Recent changes in sg
I see Hope’s Cal signed with Daywind. Good for them, I guess. The few times I’ve seen them they’ve had their act together mostly, and they clearly know how to sing (even if the vocal histrionics are still a bit too often in play). But I would thought they’d signed with Wayne Haun and Kevin Ward’s new label, especially since Hope’s Call has had such a longstanding relationship with Ward – which is to say, Ward’s engineering and producing work was essential in Hope’s Call early years, helping to keep their sound first-rate while they built a fan base and enough professional credibility to launch into the tier above the middling-to-fair category in which they began. Maybe I’ve been watching too much Hee Haw lately but I keep hearing the lyric from that old skit … “you met another and … [thuhhhhht] you were gone.”
And then Loren Harris left the Perrys. No great sound lasts forever, it just remains embalmed in a thousand chat rooms and discussion-board threads about how superior were the “real” Gold City (Tim, Ivan, Mike, Brian) and the “real” Kingsmen (Hammil, Reese, and whoever was your favorite baritone for Hammel to pick on and your favorite tenor who ruined his voice in all-night screech-a-thons) and the “real” Cathedrals (G, G, Danny, Mark) to everything that came before or after. [Interesting tangent: The Hoppers. The same personnel is intact from their heyday back in the mid to late 90s but they’ve managed to lose
Shannon Childress their mojo all the same]. Perhaps it’s a mark of excellence or greatness or at least a sign that you’ve passed some magical point in your career as a group when you find that too-perfect sound that depends on something irreplaceable in each person’s voice and creates a cultlike identification among fans. If so, the Perrys found – and with Harris’s departure, lost – that sound.
I’m not sure what Libbi Perry Stuffle was thinking when she claimed that promoting baritone Joseph Habedank to lead and hiring someone else to fill the baritone spot “will keep our sound basically the same as before.” There’s a world of difference in that “basically” — the sound will be basically the same, much the way the Supremes would have sounded basically the same if Diana Ross had gone off to spend more time with her family. David Bruce Murray has described the Perrys late sound that developed with Habedank and Harris alongside the Stuffles as a “hard singing” style – by which I think he means to describe the considerable strength (not just volume, but control, pitch, blend) equally distributed at each vocal position.
I don’t know for sure why Harris left, but the usual cabal of whisperers in my ear who are usually right about these kinds of things certainly weren’t using phrases like “wants to spend more time family.” And Habedanks promotion to lead – coming as it does on the heels of the Perrys putting two songs written or co-written by Habedank on their latest project, despite the fact that the songs were B-list beginners work at best and despite the other fact that the Perrys are, or ought to be, at a place in their career when only the best songs (and not just the ones written by people you really like) get cut – well, these are the kinds of decisions that presage a decline. Let’s hope I’m wrong.
Finally, David Bruce Murray has made sghistory.com a wiki. Go read about why that could be a really BFD.Email this Post