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Up and Down and a Cross



After a long two-week break, it was good to meet up again and sit down and sing together.

 

This is the term where we have the light evenings and the wonderful views of the golf courses and the stunning sunsets.

 

This will be a long term of challenges culminating the glorious Summer Concert on 31 July.  Enjoy the journey and for those of you who are unable to make the destination, make sure you let our Treasured Treasurer know, so we have an idea of numbers.

 

We were straight in with a brand new song, What’s Up with a tricky melody of notes going up and down in quick succession! It is a song by American rock group 4 Non Blondes, released in March 1993

 

4 Non Blondes was an American rock band from San Francisco, California, formed in 1989. The group was formed by bassist Christa Hillhouse, guitarist Shaunna Hall, drummer Wanda Day, and vocalist and guitarist Linda Perry. Prior to the release of their first album, Roger Rocha replaced Hall on guitar, and Dawn Richardson replaced Day on drums.

 

They hit the charts in 1993 with "What's Up?", their only major hit single.

 

Linda Perry left the band in 1994 to begin a solo career, and the remaining members disbanded shortly after.



The song had its origins well before 4 Non Blondes were formed. Third Eye Blind frontman, Stephan Jenkins recalled sitting in a room with Linda Perry, who worked as a waitress down the street, performing their original compositions to one another when the two were struggling musicians in San Francisco. The two played each other early versions of Semi-Charmed Life and What's Up?,both of which would become massive hits for their respective bands.

It would be decades later that Jenkins realized the songs performed in that private session would sell a combined 17 million records. 

The title does not appear in the song's lyrics, but the phrase "what's going on?" is prominently included in the chorus.


Linda Perry turned Pink into a global sensation, found Christina Aguilera’s sensitive side – and hit Grammy territory with Dolly Parton.


Eamonn’s version is true to Linda Perry’s version with lots of syncopation. The piano is like a machine running underneath and there will be lots of squeezing oranges under the arms for the top notes!

 

Although the phrases are long, it doesn’t make it a slow song.  Keep the momentum up!

 

The Altos and Tenors start us off with the Sops & Basses joining in on ‘brotherhood of man’. 

Listen closely to the Altos and Tenors so it is all sung in perfect harmony!

 

Breathing, of course is critical and Sops do not breathe during the phrase ‘and I’m feeling a little peculiar’.

 

Basses have a rather boring, mainly one note, but they are allowed to breathe where indicated.

 

The chorus needs to sound angry and with attitude.

‘Hey, yeah, yeah, eh, eh, Hey yeah yeah.  I said Hey, What’s going on?’ Make it funky sounding!

 



Then we moved across to Crossing the Bar.  A little test to see who had done their homework.

 

Again, long phrases, but this should sound like a cross between and hymn and sea shanty with the second and fourth verse sounding choral.

 

Eamonn was pleasantly surprised and we all passed with flying colours, even down to the verse we sang acapella.

 


The cast of Guys and Dolls, Bridge Theatre. After a well-earned break we returned to another new song, Sit Down You’re Rocking the Boat.

This is a song written by Frank Loesser and published in 1950. The song was introduced in the Broadway musicalGuys and Dolls, which opened at the 46th Street Theatre on November 24, 1950.

In the context of the show, gambler Nicely-Nicely Johnson invents a dream about being saved from hell in order to bring together the members of the prayer meeting.

It was performed on stage by Stubby Kaye who later reprised his role as Nicely-Nicely Johnson in the 1953 London production, as well as the 1955 film version of the play.

The song is generally considered to be the 11 o'clock number in Guys and Dolls

The song does seem to wander around aimlessly until the memorable, rousing chorus when we are all on the tune for a short period. 


However, let me introduce Sid. He has a major role in this number.

Don’t be too polite!  - ‘Sid down, you’re rocking the boat

Basses start us off and need to squeeze the oranges.

There are lot of words to fit in and the verses, although it is the same tune, have different lyrics. Make them like a jazzy backing group sound.

Check out various versions and hear how it can sound..

 

Next week we will get down to the Oohs, and finish What’s Up.

Watch out for new songs dropping into Dropbox!

Get down to your homework, and get up to scratch!

 

 

Triilers on a Perch

Working on our latest song Sit Down YRT Boat brings me back to my most recent visit to the Bridge Theatre. Guys and Dolls is, in my opinion, one of the most perfect musicals ever written, and this production is absolutely joyous. Please don’t miss it.

Have a good week, your Treasured Treasurer


Evan, one of out male basses has a one man show which opens on 29th of April. It is on for two and a half weeks. All in inflagrante are invited. The “special” night being the 29th. 

This is my third one man show at Questors theatre in Ealing. W5 5BQ. The bar is open from 7pm (closed on Sundays). The award winning bar has some quality real ales and decent wine selection and is cheap! 



The exhibition will have about 20 watercolours from a cruise to the Caribbean and is in the bar. There is no show that night so there will some parking, possibly on site, but in mattock lane as well. It’s a short walk from the 65 bus stop in Bond Street. 



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