Voice Analyser Vision
Hey there ✋
I love singing, and I have been studying with voice teachers for a couple of years now. Like many people around the world taking voice lessons, I have found it to be a slow learning process and sometimes difficult to achieve good results. I want to change this for the better.
It would be cool to see a world where anyone can learn how to sing - no matter how much “talent” they have. After all, the voice is a collection of muscles, and muscles can be trained!
🗯 Learning to sing is not easy
There are two big challenges in vocal studies. When we sing:
- We cannot see the muscles that are producing the sound
- Without extensive training, we cannot hear how these muscles affect the sound we produce
👀 The first challenge is the lack of visual feedback. An aspiring footballer can watch all of Messi’s brilliant moves on YouTube, even in slow motion, and then try to copy them. Watching Beyoncé videos and studying how she moves when she sings will not tell us much about what’s going on in her larynx.
Most of the muscles used in singing are not obviously visible from the outside. This makes it hard to copy the correct “moves” from others.
👂 The second challenge has to do with audio feedback. When you learn a new skill, you need to know if you are doing it correctly so that you can memorize the right way and repeat it. Imagine if a basketball player practising his shots couldn’t see if he was actually scoring after throwing the ball?!
Singers need to listen to themselves, but if the student’s ear is not trained yet how are they supposed to know what to listen for’ in that sound? Anyone who has ever recorded their voice for the first time may feel shocked at how different they sound. This is due to a lack of audio feedback that only comes with extensive training. ( hide )
👩🎓 Can you hire a vocal coach to solve it?
There are a lot of benefits in working with a teacher.
- They explain how singing works
- They provide instant feedback
- They guide your practice and adjust it to your situation
Unfortunately, there are some limitations to what teachers can do for you.
- Much of what you learn in a lesson will not lead to improvement without frequent, if not daily practise, which can be difficult without them there to guide you
- They are human, not robots, and so are likely to be subjective
- Not everyone can afford the price of a singing lesson
✅ People mostly overcome these challenges with the help of a singing teacher. When you sing, the teacher listens carefully to the sound you produce. Based on what they hear, they can tell you which physical changes you need to make in order to improve.
💰 The average hourly price for a singing teacher in the US is $29. To see significant results you should have at least one session per week. That’s really a minimum, assuming you do your homework. One year of studies at this rate will cost you $1500.
🤹 You will have to figure out a lot of things by yourself. When you sing your vocal coach pays attention to a lot of sound qualities like being in tune, air pressure stability, resonance, and so forth. Based on what they hear they can decouple which muscles do you use to control the air pressure, how do you articulate and where do you project the sound.
Unfortunately, they will not be able to exactly tell you how to move your soft palate or to relax your tongue to change the quality of the sound. You will have to go through a time-consuming discovery process.
☯ Teachers come from various musical backgrounds. It might be opera, jazz, pop, folk, or any other musical genre. On top of that, naturally, every person has their own stylistic preferences. All of that will influence which aspects of singing technique the teacher will value more. ( hide )
💡We can make the sound Visible
I want to build a virtual dashboard that will get the sound from your microphone and will instantly display on the screen:
- Useful real-time characteristics of your singing sound: pitch, air stability, nasality, vibratos, and so forth
- Current positions of your muscle groups used for singing
Step by step. To start with something I made this interactive pitch training. You can check if you sing in tune and practice to improve.
👩💻 I believe these can be done with the help of modern computer technologies. This belief is backed up by my master’s degree in computer science and over a dozen years of experience in the IT industry.
🏁 Similar products already exist and can be used for good. For example, the Estill method offers a comprehensive solution. Sadly, it’s a bit too complex. After paying for their software you must attend a course to learn how to use it.
Yousician is another interesting company that moves towards that direction. They are trying to create a virtual music teacher, so you will not have to hire a real one.
I believe that having a real human interaction is crucial. The software should empower teachers and students to be more effective.
Both these companies have made valuable progress. There is already a niche in the market and existing businesses in this niche are profitable. I think that it can be improved further with the help of AI.
🧠 Artificial Intelligence (AI) can be used to analyze singing voice qualities. I know that this approach can work because it is exactly what vocal teachers do.
If a human can recognize nasality in the sound, then computers can be trained to do the same. Though, the process is not very simple. To teach AI you need to show it a lot of examples of how people do it. So the computer can copy.
This project is not an easy task to accomplish. It will require a lot of time and patience, a lot of research and development. Nevertheless, I’m convinced building this product will be useful for people and I’m determined to make it happen. ( hide )
Would you like to help?
This project is too big and complex for one person.
Do you want to partner up or maybe are just willing to help? I would really appreciate some working hands from:
- Content creators & copywriters
- Singing teachers
- UX Designers
- Marketing specialists
- Software Developers (Frontend, Backend, Mobile)
- Business developers
- Name your title =)
Are you an investor or publisher?
A word of appreciation
I would not be able to walk so far without the help and support of these amazing people:
- Gonzalo Gonzales - UX researcher, who is helping with design, customer development and songs content moderation
- Celina von Wrochem - awesome, energetic author of our educational course Singing theory for beginners
- Leo Maia - illustrator, who created all these funny carrots pictures and designed a big portion of this website
- Sergey Alimsky - designer and photographer, who came up with the idea for the first feature on this website, and who constantly helps me with advice and brainstorming
- Sandra Dominguez Ortiz - wonderful person who inspired me to create this project and motivated me to keep going. Without her support Singing Carrots would not exist.
- Claudia Rolando - my first singing teacher, who prepared a list of exercises for our pitch training
- Beth Aggett - singer, composer, arranger and teacher, who constantly helps me with feedback and ideation
- Dominika Zawada - singer, actress and coach helping with dog-fooding pitch training and sharing actionable thoughts
- Linor Oren - singer and voice expert, who helped with preparing warm-up videos and gave a lot of useful feedback and advices on how to improve the website