Vocal Workout Vols. 1 & 2: Frequently Asked Questions

Which version is right for you?

Please read the following carefully as we can only make exchanges for damaged goods. The following information applies for both Volumes 1 and 2.

The typical female singer will use the Alto/Bass version, while the typical male singer will use the Baritone/Soprano version. On the main detail page for either Volume 1 or No Scales Just Songs Vocal Workout Vol. 2 are audio samples. Listen to both audio samples of "Wade In The Water" from Volume 1, try to sing along with them, and see which one is better for your range. Keep in mind that "Wade In The Water" is the lowest song in the workout: the lowest notes should fall at the bottom of your range or just below it. If not, try the other version. The highest notes in "Wade In The Water" are a third lower than the highest notes of either Volume 1 or Volume 2 of the workout. If they seem a bit high you can probably work up to them, but if they feel much too high for you try the other version. You can also listen to other sound samples to get an idea of range and difficulty. "Centerpiece" from Workout Vol. 1 is one of the early, easier songs. The three songs on the Workout Vol. 2 Sampler are a bit rangier and reach almost as high as the highest notes sung in either Volume 1 or 2 of the workout.

Female Singers

If you can sing along with any of these singers, you are probably a soprano: Alison Krauss, Diana Ross, Dianne Reeves, Dolly Parton or the following singers when they hit their high notes: Beyonce, Celine Dion, Mariah Carey, Barbra Streisand. Use the Baritone/Soprano version.

If you can sing along with any of these singers, you are probably an alto: Sheryl Crow, Alicia Keyes, Mary J. Blige, Diana Krall, Norah Jones, Billie Holiday, Toni Braxton, Linda Ronstadt, Taylor Swift, Avril Levigne. Most women are altos. Use the Alto/Bass version.

If you can easily sing with all the above singers use the Baritone/Soprano version to work your highest notes, or the Alto/Bass version to work your low and middle range. Or use the Expanded Version to cover a larger range.

Male Singers

If you can sing along with any of these singers, you are probably a tenor/baritone: The Beatles, OutKast, Tim McGraw, Usher, Sting, Elvis Costello. Use the Soprano/Baritone version. If you are a high tenor like Justin Timberlake or Steve Perry, a high screamer like Axl Rose or Robert Plant, or if you use a lot of your falsetto like Al Green or some Prince songs (such as Kiss), use the Alto/Bass version.

If you can sing along with any of these singers, you are probably a baritone: James Taylor, Frank Sinatra, Garth Brooks, Matchbox Twenty, Elton John, Nat King Cole, Randy Newman, Babyface, Eddie Vedder, Jimmy Buffett. Most men are baritones. Use the Baritone/Soprano version.

If you can sing along with any of these singers, you are probably a bass: Randy Travis, Josh Turner, Barry White, Crash Test Dummies, Trace Adkins. Use the Alto/Bass version.

If you can easily sing with all the above male singers use the Alto/Bass version to work your highest notes, or the Baritone/Soprano version to work your middle range. Or use the Expanded Version to cover a larger range.

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Should I get Volume 1 or 2?
Similarities: Both volumes use the same format—they each are two CDs of recorded vocal instruction and songs, and an accompanying guidebook that goes deeper into voice technique and offers troubleshooting and stylizing ideas.

Differences: Volume 2 has eighteen songs, one more than Volume 1's seventeen, and the guidebook for it has twenty more pages of vocal information. If you prefer the songs on Volume 1 you'll do fine with it. If you prefer the songs, or if you want a guidebook with twenty more pages of information, get Volume 2. Volume 1 has more pop standards in it, while Volume 2 has more country songs and songs from the 2000's.

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Are the books different between the Alto/Bass and Baritone/Soprano versions? Should I get both versions if I have a big vocal range? What's in the Expanded version?
The Volume 1 Alto/Bass and Baritone/Soprano versions use the same guidebook, but the songs are in different keys on the CDs. It's the same with the Volume 2 Alto/Bass and Baritone/Soprano versions. Both volumes are also available in expanded versions: same guidebook, plus all four Alto/Bass and Baritone/Soprano CDs—that's your best bet if you have a big vocal range.

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Are the CDs different between the Alto/Bass and Baritone/Soprano versions?
Yes—The main difference between the versions is the range of the songs. On the Alto/Bass version of Volume 2, I do the instruction and sing all the songs and style examples since I'm an alto. Basses will sing along with me an octave lower. I do the instruction and sing the style examples for the Baritone/Soprano version, but the actual songs are in keys that suit baritones and sopranos and are sung by baritone Perry White. Sopranos will sing an octave higher than Perry. In other words, the songs and information are the same for each version, but the keys of the songs are different. This is also the format for Volume 1.

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I think that I am tone-deaf. Can the workout help me?
It's very rare that a singer is truly tone-deaf. More likely what is needed is some strengthening of the vocal muscle (the larynx) and the co-ordination between the larynx, the brain and the ears. The workout starts off with fairly small range songs that are easier for singers with hearing problems to learn and work with. The guidebook has many pointers for how to use the workout to improve one's sense of pitch.

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I'm a complete beginner here and some of those songs look difficult. Am I going to get lost?
The later songs in the workout are definitely harder and rangier, but I've personally taught the earlier songs to hundreds of beginning singers and knows that they work. Beginning singers can move as slowly as they want and stay with the earlier, easier songs until they have increased their vocal strength and range. I recommend that beginners use both the CDs and the guidebook to get the full benefit of the workout.

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I've had loads of lessons and I've been singing for years so I don't need lots of instruction. I just want something that warms up my voice without doing scales or other voice exercises.
Use CD #1 of either Volume 1 or 2 and skip the instructional intro for each song—each section and song is marked so you can do that easily. Sing just the songs, either with the lyrics or the recommended sounds. Since they gradually increase in difficulty you will be warming up your voice as you go. If you feel any vocal tension you can always go back and listen to the instructional intros to refresh your technical memory.

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Once I've learned the songs I want to stylize and make them my own. Can I do that?
When you have learned all the songs and absorbed all the vocal instruction you can just use CD #2 of either Volume 1 or Volume 2. CD #2 just has the music tracks for the songs with brief introductions. Using just the music tracks you can move faster and you'll have more room to stylize the songs. Almost every chapter of the guidebook has an "expansion ideas" section where you'll learn many ways to stylize a song. These include how to do ornaments like passing tones, neighboring tones and pentatonic runs, rhythmic phrasing ideas, and textural or tonal vocal tricks like vibrato and breathy tone. I demonstrate all these style ideas at the end of CD #2. If you are interested in a much more detailed look at vocal style, please check out Singing with Style .

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What do I do if I've used one version of the workout for awhile and I realize I want the higher or lower version? Can I just buy the CDs for that version?
Email Zanna Discs. Previous buyers of the workout can purchase additional CDs directly from us. They come in vinyl CD envelopes, no fancy case or packaging.

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Can I just buy the CDs alone? How about if I already own Volume 1 and just want to buy just the CDs for Volume 2?
No, sorry.

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Can I order either workout over the phone?
We prefer that you order online, but we can take your phone order at 800-787-2647. Please call if you have any trouble ordering online or just prefer to order by phone. If you get our voice mail please leave a good time to reach you.

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Can the workout be used by children?
Yes—though it was designed with teenage and adult singers in mind, many children have used the workout with success. However, I now have a 2-CD set available that I designed specifically for younger singers. It's the Just Songs Vocal Warmup for Kids, and it includes thirteen kid-friendly songs and vocal instruction.

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What are the similarities and differences between the Vocal Workouts and Singing with Style?
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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Could I see the Table of Contents?
Here is the Table of Contents for Volume 1, followed by the Table of Contents for Volume 2:

Volume 1 Table Of Contents

1 Introduction
2 How To Use The Book and CDs
4/Ch.1 Angel From Montgomery--Breathing
7/Ch.2 Centerpiece--Placement, Loosening Face and Throat
9/Ch.3 Sweet Dreams--Initial Higher Notes
11/Ch.4 Wade in the Water--Placing Low Notes
13/Ch.5 I'll Stand By You--Simple Vowels
16/Ch.6 Unchained Melody--Diphthongs
19/Ch.8 Can't Help Falling in Love--Looping, R and L Consonants, Vibrato
22/Ch.9 Willow Weep for Me--Register Navigation
25/Ch.10 How Sweet it Is--The "Mix" Register
28/Ch.11 Since I Fell for You--Opening High Notes, the Inner Smile
31/Ch.12 Dark End of the Street--Sustenance, Volume
34/Ch.13 Walk Away Renee--Pitch, Step-wise Motion
37/Ch.14 All of Me--Pitch, Chromaticism
39/Ch.15 Save the Best for Last--Tonal Richness, Consonant Enunciation
42/Ch.16 Sunny Came Home--Larger Melodic Leaps
45/Ch.17 Young at Heart--Putting it All Together
48/Ch.18 Crazy Baby--Belting
51/Ch.19 Song Study Order
52/Ch.20 Glossary
53 CD Track Lists

Volume 2 Table Of Contents

1 Introduction
2 How To Use the CDs and Guidebook
4/Ch.1 I Can See Clearly Now--Facial Resonance (Placement)
7/Ch.2 Dear Prudence--Breathing
11/Ch.3 Why Don't You Do Right?--Breathing and Placement
14/Ch.4 You Gotta Be--Initial Higher Notes
17/Ch.5 Summertime--Low End Placement
20/Ch.6 One of Us--Simple Vowels
24/Ch.7 Get Here--Diphthongs
27/Ch.8 I'm Beginning To See the Light Diphthongs, Looping, and "R" & "L"
30/Ch.9 Don't Know Why Register Navigation and Vibrato
35/Ch.10 Sunday Kind of Love--The Mix Register and More Register Navigation
38/Ch.11 Thank You--Opening Highs and The Inner Smile
46/Ch.12 You're Still the One--Stepwise Pitch Work
42/Ch.13 Tracks of My Tears--Sustenance, Volume, and Singing High Closed Vowels
50/Ch.14 Ms. Celie's Blues (Sister)--Chromatic Pitch Work
53/Ch.15 Alison--Tonal Richness and Articulation
56/Ch.16 I Hope You Dance--Ending on High Notes
59/Ch.17 Bridge Over Troubled Water--Putting It All Together
63/Ch.18 Cry--Belting
67/Ch.19 Song Study Order
68/Ch.20 Glossary
70/Ch.21 Tips From the Road: Dealing with Environmental Factors That Affect the Voice
73/Ch.22 On Singing and Aging
74 About the Author
75 CD Track Lists