Saturday, 17 December 2016

December 2016

Brrrr ... chilly innit? Time to sit indoors, decorate the tree and light the candles. But first you have to brave the winter chill and come to SingWiv!

This month we managed to squeeze in two festive songs and one upbeat song (and dance!) from Nigeria.

"Nu är det jul igen" (Now it is Yule again) is a traditional Swedish dancing song.

Now it's Yule again 
And now it's Yule again 
And Yule will last until it's Easter 

That's not true of course 
No, that's not true of course 
For in between comes Lent 
And fasting

"A szelekenek" is a beautiful song from Transylvania, Hungary.

On the lively wings of the winds, 
Flying bravely over the land 
Let’s sing for you, beautiful star! 

"Aye mojinumba" is an ancient song from Nigeria that has been passed down through the ages. Don't know what language it's in. It is a celebration of Earth as our home and a reminder that we ARE the Earth.

Chris has included a version of "Nu är det jul igen" by the US group Revels, and a version of "A szelekenek" by a women's group he used to run Vox Mondiale.

Here is the link to December's recordings.

Have a great Christmas!

Saturday, 19 November 2016

November 2016

We've had some beautiful weather this month. Hard to believe that winter is on its way!

This month at SingWiv we learnt three songs: a gospel song from the Georgia Sea Islands off the US coast; a gorgeous Russian orthodox chant; and a children's nonsense song from Ghana.

"Johanna the row-di" is from the singing of Bessie Jones. She was a founding member of the Georgia Sea Island Singers. Here she is singing Johanna:

“They would go out and row the boats at nights, days and nights, sometimes in the day, but most had to row at night and try to get some fish, you know, to have meat for their children. They called it meat, like the Bible. And sometimes they would row boat all night and not have fish enough the next morning and that’s the song they would be singing for Johanna to go and get the boat. She go out and row you see, and try to get a mess of fish ’cause sometime the fish swim at a certain time and perhaps she could get a mess ’cause he done rowed all night he’s tired, you see, and then he got to try to get a little bit of rest, you know, and then go to work.”

"Mnogaya leta" was composed by Dmitry Bortnianski (1752-1825). It means (Lord grant us) "Many years."

Here it is being sung in St Petersburg:

"Senwa dedende" is a children's nonsense song from Ghana. It is an Akan or Twi song. This is just the chorus, adapted so it works as a round

"Vulture, vulture Your mother is calling you 

What does she want me to do? 

She wants you to come and eat. 

What kind of food is it? Fufu and abenkwan (Fufu is a doughy dish served with soup. Abenkwan is a palm nut soup)

Let the children share it."  

Here is the link to November's recordings.

Saturday, 15 October 2016

October 2016

The season of mists and mellow fruitfulness has arrived!

Meanwhile, at SingWiv, we were tackling some contemporary opera along with a song from Hawaii and one from Jamaica.

"Einstein on the Beach" is an opera composed by Philip Glass. We did a short section consisting of just number as lyrics!

You can hear the original of the Einstein on the Beach section that Chris has based his version on here:
"Heke hau" is a beautiful Hawaiian song using a proverb as its lyrics. This is an arrangement by Nickomo.

Love is like a healing dew, washing away all hurt.

"Janie mama" is a Jamaican song, from an island called Santiago and colonised by Spain till 1655, when the British took it over. Ya tu sabes in Spanish means “Ya know,” “You already know,” “You know what I mean,” or similar. Turnmina, Suzika and Yavana are all girls’ names. Ya tu ..., I ya... and Hey... are all “Hi there! I see you!..” types of greetings. So basically, the song is greeting these girls, and Janie Mama as well. The origin is Spanish.

Here is the link to October's recordings.

Friday, 23 September 2016

September 2016

Yes SingWiv is back!

Here's the link to the  September songs

 After a good warm up (including a quick Phillip Glass number) we sang one in latin,  music by Helen Chadwick and  two from South Africa. Despite some people still being on holiday,  the numbers were good and we even had six men. So, looking good for the new season!

NEXT one is 15th October, 2.00pm as usual, in the Scout and Guide hut.

Saturday, 18 June 2016

June 2016

June's SingWiv was a real mix: Leonard Cohen, Croatian and Jewish. Can't see you don't get variety!

We did an arrangement by Chris of Leonard Cohen's "Bird on the wire". If you don't know the original, you can find Leonard Cohen singing it here:

A Croatian harvest song (with a double meaning!) called "Polegala". This is in a Croatian dialect so difficult to translate exactly.

Polegala trava detela = "Grass which has been flattened"
Crljena Kitica = "Red bunch of flowers"
Rumena rozica lepa moja livado zelen = "Red rose - my nice green fields of grass"
Jo mi zela gizdava djevoj = "Possibly something about somebody taking the flowers"

Finishing with a Jewish nigun round "Haida". According to a Hasidic saying: Silence is better than speech, but song is better than silence. Nigunim – wordless melodies – have their roots in 18th C Hasidic movement in E. Europe (considered radicals at the time). Melody is expressive vehicle of the soul, the addition of words interrupts the flow of emotion.

Chris has included a version of Polegala sung by the Croatian LADO ensemble.

Here is the link to June's recordings.

Thursday, 26 May 2016

May 2016

Our May session was great as ever. The sun DID shine but still the people came and we had a reasonable turnout (enough to cover costs anyway) and much fun!

Your link to Chris's recordings is here 

May songs

and a little extra from Chris

James May - Hold back the river

See you on 18th June, for our last SingWiv before the two month summer break.

April 2016 - oops!

Well blow me!

I forgot to post Aprils songs and no one noticed!

Never mind. here they are for your delight and digestion!

April songs

Monday, 11 April 2016

March 2016 - a bit late - Sorry

Well I am so sorry these songs are a little late in being posted. I don't know where my month has gone and I can't believe that this Saturday, 16th April, we sing again!

Anyway - my  apologies and here is the link:          March songs

The Georgian song that we found tough going the month before, we nailed beautifully.

Its not often that we revisit a song that we have recently done, but I think that in this case you will think that it was worthwhile.

Although obviously, we normally post a link to the songs here, you should also be getting them (and more promptly) via email.  If you are not getting your regular emails from me then please let me know. They may be going astray!

See you Saturday

Monday, 29 February 2016

February 2016

As per usual, our February session was fun and what a great sound we made. It was lovely to see so many of you again and also some more new faces. 

We struggled slightly with one lovely Georgian song in the run up to tea time (sugar needed I think!) but Chris has promised we can return to it. Christine was in the kitchen at the time, putting the kettle on but she told me afterwards how lovely it sounded, so I definitely think its one we should have another go at sometime!

Click here for  recordings of us singing two of the songs from our last session - I particularly like Sylvie. I thought it was sung sweetly and I really enjoyed it. 

Chris has also sent us links to youtube clips of the songs, both really worth listening to. Beware of Rita Coolidge singing The Cherokee Morning Song - its a real ear worm  - I haven't stopped singing it since I heard it again! 

Don't forget, you can sign up to Chris's mailing list and keep up to date with information regarding other workshops and singing days he is running. A whole weekend of singing with Chris is a real treat.

Our next session is on 19th March, which is the week before Easter - Hot cross bun anyone?

Friday, 29 January 2016

January 2016

SingWiv on Saturday 16th January broke our record for numbers. It was lovely to see such a full room. Thank you all for making the effort and for spreading the word about our regular Saturday Sings.

We made a great noise - although we were a little hesitant when it came to the recordings but as Chris says, this is not supposed to be our best attempt.

The link to the recordings is below and I hope you enjoy listening to them. The Marvin Gaye song, "You're all I need to get by", is one of my favourites from my youth,  but I never expected to be singing it in three part unaccompanied harmony - well done all, and well done Chris!

January recordings

Chris has also added a couple of YouTube clips for your enjoyment, of "Minuit" - an African one and the link below, which is for Paul Winter's version - beautifully gentle. I love it.

Paul Winter's "Minuit"

Our next session is on Saturday 20th February, when we look forward to seeing you all again.

Sunday, 10 January 2016

Welcome back and Happy New Year

Happy New Year All.

Hopefully you all had a a pleasant festive season and are ready to get back to your regular monthly singing sessions.

Our next SingWiv session is this coming Saturday (that's 16th January ), as usual in the the Scout Hall off the High Street in Wivenhoe.  Please arrive at about 1.45 for a prompt 2.00 start. The diversion around the entrance to Wivenhoe is still in place and the buses are now also diverted, so they are also using Keelers Lane (at least they were this week - it seems to keep changing!)

This Saturday also sees the start of Chris's regular morning sessions in Copdock. Obviously we want you to keep coming top SingWiv - without decent numbers we will not be able to continue. However, should you find yourself unable to attend our afternoon session, you now have another option.

Please tell any friends you have who live a little closer to Ipswich - maybe we can bump up the numbers for both sessions.

We are really looking forward to singing again - the rotten weather recently might have dampened our spirits a bit, so a good sing - maybe with a song from warmer climes - will be just the ticket.

Looking forward to seeing you all (and your friends) on Saturday.