BHS announces 3 new commissioned barbershop arrangements
Quarantine didn’t hold back inspiration from these songwriters!
It was such a joy for our staff to listen to and discover the wonderful songs of hope, encouragement, love and healing that were submitted as a part of the BHS Song Search. We thank all of the songwriters who took the time to share their songs and be a part of this pilot program, in partnership with Nashville Songwriters Association International (NSAI), designed to find a positive outlook in this unprecedented time.
It is our pleasure to announce these 3 song submissions which will be commissioned to create a barbershop arrangement and accompanying learning tracks to be published and made available to the public.
Paul Olguin (BHS) | "Hold You a Little Too Long"
"Just before the beginning of the COVID-19 quarantine, a group of several friends and I were going our separate ways after having spent part of the morning together. We realized that it might be the last time we'd see each other in person for a while. One of my friends commented that the next time we got together we should be prepared to be hugged a lot. Even then, we weren't hugging each other goodbye.
About a week later, inspired to do what I could in the face of isolation, I decided to create a YouTube series on Songwriting. In the third episode, I decided to write the chorus of a song from start to finish to demonstrate the process. I chose the idea inspired by my friend, wrote the chorus to the song, and then created the video. Days later, BHS announced its Song Search, and this beginning of a song seemed like it might be just what BHS was looking for. So, I wrote two verses and submitted it."
Sandy Murphy (NSAI) | “As Long As I Got You”
Sandy Murphy is a New York based songwriter who has had songs released on major record labels such as Sony, Epic, Universal and Disney. Her songs have been featured on numerous TV shows and movies (Veep, One Life to Live, All My Children, Degrassi High, Cover Versions, etc.). She enjoys being a co-coordinator for both the New York City and Long Island chapters of the Nashville Songwriters Association. Her solo CD “Love Struck” has been selling well all over the world and is available on iTunes. Additionally, she performs frequently as singer and keyboardist with her classic rock band the Legendary Murphys in the tri-state area.
Her song “As Long As I Got You” was written one rainy afternoon after watching her Chihuahua, Emily, staring sadly out the window. The song is a fantasy of what a wonderful time they could have at the park, even if only in their own imaginations. The song illustrates that a sunny day is possible with a great companion by your side, no matter how bad the storm!
Matt Astle (BHS) | “You Can't Stop the Sun”
"Although we’re all struggling right now with the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, I wanted to write a song that would apply to all sorts of other difficulties in life as well as the current situation. I live in the Seattle area, and during the first several weeks of the recent shut-down we had unusually sunny weather, which helped make a tough situation a little bit more bearable. This song builds on that theme: the sun (hope, love, friendship) is always there, even when you can’t see it behind the clouds.
I’m best known in the barbershop world as an arranger, having done custom arrangements for several International-level quartets and choruses. I work as a corporate attorney, but my undergrad degree in music means more to me than my law degree."
Bringing Singing Communities Together
We also must thank the NSAI and its members for their participation. Executive Director of NSAI, Bart Herbison, could not agree more on this pilot’s success:
“The Nashville Songwriters Association International (NSAI) thanks the Barbershop Harmony Society for allowing our members to participate in their 2020 Song Search. We are proud of NSAI’s Sandra Murphy who is a coordinator of the NSAI Chapter in Long Island, New York, for being accepted as one of three songs in the search and thank all NSAI members who submitted their compositions. The Barbershop Harmony Society is an important partner with NSAI and we look forward to growing our participation in the Song Search in the coming years.”
This pilot program was a perfect bridge to partner with NSAI and has successfully shown us the potential of what this song search could bring in the future.
The Barbershop Harmony Society is excited to continue this Song Search as an annual event coordinated with NSAI to bring our communities together by providing opportunities for songwriters and brand new barbershop harmony arrangements!