("social singing" = not for performance)
Cultivating social singing with four-part harmony in the Ballona Creek neighborhood of Culver City

Ballona Fasola

Favorite Song Management

All unloved hymnals are alike,
but every singer personalizes their copy
of the
1991 Sacred Harp in a different way.

Writing in pen or pencil on inside covers

For those who write in their favorite songs in the inside cover and flyleaves of the book, some suggested categories are:
1. Slow major key songs.
2. Slow minor key songs.
3. Fast major key songs.
4. Fast minor key songs.
5. Best harmonies.
6. Triggers ecstacy.

During a shape note singing, we sometimes fall into a "minor key groove" for 20 minutes or more. If you have a list of favorite minor key songs, you can keep the groove going. If you call a major key song, you can flip the group out of the groove. Your call.

Also, you might want to keep separate lists for "songs that I know" (know how to sing well) and "songs that I love" (can't sing well, but want to sing anyway).

Writing in pencil on the song page

Some people use a star system, rating songs as they encounter them. After some months or years, the book is pretty well indexed, to that point that, whenever their turn approaches, they can flip a few pages and call the nearest five-star song.

People who like variety sometimes write in the date they last sang a song. Five star song, but recently sung -- nope, better call something else.

Some people listen to recordings before they come and bookmark the most intriguing songs.

Some people write in performance helps: "Ask for pitch to be lowered." Or "Needs strong trebles." Or "Altos hate this song."

Polyphony, fuging tunes, musical rights --
those are a few folkways,
That make the "Lost Tonal Tribe" of Fasola singers
Different from all other singers.
On the one hand, the use of shapes is to make sight-singing easier (singing new songs well on first sight), but in practice singers tend to call certain songs and we start to memorize them.


Back to main page.
Link to other singings in West Los Angeles area
More information on Shape Note Singing in general
Local singings around the country that generally operate the same way we do.
Contact: David Olson (310) 410-9033 for more details.

Singing location: 4427 Overland Avenue, Culver City, California
Close to "The Spot Cafe and Lounge" on Overland Avenue, cross-streets Farragut and Franklin.
Between Culver City Library and Braddock.

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