Tuesday, March 28, 2006

In Need of Musical Balance

Two things for which I have been waiting finally came in the mail last week :-D.

The first is Calvin's Commentaries. I've debated buying them for some time now, and when CBD advertised them for only $99, it was hard to pass them up. I really need to stop reading the CBD catalog! I just find too many good choices in there, as opposed to my typical experiences with local Christian bookstores. Twenty-two hardbound volumes for $100 is a steal! They now occupy a nice row in one of my bookcases :).

The second is a set of hymnbooks with CD accompaniment tracks for part singing. We ordered them from Christian Leaders, a site I found by doing random searches for part singing aids. The spiral-bound books have 80 well-known hymns with 4-part sheet music. The CD's have four piano tracks for each hymn: the first has all four parts, the second is only alto, the third tenor, and the fourth bass. We've been enjoying the books and CD's so far, working on A Mighty Fortress is Our God and Amazing Grace. My Jesus I Love Thee is next on our list. It is so much fun to sing parts, and so much richer than singing with only the melody!

Our family has dabbled in part singing a bit in the past, but we've been wanting to work on it more. Mom and dad both have some background with part singing, but Hannah and I only know a few songs in parts. Father Dear is a bass, or more precisely a baritone. Mother Dear, Sister Dear, and I are all most comfortably altos, though I have a slightly higher tone and can sometimes sing soprano. Granted, it is considerably more fun to sing harmony, but it sure would be nice to be a true soprano for the sake of balance. Ah well.

Hey! We could put out a personal ad :).

Three altos and a bass seeking sopranos and tenors between the ages of 10 and 80, preferably human. Ability to read sheet music a plus. Must be able to carry a tune. Metro Atlanta area. If interested, call the Garrisons at 144-144-8128.


Mrs.B. said...

Susan, you're so funny sometimes! (o:

I wanted to thank you for asking your friend, Ashley, to help me, she's been so sweet and helpful!

Ashley said...

Thanks, Mrs. B. :-)

Susan, I tried the number and it said it was not in service. ;-) Oh well, I'm an alto anyways - sometimes even tenor. I love singing hymns. :-) We should do that next time I come over!

Susan said...

I like Ashley too, Mrs. B. :)

Thanks for the heads-up on our phone number being out of service, Ashley. I'll have to research that. . .

Yes, I know you're an alto :(. Why can't you be a soprano?!?!? Hannah has thought about trying tenor for a few songs, since she has a pretty low voice range.

We do need to see hymns next time you're over. Four altos and a bass - that could be interesting. Is Paul a tenor by any chance? - or would that interest him? We still need to recruit a soprano or two. We're really looking forward to your cantata this Sunday :-D.

Jessie said...

No soprano from this quarter. I come from a long line of altos, but like you, I can sometimes sing soprano if it's not too high. And if my voice is in the mood.
It's funny- at my church all but probably 5 women are altos. Those poor ladies. I try to help them when I can, but alas, a high C is sometimes a bit too high for me...

PS- an interesting e-mail coming your way in the next day or two ; D

Ashley said...

Paul is the sound booth man... he can't sing a note. ;-)

BTW, the cantata is at 11 am. Do you remember how to get to my church?

Susan said...

I'm glad to know my voice is not the only one that has moods :). Hehe. Does your church sing in 4-part harmony as a congregation, or just in the choir? I would love to go to a church that sang 4-part harmony! Ooh, an interesting e-mail :). Looking forward to it. . .

We can find your church online. We'll be there at 11:00 :).

Lydia said...

Ditto, Mrs. B. That's exactly what I thought! And you are in providence because I am a soprano or more accurately a mezzo soprano. But i sing high soprano in our church choir because no one else seems to be able to sing as high as me other than the choir leader. But, alas I am in the faraway land of Kansas. you will have to come visit or i will have to. :)
I would love to sing with you and your family sometime. Maybe we could meet at the Wilds!
Great post and thanks for the 4-part singing tips.

Susan said...

Hmmm, too bad you're not a tad bit closer, Lydia. That's rather an inconvenient distance for regular singing sessions. . . *sigh* Ah well. I guess we'll have to try to find some locals.

I've never been to the Wilds (though a dear friend has been there many times), so I doubt we'd meet there. I enjoyed reading your posts about your trip there! If you ever do make it down to GA, do look us up :).

What are the differences between soprano, high soprano, and mezzo soprano?