Notes from Rehearsal with Carolyn – 11/2/20

Published on February 15, 2020,

Dear Singers,

A 71% attendance at last night’s rehearsal. As usual, for the 28 absentees, here’s what happened. And for all of us some important NOTICES.

If you weren’t there last night, you missed a near rebellion by the Altos. Their ringleader, who we shall call K (Special K to her associates), demanded that the Altos carry the melody in Only You. But she met her match in our Musical Director who has been trained in the arts of diplomacy and negotiation – not by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office but by the much more formidable English Folk Dance and Song Society. A proper compromise was reached. The Altos were given a part that was “almost the tune” and are allowed to join the Basses in singing the refrain “Only you”.

We reached a creditable top G in the warm-up and went on to rehearse:

Love call me home

Please correct another typo in the printed lyrics: verse 4, line 2 change “carry” to “call”, so that the line reads, “ Deep within me life is singing, love call me home.” This is an upbeat line in the lyrics, so we were asked to sing it dramatically at this point. The last two verses are melodically the same as the first three, but there are some rhythmic differences (at “singing” in verse 4 for the Tunes and “chance” in verse 5 in all parts). So watch out for these when we next rehearse this song.


Only you

Words fail me! Lots of syncopated “do-do”s impossible to capture in a de-brief. You’ll have to pick it up at next rehearsal.


John Barleycorn

And a final rousing attempt at John Barleycorn. This version is in three parts. Tunes and Basses have the melody, and there are parts for Altos and Tops. Paul and John are researching a fourth verse to run past Carolyn. John has found a copy in the magazine of the English Folk Dance and Song Society dating from 1964 with the words of John Barleycorn [alongside an interesting article on negotiating techniques for choir leaders and the use of special weapons and tactics (SWAT) when all else fails]. OK, the bit in square brackets is made up but the rest is true and we’ll re-issue the lyrics with the fourth verse added in due course.

Carolyn has promised us sound files this weekend. I’ll let you know when they are posted to our website.



  1. Don’t come next week (Tuesday, 18th February). It’s half-term and we take a break. The next rehearsal is on Tuesday, 25thFebruary.
  2. The Choir AGM is set for Tuesday, 5th May. We shorten the rehearsal slightly and whizz through our AGM agenda. So, those with a low boredom threshold should not be put off. Please, please let Wenda know if you would like to join the Choir Committee or if you have skills to offer, e.g. design, PR, communications, admin…. The Committee meets no more than once a term so it’s not onerous.
  3. Our summer concert this year will be on Tuesday, 7th July at The United Church, Jewry Street. Please put the date in your Calendar. More details and publicity materials will be available nearer the time.

Best wishes and see you on 25th February.


Denis Gibson

Membership Secretary

Winchester Community Choir

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