Mariah Carey MasterClass Review:
Using Your Voice as an Instrument

Last updated on: August 10, 2023, Written by:

Bill Tremlon

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Nowadays, sophisticated music software can produce sound from nothing. In the past, singers had to do the hard work of exploring the range of their vocal capabilities. Mariah Carey is one such singer who has perfected her soprano vocal range without fancy software. It enables her to use her voice not only for lyric creation but also for sound production.

If you want to know how she does it, Mariah Carey’s MasterClass is the course for you. She lets in the cameras for the first time in her recording studio, which she calls, The Butterfly Lounge. 

In this Mariah Carey MasterClass review, I’ll help determine whether the course can teach you how to use your voice as an instrument.

Mariah Carey MasterClass Overview

Mariah Carey’s MasterClass is simple and defines the production process when you create a song. Mariah shows learners a step-by-step guide for gathering inspiration, sourcing for beats, and songwriting. Mariah Carey uses one of her songs, The Roof, and reimagines it with the help of a string quartet to produce a fresh song.

Mariah Carey MasterClass Review

Mariah Carey MasterClass Review Summary

⭐ Rating:9.6 ★★★★★
🥇 Category of class:Music
📈 Suits best for:Singers and anyone interested in music
🕒 Lenght:1 hours 44 minutes
⏳ Avg. Lesson Duration11 minutes
🛍️ Course Essentials:Pen, paper, and love for music
💼 Complementary material:A Class Guide
📚 No. of Lessons:9 lessons
🛒 Payment options:Individual / Duo / Family
💵 Price:10 – 20 $ (billed annually)
🔄 Refund policy:30-day satisfaction guarantee
🎁 Free trial:

1.Meet Your Instructor: Mariah Carey;
2.Producing With Your Voice;
3.Lyricism: Write About the Realness;
4.Writing With Samples
5.Background Vocals, Part 1;
6.Background Vocals Part 2;
7.Instrumentation and Emotion;
8.Taking Care of Your Voice;
9.Surviving in the Music Industry.

Key Skills You’ll Learn

  • Producing a song;
  • Drafting Lyrics;
  • Instrumentation;
  • Caring for your voice;
  • Maintaining creative control in the music industry.

Who is Mariah Carey MasterClass for

Mariah Carey’s MasterClass is for anyone who loves music. Vocalists will find tips on achieving certain pitchiness in their vocal ranges in the course content. Artists and musicians will find a lot of great insight into how the music industry works, artistic choices, crafting melodies, self-expression, and more. If aren’t a musician, you’ll get entertainment value from one of the greatest artists of all time.

Our Evaluation

Total score: 9.6

Mariah Carey as an Instructor
Uniqueness and Freshness
Structure and Quality
Student Engagement and Retention
Value for the Money


  • Instruction from an iconic vocalist
  • Insightful concepts about music production
  • A full exclusive song
  • Useful class guide


  • Short course
  • Less technical

Mariah Carey MasterClass Instructor Review

About Mariah Carey

Most people know Mariah Carey from her popular festive tune, All I Want For Christmas Is You. The songwriter has many more catchy tunes under her belt. Mariah has nine platinum albums and two diamond albums.

Nineteen of her tracks have maintained the number 1 position on billboards over the years. With such a record, Billboard magazine has even named her The Greatest Female Artist Of All Time. It’s no wonder that she has 5 Grammy awards and is a Songwriters Hall of Fame 2022 inductee.

Mariah Carey Masterclass on vocals and songwriting

Mariah Carey as an Instructor

Mariah Carey is as good as an instructor as she is as a musician. She articulates her points well so that you know exactly what she means. A good example of her instructional skills is when she directs a string quartet in the lessons to produce sound exactly as she envisions it.

Mariah’s energetic and enthusiasm about music also rubs on you such that you want to hear what she has to say next.

About MasterClass

Since 2015, MasterClass has offered over 180 classes for online learning, taught by top-tier instructors in almost any field. It includes pre-recorded video lessons from masters such as Richard Branson, Martin Scorsese, Aaron Sorkin, Gordon Ramsay, and many others.

The video quality equals Hollywood movies, and every MasterClass course is carefully structured. But that’s not all. There are interactive assignments, MasterClass community activities, and an ever-growing video library to enjoy. The sheer amount of content can make it hard to begin. Cursums will help you to choose wisely.

Uniqueness and Freshness of the Content

Mariah’s advice about music production is all scattered over the internet, meaning it’s hard to fully understand how Mariah Carey does it. 

Mariah’s MasterClass consolidates her advice in a course containing audio-visual lessons and notes. The module is an all-in-one program that engages learners in all spheres of learning. 

There are other MasterClass music courses, each with its own unique touch. For example, you can unlock beat making with Timbaland or learn guitar styles from Tom Morello, but Mariah Carey’s course stands out due to her use of her voice as a tool for music production.

Mariah Carey MasterClass Content and Structure Review

It took me 1 hour and 44 minutes to complete the course’s nine lessons which are quite minimal compared to other MasterClass courses. On average, each lesson is about 11 minutes, indicating the briefness and conciseness of the course.

The last lesson on Surviving in the Music Industry is the longest. It goes for 16 minutes and 36 seconds, talking about Mariah’s musical journey, especially on maintaining creative control.

The class guide PDF has several assignments to keep learners engaged in the course. They are short tasks that take bout 5 to 20 minutes to complete. I found that it’s ideal to do them at your own pace after finishing the course, as they require being familiar with what Mariah says.

Producing With Your Voice

2-4 Lessons Summary

The first group of lessons is about using only her voice as a tool to produce music, and not only voice lyrics. Mariah first tells us how she learned this songwriting process unknowingly during early days of her career. She explains how she would request beat changes to her songs, thus making her a music producer.

Mariah Carey on how to use your voice as a tool

Mariah also explains where she derives her lyrics and the inspiration behind them. For example, she derived Inspiration for The Roof from a song by Mobb Deep Shook Ones Part II. She also teaches how she used interpolation of certain beats to define her melody and rhythm. As a result, some credit her for bringing a new sound by blending hip-hop with pop and R&B.

Instrumentation and Emotion

5-7 Lessons Summary

In this group of lessons, Mariah explains the source of her inspiration in her musical career. A heavy source of inspiration is her personal stories. The other sources are legendary vocalists like Luther Vandross, Chaka Khan, and Cissy Houston.

Mariah Carey on Masterclass: talking about inspiration from other vocalists

She also recreates the background vocals of one of her songs, The Roof, in her mobile studio. Grammy award-winning Brandy assists her in coming up with backing vocals and background vocal arrangements (BGVs).

The string quartet also helps to remake tunes that reflect certain in-depth emotions in the song. By doing this, Mariah teaches how to harmonize the lyrics with the beat to enhance synchronicity.

Surviving in the Music Industry

8-9 Lessons Summary

Mariah begins this last group of lessons by explaining the importance of taking care of your voice the way you would with an instrument, such as a piano. She gives tips on how to do this. For example, the importance of humidity in maintaining the voice. She also talks about the benefit of resting after prolonged use or vocal exercises.

Mariah Carey Masterclass on how the music industry works

Afterwards, Mariah talks about the challenges facing musicians in the music industry and how to overcome them. This is important for musicians to maintain the creative process when producing music.

The lessons end with the full reimagined version of The Roof. It’s the conclusion of the whole music production process that happens from lesson 1.

Fast-Track Lesson Plan

Finish Mariah Carey’s MasterClass in 1 hour and 10 minutes.

2.Producing With Your Voice09:27
3.Lyricism: Write About the Realness16:13
4.Writing With Samples12:03
6.Background Vocals, Part 213:35
7.Instrumentation and Emotion09:27
8.Taking Care of Your Voice09:15

Mariah Carey MasterClass Student Engagement and Retention

Like all other courses in MasterClass, Mariah Carey delivers excellent video production and quality. I particularly liked the shots in The Butterfly Lounge as the team works on The Roof song. The transition between the instructor and the string quartet was engaging and made me want to continue following the MasterClass.

Most of the content in the course is easy to understand, even for a person who has never attended music school. However, there’s still jargon used by the team in the studio. The course takes care of this by giving short descriptions immediately after a team member uses them. They are conveniently placed as subtexts in the video so you can read them as you watch them.

My Personal Experience With Mariah Carey MasterClass

Things I Liked About the Mariah Carey MasterClass

Instruction From an Iconic Vocalist

Many amateur and talented singers agree that Mariah Carey is a master of the vocals. Her ability to hit the whistle register effortlessly in her music classifies her as one of the greats. I was glad that I was receiving advice about music production from one of the best in the industry.

Insightful Concepts About Music Production

You may find that most of the content is familiar if you’re an intermediate or advanced music learner. However, if you’re fairly new in the music scene, there is a lot to learn. I found myself getting amazed and learning a lot from the course. For example, learning about the music business ecosystem and 360 deals was interesting.

A Full Exclusive Song

It’s only on MasterClass where you’ll get to sample Mariah Carey and Brandy’s full exclusive release of the reimagined version of The Roof song. Apart from enjoying the song in the last lesson, I also saw exclusive footage of the work behind the song’s making.

Useful Class Guide

I liked how the class guide summarized the information in the video lessons while providing extra instruction and details. The guide also has plenty of assignments consisting of tasks that help implement what the course teaches.  

Things I Didn’t Like About the Mariah Carey MasterClass

Short Course

The Mariah Carey MasterClass is short compared to other MasterClasses. As a result, I felt the course lacked enough content. However, the course does compensate for this with informative concepts about music production, but the course ended with me wishing there was more.

Less Technical

If you start watching the course with the hopes that it talks about the technical side of music production, you may get disappointed. I found that the course mainly concentrated on vocals in music production. However, the course does try to touch on the technical side by giving the software, plug-ins, and samples to help in the creative process.

Is Mariah Carey MasterClass Worth the Money

Cost of Mariah Carey MasterClass

Acquiring Mariah Carey’s MasterClass requires that you get either of the three monthly plans available. There’s a $10 Individual plan, a $15 Duo plan, and a $20 Family plan. This pricing is standard across the MasterClass platform, even for other courses.

Individual (one device)$10 per month
Duo (two devices)$15 per month
Family (six devices)$20 per month

The price of Mariah Carey’s MasterClass is worth it because of the knowledge you’ll get from a legendary vocalist. The entertainment value of the course also makes it a worthy subscription.

Does the Class Keep Its Promises

The whole point of the course is learning to use the voice as an instrument, a similar approach to Christina Aguilera’s vocal lessons. MasterClass achieves this in several ways. Mariah teaches by showing practical examples where she directs a string quartet, teaches lyricism, sampling, and creating BGVs. The production value is high, so I highly recommend this to anyone who wants to learn about music production.

Mariah Carey MasterClass: What Others Have Said

Mariah Carey is a household name due to her hit songs. They are characterized by high octaves and hitting the whistling register, for example, in her Emotions song. With an impressive octave range of 5, many of us wanted to learn how she achieves such with her voice. Luckily, it’s now possible to learn the secrets of the successful popstar on MasterClass.

Mariah Carey Masterclass review on Twitter

Others have so much adoration for the record producer that they also ended up enjoying her MasterClass. They view her as a role model in their journey to becoming multitalented artists.

Mariah Carey Masterclass review on Facebook

Others claim the Mariah Carey duet with Brandy to produce a new version of The Roof is worth it to get the MasterClass.

Mariah Carey Masterclass review on Reddit

Essentials Used in the Mariah Carey MasterClass

After getting the Mariah Carey MasterClass subscription, you must arm yourself with pen and paper. This traditional style of capturing notes will help with recording key information regarding music production.

For those who may not be familiar with Mariah Carey, it’s important to familiarise yourself with the artist to fully use the MasterClass. The following tools will help you.

  • The Meaning of Mariah Carey (2020). It’s a memoir co-authored with Michaela Angela Davis titled
  • Mariah Carey’s website

Alternatives to Mariah Carey MasterClass

Other Music Courses Available on Masterclass

  • Danny Elfman’s Masterclass on film scoring
  • Armin Van Buuren MasterClass on Dance Music
  • Timbaland MasterClass on Producing and Beatmaking
  • Questlove MasterClass on Curation and DJing
  • Christina Agulera MasterClass on Singing
  • Usher MasterClass on the art of performance
  • Metallica MasterClass on being a band
  • Carlos Santana MasterClass on The art and Soul of Guitar
  • John Legend MasterClass on Songwriting

Alternatives to MasterClass


Udemy is one of the most popular online learning providers, with a massive choice of various classes. The learning platform covers a range of music courses for beginner and advanced learners.


Coursera is another big name in the online courses market, with a lot to offer in music-related fields. It’s a great way to expand your knowledge of the field without spending much money on online learning.


Skillshare focuses on practical courses, with educational videos substituting expensive college courses. The aim is to provide users with marketable skills for finding a job. There are some courses related to creating your own music as well.

Q&A about Mariah Carey MasterClass

Mariah Carey’s MasterClass teaches to sing in all voices. However, her teaching is more refined to the soprano voice she uses to reach high pitches and hit the whistle register.

Most popular songs by Mariah Carey include: All I Want For Christmas Is You, We Belong Together, Hero, Always Be My Baby, Touch My Body, Obsessed, My All, I Want To Know What Love Is, Bye Bye, Fantasy, and The Roof.

It can teach you to use your voice as an instrument but not sing as high as Mariah Carey. In Mariah’s MasterClass, she explains the reason behind her high-note singing. The development of vocal chord nodules in her throat enhances her raspy voice, enabling her to achieve the whistle register.

Mariah Carey can hit five octaves which is impressive. Her vocal range is G#2 – G#5 – G#7, which classifieds her as a light coloratura soprano.

Author: Bill Tremlon

Blogger | Life-long learner

Bill Tremlon

I’ve spent the last ten years passionately studying various online learning platforms. Udemy, MasterClass, Coursera, and Skillshare are the main ones, but I review lesser-known study tools as well. I test and analyze each course and lesson thoroughly before sharing my research.



Receiving advice from one of the best in the industry.

Author: Bill Tremlon

Blogger | Life-long learner

Bill Tremlon