Hello faithful readers and hope you had a safe Labor Day weekend. One more thing I wanted to say about the recording of "Together in Harmony". This was the first time that I had been part of a recording session so it was a new experience for me. There was a lot of repeating of phrases of a song to make the recording as good as possible. Pat Parr worked with our recording engineer, Keith Sklower of the Band, who was very patient with Pat and us throughout the whole process.
The next chorus recording that I am writing about is titled "Wish You Were Here". The chorus was under the leadership of Michael Carlson and our accompanist was the lovely and talented June Bonacich. At this point the chorus was 40 strong.
The music on this CD was recorded in 1999 and 2000 at three concerts which took place at the Herbst Theatre, the First Unitarian Church for our Pride Concert and at Mission High School in their Murphy Auditorium for our Mission ImPOPsible concert. The CD was released as part of our 20th Anniversary celebration.
The music was varied as always as we sang "Bohemian Rhasody" by Freddie Mercury, "Begin the Beguine" by Cole Porter, "Nina" by Noel Coward, "Ain't No Mountain High Enough" by Ashford & Simpson and choralography by the lovely and talented Kirk Johnson. We also performed "Dysfunctional Relationship" by our June and a couple of gay anthems - "You Are the Light" by Leo Arnaud and "I Open My Heart" by one of our favorite composers Sky Evergreen, who I wrote about in an earlier blog entry. Michael brought us a song in Tagalog called "Dahil Sa Iyo" (Because of You), which is a beautiful love song. We also sang "Erev Shel Shoshanim" (Evening of Roses) which is another love song. I really enjoyed singing in these songs in these concerts and glad that this recording was made so we could share our music with a wider audience.
Next time I will be writing about "Group Therapy."
Cheers and love, Michael Lucero
Hello to all my faithful readers. I am back from our break and I want to welcome all of the new members of the chorus who have joined us and been through our first rehearsal of "Street Requiem". I thought I would do something a little different for these next few weeks and write about some of the various recordings we have produced.
Our first recording was titled after our motto "Together in Harmony". Pat Parr was our Artistic Director and the music was recorded in November 1993 at First Unitarian Church in San Francisco and live at three different concerts from 1992 and 1993 and we released it in 1994 on CD and cassettes (you do remember cassettes). During the time when this was recorded the chorus was at 108 strong.
Here is what Pat wrote, in part, in the liner notes: "'Together in Harmony'" is the first recording released by the Lesbian/Gay Chorus of San Francisco. It is also among the first recordings released by a mixed group of Lesbians and Gay Men in the United States - perhaps the world! The music we sang ranged from Brahms to Jule Styne, from ballads to joyously rhythmic exclamations. We are especially proud that five of the pieces were written specifically for LGCSF. It is one of our goals to encourage and perform new music written by and for members of our community."
The five pieces that were written for us are: "Love Song" with music by Marty Stoddard who was the Assistant Conductor and lyrics by Leslie Steere, one of our lovely altos; "Passengers of Infinity" by Kirsten Nordeval; "I Am Here" written by Marty Cormier; "Reason to Sing" written by Rick Weaver, one of our lovely basses; and "Three Songs on Texts by Marguerite Radclyffe-Hall", written by our glorious accompanist Dwight Okamura. The three songs were: "At the Shrine of Aphrodite", "Hands and Lips", and "Take Me With You When You Fly".
One of things that I have always loved and been amazed by is the enormous amount of talented musicians that I have had the privilege and honor to have sung with and been friends with and shared time with and this is something I will always treasure and hold in my heart. So how about we do another recording for our 40th anniversary!
Next week I will write about our recording with Michael Carlson "Wish You Were Here".
Much love to you all, Michael Lucero, your lovely chorus historian.