrass Vocals with Michael Daves is a complete singing course taught by renowned Bluegrass singer Michael Daves produced by the online music training platform ArtistWorks.com.
Price: Very affordable
Best for: Singers of all levels
Rating: 3 stars out of 5 stars
Product Rating: 3 out of 5 stars
Not Your Typical Kind of Singing Course
This not your typical singing course where you do very, very intensive vocal exercises all the way through.
To be frank, the instructor Michael Daves is not really teaching fundamental singing technique but the bluegrass style of singing – There’s a difference!
For instance, you will always see Michael carrying a guitar in his lessons. I was wondering why before I took the course.
After personally examining the course, I found out that Michael isn’t a hardcore singing coach like me that teaches singing technique that can be applied to all styles of music.
He is teaching people how to sing Bluegrass songs. He would break down the songs and teach people how to interpret and sing with special nuance of the style.
Even if you’re not a Bluegrass or country singer, you can benefit greatly from his teaching because he goes deeply into interpretation which can be applied to any styles of music.
What’s Exactly is included in the Course – An Exclusive Inside Look
Bluegrass vocals is divided into 3 main sections – Beginner, Intermediate, and Advanced.
Each level is based heavily on ear training. Even when Michael is teaching basic music theory about scales and triads, he incorporates those boring theories into actual ear training exercises for you to practice.
Also, learning songs are one of the main focus of the entire course. Other than learning how to sing the melody, through studying the songs, you get to learn how to hear the chords and harmonize while singing.
The basic vocal technique training is also included in the different levels of training alongside with all the ear training and learning songs, which actually makes basic technique training not as boring.
The Most Awesome Feature – Video Exchange system
The Video Exchange system and platform is the most effective teaching feature developed by ArtistWorks.com.
One of the biggest weaknesses of online learning is the lack of personal feedback from the instructor. The Video Exchange platform totally solves this problem.
After watching the video lessons, you have the choice to record your own singing with your phone, tablet, or camera, upload it to the Video Exchange platform where Michael will review and send a video response to you.
How awesome this is to have the online instructor to give you personal instruction so you could correct and improve your own singing!
Every Video Exchange between Michael and individual students will be share on the platform.
Each video response from Michael is actually a lesson by itself!
And there are hundreds of them. Not only are you learning from the video lessons, you are learning from the mistakes and corrections from actual singing from hundreds of students like you.
How Much Does it Cost? You won’t believe it.
The most basic plan cost $35/month, which is very, very affordable for most people.
This is way cheaper than taking a lesson per week from a decent teacher that might cost you $50 a lesson, and that’s usually just one hour of lessons.
If you take weekly private lessons, you are looking at an average $200 per month.
With this singing course and all the rest of the courses, the most you will pay is $35 per month depending on your payment plan.
What I like the most about the course
Let me sum up what I like the most about the course in the following list:
- This is actually a style-training course for singing.
- Extensive Ear Training Exercises with making harmony
- Basic vocal technique training is also included.
- The most awesome Video Exchange system.
- Michael is extremely patient and down-to-earth while teaching.
- The entire course focuses on one particular style of singing – Bluegrass.
- Interpretation and musicality are the main focus.
- You are not stuck with boring vocal exercises
- The video lessons are professionally filmed in a studio.
- Very affordable monthly fee.
However, in order to make this review fair and objective so you could decide if this course is for you, I need to point out some of the negative sides of this course.
What I don’t like about the course
I love the whole concept of video exchange that greatly enhances the learning experience of students online.
That is one of the greatest innovation ArtistWorks has contributed to online music education.
However, with this particular course – Bluegrass vocals with Michael Daves, there are some weaknesses I need to point out.
1. Michael Daves is more of an artist than a teacher.
I don’t know Michael personally, but from his video lessons I found out that his communication skills and delivery are not particularly good.
No matter how well a course is structured by the producer, if the teacher’s delivery is weak, it would greatly affect the quality of the course.
To be honest, Michael looks like his sharing his many years of professional experience with students, which is nothing wrong.
He’s sharing his personal chops that he uses on a professional stage, which is invaluable, much like how Christina Aguilera teaches in her singing course.
But, unlike the Diva, Michael lacks his personal charisma when he’s teaching in his lessons.
2. Basic Vocal technique is not the strength of this course.
This really is a Bluegrass style singing course, therefore, basic vocal technique, though covered, is not the main focus of the training.
If you’re looking for a great vocal training course that teaches you singing techniques that can be applied to any style of singing, I recommend you check out Robert Lunte’s singing program.
3. Michael Daves is a great guitarist rather than vocalist.
Like many artists and musicians, Michael looks to me like something who’s learned to sing mainly naturally with some vocal training along his professional path.
That’s really fine to me, because you need to look at an artist through the whole package.
I am a great singer, but I can’t play the guitar like Michael. Not even close.
For a guitarist, he is a pretty good singer. Or else, he would not be nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Bluegrass Album.
But, if you’re looking for basic vocal training, this course is probably not for you.
Finally, My Conclusion
I have mixed feelings for this review. I am a professional singer and vocal coach.
From the perspective of a vocal coach, this is not a singing course for everyone, because the fundamental training for singing technique is not its strength.
I can only say this course is geared towards Bluegrass music fans who are looking to sing bluegrass.
Don’t expect to sing pop, jazz, or opera after taking this course, because it is just not designed for anything but Bluegrass.
If you want learn pure vocal technique, there are many other singing courses for that.
If you are a Bluegrass music fan wanting to learn how to sing this particular style, then this singing course is definitely perfect for you.
To great singing,