2017 BHS Midwinter

I’ve never been to a mid-winter meeting of the Barbershop Harmony Society (BHS), I’ve been to many of their annual contest/meeting sessions held in July of each year, but never a mid-winter.  While the July contests focus on quartet and chorus contests with a youth quartet contest added on, mid-winter focuses on a seniors (over 55) quartet contest with a Youth In Harmony event added on.

This years mid-winter was held in San Antonio.  Since my sister lives nearby and my parents winter with her it was a chance to get a visit in with family in the area, and hear some great music too.

Now San Antonio is known for the Alamo and the River Walk.  On the River Walk there are plenty of restaurants and some great food and drink.img_0751For me, the libation is beer, like this 32 oz. Shiner Bock, that took a bit of time to get down.

Since it was a barbershop harmony event we were not surprised to find singers everywhere,img_0752like these young men checking out the acoustics under the Alamo Street Bridge.

If you sat down at a restaurant it was quite likely that you could work up an impromptu quartet img_0038like we did with these guys.  Those two with the medals around their neck are from last years senior champs, High Priority.

My dad did not make it down to San Antonio until Saturday,img_0035but he still got in on the Seniors Quartet Contest and the Saturday Night Show.  Let me tell you the music was great.  We saw a whole bunch of great, over 55 quartets, and the Saturday Night Show was stupendous.

They had 700 young men and women at the youth festival to get scored and learn more about a cappella music.  The best young women’s group was called Treblemakers, they were from Chandler High School in Arizona.  Just a few days before the contest their director was called away on a family emergency and one of the young women in the chorus stepped forward to do a wonderful job.

Clinician for the youth was Francisco Nunez a well respected composer, conductor and music educator from New York.  By the reaction of the young people he was working with, they really loved and respected him.

The young men have been coming to this event for ten years, but this is the first year young women were invited.  This caused an explosion in attendance.  As the Saturday Night Show drew to a close all 700 of the young men and women filled the stage and the aisles to sing to us, WOW!

So if you get a chance join the folks at the BHS Mid-Winter, you will really have a great time.  Maybe I’ll see you there and we can ring a few with those around us.

Published in: on January 27, 2017 at 10:16 pm  Comments (1)  
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All Chapter Chorus

2016 Fall District Convention – Appleton, WI
October 21 – 23, 2016
All Chapter Chorus 

Join in the ALL CHAPTER CHORUS, anchored by the Great Northern Union directed by Doug Carnes during our District Convention. Our goal is to have EVERY Chapter in the LO’L represented on the risers.

You will receive music and learning tracks for Rhythm of Love and Your First Day in Heaven. These will be available as attachments to an email. Learn your part for each of these songs so well that you can’t make a mistake!

On Friday, October 21st, there will be a rehearsal from 2:30 to 4:30 PM. Another rehearsal will be on Saturday, October 22nd, from 5:45 to 7:15 PM. The Mass Chorus will sing after the Quartet Finals but before the awards are announced.

What do you need to do?

  1. Complete the brief form that can be accessed by clicking the banner above.
    a. Your Name, Email Address, Phone, Voice Part, and Chorus is what we need. If you are in 2 choruses type in your 2nd chorus name
    b. You will receive an email containing the music, part predominant learning track, and a full mix track of both songs
    NOTE: This music is for you only and is not to be shared with others. Encourage your friends to sign up and receive their own music.
  2. Learn your part!
    a. Get your friends signed up so you can work together
    b. Talk to your chorus director to see if your whole chorus can work together
    c. Start now!
  3. Arrange your schedule so you can attend both Convention rehearsals.
    a. You need to attend at least one rehearsal but try to make both
    b. Bring your family along to a rehearsal so they see how you work
  4. Bring a $10 bill or a personal check (payable to Land O’ Lakes District) on 10/21 or 10/22 to cover the cost of the sheet music and learning tracks.
  5. What to wear? Either a white shirt with bright tie and dark trousers OR your chorus shirt. You will be notified before the event!
  6. HAVE FUN!

Questions? Contact Steve Zorn (allchapterchorus@loldistrict.org) at 651 242 6864.
If you have trouble getting the music contact Tyler Smith (tyleremail@comcast.net) at
651 439 4527.

NOTE: GNU members do not need to sign up as you already have the music and will be participating.

 This page is copied from the Land O’ Lakes District web site, you may need to go directly to that web site to follow prompts.
Published in: on June 27, 2016 at 6:12 pm  Leave a Comment  

We must be doing something right

For a small chapter like ours to get a mention (*) in the Barbershop Harmony Societies Magazine, “The Harmonizer” you have to be doing something right, but to get a second mention a few years later, Wow, What are they up to?

I feel our chapter is doing several things right, we sing well and we are having fun, and that makes all the difference.  That our director, Kent Mickelson, is a big part of our success goes without saying.  Kent leads us and encourages us and he puts up with our craziness as long as we sing well.

Our greatest success may lie in our youth outreach.  With our scholarship and Youth in Harmony programs we are encouraging good, new, a cappella singers for the future.  That some of them may come back to continue singing with us in only icing on the cake.

The biggest challenge we have for our chapter is in recruitment.  Our chapter is in need of some more singers.  Last Sunday we had 23 members at our Windom church tour, a great turn out, but much less than we could have if we had more bodies at practice.  It’s hard for every group now days to get and keep members, but we have something no other group can offer, we are “the service club that sings.”  Let’s promote that connection.  Let’s keep doing something right.

(*Our latest mention in the Harmonizer is in Marty Monson’s column of the May/June 2016 edition.  Our first one was an article about singing at a Twins game.)

Published in: on June 14, 2016 at 6:27 pm  Leave a Comment  

2013 food shelf benefit

Foodshelf Show 12-1-13

The Windom Area Chordhustlers will help you get you and your family in a positive holiday mood as you support their annual Foodshelf Benefit Christmas Concert on Sunday, December 1, 2013 at 4:00 p.m. at St Francis Xavier Catholic Church in Windom (548 17th St). Also performing will be the Original Blend Quartet and special guests The Southwest Minnesota Men’s Chorus.

Admission is a non-perishable food item or cash donation to the local foodshelves. Refreshments will be served following the concert.

The Chordhustlers are a thirty man, four part a capella harmony music group featuring singers from Windom and the surrounding area. They are directed by Kent Mickelson from Lakefield and are members of the Barbershop Harmony Society. www.barbershop.org For more information contact Kent Mickelson 507-830-0324kdaemick@mysmbs.com

Vintage Photos

Check out these vintage Barbershop Quartet pictures from the Chicago area.  Lots of fun was had by all.


Change a life

Change a life, teach the children to sing.  Please check out this video, don’t give up, the best is at the end.

2013 YIH a success

The Windom Area Chordhustlers 2013 Youth in Harmony event is over, and all would say it was a success.  Although we keep hoping for more, the schedules of our area high school kids is indeed full, so when they make time for an event like YIH, you know they want to be there.


They have a full day scheduled from 8:30 in the morning until after 5 that afternoon.


Practice is a large part of the event with a music director and a quartet for both the boys and the girls.


This allows for maximum help in refining the parts they already learned before they came.  It also gives them a chance to meet other singers from area schools.


We do give them time to eat and socialize, with a bit of music added to the lunch time events.  The pizza is always a hit.



The boys and girls each learn two pieces on their own, and then a mass number which is sung along with all of the coaches and the Chordhustlers.  The chance to sing in a large group of all ages has been a hit for all.

Then it’s show time!  This year the directors of each high school choir was asked to say a few words on stage.  All agreed that this opportunity to learn another style of music was good for all involved.


The show was only about an hour long, but it allowed both quartets, the Chordhustlers and the kids a chance to show their stuff.


If you made it, we’re glad you could take part, if you missed it, we hope to see you next year.




2013 Youth in Harmony

9TH   Annual

“Youth In Harmony Festival”

Sponsored by the


Windom Area Chordhustlers

Saturday, January 19, 2013 JCC Performing Arts Center

Jackson, MN 9:00 a.m.: Clinic and Rehearsal

for High School Students

4:00 P.M.Concert Open to the Public

$5.00 tickets at the door


Brent Graham, JudyWeipert

the quartets


& headerS.A.S.S.

For more information contact Jay Imker, jimker@centurytel.net 507-752-7434

Thanks to The Remick Foundation for helping sponsor this event

Coming events and practice

With the coming holidays the Chordhustlers will not be practicing on Dec. 24 and Dec. 31.  Please enjoy this time with your family.

We have our Youth in Harmony event coming up on January 19 and have been practicing some new songs to sing that day, they include “Who will Buy” and “If There’s Anybody Here From Out of Town”.  Be sure to practice them this holiday season.  Both will be done without music.

We’ll be seeing you in 2013.

Music Educator Visit

Hello barbershoppers!

 My name is Mike O’Neill and I work as a Music Educator for the Barbershop Harmony Society.  I have an exciting trip planned to the LAND O’ LAKES District and I wanted to be sure to extend this personal invitation to you so you were aware of this FREE, FUN, EXCITING opportunity!

 During the week of May 21st, I will be traveling through the “Red Carpet” division visiting various chapters who are hosting a MULTI CHAPTER EVENT!  This is a FREE event for you, hosted by the chapters listed below…all you have to do is get there!  Maybe members of your chapter would want to carpool and make a fun “road trip” out of it?! These Town Hall meetings are always more fun with lots of barbershoppers participating and it would be well worth an extra night of barbershop that week!

 Basically a Town Hall / Multi Chapter event is an evening of FUN, learning, discussion, and fraternity…all the while enjoying our beloved hobby of barbershop! 

·         Learn a new song!

·         Learn more about your voice through some excellent vocal technique exercises

·         Sing lots of tags!

·         Sing through Barberpole Cat songs

·         Discussion topics can include

o   How to enhance the overall chapter meeting experience

o   How to recruit and retain members

o   For those who compete, how can I understand better the various categories anyway

o   What’s going on with the BHS HQ lately

o   Anything else you want to talk about! 

·         Hang out with barbershoppers you usually only see once or twice a year

·         OR…meet many new friends / barbershoppers

·         Find new potential quartet mates!

·         SO MUCH MORE!

 Hopefully you can make one of the following MULTI CHAPTER events!

Monday, May 21st  

7:00 PM – 9:30 PM

Willmar Community Center

624 Highway 71 NE (Service road across from Island Entry)

Willmar, MN 56201


TUESDAY, May 22nd

7:00 PM – 9:30 PM

Atonement Lutheran Church (music room)

1144 29th Ave North

St. Cloud, MN 56303



7:30 PM – 10:30 PM

St. Andrews Church

255 Oak St.

Winnipeg, MB R3L IG3

THURSDAY, May 24th

7:00 PM – 10:00 PM

Knollbrook Covenant Church

3030 North Broadway

Fargo, ND 58102

 I truly hope you make the effort to attend this FUN evening of barbershop.  I look forward to meeting a lot of Sunshine District barbershoppers!!!

 In Harmony,

Mike O’Neill

Barbershop Harmony Society-Music Educator