Most of you who read this know I am into Barbershop Harmony. I love a cappella singing, regardless of the style, but BBShop and Christian music are my passions in singing. Over the years, I’ve come to have heroes or legends in my own hobby world. At first, while growing up, it was any number of MLB Baseball stars. Then Michael Jordan, then this guy and that guy… As I’ve grown up, my hobbies have become singing and my heroes have become Barbershop champions. Below, one of the best trend-setting champion quartets; the Confederates of 1956. 2 Rebels and 2 Yankees, the Confederates used this image as simply a vehicle. Unlike today, there was no agenda, political statement, or anything BUT a great costume and songlist that went along with songs about the South. They truly “locked” and “rang” almost every chord of the songs. They were trendsetters in explosive dynamics and interpretive style, and their style is emulated by many modern quartets, still. Plus, I started singing Barbershop in the home of these champs; Memphis. You might say, “it’s just a quartet, Drew.” True… but in each hobby, sport, or obsession, we have our own heroes. But they weren’t just a quartet. Naturally, our new “old school” quartet is singing 2 of their songs; Redhead and Goodbye Old Dixie, Goodbye.
Recently, I was hired to work for the Barbershop Harmony Society. I will be working as the Assistant Director of Membership for the BHS (formerly S.P.E.B.S.Q.S.A). We’re putting on a “Buffalo Bills” quartet contest in the January Mid-Winter International Convention. The deal is, any 4 guys (active society members) can compete in a quartet. Just pay your $20 and you can rip the old school Barbershop Tunes like the old quartets of the 1950’s era. Thus the name, Buffalo Bills contest. The Bills were the quartet in Meredith Willson’s, “The Music Man” fame.
I’m singing in the Buffalo Bills quartet contest with 3 great singers. Shane Scott (see link at the side), Eddie Holt, and another modern hero, Jay Hawkins… a 2-time Gold Medal quartet champ (see pics, below of Jay’s 2 championship quartets – 1987 Interstate Rivals, and 1995 Marquis; Jay’s the Bass, in glasses). It’s awesome! In addition to singing with a hero, it’s realizing that all heroes are real men and women. People who have worked hard and achieved the heights of success by doing the groundwork. Oh yeah… if we win, it’s $3000 in our pocket! Woohoo! If you haven’t sung barbershop harmony… you are missing some of God’s greatest creations; perfect harmony. Want a kick? Go to YouTube and do a search for “Interstate Rivals” – you’ll see the 1987 champs in action, with a hero Lead singer, Joe Connelly in the first of his 3 Gold medals!