Tuesday 8 March 2011

Rain Rain Beautiful Rain

Accapella is a really difficult word for me to spell, so let me try again.


No, apparently not.

Of course I could activate spell check here and save myself a lot of embarrassment, but where would the fun be in that?


Accappella, I don’t think so.


Accapela. Accappela. Acapela?

Ok, I’m getting desperate and you are probably getting bored so..


Anyway… difficult though it is for me to spell, it was even harder for me to do.

I had accepted a three-month contract to perform in a Pantomime at Christmas (more on that here), this was many snows ago, and also hired for the extravaganza was Brian who, along with his former group, had reached number one in the English music charts with a non musical instrument version of “Only You”.

The director of the show thought it would be a good idea to have the cast provide the vocal backing for Brian in the middle of a fairly anarchic version of the traditional tale Aladdin.

The cast included an 80-year old former music hall star – Mr Ben Warris, and when the various parts were handed out he and I were given the base line.

Do wop, di di bi di bi di wop, di bi bi di bi do wop, di di bi do bi do wop ……. etc etc

I panicked. This was the first time I had sung in public since I had growled through a version of “It’s the poor that get the blame” whilst portraying a diseased beggar returning from the Holy Wars.


I sought out the musical director after rehearsals and he kindly consented to recording himself singing the line so that I could take a cassette home and practice.

Which I did all weekend.

On stage the next week I worked as hard as I could to perfect it, I was often seen in the wings with a headset humming to myself, and in rehearsals I stood with both fingers in my ears so that I wouldn’t be seduced by any of the other voices to change tune.

I got it.

Show time came and when the number started I was in full flow when I suddenly realised that Ben, who was standing next to me in the glorious costume of the Chinese Emperor, was simply moving his lips and nothing was coming out.

I looked at him astonished.

He smiled and whispered – “Do you think this is important?”

A cappella.


Anne Hodgson said...

Holy macarel, a solo!? You sang "Only you", then? Hehehe.

popps said...

He he he!
Now Anne - Holy macarel, where did that come from - catholic gill's school, father a fisherman?

Mary said...

Holy Moly -- Where's the YouTube video when you need it? Love that song. Well done Chris! Am envious - can't, I mean, I'm not allowed to sing in public, no karaoke, nothing. Can't hold a tune.


popps said...

mary - i didn't say i could hold a tune, i just said i growled!
By the way, a moly - relative of the macerel?

Mary said...

Moly - original reference in Homer's Odyssey, later became famous and Holy added in Marvel comics.

Anyway, wanted to add to the devout fun of Anne's Holy Mackerel! Can't help myself.


Mary said...

Just finished reading the Lockerbie story that you link to. I didn't know Bill Mack but what a horrible shame.

I realize there is still much in BnB's that I haven't read.


popps said...

it will keep you going for a bit Mary.

Anne Hodgson said...

I have a great fish story about mollies (do they count as a moly?). Anyway, I got some mollies from my dad, in a plastic bag from the pet store, and put them into a big old bowl "to acclimatize to my room" (sort of an experiment, that's the kind of kid I was). And while I was in the bathroom, they up and jumped out!!! I saw them in the dust, and thought "they're dead! Oh no!" So I threw them in the toilet, and flushed. (Rule 1: Remove evidence of wrongdoing!) But didn't those little buggers just start swimming around!?! Well, I rescued them all with a toothbrush glass, and they went on to live to ripe old age.

Yeah, actually, my dad was from Iowa, where they've got corn, mostly. Ok, pigs, too. And fish, I guess, swimming in the Missouri River. But not a whole lot else. Maybe that's why his language was so quaint and sweet I made it my own. He always said "nuke-ye-lar", just like ol' Georgie Bush.

popps said...

It's a lovely story Anne, that i am honoured to see as part of this blog.
i am, though, a little worried for whoever next brushed their teeth in that bathroom.