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Things you only learn when you join a choir

Things you only learn when you join a choir

You will end up smiling

No matter how fed up you are, after an hour of singing, you will have a smile on your face.  A sing-a-long will really get the endorphins (feel good hormone) pumping around your system.

You’ll get a far more fun workout than spending an hour at the gym

Ok, so it might not tone you up quite like a spin class would, but as couple of hours singing will quickly burn off a few calories.

But, Hide the cakes

You will be famished when you get home from rehearsals, even if you had food beforehand.  So, if you want to keep the inches away – hide the cakes and put locks on the cupboard doors.

Singing is a great leveller.

It doesn’t matter what walk of life you are, you will mix with people who you may probably have never crossed paths with before, and you will make the best friends for life.



If you’re an alto, you’ll think Christmas has arrived early everytime you get the tune.

Soprano’s usually get to sing the main melody line of a song, whilst the altos, tenors and bass tend to get the harmonies, which are harder to master.


Christmas starts in September

Your suntan may not have started to fade, but as soon as September rolls around you’ll be having The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year, singing O Holy Night and White Christmas as the Christmas Concert countdown begins.


Almost every song could be given a choir twist

Many choirs don’t stick to traditional/choral pieces anymore.  You may find yourself singing new arrangements of anything from Abba to Zed Leplin.


You’ll no longer be able to sing to the radio like you used to.

Forget every song you have ever known. You will now be learning to sing parts to a favourite song to suit your voice type.   Whenever that song comes on the radio, you will find yourself singing your version.  Your non-choir friends will look on with amazement.


You will drive with your car window’s up and the air-conditioning on full blast.

You will be driving along with your practice CD on the car stereo, but you won’t want anyone listening to you when you stop at traffic lights.   Expect to see some crazy looks if you forget.

You will no longer need Soduko Crosswords or any other brain training.

To learn 30 songs in a matter of weeks, off by heart, for your next concert will having you cramming like never before.  You didn’t have this much to learn when you sat your GCSE’s.

Don’t worry about the performance. The most stressful part about the concert day is where you are sitting

If you are used to being surrounded by your alto pals during rehearsals, goodness help you if you are sitting next to a bass, or even worse, a soprano.   You will forget everything you have every learned in practice and will end up singing along to their part.

Every time you wear black* you will want to burst into song.

It’s probably your choir uniform colour, so of course you will associate the colour with singing.




10 Things You Might Not Know About the Shure SM58

10 Things You Might Not Know About the SM58

This year Shure celebrates the 50th anniversary of the world’s most popular mic, the ShureSM58® Vocal Microphone. Loyal users know that this rugged and reliable mic sounds great. But many may not know some of the fascinating history and technical facts about it.

#1  The “SM” in SM58 stands for “Studio Microphone.”

Shure microphones had been a fixture in the public address market for nearly three decades when Shure executives saw growth potential in the radio and television broadcast markets of the early 1960s. This led to the development of the SM microphone series. The SM57 (1965) and SM58 (1966) were based on the popular Unidyne® III 545 (1959) used for public address systems. These new SM models were intended for broadcast studio use, eliminating the on-off switch and featuring a non-reflective, dark gray finish.



#2  The SM58 faced extinction in 1970.

A single competitor was so entrenched in the broadcast market that radio and television stations weren’t excited about the new Shure SM microphones. Sales were sluggish, and plans were afoot to discontinue the SM58 and the SM57. As a last-ditch effort, the Shure national sales manager suggested introducing the mics to live sound engineers in Las Vegas. The mics were a hit in Vegas, and entertainers began to embrace these models for live performance. As they say, the rest is history.


#3  Add a meshed ball grille to the SM57, and you have the SM58.

Both models are based on the Unidyne III cartridge design developed by Shure engineer Ernie Seeler in the late 1950s. The primary difference between the SM57 and the SM58 is the grille design. The SM58 was designed for vocal applications, utilizing a ball grille that acts as an effective P-pop filter. The SM57 was designed primarily as an instrument microphone where a smaller grille size is preferred. In this application, P-pop is not a concern.


#4  You can turn it up to 11. Maybe even 12.

How much SPL can the SM58 handle? At what point will the sound distort? The answer is much higher than would be safe for your ears: somewhere in the 150 to 180 dB SPL level, close to the noise level of a space shuttle launch. A well-designed dynamic like the SM58 is unlikely to reach its distortion point under normal circumstances.


#5  Zero gravity is no challenge for the SM58.

In a video interview with The New York Times in April 2011, a wired SM58 is floating around and being shared by six astronauts on the International Space Station. It sounded great, and it provided a testing opportunity even Shure engineers could not have performed on Earth: the SM58’s performance characteristics when weightless.



#6  Ernie Seeler, the man behind the development of the SM58, didn’t like rock and roll.

It’s ironic that a quiet man who preferred classical music invented a mic that would become synonymous with rock and roll, first capturing the attention of acts like The Who and The Rolling Stones. Shocked by its widespread adoption on the rock stage, Ernie Seeler said, “I love classical music, but rock and roll, I don’t take very seriously.”



#7  The SM58 was born to perform. In fact, it’s practically indestructible.

The SM58 has been subjected to caught-on-video tortures in a series of Shure Mike videos in which the sturdy SM58 was dropped from a helicopter, dunked in a pint of Guinness, shot with a 12-gauge shotgun, run over by a tour bus, tossed into the Pacific, grilled alongside some hot dogs, and slap-shot into the boards by the Chicago Wolves. Ernie Seeler tested the Unidyne III cartridge back in the 1960s by dropping, cooking, freezing, and submerging it. We can all thank the Shure Quality Assurance standards for its unfailing durability 50 years later.


#8  The SM58 capsule is still #1 in Shure wireless.

Currently, there are fourteen microphone capsules available for Shure wireless microphone systems. They range from the affordable PGA58 dynamic element to the new KSM8 Dualdyne™. Due to popular demand, the SM58 capsule is available for every one of the eleven Shure wireless lines.



#9  The internal acoustic design of the SM58 can be traced back to the Unidyne Model 55 introduced in 1939.

All Shure unidirectional cardioid microphones employ the revolutionary Uniphase acoustical network that engineer Ben Bauer began developing in 1937 and used in the Unidyne Model 55 microphone (1939.) Ernie Seeler advanced this technology in the 1950s by designing an end-address microphone with an internal pneumatic shock mount, the Unidyne III. The SM58 has a Unidyne III cartridge.


#10  A variety of artists have turned this mic into an icon.

The SM58 has been the microphone of choice for Roger Daltrey, Paul McCartney, Henry Rollins, Patti Smith, Alice Cooper, Buddy Guy, Cheap Trick, G. Love, Martina McBride, Megadeth and countless other musicians. In fact, it would be difficult to name a major entertainer who has not used the SM58 at some time in their career.


Final thought: The Shure SM58 has become the touchstone for a professional vocal microphone, perfect in form, function, and feel. For many musicians, it is the only microphone needed for their entire career. Everywhere people make music, and for almost as long as music has been amplified, the SM58 has been “what you sing through.” If any product has ever earned the title of “worldwide industry standard,” surely the SM58 is it.

Shure Website

Shure Blog


Singing Karaoke

The word Karaoke comes from the Japanese for ‘empty orchestra’.

Singing Karaoke

You usually see karaoke in local bars and pubs, but developments in technology over the years have produced home karaoke units, game consoles and even apps for your tablets and mobile phones.

How to sing karaoke.

Your first introduction to karaoke is usually at the local pub or at a mate’s house with a group of friends.

Browse through the songbook or choice of songs.  Chose a song you know well or pick an artist you know, who’s voice match yours. If you are able to sing-a-long to all/most of this artist’s songs, without straining your voice, this is a good place to start.

Remember, your first time on stage is about having a go

Give the song-number or the name to the karaoke host.

Sit down and enjoy the Show, and wait for your song.

If you’re at a professional operation, 20 seconds before your song comes up, “PREPARE FOR: xxxxx xxxxx (song title)” will be displayed on the screen.

Go to the side of the stage, take the mic and take your place.

Listen to the music – not your own voice. The sound you hear on stage is very different from the sound the audience hears. Don’t get frightened hearing your voice, and move away from the microphone. Focus on the music.

But most of all HAVE FUN!!!

Singing Pictures

Our Collection of singing pictures,

inspirational quotes, memes and posters

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Things You Only Know If You Sing In A Choir

Group Of School Children Singing In Choir Together

Let’s face it, singing in a choir is the most fun you can have with your clothes on.

When you’re feeling a little flat, nothing gives you more of a trill than some simple harmony.

And it’s not just about the music – you’ll never leave a choir without making some lifelong friends.

Here’s a few you only know if you sing in a choir.

 The weirder the warm up, the better it is

‘Hmmmmmmmmmmm’, *pant pant pant* ‘zzzZZZZZzzzzz’, *moves tongue round face*

 There’s always at least one diva

If you don’t know who they are then, yes, it’s you!

Smiling stops you singing flat

Or possibly hypnotises the audience into not noticing your mistakes.

There’s always one who has just learnt how to harmonise

And is going to show off by adding it in, even when it’s not meant to be there.

There’s always one who doesn’t really know what harmonising is

But this doesn’t stop them adding it in by mistake.

If they’re not in the hall they’re in the pub

Because beer is very good for the vocal chords.

There’s always one who sings really loudly during the bits they know, then mumbles the rest

Ok, we’ve all been this one at some point.

What happens in chorus stays in chorus

Not to mention the after-show do.

There’s always one who ‘corrects’ the MD, or tells the room a fact to show they’re musical

This fact is almost always wrong.

When the conductor says ‘quiet’ she means it

But this won’t stop the gossiping of the girls aged 13-93.

It’s hard to keep a straight face when the sopranos get warbly

This includes the sopranos.

As long as the face is smiling, and the lips are moving, you can get away with anything

Honestly, anything.