Friday, September 25, 2009


So I was looking up the song "Feelin' Good" and was surprised at how many different covers have been done in the past! I thought I would share a few examples just so you could compare how artists interpret the same song in very different ways!

1) The Original

Written by Anthony Newley and Leslie Bricusse, "I Am Feeling Good" was originally for the 1965 musical The Roar of the Greasepaint—the Smell of the Crowd. 

2) Nina Simone

A popular cover is by Nina Simone, an African American singer, pianist, arranger, and composer. 

3) Michael Bublé

Another popular cover today is by Michael Bublé, a Canadian singer and actor.

4) Adam Lambert

On the most recent season of American Idol, Adam Lambert wowed everyone with his version.  I loved it!

5) The Dear Abbeys

A few weeks ago, Mr. Braet recommended listening to The Dear Abbeys, an a cappella men's group from Boston University.  They arrange lots of rock music for all male voices.   They also had a version of "Feelin' Good".

There are tons more out there...these are some of my favs! Enjoy!

Friday, September 18, 2009

The Power of One...

This guy recorded himself singing all 6 parts...the blend is amazing! Very, very cool stuff.  Lots of practice...see what happens when you put a little (or a lot) of time into something?? :)

Friday, September 11, 2009

a day to remember...

Seems hard to believe that at this time 8 years ago, I was sitting in high school watching 9-11 coverage live. I still can't even fathom that it actually happened...let alone how "normal" the term seems now.  It's like 9-11 isn't a date anymore, but an event that will always remain with us.  There was so much media coverage for so long...and now it's a normal part of our lives.  Every year on September 11th we remember what happened and how lucky we are to still be here and be able to feel somewhat safe...I feel I'll be 75 years old and still vividly recalling what happened that day. 

In choir we're singing "Song for the Unsung Heros" which was commissioned by a high school choir on the East Coast in rembrance of 9-11.  Everyday we pull it out of our folders and work on dynamics, rhythms, notes, and funky 3-part splits amongst the sopranos and altos.  It's just another song that we have to work on each day to get ready for our next concert.  We get in the habit of rehearsing music for music's sake and never really stopping to think about why a certain song exists.  Music is most often written with something in mind.  Whether it's about love, death, being young, life changing events, or baseball games...there is almost always a reason for a particular songs existence.  ESPECIALLY vocal music--the words are over 50% of the song.  Why is it, then, that we don't even pay attention to what we're singing? We get so wrapped up in making sure we are hitting correct pitches that we forget WHY we're singing.  Music is the language of our souls...not the language of singing in tune...of course it helps to sing in tune and we much prefer it that way! But singing feels good. It allows you to express yourself and display emotions that maybe you wouldn't normally display.  It tells a story, happy or sad. We weren't in NYC on September 11th, 2001. But we were somewhere.  We remember what it felt like to know our nation was being attacked.  We have families that we don't want to lose.  We have lives that we want to keep living.  So maybe today when we sing, we'll actually take a moment to think why this song was created...and maybe we'll feel something when we rehearse.  Perhaps we can stop worrying about correct pitches, and just sing because it's fun, it's meaningful, and we're just happy to be alive and able to sing to our heart's content...

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Horns up!

That's how I start my morning each day. "Hey, get your horns up! Let's go!" Cue the Star Spangled Banner.

In what other profession do you get to hear our country's national anthem and endless Stevie Wonder tunes (well, ok four of them over and over and over again) played live every morning! Some might say it gets old, but I rather enjoy it. It's like I'm in high school band all over again, except I don't have to go to early morning rehearsals or practice :)

This morning I had a few students show up for All-State rehearsal...only 2 of the 6 (ahem you naughty students) but it was fun and productive nonetheless. We have a lot of work to do but nothing that can't be accomplished with lots of practice and hardwork. I'm very excited about both All-State and OPUS this year...we have some really talented kids trying out and I can't wait to see what happens!

Anywho...I suppose I should go guzzle down my coffee and plan for classes today. I'll try to post some youtube links and other things a little later...have a great day!