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Re: [colorado-acappella] Famous Co-Ed Group?

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  • Kristen Owen
    Hi guys, I guess I could have properly introduced myself, eh? I ve been singing for many, many years... mostly through choirs, music theatre with various
    Message 1 of 6 , May 11, 2004
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      Hi guys,
       
      I guess I could have properly introduced myself, eh?
       
      I've been singing for many, many years... mostly through choirs, music theatre with various community groups, and opera with the Denver Opera Company.
       
      I did a little bit of a capella when I was going to school at CU (I studied Music Ed in their College of Music). The group I was in was pretty darn lousy, so I didn't stick around long. But, I was a huge fan of The Buffoons, and they were probably my first experience with a good, fun a capella group.
       
      Most recently, I finished up doing the musical "Into the Woods" in Estes Park, and some friends and I were talking about how much fun it would be to start a group. Estes has an Oratorio Society, a Chorale, a Barbershop Quartet and several Chamber groups, but NEVER has their been a successful a capella group specializing in pop, rock, jazz, etc. There's a large appreciation of the performing arts up here, and I think we could really have the "corner" on this style of music. 
       
      We have five people who are "pretty" committed to the group - 3 women and 2 men. We are missing, however, what I think is the most important element - a talented bass. We can't even think of anyone in town who fits the "mold" that sings bass. But, I think we're content to start without a bass for now. The five of us have worked together a lot, and are all very talented singers, sight readers, music teachers, directors, arrangers, writers, etc. I really think it's a kind of "dream team" of local talent and I have very high hopes for this group. Estes Park is a small enough town that most people have heard each of us perform in one fashion or another, and I think they'd be really excited to know we'll now be performing together.
       
      My main concern is, however, that we will lack the motivation and/or leadership to get off the ground. One of the people I consider crucial to the group  has admitted that he really can't commit himself until after the summer tourist season, because he runs cabins and a lodge. Everyone, including myself, admit that we all have extremely busy lives (I'm the mother of two boys - one's 2 and one's 8 months, plus I'm training to be a volunteer firefighter, plus I'm very active with the Fine Arts Guild, plus... well, you get the point!), but I'm not convinced that everyone is willing to make the sacrifices that I am. And, quite frankly, the people I'm working with are what is making it WORTH the sacrifice to me. If any of them were replaced with someone else that could commit more time, but doesn't have quite the same calibur of talent, it really wouldn't be worth it to me. (Trust me, I know what the local talent is like.)  ;-) So, any suggestions in this department?
       
      We are *trying* to get a meeting set up for this weekend to discuss each person's ideas, goals, commitment-level, etc, and go over song possibilities. I can tell you that we probably won't be all on the same page about that, either. I know that one person really wants us to be more jazz-centric, whereas I'd like to be more pop. As I mentioned before, my early interest came from the CU Buffoons (I'm also a huge fan of Rockapella and the Mint Juleps), and I'd like to be a lot like them - popular songs, and a very funny, entertaining performance. I'd like us to learn how to do vocal percussion, too. I mentioned to another person in the group that it'd be great if there was some light choreography, to make it funny and entertaining. He looked at me like I was crazy, and said, "I'm not going to have to do spirit fingers, am I?" HA HA! I guess "choreography" was maybe a poor word choice. So, anyway, I don't know what music will focus on. Hopefully a good variety of everything.
       
      I know that if we can get motivated, we'd have a talented group, a set put together in a matter of weeks, have some original arrangements, and even be pretty popular in our small community (I even have friends at the newspapers, so I know we'd even get great press). However, my hopes are so high about this right now (obviously I'm the one doing all the research, since here I am on this mailing list, right?), and I'm afraid that it's not going to pull through.
       
      Any advice that can be offerred about how to make this work, and where to go from here would be greatly appreciated.
       
      Kristen
       
      ----- Original Message -----
      Sent: Tuesday, May 11, 2004 5:04 PM
      Subject: Re: [colorado-acappella] Famous Co-Ed Group?

      Hey Tim,

      Thanks for getting back on this. You came up with more co-ed candidates than
      I could think of. I had a list started here at my desk with Toxic Audio and
      SoVoSo among others, but, as you alude to, there are so many styles and
      sizes, and "professional" levels, it's difficult to make any recommendations
      without knowing more about Kristen's interests. And the "co-ed" reference
      brings the idea of college stuff forward. I have always thought of these
      groups as "mixed." Is that different?

      For example, LoDo Air Band has been around here a long time (mixed 3+3
      sextet), but they may not be in the ballpark of Kristen's ideas. Funny also,
      when I think of the Allstars, I always think of a guy group with a female
      featured -- just from the style of their presentation -- although for awhile
      they were 6 (2+4). And of course, DAP is the other end of the spectrum -- as
      in Swingle Singers.

      Looking through the CASA directory might help, or scanning the online or
      published catalogs of Primarily A Cappella or Mainely A Cappella could be
      helpful. The universe of a cappella is a stringy one.

      Feed us some more, Kristen.

      Rol Sharette


    • rjsharette@prodigy.net
      Hello again, Kristen, Well, for starters, how about getting in touch with Nic Widhalm, our CASA area ambassador in the Ft Collins/Greeley area. I know he comes
      Message 2 of 6 , May 12, 2004
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        Hello again, Kristen,
         
        Well, for starters, how about getting in touch with Nic Widhalm, our CASA area ambassador in the Ft Collins/Greeley area. I know he comes in contact with more young singers than I do and may have some suggestions. Also, his group, Curious Gage, does some of the stuff you mention, so you may want to sit in on their rehearsal or show sometime to get the juices flowing. Nic is into the college scene enough that he may be able to find a prospect that's movin' out and would be a match for you.
         
        Once you get your formulative stuff underway, consider bringing someone in to do a weekend with you all -- like a Deke Sharon or Tim Jones. I have a feeling their enthusiasm and rapport would do great things for your energy and focus. I realize you can't get very far wiothout identifying the voices, but a candidate from Greeley should be possible -- or even Ft Collins. Nic's contact info is in the current issuie of the Colorado Songster. Give him a jingle. It's a good place to start.
         
        Rol Sharette
        We have five people who are "pretty" committed to the group - 3 women and 2 men. We are missing, however, what I think is the most important element - a talented bass. We can't even think of anyone in town who fits the "mold" that sings bass. But, I think we're content to start without a bass for now. The five of us have worked together a lot, and are all very talented singers, sight readers, music teachers, directors, arrangers, writers, etc. I really think it's a kind of "dream team" of local talent and I have very high hopes for this group. Estes Park is a small enough town that most people have heard each of us perform in one fashion or another, and I think they'd be really excited to know we'll now be performing together.
         
        My main concern is, however, that we will lack the motivation and/or leadership to get off the ground. One of the people I consider crucial to the group  has admitted that he really can't commit himself until after the summer tourist season, because he runs cabins and a lodge. Everyone, including myself, admit that we all have extremely busy lives (I'm the mother of two boys - one's 2 and one's 8 months, plus I'm training to be a volunteer firefighter, plus I'm very active with the Fine Arts Guild, plus... well, you get the point!), but I'm not convinced that everyone is willing to make the sacrifices that I am. And, quite frankly, the people I'm working with are what is making it WORTH the sacrifice to me. If any of them were replaced with someone else that could commit more time, but doesn't have quite the same calibur of talent, it really wouldn't be worth it to me. (Trust me, I know what the local talent is like.)  ;-) So, any suggestions in this department?
         
        We are *trying* to get a meeting set up for this weekend to discuss each person's ideas, goals, commitment-level, etc, and go over song possibilities. I can tell you that we probably won't be all on the same page about that, either. I know that one person really wants us to be more jazz-centric, whereas I'd like to be more pop. As I mentioned before, my early interest came from the CU Buffoons (I'm also a huge fan of Rockapella and the Mint Juleps), and I'd like to be a lot like them - popular songs, and a very funny, entertaining performance. I'd like us to learn how to do vocal percussion, too. I mentioned to another person in the group that it'd be great if there was some light choreography, to make it funny and entertaining. He looked at me like I was crazy, and said, "I'm not going to have to do spirit fingers, am I?" HA HA! I guess "choreography" was maybe a poor word choice. So, anyway, I don't know what music will focus on. Hopefully a good variety of everything.
         
        I know that if we can get motivated, we'd have a talented group, a set put together in a matter of weeks, have some original arrangements, and even be pretty popular in our small community (I even have friends at the newspapers, so I know we'd even get great press). However, my hopes are so high about this right now (obviously I'm the one doing all the research, since here I am on this mailing list, right?), and I'm afraid that it's not going to pull through.
         
        Any advice that can be offerred about how to make this work, and where to go from here would be greatly appreciated.
         
        Kristen
      • Nic Widhalm
        Hey Kristen, Nic Widhalm, Northern Colorado Area ambassador here. If you re looking for great co-ed groups I would definitely check out Groove Society or 17th
        Message 3 of 6 , May 19, 2004
        • 0 Attachment
          Hey Kristen,

          Nic Widhalm, Northern Colorado Area ambassador here.
          If you're looking for great co-ed groups I would
          definitely check out Groove Society or 17th Avenue
          Allstars. Both groups are incredibly talented, nice,
          and live in the area. I'm sure they would have a few
          pointers for you.

          If you're just looking for experienced groups to model
          after, spiralmouth is one of my all time favorite
          co-ed rock groups, idea of north and sixth wave are
          wonderful jazz groups, and nobody's funnier than the
          bobs and Minimum wage. All have websites and cd's,
          and you should be able to find contact info on the
          CASA website (www.casa.org).

          Hope this has been helpful.

          ~Nic Widhalm
          CASA Northern Colorado Area Ambassador
          VP for Curious Gage
          www.curiousgage.com

          --- rjsharette@... wrote:
          > Hello again, Kristen,
          >
          > Well, for starters, how about getting in touch with
          > Nic Widhalm, our CASA area ambassador in the Ft
          > Collins/Greeley area. I know he comes in contact
          > with more young singers than I do and may have some
          > suggestions. Also, his group, Curious Gage, does
          > some of the stuff you mention, so you may want to
          > sit in on their rehearsal or show sometime to get
          > the juices flowing. Nic is into the college scene
          > enough that he may be able to find a prospect that's
          > movin' out and would be a match for you.
          >
          > Once you get your formulative stuff underway,
          > consider bringing someone in to do a weekend with
          > you all -- like a Deke Sharon or Tim Jones. I have a
          > feeling their enthusiasm and rapport would do great
          > things for your energy and focus. I realize you
          > can't get very far wiothout identifying the voices,
          > but a candidate from Greeley should be possible --
          > or even Ft Collins. Nic's contact info is in the
          > current issuie of the Colorado Songster. Give him a
          > jingle. It's a good place to start.
          >
          > Rol Sharette
          > We have five people who are "pretty" committed to
          > the group - 3 women and 2 men. We are missing,
          > however, what I think is the most important element
          > - a talented bass. We can't even think of anyone in
          > town who fits the "mold" that sings bass. But, I
          > think we're content to start without a bass for now.
          > The five of us have worked together a lot, and are
          > all very talented singers, sight readers, music
          > teachers, directors, arrangers, writers, etc. I
          > really think it's a kind of "dream team" of local
          > talent and I have very high hopes for this group.
          > Estes Park is a small enough town that most people
          > have heard each of us perform in one fashion or
          > another, and I think they'd be really excited to
          > know we'll now be performing together.
          >
          > My main concern is, however, that we will lack the
          > motivation and/or leadership to get off the ground.
          > One of the people I consider crucial to the group
          > has admitted that he really can't commit himself
          > until after the summer tourist season, because he
          > runs cabins and a lodge. Everyone, including myself,
          > admit that we all have extremely busy lives (I'm the
          > mother of two boys - one's 2 and one's 8 months,
          > plus I'm training to be a volunteer firefighter,
          > plus I'm very active with the Fine Arts Guild,
          > plus... well, you get the point!), but I'm not
          > convinced that everyone is willing to make the
          > sacrifices that I am. And, quite frankly, the people
          > I'm working with are what is making it WORTH the
          > sacrifice to me. If any of them were replaced with
          > someone else that could commit more time, but
          > doesn't have quite the same calibur of talent, it
          > really wouldn't be worth it to me. (Trust me, I know
          > what the local talent is like.) ;-) So, any
          > suggestions in this department?
          >
          > We are *trying* to get a meeting set up for this
          > weekend to discuss each person's ideas, goals,
          > commitment-level, etc, and go over song
          > possibilities. I can tell you that we probably won't
          > be all on the same page about that, either. I know
          > that one person really wants us to be more
          > jazz-centric, whereas I'd like to be more pop. As I
          > mentioned before, my early interest came from the CU
          > Buffoons (I'm also a huge fan of Rockapella and the
          > Mint Juleps), and I'd like to be a lot like them -
          > popular songs, and a very funny, entertaining
          > performance. I'd like us to learn how to do vocal
          > percussion, too. I mentioned to another person in
          > the group that it'd be great if there was some light
          > choreography, to make it funny and entertaining. He
          > looked at me like I was crazy, and said, "I'm not
          > going to have to do spirit fingers, am I?" HA HA! I
          > guess "choreography" was maybe a poor word choice.
          > So, anyway, I don't know what music will focus on.
          > Hopefully a good variety of everything.
          >
          > I know that if we can get motivated, we'd have a
          > talented group, a set put together in a matter of
          > weeks, have some original arrangements, and even be
          > pretty popular in our small community (I even have
          > friends at the newspapers, so I know we'd even get
          > great press). However, my hopes are so high about
          > this right now (obviously I'm the one doing all the
          > research, since here I am on this mailing list,
          > right?), and I'm afraid that it's not going to pull
          > through.
          >
          > Any advice that can be offerred about how to make
          > this work, and where to go from here would be
          > greatly appreciated.
          >
          > Kristen





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