The power of singing... and social networking

528BaitedHookHandmade_C!C!C!Singing at Monarch Tavern with Choir! Choir! Choir!

It's Friday afternoon at the office and I am giddy and quite frankly bordering on annoying because at 5:00 I will meet up with friends and head downtown to sing. The choir that I will be singing with is not the choir I have written about in the past where we are

accompanied by a piano, where we do vocal warm ups (horse lips being my personal favourite), where we are taught how to breathe, how to shape our mouths for optimal sound structure and projection and where we have an end of term musical theatre concert in a church. Tonight is Choir! Choir! Choir! (c!c!c!). This choir is held in a dark cavernous bar where daylight barely trickles through the windows. At this choir we pay 5 bucks at the door and are handed a piece of paper containing the lyrics for 2 songs (­no bothersome notes or scores). We order beers, chat with friends and sing. It feels wonderfully rebellious singing with c!c!c! We can be sibilant with our S's, We get sworn at if we mess something up and we can even shimmy a bit if we feel like it.

This evening is not a regulatr c!c!c! night. We are all going to sing at a big BBQ bash that is piggybacking on the NXNE festivities. A min-music festival, if you will.

529BaitedHook_Choir_3Daveed Goldman and Nobu Adilman instructing the choirsters.

c!c!c! is run by Daveed Goldman and Nobu Adilman. Nobu, who is in the film and television industry (hosting shows such as Smart Ask!, ZeD, Food Jammers, Invention Nation) producing, and acting (Trailer Park Boys), was regular patron at a brunch restaurant called "aunties & uncles" where Daveed has been working/managing for over a decade. When I asked them how C!C!C! came into being Nobu told me that there is a long and a short story. He gave me the medium version – "a friend Amanda and I were asked to put together a choir for another's friend's surprise birthday party. The song was Magic by Pilot and Amanda enlisted Daveed to play guitar. This would be the first time I hung out with Daveed outside of the restaurant. About 12 people gathered in my kitchen to practice. We had no idea what we were doing but it was a lot of fun and everybody loved it. Amanda and I talked about doing more but for one reason
or another, it didn't come together. Two years later, I walked into Aunties and Daveed asked me when we were doing choir again. I had joined facebook in the meantime so I sent out a general message to my friends that essentially said: if we build a choir, will you come. The response was overwhelming. So a few weeks later, in the middle of a massive snow storm, about 20–25 of us met at the Bosley Real Estate office on Queen West and sang The Beatles Nowhere Man and Pilot Just A Smile. We thought it would be a monthly affair but it instantly became weekly. And now we do sessions twice a week!"

Tuesday's and Wednesday's to be exact. The Tuesday group is c!c!c! 1 which is now at capacity. I am a c!c!c! 2 member which meets every Wednesday night at the Monarch Tavern.

530BaitedHook_CCC_MusicMusic collected from nights at c!c!c!

My introduction to c!c!c! was s few months back and I admit I was a bit nervous. I had no idea what I was walking into but the second I was handed my lyric sheet I knew I was in the right spot: ABBA's SOS and CCR's Have you ever Seen the Rain. We tackled ABBA first – running through the whole song once and then breaking it down into 3 part harmony, adding emphasis and energy where required. Nobu encouraged us with positive feedback, helping us to "feel" the lyrics and to "move in closer". Daveed would make us repeat our ohhhs and ahhs until we nailed them (almost) and every once in a while he would break into a random guitar solo. By the end of the hour we had sorted through the song clutching at our beer bottles all the while.

Time for a break to chat and refresh our drinks and on to our next song. By the end of the night we had recoded both songs. I was humming all the way home and well into the week that followed. I told everyone I knew about it and had a little entourage with me the following week. According to Nobu and Daveed that seems to be the way c!c!c! grew into what it is today – simple, old fashioned, word of mouth. Oh, and facebook. "Somehow word spread like crazy. People we didn't even know were at the first session. Eye Magazine had heard about it and came back to take a pic, which was featured in the next week's issue. Our friends have huge networks so they kept bringing more people with them. Somehow it was an idea that everybody loved and wanted to be a part of. So we expanded very quickly," explained Nobu.

I asked each of them what they liked most about c!c!c! – "The sense of community. Watching people sing, completely in their element. The sounds we make as a group. Choir is the most beautiful feeling," was Nobu's response. Daveed told me that aside from the people, he loves the spontaneity of it all. "Week to week we don't really know how things are gonna play out. It is stressful for sure, but also a lot of fun for Nobu and I. When we do succeed, it feels that much

c!c!c! is not their only musical outlet. Nobu released a CD years ago called Mr. Nobu. Nobu described it as being "virtually invisible" but I found it online quite easily. He continues to write and record new songs that he predicts "will eventually see the light of day". He has also started a recording project with Nyles Miszcyzk, a friend he met at choir. We are called Party Line. Daveed has been writing, singing and performing for years, but for now Daveed tells me that "c!c!c! takes up pretty much all of my creative juices."

533Senning Lukc!c!c! rehearsal at Monarch Tavern. Photo generously supplied by Senning Luk.

Every once in a while c!c!c! gets asked to do performances such as the one tonight at the bbq which will be my first experience singing with c!c!c! outside of the bar and I admit I am pretty excited and am curious where else we might perform.

Nobu and Daveed each have ideas of where c!c!c! could go in the future. Nobu says he wants to host a variety show or do an exchange with a hotel in Niagara Falls or make an interactive choir art show that tours the world (virtually)...
Daveed remains open to all types of opportunities. "As long as we are having fun, we'll keep plugging along. It's pretty hard to predict where we'll be in a years time, but for now, branching out to do something with kids would be really gratifying," he explains.

After each Wednesday night rehearsal the songs that have been recorded get uploaded to soundcloud. Nyles Miszcyzk does a fantastic job drowning out the clinking of bottles and glasses produced at the bar and the odd siren screaming by outside. It is fun to hear what a group of people accomplish in a few hours. My favourite song so far was video'd by Senning Luk.

If you like to sing in groups surrounded by beautiful people CLICK HERE

531MusicIsMyLifeGrafitti on the wall of the Monarch Tavern.