The Big WGNC Christmas Sing!

One consequence of not being able to meet for church services at the moment is that we can’t sing together.  Quite a few people have said that they really miss that.  Well, let’s do what we can to counter that.  A Christmas Carol service will take place on Sunday December 20th at 7pm, on Zoom.  It would be great to have some singing from everyone.  The instructions below explain how you can record yourself singing a carol and send this in to be combined with others.  It would be great to hear us all together again!   If you find it easier, you could make a recording by joining forces with someone else in your household or bubble.

To make a recording, the idea is that you watch the video below on one device (for example, a computer or tablet), while recording yourself on another device (for example, a phone) singing along with the tune.  It would be ideal if you made a video of yourself singing.  The sound on your video should be only your own voice, so you need to listen to the video below on earphones. 

You may well already be familiar with recording video on your phone.  If not, another member of your household may be able to help.  If you are still stuck, feel free to contact me at the e-mail address below or send me a text or WhatsApp.  I’ll do the best I can to help.  Here are some tips about making a video recording.

  • Try to capture your head and shoulders, with the camera at head height, or even slightly above.  Shots from below tend to be less flattering!  Please also take the picture in landscape mode (with the long side of the phone parallel to the floor).
  • Check where the microphone on your phone is, so that it isn’t inadvertently covered up when you record.
  • Think about the background of the shot.  Plain wall is best if you can organise that.
  • You will sing better standing up, but try not to move around.

Please do send in a video if you can but, if you are adamant about not being recorded on video, an audio-only recording will also be welcome.  There are two ways to do that.   One is to record on video but tell me that you want only the audio to be used.  The other is to use one of the simple recording apps for phones, such as Voice Memos or Easy Recorder.  You can also record on a computer or laptop if you have suitable software.  The ideal form of returned file for audio is .wav but .mp3 or any other standard format should also be fine.

The carol is Hark! the Herald Angels Sing.  Here is the backing track to watch: video.  If you would prefer simple audio files (piano only, or piano + voice) these are also available, but you will probably find the video easiest, not least because it gives you prompts for the words.

The expectation is that most people will simply sing along with the tune.  However, if you know some of the traditional harmonies, feel free to sing those.

To sing well, it is very important to warm-up.  Here is a short set of exercises to prepare your voice.  If you click on the link, you should be taken to a short audio file which will talk you through what to do.

Please send the file with the recording to me at the e-mail address below.  Your file will probably be quite large so it may be easiest to use the free WeTransfer facility at wetransfer.com.  Please send your recording by Sunday 13th December so that the results can be put together for the Carol Service the following week.

I hope that doesn’t sound too complicated!  This is intended as a fun project.  Feel free to get in touch if a conversation about how to do it would be useful.  Also feel free to give feedback on whether the guidelines above could be improved.
 
Other hymns to sing along to will be available by Sunday 6th December, but Hark the Herald is the main target.
 

If you can think of any family or friends that would enjoy joining in please do invite them.

Thank you!