The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #106314 Message #2196877
Posted By: Ferrara
18-Nov-07 - 01:48 PM
Thread Name: Do you sing from Memory?
Subject: RE: Do you sing from Memory?
Barry, your long post [18 Nov 07 - 01:13 AM ] is fantastic. Somehow you put into words all the magic of a great singing session. Wow. Very, very well written IMO.
I agree that someone trotting out a song sheet in the atmosphere you describe would be the kiss of death. There is nothing like a spontaneous sharing of songs that flows naturally and lets everyone flow with it.
Groups who actually prefer to sing out of RUS are self selecting. Someone wanted to start an official FSGW group like that in the DC area, where song sheets were passed out, etc. I said, "Fine, if you will organize and lead it. No one else I know who has the experience to make it happen would be able to stand sitting through at a sing-around like that every month." Of course it never happened. But. There are groups like that in this area, some are quite nice as I understand it. The people who wanted to spend time like that organized it for themselves.
Also, singers with a big enough repertoire to enjoy the give-and-take kind of session Barry described, tend to have enough knowledge of folk music to get really, really irritated when some jerk with a copy of RUS tells them they "aren't singing the right words." So for the most part the twain don't meet.
Our local FSGW Open Sings are Open. So we encourage people to come and try their wings even if they have to have the words. A couple of people have really grown as singers by taking this approach. But the Open Sing is a "sheltered" environment. It can be very good overall but it's not likely to be magic. First and foremost, it's a sing-around. That kills the kind of give-and-take Barry was describing; each person sings whatever they came to sing. In a specific order. Different purpose, and very different experience from a good spontaneous singing session.
I know which I prefer BTW....