Re: How I got hooked
- Thanks for sharing how you got hooked on Barbershop. I thought I would share
with you how I got hooked. While I was going to my local Junior College here
in Santa Rosa California (1980 ish) I enrolled in some vocal music classes.
One was a basic vocal instruction class and the other was a mixed double
quartet that did some touring. I had the same instructor for both of my
classes, I could tell that my instructor had and still does have a love for
Barbershop, I remember him telling us about this great woman's chorus in
Santa Rosa with a Dynamic director and he felt that I would really like this
group Called Sweet Adelines.... All I knew of Barbershop was from what I had
seen on TV like The OSMONDS, I just Loved them! or in the plays that I was in
like the Music Man, But I thought Woman's Barbershop? Oh, dear! I don't wanna
sing wearing Gingham and wear funky costumes, but I did love the Makeup part
of it. Well, to make this long story longer =) I did check out Sweet Adelines
a few years later from an article that I had read in the paper and from the
moment I walked in the door not only was I hooked! I was remembering that my
Uncle Jerry in Washington State Sang Barbershop and that my college
instructor loved barbershop so a year or so Later at one of our rehearsals
there sat watching us was my instructor from the College. It was then I
realized that he wasn't only "MY" instructor in College but he was the one
and Only Val Hicks. What a thrill it was to work with Val and the many
stories that he told I will cherish forever. when I went to my first Mens
International in Anaheim in 1999 and hearing all those quartets and choruses
singing it brought back so many memories on how I got hooked into Barbershop.
Thanks Uncle Jerry Stewart and Val Hicks for Sharing Your Hobby with me.
REVIVAL Thanks and Pacific Empire you all hold a special place in my Heart!
Pacific Empire Chorus Region 12
Sweet Adelines 8th place International medalist
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- I love hearing these stories. What a great resource for membership
promotion! There's no better idea than one that has been proven to work.
My story is similar to many others. In 1971, living in a strange city
(Detroit) with limited social contacts, I had joined the Newcomer's Club,
hoping to make some friends by participating in some of the small activity
groups. Once a month they had a general meeting, and the entertainment at
one meeting was a quartet from the local Sweet Adelines chapter. Just a
regular chapter quartet - nothing great, no gold medals - but I thought
they were wonderful. I went up to them after the meeting and asked how I
could do this, and of course they were thrilled that they had a prospect.
They sent someone to pick me up the next Tuesday, plopped me down in the
middle of the baritone section, and the rest, as they say, is history.
(Needless to say, I gave up playing pinochle and making purses out of jute
string.) Since then I have made two major moves to different states, but I
never again had to worry about making new friends in a strange city.
Carol Donnelly <cdonnel@...>
Prospective Kentucky Sound Chapter, Sweet Adelines
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- I've been on vacation and have enjoyed catching up with these stories. I
think mine is a little different, so...
I'll join in...
There was this secretary in the school where I taught math - she kept
pestering me to visit "Sweet Adelines" - whatever that was. I was sooooo
shy, I just kept saying no. (I mean so shy that I couldn't buy gas for my
car because in those days you had to roll down your window and ask a
strange man to "fill 'er up.")
One day in the summer she called me and said she HAD to have a guest at the
next rehearsal or she would suffer some terrible indiginity (maybe wearing
nametag upside down, I don't remember.) I said I would go if she *promised* to
NEVER mention Sweet Adelines again. She did and I did.
Long story short - I was so enveloped with acceptance and love that night -
I didn't care one whit about the music! That came later! In about a
month, I knew I was "home." 28+ years later, I've done everything at the
chapter level except riser chair, everything at the regional level except
DMA (they changed it before I got a chance and now the job is TOO big) and
have competed with choruses and quartets, founded and directed a chorus and
... well, you name it! AND, I am no longer paralyzed with fear when
talking to strangers, although I would say I am still basically shy.
Thanks, Betty Marshall! Your persistence was a great gift to me!
The music hook, several years later, was probably singing on the same show
with the Gentleman's Agreement and getting advice on how to handle my
nerves from the great Bob Whitledge.
Marti Lovejoy, Life Member of Sweet Adelines (28 years so far)
SA Score Central for the SING & the Harmonet
Houston Horizon Chorus, Reg 10, TX, USA
- I've been reading this thread for about a week now and there are some
great stories about what got people started in Barbershopping.
I didn't come from a musical family and wasn't a "Barbershop Brat"
but I did enjoy singing. I started singing in choirs in junior high
school and continued through high school and church choirs. When I
graduated from college and moved from Tucson to Douglas, AZ (a small
border town about 90 miles to the south) to work, I left singing
behind, or so I thought.
Somehow, I had picked up an album of the 1968 International
Convention and listened to the likes of the Western Continentals
among others. There was something about the quartet style that just
captivated me. When I moved back to Tucson in 1976, I immediately set
out to find the local chapter. Fred Koch was my sponsor and I joined
the Tucson Chapter and was singing tenor in a quartet with him within
Barbershopping has been a major part of my adult life and I couldn't
imagine it not being so.
Tenor, Kopper Kings, Sunrise, Thursday Night 4-um, Vocal Command and
- I was in the Navy and checking into my new command in Hawaii in 1983 when I
was asked if I liked to sing by a Senior Chief. I said yes, why? He said
he was trying to put together an all Navy quartet. I asked what part he
needed and he asked me what part I could sing. I said melody, tenor and
bari. He said he had a Joulliard Bass and an outstanding tenor and he had
been singing lead for all his life so I could/would sing bari. Later that
week I went to my first meeting with the Sandwich Island Barbershop Chorus
and was really pleased with all they were doing. So I joined and sang with
them until I left in 1986 and have been a member ever since. I really wish
I had ben introduced to Barbershop music when I was much younger.
Knights of Harmony