This article (ST Vincent Masterclass Review) will provide you with the opportunity to read an in-depth evaluation of ST Vincent’s, including information on how the lessons are presented, who the course is best suited for, the Cost of ST Vincent MasterClass, and what I enjoyed about it, etc.
Annie Clark, better known by her stage name St. Vincent, is a contemporary legend. She is extremely versatile, extremely cool, and a genuine rockstar. She is frequently compared to David Bowie.
Incredible responses were received when it was announced that she would be teaching a MasterClass. These people have gone completely insane!
However, just like everything else that is overhyped, it may be difficult to determine whether or not the course is actually something that would be beneficial to you.
So, in this Review of ST Vincent Masterclass, I’ll walk you through what the course entails, whether or not it’s worth the money, who it’s intended for, and whether or not there is something better available.
Who Is St. Vincent (a.k.a.) Annie Clark?
St. Vincent. Annie Clark is a formidable force in the music industry as a result of her commitment to ongoing transformation. With over a million followers on Twitter, Annie is also a well-known personality.
Listed twice in the “200 Greatest songs by 21st Century Women” list that was compiled by NPR in 2018. Several Grammy Awards were bestowed upon her for the albums St. Vincent and Masseduction.
Rosalyn, a collaboration with Bon Iver, and “The Antidote” are two of her songs that appeared on the soundtracks for the Twilight Saga film series.
And if you haven’t seen the trailer for her MasterClass yet, I strongly suggest you do so in order to get an idea of what’s going to be covered in the course
What Is MasterClass?
MasterClass is an incredible platform that makes it possible for regular people to learn from instructors who are recognized all over the world.
There are over 80 different classes that can be taken, and some of the people who teach them are famous people like St. Vincent, Hans Zimmer, Gordon Ramsay, and Helen Mirren.
Since its inception in 2015, it has rapidly become a popular destination for online education and shows no signs of slowing down! It won’t take you more than a minute and a half on a Reddit thread to figure out that users adore MasterClass.
Having said that, the courses offered by MasterClass adhere to a particular format, and this format might not be appropriate for everyone.
In light of this, allow me to walk you through this St. Vincent MasterClass so that you can evaluate whether or not it is something you would benefit from.
Course Overview – ST Vincent Masterclass Review
The duration of St. Vincent’s MasterClass is two hours and eighteen minutes, and it is comprised of sixteen videos. In addition to the videos, you will receive the following:
- A companion workbook consisting of 22 pages.
- Access to the St. Vincent MasterClass forum, where you can talk to other students about your work and share it with them.
The MasterClass is divided up into the following five key sections:
- Getting to Know Your Professor
- The Craft of Songwriting as an Art Form
- The songwriting demo for “Savior,” which is included in Roadmap to a Song
- The Man Behind All of Saint Vincent’s Masks
- Acoustic Guitar Notation
I’ll focus on the most important aspects of each chapter so that you can get a better idea of whether or not you should take this class.
01 – Meet Your Instructor
Singing is an attempt to communicate the ineffable and the struggle inherent in being human. With clips of her strumming an electric guitar at Coachella and celebrities such as Kanye West and Chris Martin extolling the virtues of Annie Clark, we get our first look at St.
Vincent, also known as Annie Clark. It’s clear from the start that this isn’t your average class.
- Annie explains her goals for the session and the steps she’ll take to help you along the way.
- She says she’ll do her best:
- Tips for better performance
- hints for songwriters
- Tips for the studio
02 – The Art of Being a Songwriter
Nun Mode: Discipline in the Creative Process
Sitting in uncomfortable positions and waiting for anything to happen is half the battle of writing, as one writer put it. Annie demonstrates how joy and discipline can coexist in the creative process.
While she admits that she’s used drastic efforts to get into the creative zone, she also points out that creativity isn’t necessarily what you may expect.
Working hard and being busy are two examples of “active involvement,” as defined by St. Vincent de Paul.
In addition, she is a fan of “passive engagement” in the creative process. For example, you could be doing nothing except playing around with your instrument or staring into space.
Every Song Needs an Epiphany
In order to learn, Annie emphasizes the value of attentive listening. She cites some of the most famous songs of all time and explains how you can analyze them in order to get a better understanding of her Grammy-winning songwriting.
Remember to pause and take note of any on-screen listening tasks that appear, as the workbook has no instructions for additional study.
You’ll get the following:
- Tips for writing better lyrics, with the goal of creating an epiphany in the process.
- Tips on how to improve your musical ear: how to discern what each instrument is doing in a song.
- The importance of recording everything, even if you believe it’s crap, in the real world.
- In addition, here are some pointers on how to prepare for your big break by learning and listening to as much music as you can today.
Basic Tools for Bedroom Composing
“This might be the basis for an entire album. It is possible for you to do so.”
This course is a lot of fun. If you don’t have the funds to rent a studio, this book is a godsend since it shows how much you can accomplish with a simple home setup.
St. Vincent shows us how to set up a studio in your bedroom and what basics she keeps in her studio. The workbook includes a handy list of all of Annie’s accessories.
Budget-conscious people can benefit from practical advice, such as:
- Using ordinary items like blankets to improve the sound quality of recordings.
- Make use of the free GarageBand app before moving to Logic Pro.
- A pawn shop or digital presets are two areas where you can find unique sounds.
- How to make a full album in your own home studio
Fear, Shame, And Humiliation
“It’s normal to feel a little awkward, a little out of place, a little self-conscious, a little fearful, and all those things.” Annie is quite open about the emotional toll that performing on stage has on her.
According to St. Vincent,
- Always keep an eye on where you want your musical career to take you.
- Several reasons why you shouldn’t strive to fill someone else’s shoes.
- Personal advice from her on how and why she shames her best buddy.
03 – Roadmap To A Song – “Savior” Songwriting Demo
“The process of writing a song is a mystery to me.”
As a songwriter, Annie has some fantastic advice for you, such as the following:
- Understanding whether a song’s lyrics are good and whether it’s time to “kill your darlings.”
- Leave enough room for your listeners to create their own story in a lyric while still saying what you mean
- With the help of tension and release, how can you write good lyrics?
- To see if the song can stand on its own without all the bells and whistles, we tried it out in a pared-down form.
An in-depth examination of “Saviour,” one of her most beloved songs, is used to do this. It has a haunting melody, unexpected twists, and turns, and is both relatable and heart-wrenching..
Annie adds that she chose “Savior” for this class since she wrote much of it while she was a teenager.
Since Annie has been interviewed about her music, you know she has a hard time with her earlier recordings. Even in her MasterClass, many have believed that she would never share any imperfect recordings.
I’m here to inform you that the rumors are untrue
A 17-year-old Annie sings the formative moments of “Savior” in this rare look back into the archives. You can see how she has matured and expanded an idea into a complete song, even if she is embarrassed by it.
It’s important to remember that even if you don’t enjoy certain aspects of your singing, you should not give up on it since you may develop it into something wonderful.
“You can put a good song in any outfit and it will still be a good song.”
Finding the North Star
Refine, refine, refine something that’s already outstanding. “Take a nice thing and pummelled it into greatness.” We get a unique opportunity to hear old versions of the song that were previously discarded by Annie.
While the finished music features a slinky, seductive bass line, there is an alternate take that has the bass line played slower and more “dirty”. And she performs a line about the Virgin Mary that she’s thankful she also discarded!
Whether you’re a St. Vincent fanatic or not, these are moments you’ve never heard before, and they serve as a solace in the knowledge that not every idea Annie has is Grammy-worthy.
Saint Vincent also offers:
- Why deciding on a song’s “north star” is critical. For “Savior,” the idea of not being a savior was literally the point.
- How to stop worrying about being flawless and start thinking about what you want to write about instead
- Take a look at the mechanics of harmony as a journey. Observe the path that a single chord progression takes you.
Rewriting, Revising, and Refining
Ultimately, “does this serve the song?” is one of the most important guidelines in my creative process. This is the most in-depth and analytical class I’ve taken thus far.
As she sings and sings along to older versions of the song “Savior,” she demonstrates how and why the lyrics needed to be changed.
You can then listen to the same portion of her Coachella performance to see how the samples differ. During this demonstration, you will gain knowledge about the following:
- How to make your music sound louder without overpowering the singers by manipulating listeners’ perceptions of volume
- The best way to bring suspense to your writing is to use a mystery.
- How to collaborate with others and not be afraid to travel down a rabbit hole
- In her song “Savior,” Annie pays homage to the legendary Dr. Dre.
“Studio time is my favorite time.” It is my fave. It’s my favorite spot on earth. Imagination knows no bounds. A studio is a place where anything is possible. “It’s so thrilling!” exclaimed the student.
Finishing up “Savior” in the studio was a highlight for me. Moving from Annie’s home studio to a professional one is what the class does.
She uses the studio mixer to mute and lower each track so that you can hear exactly what’s going on in the background.
She’ll perform a drum track and then demonstrate how it sounds with various effects like snap delay and plate reverb. Once it’s in the mix, you can hear how it fits in with the rest of the music.
It was fascinating to get a glimpse behind the scenes of the making of “Savior” in this session.
St. Vincent travels through the following:
- Even if you already have a studio at home, it’s still a good idea to go to a professional studio.
- The most effective means of interacting with engineers in order to realize your vision
- Make your music stand out by adding “flavor crystals” to it.
- Even if you can’t hear it in the final mix, you should still contribute chaos and texture to your music.
- Adding effects to your vocals is the most important rule to follow.
04 – The Many Faces of St. Vincent
It is Annie’s formative years that are used as an example of how to take advantage of any chance that comes your way.
When she confesses what her parents thought of her music addiction as a teenager, it’s a moment that’s universally familiar.
As she recounts her experiences, it’s written in a conversational tone:
- When she first started out, she did some crazy things to get gigs.
- In what ways, as a child, did she learn about artists and producers?
- Doing a tech job, learning how to roll cables, and understanding which cables need to go where are essential.
- When she left Berklee and traveled to New York to “make it,” what happened?
Tuning In to the World Around You
With the help of anecdotes from her own life, Annie Clark returns us to an anecdotal style of teaching.
She discusses her creative process as a solo artist and how David Byrne, a legendary singer-songwriter, has influenced her.
You’ll be able to do the following in this class:
- Listen to St Vincent’s story of how David helped her to become more free and creative.
- Find out how Annie responded to the question, “But what if you tried?” by embracing new concepts that were tough for her.
- You’ll learn about the ways that choreography may help you become even more authentic.
- Discover Annie’s inspirations for her best-known songs.
Out of the Studio, Onto the Stage
“Tips for enhancing one’s performance. There is a zillion. Many of these are due to my own incompetence since I’ve made numerous mistakes. A lesson on performing on stage concludes the final class.
“Savior,” the song we examined previously, is featured prominently in a number of footage from St. Vincent’s many performances, including her stripped-back solo tour, her full rock band tour, and her vocal and piano tour.
Annie reveals her best on-stage advice, including:
- Before a performance, the best moment to eat is right before the curtain goes up.
- On-the-road tips for keeping your voice intact
- Keeping the audience in mind at all times
- How to lessen the effects of stage fright
- For those who aren’t familiar with latex, here are some things to keep in mind when deciding what to wear:
- Ways to deal with the consequences of your own mistakes: social graces and how not to be negatively affected by them
- That simple phrase has been Annie’s lifeline through some of the most difficult moments of her career.
Writing a Theme Song
As with the previous lesson, this one is videotaped in the studio, which gives her the opportunity to show and explain more in-depth while the audience listens.
The following are some of Annie’s most helpful hints for coming up with a movie theme:
- Writing for a film makes it easier to come up with catchy tunes
- When it comes to songs and movies, she has a unique perspective.
- When and how to employ each effect is the focus here.
- Songs and movies that have influenced the sound she creates
- Pitch correction can be used in creative ways.
- The way she subtly alters the tempo to amplify a mood.
Each time she stops to talk about the music, she’ll play samples and delve deep into the essence of what she is doing. She’ll sometimes talk about guitar, sometimes voice, sometimes bass or drums.
You can expect to gain a better understanding of guitar tone, effects pedals, technique, and philosophy as a whole.
In a manner similar to the case study lesson on “The Nowhere Inn,” Annie presents a new spectrum of effects, explaining what they do and how they sound as well as playing them herself.
What she does:
- How she takes the guitar beyond simple chords to become poetic or percussive is what makes her music so unique.
- Techniques for reducing physical and mental stress when performing
- After first creating noises in her mind, she then transfers them onto the instrument.
- How many pedals she has on her pedal board, and how each effect is used.
- The way she uses her electric guitar to mimic the sound of a human voice and other instruments
- Use paper and paper clips to create non-pedal effects on your prepared guitar!
Tunings and Technique
“The familiar becomes unfamiliar.”
Next, we’ll cover a slew of guitar techniques and advice. We eventually get to see Annie play all three of her guitars that have been lurking in the background throughout the course.
What she’s going to do for you:
- Showing you how and when different tunings, such as the standard tuning, glam tune, Nashville tuning, and St. Vincent tuning sound.
- Using different tunings to produce something new and different from what she’s done before.
- Masseduction’s tuning and the reasoning behind it
- A baritone guitar’s distinct tones are well worth exploring.
- From “the world’s greatest fingerstyle jazz guitar performer,” she learned her technique.
- When and how to use harmonics
Pros & Cons – ST Vincent Masterclass Review
01 – Grammy-winning singer-songwriter teaches
Annie Clark has dedicated a significant portion of her life to perfecting her trade, and it shows. The one-of-a-kind experience that Annie has had as St. Vincent and her rise to the top of the music industry are what set this apart from other songwriting classes. Of course, you can take a songwriting class anyplace.
02 – Incredible Examples and explanations
Annie’s explanations always make sense to me. Talking about something as complex as music and creativity is quite tough, but she pulls it off well.
I appreciated how thorough she was in her explanations. As an example, when describing a result, she said:
- First, he explains it.
- Next, go over the specifics of how this works.
- it evokes in the mind’s eye
- Who is a notable example of someone employing this technique?
- Then he performs it to demonstrate the effect.
I was able to walk away from this course with a clear understanding of how these techniques work and how they might be used.
03 – Urged to be more imaginative
St. Vincent, like David Bowie, is well-known for constantly reinventing herself, so it’s not surprising that she’s constantly venturing into new musical territory.
Consequently, this MasterClass is jam-packed with ideas that I never would have considered on my own before.
Putting paper clips on your guitar was one of many “oh my God, I never thought of that” moments. Another was breaking out of a musical rut by performing a familiar song on a guitar with a different tune.
04 – Production and styling creativity
I believe Annie had a significant impact on the look and feel of this particular MasterClass course.
In addition to the bright neon hues, each lesson is introduced by an animated title card.
Although it may seem insignificant, the graphics are so unique and stimulate you to think outside the box.
05 – On-screen glossary
The course contains some specialized languages. A glossary appears at the bottom of the screen to explain any terms that aren’t addressed by Annie during the course of the video.
This makes the course a breeze to follow and doesn’t necessitate a lot of prior knowledge to benefit from it.
01 – More Thorough workbook
All MasterClass courses come with a PDF workbook, and the St. Vincent course is no exception. In contrast, the St. Vincent workbook reads more like a magazine editorial than a workbook. ‘
There are no homework assignments, and the additional reading is minimal. Additionally, there isn’t any room for remarks. It’s a great visual representation of St. Vincent, but it’s not particularly useful as a workbook.
Rather than an educational experience, this two-hour course is more like “information entertainment” than anything else.
02 – Additional demonstrations (especially at the start)
It began with a series of anecdotal-style lessons, with Annie sitting in the frame and chatting. I’m glad they included this type of instruction in the course, but I loved it more when it was used to break up the more hands-on classes.
By the third class, despite the fact that St. Vincent’s rock-star guitar playing is well-known, we still hadn’t heard her play.
At one point, while attempting to teach a Nirvana technique, she broke out into a solo on the air guitar. In light of the fact that she was seated right next to three guitars, it seemed a little disingenuous!
The start of the session could have been much more educational and engrossing had they used demonstrations right from the start.
03 – A little bit short
In general, I thought the lesson was excellent; however, with a duration of only about two hours, it is one of the shorter MasterClasses available, and the price of $90 for a single enrollment is very costly.
It would be very interesting to see another case study, or for St. Vincent to demonstrate even more unorthodox extended procedures.
Who Should Take This Course?
This MasterClass is accessible thanks to Annie Clark’s explanations. Full-time musician, yet I only know 3 chords (G, Em, D)
Despite my meager guitar talents, I followed Annie’s course easily. Despite 6 years of music school, I learned a lot. Because of St. Vincent’s distinct style, I think this course has something for everyone.
It’s good for:
- He is looking forward to the opportunity to learn from a Grammy-winning songwriter.
- Already a musician, but looking to branch out into new genres.
- Is ready to expand their musical toolkit with new sounds, whether through effects, other instruments, or simply playing their instrument in a new way?
- Is it difficult for a woman to break through the barriers of the music industry?
- Interested in learning more about the multifaceted career of St. Vincent?
- Has a great deal of admiration for St. Vincent!
Not everyone should take this MasterClass. This course lacks tasks and subsequent reading, so it feels like “infotainment.” This course lacks defined tasks and feedback.
Course Cost & Pricing – ST Vincent Masterclass Review
For the most up-to-date MasterClass pricing information, please visit this page. The most common method of accessing MasterClass is through a $180-a-year subscription package (about $15 a month).
MasterClass subscriptions provide you access to all of MasterClass’s 80+ courses. If you’re only planning on taking a few classes, you can save a lot of money. In addition to Hans Zimmer’s seminar, I recommend looking into the creative process.
That works out to about $30-$45 per course, so it’s worth looking into at least 4-6 lessons. This works out to $30 for each of the six classes that you take.
It’s hard to find a better deal when you consider that these seminars are being taught by world-renowned authorities. It’s a sort of learning hack.
Furthermore, if you’re not satisfied with your purchase for any reason, you can get a full refund from MasterClass within 30 days.
ST Vincent Masterclass Review – Is It Worth It?
In my view (ST Vincent Masterclass Review), the answer is a resounding yes!
Annie Clark is a fantastic educator who possesses the unique ability to translate inexplicable ideas about abstract art into terms that can be understood by anyone.
It is both educational and entertaining to watch due to the excellent combination of anecdotal lessons and more in-depth research presented throughout.
Depends on what you want:
To improve your songwriting, this book is a must-read and is ideal for you. All-inclusive subscriptions are especially beneficial.
If you’re searching for an assignment-based academic program, this isn’t the course for you. On Coursera, Berklee’s course might be a better fit for you (though it is extremely technical).
The final word?
For a good reason, St. Vincent is a household name. This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to learn from someone who has paved her own path to success.
In addition, she is a natural teacher who has a deep understanding of how to convey such an abstract concept as creativity in an understandable way.
One of the best online courses I’ve ever done, in my opinion. It’s a bargain at $90 for the whole thing. But what if you had access to other instructors like Tom Morello and Hans Zimmer as part of your package? The price is too good to be true.
Frequently Asked Questions
How long is St. Vincent’s MasterClass?
The duration of St. Vincent’s MasterClass is 2 hours and 18 minutes, and it is comprised of 16 films that are separated into 6 distinct chapters.
How much does the St. Vincent MasterClass cost?
An all-access pass to MasterClass can be purchased for $180 per year (or $15 per month). You will have access to more than 80 more courses in addition to St. Vincent’s MasterClass when you purchase this.
Is St Vincent Masterclass watch online free available?
The St. Vincent MasterClass is not, however, available for free download or streaming. However, MasterClass provides a number of different purchase choices as well as refunds in the event that you are dissatisfied with the service.
Can I get a refund if I don’t like the St. Vincent MasterClass?
You can get a refund from MasterClass if you buy directly from them. If you buy from a third-party vendor, their return policy may be applicable. Visit MasterClass here to make sure your refund policy is up to date.
Can I buy St. Vincent’s MasterClass by itself?
Using the MasterClass “gift” option, you can purchase just the course. As a stand-alone course, it costs $90.