8 February 2018

And so, with extra small people because it was half term, DFS gathered in the dining room where everything was ready for us apart from Ed’s organ. Of course we won’t be here next week, but the following Thursday we will be back in the hall again. 

Songy warm-ups instead of excersize warm-ups began with Hallelujah and we got to vote on PAUSE or NO PAWS, with a demo first, and THE PAUSE won. 

Out now is our trip itinerary, but nothings set in stone as yet, Voulez-Vous? Then Ed stopped leading us astray and added another Sylabul to ‘La question’ so we will see how that turns out. It was sounding a bit choral and Ed wanted more pop. 

The church organ came out for a song revisit, The Vicar Of Dibley. Parts will be available soon in the form of sheet music, for any who read such like and would like to sing other parts. 

Karma Chameleon popped up in a different key. One day I might blog which one we settle on? It’s going to sound fabulous once Ed has created the backing track. Since You’ve Been Gone requires raucous singing and contains a few little pitfalls for tired DFS members to stumble into. One is singing whoa not Oh, but we still sounded a bit too nice. 

And gently does it with The Rose that sounded proper well good then we ran through How Far I’ll Go and Build Me Up Buttercup which is coming along nicely. The penultimate song was I Am What I Am, when it’s important for everyone to know where they am, and for the finale, we took votes and sang Hallelujah. 

Well done DFS you worked well in the room with no acoustics to speak of, go home and have a nice cup of tea, listen to you tube and see you after half term, love, The Cat xxx

1 February 2018

Traffic may, still an issue near the school but the hall was full of happy choir members ready to warm up before notices. 

No letters for Chichester are available this week, because much of the itinerary remains to be confirmed. Watch this space. 

New songs can be suggested to Ed in many ways, verbally at choir, by email or little notes are all fine but DFS Dorch members have gone a step further and written in a poly pocket on headed paper, and even included a DVD of a certain to medleys. Maybe we will sing them, who knows. 

The Rose was our first song, and we looked at those timings again, with Ed playing metronome, before attempting a brand new song Since You’ve Been Gone. We were encouraged to apply controlled raucousness and decided to change Oh’s to Whoa’s, but do watch the numbers and the meaningful gap. A few choir members were left exposed. Don’t be that person. Ed outlined the harmony, following the melody starting with the note from the first verse, and we stood to perform. Dare to power-grab. 

With only a 30 second break on our bottoms, shuffling papers to find the words, we stood again to belly dance. I mean song Voulez Vous. Those timing are still giving us a run for our vocal-money. 

But Hallelujah it was time for another song. Please drop your aiches DFS ...

Build Me Up Buttercup OOOO-oooo-oooo baby, and onto the anthemic I Am What I Am  beginning with men only for those important first two opening lines, and we ended with Lily singing How Far I’ll Go recorded at Fulvia’s 60th Birthday. We were allowed to sing along if we wanted to but we all listened before singing the last two choruses with Ed and his piano. 

Wow DFS didn’t we do well? Keep singing, that’s not why I love you xxx

25 January 2018

Once more into the hall dear friends, Ed began by checking everyone had all the words to all the songs we are working on. Warm up began with some copying of scales and then some of are classics, such fun. 

We have been asked to to The Rose Garden, on the 14 July and we have time to decide if we want to do that, because it will be after choir has finished for the summer. 

4th May is our Chichester trip, and next week there will itineraries available from next week and you can hand in deposits from then too if you like. 

We began with Build Me Up Buttercup and ran head first into that dodgy note, then we had a good talking to, and totally nailed it, to the choir master’s extreme surprise, even though he made us do it twice more before slipping into The Rose. But the naughty high harmonies came in a verse too early, and then everything sounded a bit sad. Maybe choir were scared to get it wrong, so Ed had to reassure us of his love, plus a couple of starting notes for good measure. 

And up tempo again to Voulez Vous just in case The Rose made anyone, not Jack, fall asleep. I decided to do a Facebook Live video just to prove I can actually sing now and I got lots wrong. Haha, or is it Ah-ha? Take good care not to be Pirates, or even emphasise the Ah not the Haaaaa.  

Back to earth, and English, Hallelujah, not forgetting the free-for-all-ending and I waited to see who would go for it. Ed went for it. Well done choirmaster! Then he introduced a harmony, a low one in the second second verse, and a high harmony hitting a note that he’s not achieved before. Nice. No gap must be left between the ends of the verses and the Hallelujah. Hallelujah said Ed, when we seemed to have got it, Lovely. 

And to see who did their homework we sang How Far I’ll Go which is quite a jog. After a run through we did it A Capella to sort out some of our timings, before having a whizz through Karma Chameleon. My mum once video’d this off top of the pops, and we played it twice as fast because our player would do that. Ed sang the nice overlaps and harmonies like a boss. 

Grand finale, I Am what I Am, starting with men only for the first two lines. I love you DFS, keep singing! Xxx

18 January 2018

This week song booklets were by the hall door, just to keep everyone on their toes. Or heelys, if you are my daughter. Before warm ups we had a whistle stop tour of the website. Sadly the blog couldn’t be shared because of the very important school firewall that keeps out all potentially naughty blog posts. 

Then everybody but me sang Dum Dum Diddley followed by some sliding nice lovely scales, and some of our more familiar warm ups. I can hum but I felt like my newly screwed down palate might vibrate off. 

Our first song, is only a bit new. We had sung the chorus before as a choir, when Harry used to come in and play ukulele and Ed was singing all the verses. Hallelujah! Ed played around to find the key and we sang our socks off. At the end there’s a big ad lib section and anything goes. Well, so long as it’s in tune! Ot was declared a work in progress. 

And bang up to date, How Far I’ll Go from the film Moana. YouTube gave us a preview and we all listened while a select few Moana fans sang along. For homework listen and learn, and maybe watch the film, it’s better then frozen anyway. This song is new to half of choir, but it does have a sea theme, and that’s good given this years charity of choice. 

And onto Voulez-Vous that we met last week. I think we remembered most of it. To do some harmony work, we sang with the keyboard beat and Ed conducting. Hmmm. The gentlemen were given a world or two about the execution of the ‘Ah-has’... and generally there was another ‘chat’ about timing. Not on the beat! So we stood to perform it, does it even have an intro? 

And to gentle it all down we sang The Rose, and with all the harmonies too. This song needs to build to a meaty middle and then ease down to a soft ending. 

And to get us going again Build Me Up Buttercup which we sang so well over in Normandy in 2013. Evidence is on the blog somewhere if you look. It’s still a rather good concert filler, and won’t take too much work.

And starting with just the men singing from their boots we launched into I Am What I Am! And Ed set listening to Perfect by Ed Sheeran for homework, but also sang some of it for us. I guess I will slap that one on my Spotify and dance with the dog. 

With the clock at 8pm, just for fun, we ‘sang’ Karma Chameleon and I felt very old. Once we got into it, it sounded pretty good! 

Well done DFS, I love you - keep signing! Cat xxx

11 January 2018

Happy New Year to DFS Weymouth and Portland who were happy to back in the hall again at All Saints school. We will be in the hall for all sessions until half term, so with glee we launched into a warm up, a Dum Dum Diddley Diddley!

But Ed, without the right end on his lead, had his piano turned up so loud that he couldn’t hear us at all so a huge chair shift took place so we could snuggle up. Amen ..

In announcements we met our list of brand new songs. A member of MV Freedom gave a vote of thanks for the money raised at the Christmas concert. 

We started proper singing with The Rose and a brief reminder of the harmony because this song is quite well known to seasoned members of DFS. And then, with Ed conducting, we flatly began to sing Al Fresco. A note about sssssss and another note about syncopation were made, and a note from the piano got us unflattered again. A smiling DFS sang again as our lifted cheeks lifted the sweet little tune right out of the durge it had fallen into. And I smiled too in support, although I’m not yet singing. With some extra work on the harmony parts this song was beginning to sound a lot more confident, as choir stood to perform it. 

We also revisited Build Me Up Buttercup and a fantastic bum note or two and because Ed wanted some more lively numbers this term. Someone was doing a Billy Ocean. Ooooohs are so hard to get right. There was no backing track to work with so Al Fresco again it was to fine tune a thing or three, and back to the piano to refine the second to last HEART ... the C# one before the key change. Oh dear. It’s going to be a looooong term .......

Then we moved to whizz through the rest of the songs beginning with Voulez-Vous and a nice bit of disco rhythm to boot! Choir had to split into AH-HA people and THE INBETWEENY BITS people. Fantastically upbeat, Ed left both Jack and the choir behind!  The beat sure needed sorting out and the French pronounciation too! 

And then to calm things down, Say You, Say Me. And breathe. Wasn’t this once an advert? 

And then to finish, I Am What I Am to see how the key fit. Ed broke the piano. 

Well done everyone, do your homework and keep singing xxxx

7 Dec 2017

As choir starts up again this week I look back at our concerts performed at the end of term. I was not at DFS Dorchester’s do, but I bet it was as good and enjoyable as last year and choir realised £275 for the MS Society. Well done DFS Dorch. I would have come but was having very special family time and saving myself for ....

DFS Weymouth and Portland performed on the next night, a good and varied bunch of songs, some brave soloists, and of course a Christmas medley with real jingle bells. I like it when props make an appearance! At one point a sheep showed up! Solo songs included two really funny numbers, ‘Cheep Flights’ and
‘Earnie’, something I vaguely remember from the olden says. 

Along with a glittering and fabulous raffle and some fun games we managed to raise £814.95 for MV Freedom, and I sang my last song for a while which was written by Hintze and Greenaway, and I’m afraid there was no time to write a blog the next day because of rushing to Poole Hospital for 7.15am. Without, may we add, even a half decent breakfast. I’ll be back blogging for you all again tomorrow but I won’t be able to sing. Enjoy the break, and hope too that you enjoyed the Christmas break and felt loved, free of man flu and other yuck things like that. 

Keep singing, I love you, Cat The Blogger xxx

30 November 2017

We entered the dining room serenaded by the backing track of So Happy Together. All backing tracks were present and correct, in perfect key and correct tempo, and the running order is finalised. And that was our first song, straight in without a warm-up. 

The dress code for choir could be ‘summery’ with Bermuda shorts and bikinis but we decided to go Christmassy after all. Festive jumpers very welcome, as is sticking tinsel anywhere you like it. Remember the concert starts at 7.30pm sharp. There will be no bar, but feel free to bring you own.

And as we scurry to order our folders, we start the second song Make You Feel My Love. 

Don’t forget your harmonies when you Walk Right Back. We sang it with great aplomb, and slipped into our sea legs for Song Of The Sea. Coming together beautifully. 

And Christmas Medley was upon us again. Shall I bring Ben the singing rat or Elf on a shelf? So the interval is and then we will be Keeping The Dream Alive and remembering the right time to go up and down. More highs everyone. Across The Universe we sang to see if like DFS Dorchester we would keep it in. Let one go at the end of you please, improvisation. Adele, When We Were Young, well we are good at this one! Lovely, lovely. Did anyone notice this little number was more up tempo? 

And down tempo, we Bring Him Home ... our next song will bring them near, O Holy Night. Then our concert will end and we will sing our encore Fairy Tale Of New York. Drunk men to start, then everyone, and the audience to sing too. We will make them. In housekeeping, Ed reminded us not to talk to each other between songs, and to arrive at school early if you want to run through your solo. Ed said there would be some surprises, and I asked if we could eat them. Possibly because I’ll be nil by mouth from midnight on concert day. Then we had some time for revisits, vote by mumble, so we did that, until we were Song Perfeft. 

We meet again on the 11th January all full of sprouts and raring to go after crunching through the frost up to the hall. Yes we will be back in the Hall. Everyone cheered. See you next week ALSO IN THE HALL for the concert. I love you, keep singing. XXX

23 November 2017

And greetings from the dining room where Ed was only armed with a screen and a music stand, and a huge catalogue of fresh backing tracks to boot. 

Dress code for the concerts is a little festive. Think tinsel. Bring your own food and drink and money for the usual fab raffle too. 

With out a sniff of a warm up, we started with Walk Right Back but not before wishing Mike and Cat a very happy 3rd Year Wedding Anniversary. Wait, that’s me. I’m still honoured that DFS came were there that day to sing and break bread with us. Ed suggested you might like to watch the wedding video ...

And quickly on to Make You Feel My Love and followed on with So Happy Together with barely any time for me to paste a link from YouTube ... and decided to swap this together the number one song, and pressed on with song number 4, Song Of The Sea. Did you remember your timing? 

And thus marks the end of part one, and the start of part with the Exciting New Christmas Medley which you may recognise from last year. It was the toy piano version. Mind the gap in Mary’s Boy Child. 

And we sang Keeping The Dream Alive without a backing track. Next. Across The Universe. Kangaroo Diva. That’s me. Ed wanted to take it from the top again. So we did. 

When We Were Young will get a new backing track with some drums. Bring Him Home brought us to O Holy Night and Faiytake Of New York that sounded much better with drunk men. I’m excited already. 

Singing Do Wah Diddy Diddy without a backing track was an experiment to say the least. There might have been issues with timing ...

I love you. Keep singing. The Cat xxx