On Thursdays & Fridays, usually, I have choir rehearsal at school. My choir consists of about 28 3rd, 4th & 5th graders who like to sing, which is good, and who also like to talk, which is sometimes bad. But I learned a long time ago that a good song can shut them up, uh, I mean…. a good song can make them stop talking and start singing.
So today, the wall of sound of talking came to an abrupt end when I started playing this….
Of course, being a qualified and responsible choral director, I tried to bring some order to the unbridled happiness. I’m saying that, because when I started playing the song (loud), the 3rd, 4th & 5th graders started all singing it (loud), but not so much chorally. More like they were all singing in their cars. And you know as well as I do – when you sing in your cars, anything goes.
So I said, “For now, I don’t want any of you singing the part in the chorus that goes “I’m happeeeee……….. Just let the recorded background voices do that, and you can sing the whole “clap along” thing. Got it?” They indicated that they, did, indeed, have it. But that’s not the way they sang it. It was more like, “‘Cause I’m happppeeeeeeeee clappa long if you feel etc.” So after a few minutes we stopped the song, and I explained it again: “You don’t need to sing the “cause I’m happpeeeeee…… part, because I want to let the recorded voices do that. Just sing the ‘clap along’ part.” They seemed to understand. Then they sang, once again, “Cause I’m happpppeeeeeeeee clappa long if you feel…..” etc.
Obviously, they weren’t getting it. These kids were just too darn happy. I told them, “Hey guys, you can’t sing both parts. It doesn’t work. It sounds like you’re singing “Cause I’m happy-clappy.” Which made them even goofier.
And one girl said what I already knew, and what I alluded to earlier in this post, “Mr. Miller, that’s the way I sing it in my car.”
This made me think of your class.
Ha. Yeah, my little Caucasian choir sounds exactly like that.