Monday, August 10, 2009

August 2009, #1

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Chorus Appearance At Canal Park

On Tuesday, July 28, the Akron Derbytown Chorus sang The National Anthem at the baseball game between the hometown Akron Aeros and the Erie Seawolves. This has become an annual event and as usual, a great time was had by all. After a brief warmup, we were escorted onto the field. The opening ceremonies included the traditional first pitch delivered by our President, Wil (Wild Thing) Veith and also Assistant Director, Bud (Speedball) Couts. Then it was time to sing. It is difficult not to feel a few goosebumps as you stand together with your fellow barbershoppers and sing our nation's song.

As we left the field, the Seawolves' third base coach told us that it was the best rendition that he had heard. He may not have ever judged at an international convention, but he has certainly heard a lot of versions of The Star Spangled Banner.

We then settled into section 114 with family and friends to watch the game and lead the crowd in singing "Take Me Out To The Ballgame" during the seventh inning stretch. The weather was perfect, hotdogs were $1.00, and the Aeros won the game by a score of 7-4.

The video below shows our pregame performance. One editor's note: To Erie hitting instructor, Lee May, Jr., number 30. If you expect to rate with the Akron Derbytown Chorus, don't expectorate while we're singing.

Barbershop Glossary
Decrescendo- a gradual decrease in volume

Echo-an arranger's device used to enhance a song musically and lyrically. Usually, the leads hold onto a word while the harmony parts change notes and repeat words from the end of the phrase.

Legato-smooth singing with no apparent interruption in articulation.

Pick-Up-when an arranger starts a phrase on the upbeat with one voice part only, usually lead or bass, joined by other parts on the downbeat of the next measure.

Tonal Center-Giving preference to one tone, so that the tonic becomes the center to which all other tones are related. The tonal center should remain constant, barring a key change, until the song's conclusion.

Getting To Know Us

This barbershopper was born in Akron and has lived in this city for all his life with the exception of a 19 month period during 1963-65. He has been a barbershopper and chapter member for 22 years. He has three children, 13 grandchildren and one great-grandchild.

He played clarinet from fifth grade into college. His first voice class and directing course came around age 13 and soon after, he founded and directed the Youth Choir at Norton Grace Brethren Church. In this role, he competed and placed second in a national competition.

After graduating from Kenmore High School in 1963, he moved on to Grace College in Winona Lake, Indiana. He sang in the Oratorio Society in college. One of the major tasks of this group was to sing Handel's Messiah before Christmas break. His classes included math, music education, English and Speech. He also was an actor and tech director for two plays while in college.

According to his bio, his parents moved while he was away at college. He finally pried the address out of them and moved home in January, 1965.

He worked at Goodyear Tire and Rubber Co. for 37 years, a large portion of which was spent servicing all the scales at the Tech Center. This included everything from lab scales to truck scales. Other job experiences were in janitorial service during college, maintenance for his parents' dry cleaners and as a saw man in a machine shop.

This chapter member's hobbies include leaded glass and glass
lamp work, art painting, fishing, carving, gospel and old-time music, making musical instruments, gardening, woodworking and acting.

(this chorus member's identity will appear in the August 24 bulletin edition)

The Songs We Sing

"Hello Mary Lou" is a song written by U.S. singer Gene Pitney and Cayet Mangiaracina and performed by Ricky Nelson in 1961. It reached #9 on the Billboard music charts on May 28, 1961, although the other side of the single, "Travelin' Man", hit #1. In the United Kingdom, where it was the unrivalled A-side, it hit #2, and it was a hit in much of Europe, particularly Norway, where it spent 14 weeks at #1. The song features an influential guitar solo by James Burton, often cited by modern guitarists such as Brian May.

(All together now, "More Cowbell")

Chapter Officer Duty Descriptions

With chapter elections coming up in a few weeks, here is a continuation of the article that was introduced in the July 27th bulletin.

Chapter Development VP-responsible for marketing, membership development and services, and public relations. He guides the Chapter committees to accomplish the Chapter's goals. This officer guides the chapter in membership retention, growth and marketing. He should provide periodic inputs to the Chapt
er bulletin to improve Chapter awareness of ongoing activities. The Chapter Development VP coordinates and shares duties and activities with the PR and Marketing VP.

Music and Performance VP-responsible to the Chapter for developing the Chapter's music leadership and maintaining an acceptable standard of capability in the Chapter's performing units. He should provide periodic articles for inclusion in the Chapter bulletin. His primary interface is the musical director.

Chorus Manager-responsibilities cover nearly every physical aspect of the chorus rehearsal and performance. He assures that materials and equipment are in the right place at the right time. He supplies the music team with any mat
erials that they require. He must interface well with all members of the Chapter and also with individuals and groups outside the Chapter. In short, he should have good PR and communication skills and be able to delegate to others within the Chapter.

Program VP-the music team and director are in charge of ensuring a quality musical presentation at every Chapter meeting, the Program VP is in
charge of everything else. He is responsible for making the meeting congenial and fraternal. He focuses on logistics that will make for a well-organized meeting that runs smoothly and is fun.


Mark Nedel-8/11
Jim Mally-8/12
Mark Purdy-8/12

Quartet Activity

Clear Choice was busy last Saturday (7/8). Dan, Ray, Jim and Bill delivered a Happy Birthday/Singing Telegram (sort of, ask one of them for details) early Saturday afternoon and then motored to downtown Kent for a 30 minute show as part of an ice cream social. It was rainy, but they sang songs about sunshine and stayed dry, for the most part. Ice cream was 25 cents/scoop and age 60 and over ate free. Who cares about rain?

Upcoming Clear Choice gigs are:

8/21-Sandusky, Ohio: Providence Care Center

9/4-Hickory, PA: High School Reunion

Upcoming Chorus Activities

Monday, August 10 (today)-Chapter Board Meeting, 6:25-8:15, North Hill Library, 183 East Cuyahoga Falls, Avenue
Thursday, August 20-
Summerville at Camelot Place, 49 Leisure Lane, Medina. Be there before 6:30, we sing at 7:00. Uniform: Red chorus golf shirt, black pants, black socks and black shoes.

Opinion Poll

You noticed that some parts of today's bulletin contained red text color as usual and other parts had black text. Take a minute, scroll back to the top of the bulletin and complete the Text Preference poll in the top right corner. You can listen to the Music City Chorus below before you do the poll. It's up to you, but please respond.

How About Some More Singin'?
(These guys came in 18th)