Jewel recently stole a copy of the ancient, long-out-of-print Upon This Truth album from me, and I was made to listen to it this afternoon. Even though it was in the background, believe me I heard everything.

This was an album we made during and just before a big learning curve, for the group as a whole but especially for me personally. So this whole recording is crammed full beginning to end of things that soon after it was completed I recognized as varying from bad mistakes to just poor musical choices. If you can make sense out of that sentence, you’re a better reader than I am a writer. Goodness. But, that’s the beauty of blogging, stream of consciousness.

Anyway, one of the songs on there brought back a disturbing moment from bygone days of aged history. As it played, my mind drifted off deep into the ancient past……..

AHQ was singing for the small Sunday morning service at the Rock (in fact, we were standing just in front of this fireplace!). We got up and opened the set with “Just a Little Talk With Jesus.” Man, this was a long time ago.

We sang the first verse and chorus, then I pulled my trademark lead-singer move. I messed up the words.

I first became aware of this phenomenon years before when I ran into the King’s Heralds in a Corvallis Burger King (Rob and Dave, there’s your links). They told me some stories about Jerry Patton (one of my all-time favorite lead singers) and his propensity for forgetting the words. I came to realize that one of the marks of a good lead singer is his occasional lapse in the lyrics department! If that’s all it took I would be a truly great one, but alas, I think there is a little more to it.

At any rate, we went to start the second verse and for some reason I started with the words to verse three. I had great confidence, if nothing else, and boldly sang over the other three guys until they reluctantly joined me on the words to verse three. Oh well, when you pull an egregious error in the middle of the song you just press on and deal with it and try to make the most out of the situation.

We shoulda tried that.

There was a problem, and we were too green to handle it. We had a key change coming up at the end of the third verse before we went into the chorus for the last time. It’s been so long I don’t know if my recollection is accurate or not, but I think we sang through the third verse and then went back to finish with the second. Now this key change was vital, it weren’t no half-step job, it was a big, several-step move. We totally changed around the last chorus, switched up the stacks and I don’t know what all, so we had to have it. But we came to the end of the second verse, sung as if it was the third, and NO KEY CHANGE!!!

My part was actually holding the note straight across, the other guys did the moving for the key change, so there was nothing I could do. I thought what in the world, why didn’t you do the key change!!!! It was the words to the second verse, so I don’t know if they just couldn’t justify doing the third verse key change to the second verse words or not, but it didn’t happen for whatever reason. And we were left dangling in the breeze to mangle the chorus.

And mangle it we did. Oh my goodness. So far away from the right key, we were fishing around for parts and mucking things up like nobody’s business. It was painful.

You always want to start a set with a strong song. You want to open with a bang. It’s best if the bang is not the result of the group’s implosion.