I'm taking a deep breath as I start this blog, because I can't quite believe we've reached this point. Tonight, Gerald and I performed "Nashville Bound - Our Farewell Concert". We really wanted to do a night of music to celebrate what we've done here in Toronto, and to look forward to the music we're going to do in Nashville. We've been talking about it for months, and tonight was the night!
We did it at our home church, and despite the fact that it's a Tuesday night, we got a good-sized crowd out. Mom covered our front of house, and Dad did our sound. He's never done sound before, but the church's sound dude was unable to come, so Dad learned how to work the board 2 days ago, and tonight he ran all the tracks. Yay, Dad!
We were joined tonight by some awesome friends, including our beautiful Monika. Moni was supposed to do a gig tonight, but at the very last minute (literally an hour before showtime!), a sub came through and she was able to join the party. More yay!
We opened with This Little Light of Mine, with everyone singing, after which Gerald did 2 of his songs - So Far and Comin' Home. Monika and I did a duet with He Touched Me, with my friend Marque on piano. I love singing with Moni. It's as natural as breathing. Esther joined us for a few songs, including When You Believe as a duet with Monika. I did Infinitely More and Jesus Loves Me, and then Gerald and I did I Call Out your Name. I love doing the duets. You get these awesome moments of really living the song together. Gerald and I finished the first half with the duet version of All Her Flowers are Wild. I loooove singing that song!!!!!
Our second half opened with Monika and Gerald doing a very jazzy version of Summertime, including a fake-trumpet solo by Gerald. (I don't know what else to call it - You know, it's when he puts his hand over his mouth and it sounds like a trumpet!) Next, we did It Is Well. Esther and I have both recorded that song, and between us all we've sung it a million times, but tonight, it just rocked (if that's an appropriate term for a hymn?) Marque accompanied us. I opened with a solo verse, and Esther joined with harmonies on the chorus. Then we did verse 2 in harmony, but after that chorus, we shot it up into a higher key. Halfway through the verse, I lifted up the melody a la David Phelps, and Moni came in with a third harmony line underneath Esther. For the final chorus and ending, we just opened up the harmonies and sang out. It feel amazing, and the audience reaction was powerful!
Then we invited up our friend, Michelle, who took the lead on Praise You, and Esther and I sang harmonies. Love that girl trio sound! More solos filled the middle part of the half, and then another girl trio on Mosie Lister's Down On My Knees.
Then Gerald and I did a first: We did a guitar duo! I wanted to do I Have Decided to Follow Jesus, so I asked Gerald if he'd solo a little over my basic rhythm guitar pattern. We both sang on it, trading the verses, and Gerald took one verse for a guitar solo. It felt so cool to actually be playing together! I've never done anything like that before! We shared a mic, and it all felt very Opry...
We ended the show with our very Celtic version of Lord of the Dance, with me on guitar and lead vocals, Gerald on djembe, and everyone else singing along on the chorus. It was just so much fun, and in the end, we were blessed with a standing ovation! Such an honour! The audience reaction was just so wonderful and generous. We have so much support from this group of people.
Tomorrow, we need to go back to clearing out the house and finding someone to tile our kitchen (Yes, another delay!!!) But tonight was so important to remind us why we're clearing the house and getting our kitchen tiled ... We're Nashville bound!