I was raised in a home where music was just what you did - in the olden days before TV. Sunday afternoons following church and an extended family dinner, we would gather in our frontroom around the piano where mom played the currently popular songs as well as hymns from church. One Aunt would sing the melody, another Aunt played the spoons, Dad and I harmonized, my sister and brother would chime in with grandmother and tuba playing grandfather.
As a young at-home mom I grew hungry for interaction with other adults, when along came Sweet Adelines. Evening meetings were the answer for me. For many years I sang and competed with that organization of ladies. We traveled and entertained as quartets ending up singing on cruise ships, at Disney World, and Palm Desert where we received a standing O from a young audience for our acapella renditions.
I was handed a solo part by the director of the local college chorus when I replied, "But Fred, I don't sing solos", to which he said, "You do now". "What'll I do" is that first one, and now I am hooked. Thanks to Fred Weber, Sierra College music director for your faith in me.
You have created a monster: I love participating in the yearly production "Broadway at Sierra", with all those young kids. Running up and down the risers is such fun.
I discovered Gentle Rain, the combo who backs me, quite by accident: their mellow sound captivated me immediately. Mickey's easy bass is a joy to listen to. His introduction to "Summertime" is one of a kind good. He is a natural comic, and is featured in an outake or two. Brad's trombone is sweet and heartrending. Handsome, talented and mellow - we truly match tonewise. He is also my sound engineer personified. There are no words adequate to describe Charlie's guitar : he is meerly the very best. One of my favorite cuts is his and my duo on "All The Things You Are". He did all the charts for us.
My natural love of harmony came through on "Killing Me Softly" as I asked to re- track the chorus and sang with myself - one take for each part I sang and it was done!
I attended the Berkeley School of Jazz Jazzcamp in the Santa Cruz mountains the summmer of 2005. I was among only 12 vocalists selected to be in the Vocal training class. I met the instructor Rebecca Parris at the audition - she was so impressive I was scared to death. After 8 days of intense training with her, I returned to the sound studio and re-recorded my tracks on 2/3 of the album. Thanks to Rebecca, I am free, now, to do MY thing with the amazing instrumentals put down by Gentle Rain.
You have to hear the duo between Charlie and Brad on "I Got Rythm" - they are so perfectly aligned it is exciting to hear.
I sing now with a small chorus in town, formerly know as Virtual Chorality: we are now Colla Voce. Our new director plans to take us to France in the near future - just another market to investigate.