Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Calm Down! Calm Down!

December is almost here and I am guessing that we (Liverpool Walton Sally Army Band) will play about 250 carols in the open air and one Beatles song (All You Need is Love).

But it's the Beatles song that we have spent longer rehearsing than any other carols. This is because the BBC have asked us to participate in the Liverpool Nativity which is to be broadcast live on BBC 3 on December the 16th.

I know that we will only be on screen for 10 to 30 seconds but I don't know how many people will see or hear us.

The paperwork involved in getting on telly is amazing. Everybody has to give their name address, date of birth and passport number, presumably so the BBC can come round to your house if you play a wrong note and make your life a misery.

If you get a chance tune in and cheer us on, we will appear at the new Liner Landing stage, presumably when Mary and Joseph gets off the Mersey Ferry. (That, not so well known part of the Christmas story) (presumably singing Ferry Across the Mersey).

Expect Liverpool cliches will abound, I am thinking of kitting the band out in fuzzy wigs and (yellow?,) red and blue track suits. (We could even stage a fight, "You playing my part! Calm Down! Calm Down! eh! eh! eh! eh!")

Friday, November 23, 2007

Sally speak

I have been thinking about Heathers posts (and here) and about a recent visit to Transitional Church Weekend. It seems every church or corps claim to be welcoming, which makes perfect sense as nobody would claim to be unwelcoming. But are we really welcoming. I have been thinking about the "Sally Speak" we use.

You will often find the Officer saying "We will stand to sing the first song". But if someone actually did this they would be standing on their own for a considerable time before the rest of the congregation joined them. What actually happens is the Officer will say this and then go on to tell everybody about the song. Then everybody stands and sings. Don't believe me? Watch next Sunday morning.

The band and songster "message" is not in the form of a letter or even a note, but a carefully rehearsed piece of music.

The offering is a plate which you put money on. Which is immediately followed by somebody saying a prayer not down the microphone.

Even singing is something the man in the street may not have done. Young people don't sing in secondary school, unless they joined a specific choir. They listen to music all the time, through mp3 players but don't join in.

I look at some of the words we sing and I find them difficult to understand. I can't imagine what the man in the street thinks if he hears (nevermind understand) some of the stuff we sing. Perhaps we should use Song Books and use the overhead digital projector as a glossary to the words of some of the songs.

I will look for some more this Sunday.

When a group of people (usually wearing dark suits) come to meet in the hall for a couple of hours to sing songs and listen to the officer.

The guy in a dark suit who sometimes leads the meeting

A group of people in dark suits who stand up and sing a song in the middle of a meeting

A group of people in dark suits who sit and play brass instruments

Monday, November 19, 2007

The trouble with you lot is ....

(Warning Sally Army post)

I have spent a very long weekend at Sunbury Court (near London), attending a Transitional Church weekend. I think we sat though easily 10 hours of lectures my head is spinning with too much information. I need time to think it all through, but there are some highlights that have stuck so far.

  • Alan Burns wants to interview some of the early Christian Mission people to see if they where cheesed off with the new fangled Salvation Army.
  • "The trouble with you lot is you're not traditional enough!"
  • Early Salvationists didn't wear uniform to meetings on a Sunday. They wore them to work in the morning.
It was good to make some new friends, (York people, Isle of Man people, Scottish people, (Although I must apologise to the Scottish Cadet who wore his Scotland shirt on Saturday night (Scotland lost 2.1 to Italy thus being knocked out of the European cup... again) worse still Isreal beat Russia thus keeping England in the competition, so again sorry (Will pass this on said Scottish cadet)))

It was good to see some good friends that I haven't seen for a couple of months/years join us on Sunday.

The sad thing is ..... they are all Divisional Commanders (a bit like bishops in Sally speak)!!!!

But never the less it was good to see you all. (As they are DC's they won't read blogs or even know what they are.)

Friday, November 02, 2007

Youth sub groups

I have been looking into the groups young people put themselves into. I have a few categories below.

Emotionals. They like to be a bit sad. They are defined by their music and their clothes, I think. I know a Emo who has a really long fringe and likes to hide inside his black hoody top.

Like to wear a particular type of clothes and chains. Again defined by the music they listen to and the black clothes they wear. I think they may lobby their parents for body piercing.

Trendies or Scene People
Bright happy clothes usually expensive. Obviously mortal enemies of the Goths and Emos.

All scallys refuse to belong to this group. Every knows who they are apart from the people who are scallys. They usually wear sports equipment, track suits etc.

I will add to the list as more occur.