Wednesday, August 20, 2008

A (Really) Bad Mullet Does Not A Bad Singer Make

OK, all you haters. Have you heard Michael Bolton sing When A Man Loves A Woman? Georgia On My Mind? How Am I Supposed To Live Without You?

I know, I know. The hair. The poser facial expressions. The whole 'I Said I Love You But I Lied' debacle. But, come on. Those are some pipes. Some of the strongest, grittiest soulful singing to hit the airwaves.

You don't have to agree with me. It's subjective, I know. I just happen to be right. ; >)

Another great singer? The person who's singing a duet with me on my Christmas record.

Monday, August 18, 2008

It's Time

OK. It's time for me to sort out my thoughts about this. What have I done? Why would I even put my mind to such a subjective nonsense? Who is the best singer ever? What kind of question is that?

I loved reading your responses. You had so many great observations and thoughts about the question. And it really is a subjective question. We all are going to look for different things in a good singer. Some people might recognize tone as the most important factor. Others might listen for range. Or agility. Or power. Or nuance. Or some combination of all of them.

Here were your top choices (number of votes in parenthesis):
Women -
1. Celine Dion (9)
2. Whitney Houston and Barbra Striesand (tie - 5)
4. CeCe Winans (4)
5. Karen Carpenter (3)

Men -
1. Steve Perry and Josh Groban (tie - 4)
3. Elvis and Nat King Cole (tie - 3)

Pretty decent choices, in my opinion. Now, some of you voted with your heart and not your mind, bless your hearts. As a reminder, I asked you to vote not for who was your favorite singer or favorite artist, but who, in your opinion, was the best singer ever. Just reminding you. Some of you. You heart voters, you. A couple of your votes made me want to punch my computer screen. In love, of course.

Some of your votes made me stop and reconsider who I thought should be on my list. Like Steve Perry. I did not have him even in my top 5. But now, I might consider it. Just for the sheer homage to the first 4 words of "Oh, Sherrie." Mmmmmm. Good. Also, Karen Carpenter. Not much power. Not very agile or "licky." But, oh the tone and nuance.

Just like me, Karen, they long to be close to you.

And something my friends and I have observed is that generally speaking, over the course of history, people look for great singers in their female artists (Whitney, Celine, Mariah). But for male artists, more than being just a great singer, they look for the whole artist / rock star thing (Elton, Billy, Michael). Interesting. I am the same way. My favorite male artists list reflects that...Michael Jackson, Phil Collins, Billy Joel (80's much?). But I have struggled to make a list of the best male vocalists ever.

OK, so here goes my list.

3. Aretha Franklin (I'm giving her R-E-S...nevermind)
2. Celine Dion (her heart will go on dan don)
1. Whitney (she believes the children are our future)

To me, there is no voice as close to perfect as Whitney's was in her prime.

Honorable Mention: Mariah Carey, Christina Aguilera, Dolly Parton, Allison Krauss

Horizon Award: Carrie Underwood and Kelly Clarkson - two voices on their way to being two of the best ever (reminder: OPINION). I know. They are both from American Idol. Don't judge me.


I'm just not ready to list this one. But, dang it. It's not going to get easier. Here we go:
3. Michael Bolton (again. don't judge me.)
2. Michael Jackson (mamasehmamasahmamakusah)
1. Stevie Wonder

I don't know. I will change my mind tomorrow. Leave me alone about it right now. I need more time. Something. Just...whatever.

Honorable mention: Tony Bennett, Elvis, Luther Vandross, Michael McDonald, Michael English

Horizon Award: Michael Buble (have you really listened to this guy? unstinkingbelievable.), Israel Houghton (freakishly great singer)

Another time, we will rank our favorite artists. But my brain is cramped up from THIS stupid question. So, in the words of Janet Jackson, let's wait a while...before we tackle that one.


Friday, August 15, 2008

Checking In

Hello, peeps! I hope everyone has had a great week. I apologize for being a slacker blogger this week. It has been a strange week for me. It's not like I have been completely busy 24/7, but I have had a lot on my plate. I finished up an easter musical that I was writing and recording. I finished everything involved with it on Wednesday. And I am in the middle of mixing my Christmas record (mixing is the final process of putting everything together and making it sound good). So, I am spending much of my days right now listening to the songs OVER AND OVER, making sure this vocal is loud enough, that violin is bright enough, this snare drum isn't too loud, that cowbell is speaking just perfectly. You get the idea.

This week, I also recorded a duet for the Christmas project, and I CAN'T WAIT to tell you with whom I am singing. But I'm not going to tell you just yet. Just's a DOOZY, and I am flipping out about it.

I have also been pretty busy this week trying to find classmates from my graduating high school class. Our reunion is in October, and I am helping out with the plans. Anybody out there from my class???

It's hard to believe I have been out of high school for 5 years.

OK, that must be the sleep-deprived Olympic obsesser talking. Which brings me to the biggest reason I have not blogged this week. I cannot look away from the Olympics. The Cottrells have been obsessed. I am even dreaming in red, white and blue.

I will have to tear myself away from Olympics TV this weekend. I am heading to Atlanta for a Sunday night concert at FBC Woodstock, GA. If you are in the area, please come join us! Their choir, praise team and band and I will be joining together for a night of worship. I can't wait.

Have a great weekend. See you soon...


Thursday, August 7, 2008

The Bewildering Call of God

Hey...I hope everyone is having a good week. I am still in Colorado. Beautiful Colorado. I am heading home tonight.

This entry from Tuesday's My Utmost For His Highest was profound to me. Check it out. I hope it will be for you, too.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Living Proof Live Louisville / Simulcast

Living Proof Live Louisville KY Simulcast from Rich Kalonick on Vimeo.

Simulcast Recovery

Hey, friends. I hope your week is off to a good start. I spent most of the day yesterday wandering around the house, murmuring monosyllables, gazing pitifully into space, and trying to at least appear engaged in life to my kids so they wouldn't worry that daddy was going to have to go "somewhere where he would be safe." really wasn't that bad. But the weekend was a BIG weekend. The simulcast was great fun, and it was great to have my sweet Lily Kate there with me.

I think there was something about the spiritual heaviness of preparing for and guiding through leading 70,000 people at the same time that really wore me out. By the time I crawled into the van to ride home from Louisville, I was a MESS. But my sweet Angela must have sensed my state of mind, because as soon as Lily Kate and I got home, she whisked us off to one of our favorite mexican restaurants, and we had a great dinner and great family time.

Truth be told, I had pre-meditated skipping church on Sunday, mainly since I had to be at another church an hour away by 3 in the afternoon. But Angela had to be at our church at 8am, since she was singing on the praise team. Which meant that I needed to get my self out of the bed and take the kids to church. I'm glad I did...the sermon was rockin', and so was our Sunday School class.

I then had to hurry home to get myself ready to be at Long Hollow Baptist for my buddy David Moffitt's choir kick-off at 3, and then led some worship at their summer celebration service that night. It was a fun time...I always love being up there with them. But by the end of the weekend, I felt like I had about 9% of my voice left. was not good.

So, I rested my voice for much of the day yesterday. I have to sing as Estes Park, CO Wednesday and Thursday. In case you don't know, Estes Park is like 3 feet below the sky. It is HIGH. Last year, I had to be put on oxygen right before I sang. Seriously, in the words of Jordin Sparks, NO AIR. I would appreciate your prayers for my voice to last through the week.

A lot of you have had questions about some of the songs we sang at the simulcast. And you have been answering each other's questions...thanks for doing that. After every event, we post our song list on my official website, so you can go find song titles there. When you get there, click on the interact tab. There are a few new songs that many of you have asked about that we have not yet recorded. Mercy Seat and Revelation Song are both songs you can find great versions of out there. We plan to have at least Mercy Seat on our next worship record. Angela Cruz KILLS that song, and I can't wait to record her singing it. The other song some of your were asking about - This Is The Day - is a brand new song. It, too, will be on the next record. I hope this helps answer some questions.

You guys have a good day. I am off to meetings today. And I am working on my "best singer ever" post (What have I done? It's an impossible question.).

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Shark Post FOUND

Many thanks to all of you who tried to help me find my shark post. It actually was in, GONE. No where to be found. Possibly eaten by a shark. I'm not sure.

But thanks to the heroic copying and pasting by Nancy Mattingly, I have it back.

Thank you, Nancy!

Where Did My Post Go?

Something happened to the end of my story about the shark in the ocean. It has disappeared. Does anybody know how that might have happened? Or, how I might retrieve an earlier version of the post?