Wow, so where to even begin? I have so many thoughts turning round in my head that I just might burst. I decided to break this post into several, because once I got going, it became quite lengthy. I hope you’ll come back in the next few days to read parts two and three of my exciting story.
So, I guess I have to start at the beginning. Something somewhat unique to the church of Christ is that we sing using a cappella music — a fancy way of saying without instruments — in worship. I grew up listening to the beautiful chords of four-part harmony, and while I appreciate uplifting music of all kinds, to me, there is just nothing that touches my heart more than hearing raw, harmonizing voices being lifted up to our God in song.
I have always been a singer. I remember making up songs as a child and always singing. My mother sang alto, and I would sing soprano, loving the blend. We would sing together in the car. As I got older and my voice changed as a teenager, I began to sing alto as well. It seemed natural to me. Having stood next to my mother all those years, the harmony just seemed to be a part of me. If I didn’t know the part, I made it up, and usually it was pretty close, or at least sounded okay. (If it’s “in the chord” it’s all good!)
When I was in the 4th grade, my Bible school teacher (Hi Margy!) gave each of us a copy of a tape called “Conquerors” by the band Acappella. I wore that cassette out! I still can listen to it and tell you what song comes next. I even remember at which point I had to flip the tape (remember that?!?) So began my love for this band started by the amazing Keith Lancaster.
Keith Lancaster is a church of Christ rock star. He started the band Acappella in the early 80s and today, Acappella Ministries has grown to umbrella so many wonderful works. Through the years, I have enjoyed listening to too many Acappella, AVB, Vocal Union & Praise & Harmony cds to mention. Many songs on these albums are ones that Keith himself wrote and/or arranged. One thing I particularly like about the music is that so many of them are based on scripture — and some are even scripture verbatim. I love that!
Keith considers himself a “musicianary.” He ministers through music, and considers it his mission to make sure that the art of singing in four part harmony does not become a lost one. As an avid
stalker follower of his blog, I read last year of his upcoming Praise and Harmony recording to take place in Amarillo in April of 2013. I thought it would be so awesome to be able to participate. A few weeks later, our worship leader mentioned the auditions in our praise team practice one evening. I told him we were highly interested. He said we’d do it.
We missed the audition date. I was bummed. Jayson emailed me one day and asked when the audition deadline was. I was like, “um.. today.” Oops! He was awesome enough to email the Acappella people and get them to give us an extension to turn in our quartet recording, which we promptly made and turned in. I was so excited!
To be continued…
(Read Part 2 HERE).