Frequently Asked Questions

How does Singing with Style differ from the No Scales Just Songs Vocal Workouts?

Both Singing With Style and the Vocal Workouts include song-based vocal warmups that are sung with various warm up sounds, and both have fully produced music tracks with and without vocals for practice purposes. The Vocal Workout's seventeen songs cover a variety of popular styles and some of the song versions have been shortened. On Singing With Style there are eleven songs, all are jazz standards, and all are complete versions.

The vocal range of Singing With Style works well for altos, basses and many sopranos. The Vocal Workouts are available in two ranges: alto/bass and baritone/soprano.

Both Singing With Style and the Vocal Workouts include detailed voice technique information, but the format is different: The Vocal Workout has shorter teaching narrations on the CD, supplemented by the guidebook. Singing With Style has no guidebook but longer teaching narratives.

The Vocal Workout has several songs that modulate to higher keys as the song progresses to gradually work higher notes. On Singing With Style the songs don't modulate but stay in one key. The Vocal Workout has short segments and examples about developing vocal style. On Singing With Style there is over 90 minutes of vocal style instruction, with much more detail and examples. For more information see the next question.

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Should I get Singing With Style or one of the Vocal Workouts?

Get one of the No Scales Just Songs Vocal Workouts if:

1] You want to sing different styles, including pop, rock, jazz, and country, and R&B.
2] You are not interested in vocal style.
3] You are a soprano or tenor and want something that perfectly fits your range—Singing With Style is only available in an alto/bass version.
4] You like variety and moving quickly and you want to sing more songs that are shorter versions.
5] You like having a guidebook to supplement the CDs.

Get Singing with Style if:

1] You want to focus on jazz standards.
2] You want to focus on vocal style or scat singing.
3] You want to learn both vocal technique and vocal style.
4] You want longer, unshortened versions of songs.
5] You want all the information on CD—on the Vocal Workouts the instruction on the CDs is supplemented with a separate book. On Singing with Style all of the information is on the CDs.

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Do any of the songs on Singing With Style also appear on either the No Scales Just Songs Vocal Workout Vols. One or Two?

No—the songs on Singing With Style don't appear on either of the Vocal Workouts.

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I can't hold a tune at all, will this help me?

Yes, since building vocal strength and technique usually helps pitch problems. You will have more success with the earlier songs on Singing With Style. Spend a lot of time with the vocal technique section before working with the vocal style section. You'll also have an easier time if your vocal range matches the range of the songs. If it doesn't, you'd be better off developing your ear with the No Scales Just Songs Vocal Workout, using the version that best matches your range.

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I'm a complete beginner to singing—can I start with this if even though it uses jazz songs?

The voice technique information starts with the basics that any beginner needs to know, and the first few songs are easy enough that a beginning singer can handle them. Some of the later songs are more difficult and you will have to work up to them over time.

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I can't read music and I don't know a thing about music theory.

No note reading is required, you'll learn everything by ear. Any music theory you may need to know to successfully use the CDs is explained.

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I want to work on vocal style but I mostly sing pop (or R&B, rock, country, alternative, folk, blues, or singer-songwriter.) How specific to jazz is the vocal style work?

All of the vocal style examples are with jazz songs, but the material is very relevant for other contemporary styles. R&B singers often improvise extended pentatonic runs. Country singers often add fills, or ornaments. Rock singers often add dives, vocal texture and substitution notes. Pop singers must stay aware of interpretation and dynamics. Folk singers often use subtle ornaments. Singer-songwriters often use all of these elements as well as phrasing. All of this and much more is covered in the vocal style section of Singing With Style.

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How do I use the CDs if I only want to work on vocal style?

Work with the warm up section just long enough to learn the songs, then go to CD #2 to work on vocal style. The vocal style section can be used independently of the warm up section.

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How do I use the CDs if I only want to learn about scat singing?

Skip the warm up section and work with the vocal style section instead. Virtually all of the the vocal style elements taught there will increase your ability to scat sing. Though you could go directly to the scat singing section on CD #2, it's recommended that you first learn all of these vocal style methods before working with the scat singing section. For scat singing it isn't absolutely necessary to learn the melody and lyrics for all of the songs: you can replace the lyric with any of the warm up sounds or scat words you prefer, and you can sing a very loose approximation of the melody.

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How do I use the CDs if I just want a warm up using jazz songs OR
How do I use the CDs if I 've already had voice lessons and I just want a warm up without all the instruction?

Use the warm up section and skip the instructional segments. There are brief tracks before each song track that state the warm up goal of the song and the warm up sound to use. You can use that warm up sound or the lyric. Once you have learned the songs you can sing them straight through with the music tracks on CD #3.

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I just want to learn some basic voice technique, I'm not ready for style.

Work through the warm up section, listening to each instructional segment and then learning and singing the songs. All the essentials of good voice technique are covered. The warm up section can be used independently of the vocal style section.

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Can I use the music tracks as a backup when I perform?

Yes—there are no spoken introductions on the music-only tracks in case you want to do that.

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Can I combine using the vocal warmup with working on vocal style?

Yes—once you have learned the songs and sounds in the warm up section and have learned several ways to stylize a song from the vocal style section, you can sing through the songs with the music-only tracks on CD #3 and do your own stylized versions of the songs, with or without the warm up sounds.

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I don 't know what my vocal range is so I don't know if I can use these CDs.

The songs on Singing With Style fit into an alto range of almost two octaves, from Eb below middle C to D almost two octaves above that. However, the bulk of the songs fall in a range from Ab below middle C to C above middle C, which is a comfortable range for most altos and sopranos. Bass-baritones can also use Singing With Style by singing an octave lower than all of the vocals. Listen to and try to sing along with the audio samples on the main detail page for Singing with Style. If the songs are not in your range see the next question and answer.

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I'm an alto with a big range (or a soprano, or a baritone) and I'd like to warm up higher or lower than these songs go.

Once you've learned the songs on CD #1 and have learned several ways to improvise new melodies from the vocal style section, you can substitute some higher melodies as you sing the songs to warm up those higher notes in your range. You can also change the lowest notes of the lower songs to sing lower notes. You can also use the same vocal style methods to decrease the range of the songs if they are too rangy for you.

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Is this something children can use?

The singing technique and vocal style information is appropriate for kids, but lyrically most of these jazz standards are love songs. Due to that, Singing With Style is probably more appropriate for teenagers and adults. Kids would probably do better with the Just Songs Vocal Warmup for Kids.

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Can you give me more details on how to use the CDs?

Here is a reprint from the CD booklet on how to use Singing With Style:

To warm up your voice and learn singing technique: Work through the warm up section that starts on CD #1. Track 1 explains how to best work with the CDs.

To warm up your voice without instruction: Use CD #1 and #2 to learn the eleven songs in order, but skip the instructional tracks. You can sing the recommended warm up sounds or the lyrics. There is a brief track before each song track that tells you the warm up sound and technical goal for the song so you can skip the longer instructional segments. If you encounter any problems refer to the instructional segments.

Once you have learned the songs from the warm up set you can sing them with the music-only versions on CD #3. In case you want to use these tracks to perform, the titles and recommended warm up sounds are listed in this booklet and not on the tracks.

To work on vocal style, riffs, interpretation, and more: After learning the songs from the warm up set, listen and sing with the stylizing section that begins on CD #2. During the style section each song from the warm up set is used to demonstrate a different aspect of vocal style.

To combine vocal style with warming up: Once you know the songs and are comfortable with stylizing you sing with the music-only versions and add variations to the warm up, whether you sing the warm up sounds or the lyrics. Many of the songs have repeated sections so you can try out different ideas.

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I purchased a download of Singing With Style on another site and it came without the booklet.

Write us at and we'll email you a copy.

If you have any other questions please write to Susan.

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