Vocals, harmony singing, old-time,
bluegrass & beyond
Singing in harmony begins with “thinking in harmony”.
Learn how to tune in to the voices around you while practicing an array of tips and tricks for harmonious singing in duos, trios and quartets. Lessons begin with an oldtime standard duo that will slowly metamorphose into a bluegrass standard quartet and beyond. Go on a fascinating journey that highlights subtle stylistic changes, which can turn a nitty-gritty oldtime song into a sweet, “high-lonesome” bluegrass number. While these lessons will mainly focus on learning by ear, handouts with lyrics and notation will also be provided. We will use classic harmony singing families as our guides: The Carter and Watson Families, The Stanley, Louvin and Monroe Brothers.
Lessons can be taught for and individual or a group.
Prerequisites: A willingness to give up your own super-stardom in order to play a supporting role is key. Since the class is harmony singing rather than basic singing technique, the ability to basically carry a tune is real helpful for this one, but not required. We’ll work with singers of all levels.
Bring: If you play an instrument, feel free to bring it. Recording devices will be extremely helpful, as part of the class will involve recording and listening back. Pen and paper is old school, but a good idea anyway.
Rebecca Stout began singing harmony vocals in exchange for Barbie doll money when she was six years old. She traveled throughout the southeast performing Loretta Lynn songs with her mother at music festivals, dance halls and senior centers. She explains: “I didn’t know I was singing harmony. I just knew that to be heard over my mom’s big voice, I had to sing different notes from her.” Growing up near Nashville, Tennessee she became a sought after background singer, harmony arranger and session vocalist. With a four-octave range and impeccable sense of pitch timing and blend, she was known as a “human harmony machine”. Over the past 40 years, Rebecca has worked with numerous leading artists including Robert Earl Keen, Roseanne Cash, Ed Dye, Ronnie McCoury, Roy and Victor Wooten, and Mark O’Conner among others. Rebecca currently resides in Los Angeles, where she performs in the Balkan vocal group, Nevenka, along with friend, musical cohort and co-harmony singing instructor, Molly White. She has taught classes at Julian family Fiddle Camp, Mendocino Folklore Camp, Walker Creek Music Camp, Big Sur Music Camp and Blue Ridge Old-Time Music Week at Mars Hill University and North Carolina’s L.E.A.F. Festival. She is an International Bluegrass Music Museum featured artist.
All private lessons are 1 hour and fifteen minutes in length and are to be paid for in advance.
There will be no credit given if lessons are missed by the student. Since my work schedule involves performing and touring as well as teaching, there are only so many hours I can allow for lessons. A carefully selected time is reserved for each student. Rescheduling of those hours is simply not possible. If, however, I must miss a lesson, you will not be charged.
Thank you for giving me the privilege of being a part of your musical lives. I look forward to sharing good health, good cheer and good music with you all!