Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Recognized Again on the Mouth Off Show!!

Clearly Vocal was awarded Runner-Up for "Where Did They Come From?" (a.k.a. best a cappella newbies) on this week's Mouth Off Show! We're in the segment beginning around 34:20. You might notice that the other runner-up was Voices of Lee. Then you might also notice that the winners were Sonos and Nota, and they both have label contracts! Just to be named among those groups is such an honor!! Thanks, Dave and Christopher!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Are YOU watching?

The Sing Off: a special 4-episode reality show on NBC similar to Idol. The difference? It's all a cappella! Not your "typical old-school boring a cappella," which is what so many people think when they hear that term, but exciting, new, and all different styles of vocal singing. Oh, the amazing power of the human voice! What a gift!

Here's a clip about the groups competing:

Here are some things that make this competition so special to Clearly Vocal:

  • We know Courtney Jensen, the beatboxer in the all-female group, Noteworty!  She was at SoJam, taught a class, and said she loved hearing us sing! And she's the nicest person in the world.
  • We saw Voices of Lee live in Nashville a year and a half ago when we went to go hear The Real Group. They were some of the college winners at that a cappella competition who opened for TRG.
  • We know Deke Sharon, the main guy who is working with the groups and doing the arranging for the new songs. He arranged the opening act, "Under Pressure!" Deke is the president of the Contemporary A Cappella League, of which CV is a member. Deke went out of his way to compliment us in front of everyone in one of his SoJam classes! We sing several of his arrangements. He sings with the vocal band, The House Jacks.
  • The intro and transition music you hear throughout the show is performed by The House Jacks! They also performed at SoJam and are working with each Sing Off group on their performances.
My biggest concern about the show is that I'm afraid groups are getting voted off because of bad mixing. Several of the judges' comments had to do with not being able to hear the soloist. That's a soundman error! I wondered if the mix we were hearing through the tv was better than what they were hearing live, sitting right in front of them. I could hear the solos just fine.

Yes, of course, Clearly Vocal is dreaming of The Sing Off, 2010. We'd have to learn to bust a move out there, though! That could be a stretch for (some of) us! ;)

Tonight is night two of The Sing Off! I'm so excited! This is a great thing for contemporary a cappella singing!

What do YOU think?

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Since then ...

... we've been doing a lot of singing! From restaurants, to school choir concerts; outdoors, indoors; full shows and guest appearanes, for young people and old people; we've been doing a lot of singing!

We kicked off our December singing at the Bullard Middle School/High School Choir concert. Their director is Cindi Galletly, a friend of ours who sings on the praise team. She asked Clearly Vocal to make a special appearance at "halftime." That was fun, but I think it was more fun to watch Cindi direct her choirs! I really appreciated the mutual respect that Cindi and her choirs had for each other.

And we did awesome. And here's what they sky looked like that night:

Our all-female singing group from church, The Blessing, sang up in Hawkins, TX for their annual Christmas in the Park. It was the absolute worst singing conditions I had ever sung in. Outdoors, 39 degrees, a cold wind bouncing off the lake, using someone else's sound equipment, monitor levels incredibly high, and a train that ran past every few minutes, blowing its horn. Imagine trying to give pitches 1/2 step higher than the second note in the train's own little chord. Wow. HOWEVER, it was worth it, and I'd do it again in a heartbeat. Those ladies are troopers!

Clearly Vocal then trekked out to downtown Ben Wheeler to carol for a couple of hours. They have this guy out there who I think is trying to single-handedly grow Ben Wheeler from the ground up. He told me that he wants to turn Ben Wheeler into a Mountain View, AR, kind of a place, and then snickered, assuming I had never heard of the place. He was totally taken aback when I told him that I have been to Mt. View almost every year of my life since I was 12! Then I was taken aback when he told me that he had never actually been there! Ha! I think they're up to ... maybe five or six stores? Including the restaurant, Moore's Store. You'll be hearing more about Moore's in future posts.

Anyway, we bundled up and sang outside for a couple of hours. Chelsea also came with us and took some pics! Aren't we cute? :)

The very next day, we performed our full Christmas show for the Meadow Lake holiday party. Meadow Lake is the newest retirement community being built in town. Looks really nice ... family? ;)

Tonight, The Group Therapy Band will be gigging at KE Cellars from 6-9!

When we're not singing, we do see our children from time to time.

See? Here they are reading books. Wait, that's only two of them ...

There's the other one! He's wearing an outfit that was John's! Thanks, Momo!

Here's this one, singing at the top of her lungs. (Never take pictures while driving.)

And here's this one. Trying to tell me something, Jonas?

And here's what happens when you try to organize all of Grammie's recipes:

You get some AMAZING boiled custard and leave the rest of the recipes to be organized another day!


I'm a little behind, but alive and well! Here is the Thanksgiving post.

Kalleigh had her little Thanksgiving feast at school. Each class sang a song for the parents, but I couldn't get a good picture of them with just my iPhone. (Remember, I dropped my camera on concrete while in Galveston. Yeah, been without a camera since September. Bleh.) So, here's Kalleigh enjoying her feast in her Indi- ... uh, Native American head gear. :)

We had a wonderful Thanksgiving break. The kids and I got all the Christmas decorations up on Monday and Tuesday while John was at work.

Ahhh, my tree. In front of the window that faces the street. The determining factor in the choosing of this house!

Johnathan put up the kids' tree all by himself! All he needed help with was the bow on top!

JohnaClaus. :) If you can't tell, his mustache/beard (that he made by himself) is held to his face by tape. Because as you know, tape is the answer to so many problems.

Wednesday was full of baking desserts and bread for the next day. Thursday morning we drove to Bonham to stay at Jay and Tracy's beautiful bed and breakfast, Granny Lou's.

We enjoyed a yummy traditional Hodges meal with Martha, Jay, Tracy, Kevin, Laurie, Brenna and our five. We were lucky to catch Jayson and his wife Ashley before they had to go. They're expecting their first in May!

Uncle Kevin takes on the kids in Monopoly.

We came on home that night. I nearly took a six point buck home on the front of our car, but thanks to good breaks, we "missed out on that opportunity!"

Friday, we played the Wii, snacked all day and avoided the crowds! We also did some work. John worked hard on a video editing project for a friend and we did all the filing that had been piling up.

Saturday, we drove over to Ft. Worth to Kevin & Laurie's house to be with the Hodges crew again. This time, Martha's sister Marilyn also joined us. John and Kevin played with the kids in their beautiful backyard while lunch was cooking.

Laurie had asked us to bring the Wii, since they were thinking about getting one for Christmas. I think their decision was finalized! Tracy tore us all up bowling, but Johnathan proved hard to beat!

Thanks Jay and Laurie for hosting Hodges Thanksgiving! We had a great time!