The Northcountrymen Barbershop Chorus is about to fold up. Unless and until we find a director and until we find about 20 younger men who like to sing and are willing to spend one evening a week practicing to perfect their voices to create a very pleasing sound.
We are willing to forego the exclusive singing of only Barbershop arrangements and expect to have fun in singing any and all styles of music including gospel, religious, western or whatever the group and director decides is proper.
Our present chorus is composed of mostly men over 60 years and was started in 1969 by Dick Jensen, Al Lubke, Don Madsen, Bill Hendrickson, Jim Glenn, the former high school music director, and myself. All have either passed away or moved except Dick and me. We have been fighting a losing battle over the past few years to increase membership. Therefore we are in the process of relinquishing our membership in the Barbershop Harmony Society formerly called the Society for the Preservation and Encouragement of Barbershop Quartet Singing in America.
We have been fortunate over the years to be able to use the facilities of the First Congregational Church for practices and have made it a ritual to sing one Sunday a month during the summer at up to seven different churches, in Brainerd, Pine River Little Falls, Baxter, Aitkin, Crosby-Ironton, Nisswa, Pequot Lakes, and Aitkin.
In addition we have sung at weddings, funerals, graduation parties, service clubs, memorial services, banquets, class-reunions and family gatherings.
The main reason for this guest column is to appeal to the citizens of this area that unless they come to our aid, that one of the musical institutions of the Brainerd lakes area is going to cease to be.
We need younger singers ready to lend their voices (you really dont have to read music, we'll teach you the notes).
We really need to continue to entertain the central lakes area with good quality music.
In the past we had some younger members from the Franklin Junior High who have gone to entertaining people for the past 15 or 20 years. Guys who have sung with the Herd Of Bananas, A Cappella Choir and other groups are all welcome to come and join us.
If anyone knows of a possible director (male or female) please call us and if you are interested in singing with us, call Dick Jensen at 829-9663, Yibby Knudsen at 829-1214, Carlie Anderson in Deerwood at 534-3220 or Lyle Steffenson in Nisswa at 963-3427.
Thanks for helping us.
YIBBY KNUDSEN is a longtime Brainerd resident and singer.
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