Saturday, September 3, 2016

More on music (but hopefully the last of this stream)

Friday night's Fraternity meeting provided a snapshot of why I want to get out of providing music for the Fraternity.

The night was to prepare for the upcoming profession, and the Minister wanted us to practice the songs. I had already told her that I didn't want to provide music after the profession, so  there would have to be another way to provide music Beginning in October. But I made it clear that I would play for the profession.

I prepared the three main songs for the profession Mass to practice, and printed song sheets for the Fraternity, something I've done every time I've provided music. But ... the minister had called the woman who used to do the music before I did, and gave her the impression that I was not going to provide music starting immediately, so the woman prepared three different songs to sing. We both arrived prepared - and the Minister had printed the program with the three songs in it so we would practice them. She got upset - not angry, just flustered - that I had also printed the songs. The woman who had prepared three different songs thinking they would be needed put hers away. My song sheets were not needed, so they got put back in my bag.

I spent the time before the meeting began setting up tables and chairs, opening windows, and helping people with walkers or with heavy bags get to the meeting room - which is what I really like doing rather than fussing with all the music stuff.

When we started singing the songs, with me leading, two women joined me to help with the singing. But one of them - the soprano who sings harmonies I'd mentioned previously - began singing one of the songs using half notes for part of it where the music was actually in quarter notes, turning the last verse especially into a mish-mash. We had to go through it again a couple of times with me not really playing, just strumming loudly on each beat so people could follow. Meanwhile, one of the women to be professed asked where a song she had requested was, and I said the Council had rejected it - too contemporary, not one of the Charismatic and Steubenville songs they like, and, one they did not know (of course, the musician who was playing it, the two women being professed who wanted that particular contemporary hymn, and a younger member of the Council did know it) - and substituted an old hymn that was not intended for guitar. To be honest, I struggled with that one.

Then we started running through some Mass parts that the Fraternity old guard wanted, but which no one else (including me) knew. We had to keep doing them over and over. Then one of the old guard began saying that the women in their response part should sing it a way different than the music called for because that other way was the way they used to do it at Steubenville years ago. We kept trying to do it the way he wanted - with him pushing for repetition and the Minister getting more and more upset because we could not do it the way it used to be done. Interestingly, given their rejection of the contemporary song because people would not know it, they were trying to get the Fraternity to sings Mass parts few knew, and they were okay with that.

There was some rolling of eyes by folks, including those to be professed, as all this dragged on.

Practicing basically ate up the much of the time for the Fraternity meeting.

I spent the last 20 minutes of our time at the church helping people carry things and escorting them to their cars in the now dark parking lot. Something I enjoy doing.

Anyway, a frustrating night musically. I should have offered it up, but to be honest after I got home I took the dog out for a walk, then had a beer.

Pax et bonum

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