Learners Group

Purpose: The original intent of shape note singing was to help singers learn to read music more easily, and thus to experience more fully the joy of joining others in song. Itinerant singing school masters traveled from town to town holding week-long singing schools based upon shape note notation and popular songs. However, the conditions of today’s singing conventions, and even regional or local singings, have evolved to fit the needs of more experienced singers, and their pace often overwhelms and frustrates beginning and novice singers.

The purpose of this "learners group" is to help singers get "over the hump" of acquiring the knowledge and skills necessary to participate more fully in singing shape note music. We will proceed at a relaxed pace, which will allow us to effectively practice the skill of reading the music while becoming familiar with a number of songs. Also, we will practice the skills needed to lead songs, and will study some of the traditions of Sacred Harp singing.

Who: Everyone is welcome to come to learn, sing or listen. No experience is necessary, and there are no commitments to participate.

Where: The Learners Group meets at the home of a Sacred Harp singer in Santa Monica.

When: We meet on the Saturday before the  fourth Sunday of each month from 4:00-6:00 p.m., unless otherwise announced.  Singers are welcome to attend as few or as many sessions as they wish.

Cost: There is no charge. 

Leader: Rick and Laura Boyd Russell of the Los Angeles area singers, assisted by various local singers.

What to bring: Your Sacred Harp book, if you have one. Loaner books will be available, or you can buy your own for $25. (Not bad for over 550 pages of songs!)

More Information: Phone Laura at 310-450-3516, or send email to Rick

Last revision: 2/4/14