Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Shape-Note Singing in Richmond

This article brought back my memory of attending a sing -- maybe even in Singers Glen, VA -- with my parents many years ago. I was a distracted, if not sullen, teenager, but still vividly remember how the timbers of the log church seemed to glow and the sound filled every corner.

Having grown up in a church tradition of acapella congregational singing-- everyone sang-- it has taken me a long time to realize just how impressive the sound of many unadorned human voices can be, especially if you've never heard it.

I've never been a confident singer. I'm not ever going to solo. But people singing together is definitely something that should happen more often.

1 comment:

  1. There was a scene in "Cold Mountain" where they sang a "shape note" hymn. It was kind of odd, but I liked the enthusiasm and participation.

    I also grew up with the folk tradition of the '60s which was tailor made to sing along. Even today it's hard for me not to sing along with my favorite music, but I try to hold it down in public. There's no use ruining the show for everybody else.