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21 February 2007 @ 10:38 pm
This will either be a huge success, or a massive failure.  
OK, so my online ventures have expanded to include MySpace and YouTube.  Both have gotten some attention, both have had people asking me who I am.  And I've designed my spaces on both in such a way that it's not really appropriate for me to answer.  My MySpace is for a cappella coaching, my YouTube is for a cappella videos.  My LiveJournal is for me.

So here's the deal.  I'm taking the basic idea from one of the latest Meme's, tearing away parts of it, and expanding on other parts.

"Interview me!"

This journal entry is all about me (as opposed to the rest of this LJ.  Well, ok, but this is a more compressed format).  If all goes according to plan, it'll be an evolving interview.  Feel free to use the comments on this entry to ask me anything you want to - much of the answers are likely to be found elsewhere in the LJ, but there's a few years' of entries to dig through, and I don't expect anybody to care about me that much.  I'm going to link to this entry from both MySpace and YouTube, so anybody from any source has the opportunity to find out who I am, and possibly glean from that why I do what I do.  It's like an interactive FAQ. 

For my part, I'll try to be as honest as I can in answering your questions, while respecting the privacy of anybody else involved, and the sensitivities of those who I know read this journal.  For yours, feel free to post from your LJ account - or not.  Feel free to sign your entry - or not.  Anonymity is fine by me.  I'm going under the assumption that most of the people who already read this journal will probably not have much to ask, and those who ask stuff are probably people I don't know.  If I'm wrong about that, however, feel free.  I didn't specify what kinds of questions you can ask.  Whatever you want to know.  Open forum.

Idtechnomonkey on November 26th, 2007 02:49 pm (UTC)
Oh, and...
If you want to know how I got into the contemporary a cappella scene, just ask. =)
wings_on_waterwings_on_water on November 27th, 2007 06:44 am (UTC)
Re: Oh, and...

How did you get into the contemporary a cappella scene?

Idtechnomonkey on November 27th, 2007 07:54 am (UTC)
How I got into the Contemporary A Cappella scene
That particular road is long and convoluted, so I'll try to just hit the highlights.

As with many people's, my Contemporary A Cappella story begins with "Where in the World is Carmen San Diego?" My brother and I found a love for Rockapella through that show, and we went to a concert of theirs in which the opening act was a group then called This Side Up.

We followed This Side Up through their name change to Spiralmouth. (several hundred albums later, I still feel strongly that Spiralmouth's is the best a cappella CD in my collection. If you haven't heard it, go to Amazon and buy it today. It's worth it.)

Spiralmouth was a guest at a concert hosted by USC SoCal VoCals, and my then-girlfriend (now-wife)'s roommate's boyfriend's roommate was in the VoCals at the time (I told you this was convoluted), so that couple was dragged to the show. Anne introduced Jen and I to the VoCals. We went to their CD Release party for V3, their third (and best IMHO) album, and were told about the ICCAs at that show.

The ICCA quarterfinals were at UCLA that year, and we were introduced to several groups that we've followed obsessively since: USC Reverse Osmosis, UCLA Awaken A Cappella, and UCSB Naked Voices.

RO in particular, we became scary-stalker-fans of. Eventually, we and Brendan (RO cofounder) started talking after shows and such, and Jen and I convinced him to let us coach the group. Lord knows how we managed that - we didn't know much of what we were doing back then. Still, it could have gone worse, and they were kind enough to invite us back. It took a year and a half, but we weren't in any hurry.

At that time, I was heavily in the barbershop world, and something happened in ICCAland. Specifically, they had a major computer crash and lost their entire database of judges. Competition season was coming up quick, and they were panicking, so they sent out a call for help to all the a cappella societies, including barbershop. Suddenly Jen and I were judging.

A couple of years ago, we were helping RO with the ICCA process (we coached them three or four times that year) when a judging SNAFU got them an invite to the ICCA finals. (The judges hadn't gotten back to their seats when the second act started so they didn't see RO's full set, and they couldn't honestly say whether RO would have taken 1st or not if they'd seen it) We convinced the group to let us tag along, and while we were there we met Amanda Grish, then-Executive Producer of the contest. Jen chatted her up, and talked her into a more serious conversation that later became a job offer, and suddenly Jen's the ICCA West Producer. (Sadly, her "real-world" job commitments have changed and she wasn't able to maintain the position this year, but that's a different story)

Meanwhile, I bought a video camera. I specifically did that for ICCA finals that year (2006), and have been camera-happy ever since. Well, I guess to be fair, I was camera-happy with my digital still-camera long before I got a video camera, but I've found my interest in still frames to have waned since I discovered the wonders of multimedia.

Anyway, that's about it. The past twelve months have included coaching several groups that we hadn't had the opportunity to work with previously, which we love. We buy far more CDs than could possibly be healthy for our budget. We're basically big geeks who have found a niche that we love.

And yes, that's the short version.
wings_on_waterwings_on_water on November 28th, 2007 06:58 am (UTC)
Re: How I got into the Contemporary A Cappella scene
Yay! That sounds awesome. I never even knew there was a contemporary a cappella genre before this! But it certainly makes sense. Personally, I love listening to and singing a cappella music, though I've never been really seriously into it, and I've only sung in more traditional choirs. My favorite group in the whole universe is Rajaton, a six-person group from Finland. They're pretty famous in their home country, I take it, though they're starting to make a name for themselves in Canada (I have no idea about the US). Anyway, I'll have to investigate some of the groups you've mentioned, and find some time to view more of your YouTube videos!