Control (Somehow You Want Me)

About halfway through the Covid isolation period (or what seems like halfway as I’m writing this), I decided to get our worship team to jump into the “Zoom music video” craze that was going around. It took a lot more work than I anticipated. But isn’t that the way it always is?

Anyway, we chose Control (Somehow You Want Me) as the song and decided to use the sheet music from The Acappella Company’s Praise & Harmony project. After getting everyone’s agreement to do it, I sent out the sheet music and recording of the song to everyone on the team. Out of 40+ singers, I had 31 who took the time to submit their recordings. Not bad!

They were given the usual instructions… create good lighting, listen to the accompaniment track on one device and video yourself on your phone, choose a quiet room, etc. I was amazed at the quality of the recordings that came back. While I used everyone’s video in the project, I only used 24 voices for the final product.

All the voices were imported into Logic Pro where I tuned and fixed timing on all parts. From there, it was over to Premiere Pro where I synced up the final mix of 24 voices with 31 videos. After that, it was a process of editing and getting everything lined up just so.

One of the surprises came when Blake McNeill sent in two submissions… one as tenor and one as vocal perc. It was well done. I did very little editing on his perc. I think I nudged maybe a couple of bass hits and a couple of snare hits. Otherwise, it is as he did it.

We’ve gotten great response from the video. I hope you enjoy it!

LCU’s Best Friends 2017-18 Pt. 1

I’m back for my third and final year at Lubbock Christian University as director of the singing group Best Friends. Every year has been a fabulous experience. This 3rd group is a wonderful collection of young men and women and they’ve done a superb job representing the University.

We’ll be traveling to the United Kingdom in May for 3 weeks. We have eight cities lines up for the tour and we’re looking forward to it immensely. In the meantime, we’re in the process of shooting videos from our new album Risen. Here’s our first, entitled “This is Living.”

LCU’s Best Friends 2016-17 Pt. 2

The 2nd video from the new album in 2017 is called The River. It was shot on location at the Pecos River just south of Glorietta, NM. For those of you interested, the entire video was shot on my Google Pixel phone using an Ikan Fly-X3 Plus stabilizer.

This song has taken on its own interesting history. We had the opportunity to sing in West Monroe, LA at WFR church. We always stay in the homes of church members, and this time we wound up staying with Jase and Missy Robertson of Duck Dynasty fame.

We stuck around a couple of nights. On the 2nd evening, after a great pizza party, Missy asked us to sing a song that she had missed at that morning’s concert. So the group stood up to sing The River. She said, “Wait, let me video this.” That was quickly followed by, “Hey, I’ll just live stream this. I’ll use Jase’s page – he never uses it.”

So they started singing live on Jase Robertson’s page. Within 20 seconds, 20,000 were watching live. By the end of the song over 50,000 people were watching. Less than 24 hours later, the video had been watched half a million times. Amazing! The platform the Robertson family has is incredible. And they’ve used it well.

This is not the video of them doing it live in Jase’s house, but it’s the official video. You can find the album this came from at this link.

LCU’s Best Friends 2016-17 Pt. 1

I directed the group for another year in 2016-17. We had the chance to record a really good album and shoot a couple of great videos, the first of which is shown here. It’s called Prayer of the Children.

I first heard this song when I was on tour with Acappella. Back “in the day”, before Microsoft was a thing, we used a program called Word Perfect for text editing. In the late 80’s, they sent out an update (via CD-ROM) for the program. Along with it, they included a sampler CD of some really good music. Most of it was stuff from Windham Hill or something similar. The last song on the CD was a haunting a capella song from someone named Kurt Bestor. It was Prayer of the Children.

Autotune was used heavily, as more of an effect than as vocal correction. This was before the world even knew what autotune was. It gave the vocals an etherial feeling and made this wonderful song even more moving. I knew then that I had to do this song somewhere, someday. This Best Friends combination was the group, and this is the video. The album can be found on iTunes at this link.

LCU and Best Friends Pt. 2

As promised in the earlier post, here is the 2nd video produced by Best Friends in the 2015-16 school year. This is a great song called Brother. I hope you enjoy it. The album can be found on iTunes at this link.

LCU and Best Friends

In 1983, as a sophomore in college, I was part of something new. John Paul Blankenship was forming a new mixed ensemble a capella group to travel and recruit for the college (Lubbock Christian College, at the time). I was recruited as part of the original group that became known as Best Friends and stayed with the ensemble for the next three years.

Thirty years later, what goes around comes around, I suppose. LCU has recruited me once again for Best Friends… this time as director. As I write this, we are drawing close to the end of the first year. It has been very enjoyable and has kept me busy and young at heart.

I’ve produced a couple of music videos for the group. I’ll post the 2nd one later, but here is the first. This is the title track to their 2016 album That Was Then, This is Now. The music, by the way, can be found on iTunes at this link. Hope you like the video… Video Series

MG ThumbnailAs many of you know, I have recently entered the world of motorcycles. Yes, I’m legally on a scooter… a 600cc scooter that goes 120 mph, but it’s still a scooter. Still, I went through a 3-day motorcycle class on a full fledged bike. I figure I count.

Anyway, because of my new hobby/habit, I needed to pick up some gear to make it as safe as possible. Enter A friend (thanks Buddy Mills) told me about this online company that carries a ton of gear at really great prices. As it turns out, their home office is about 6 blocks from my house here in Shallowater. Yes, I spent lots of money.

In the process, I struck up a friendship with the owner, Paul Thompson. He’s a really nice guy and a sharp businessman who knows his way around the world of e-commerce. Before all was said and done, we ended up working together on a new video series for his company.  Long range plans include at least 2 different types of video series and up to 100+ videos. Sounds like a lot of fun.

If you ride for any reason… commuter, touring, racing, whatever… you really need to check out Below is an example of the first video series. There should be many more to come.

If you are looking to add a video series for your business or organization, contact me through Moyers Design. I’d love to chat with you about it. Or just leave a comment below.

The Fab 3 Strike Again

My son, Austin, has released his third video in the series of five he must do as his Senior Project in high school. This time, he went for a classic (at least in my opinion). He chose The Beatles’ tune Come Together. Enjoy!

Herculean Tasks – otherwise known as Senior Projects

My son, Austin, has a task he must undertake. Like any ancient hero of old, this task must be completed in order to advance “beyond.” In his case, it’s called a Senior Project.

Students at Shallowater High School, here in Shallowater, TX, must complete a project their Senior year. This project must be something that they would not have done otherwise. Something that will stretch them a bit. Something that educate them in a new field… and they must invest at least 18 hours into the project.

In her Senior year, my daughter chose to turn the animated movie Mulan into a staged musical, complete with full cast, props, arrangements of the songs from the movie and sound effects. Her project took over 250 hours and was a big success.

My son also chose to venture into the arts. Being a child of the millennial age, he has grown up watching more YouTube than broadcast television. It came as no surprise that he wanted to create a YouTube channel of his own music videos. Voilà! A senior project is born.

Each senior must enlist the help of a mentor in the process. Austin was able to recruit one of YouTube’s more popular artists, Justin Robinett, as his mentor. Justin has been very helpful and as I write this, Austin is finishing up the mix on his 3rd video. He has two more to go to complete his project.

You can find Austin’s videos on his YouTube channel – ProbablyNotAustin. But for your enjoyment, I present his 2nd video in the series… Don’t Worry be Happy by Bobby McFerrin.

Kickstarter Success

follow us on kickstarterIf you have followed me on Facebook or any other social media outlets, you’ve probably seen that the Kickstarter campaign I mentioned a few posts ago has finished. And finished very well. We set our goal at $26,500 and we received $31,660… 120% of our goal. To say we are excited about it is somewhat of an understatement. I’ll have a lot more to say about Chasing David and where we go from here in future posts. For now, I thought I’d address a question I’ve already been asked… “What did you guys do to make sure your Kickstarter campaign was a success?”

I’ve seen several books and e-books on this very subject. Here’s my take on it and I’m not charging a thing.

We relied heavily on the social aspect of Kickstarter. We did several big pushes on Facebook and used the promoted post feature 3 or 4 times. Also, every time we did an update on our campaign we would post a link to the update page on our facebook profile.

We were counseled early on to not be afraid to use the “a” word – Ask. Whenever we would post something on Facebook, we would always ask everyone to please share it on their own personal profile along with a message for support. That got a lot of traction.

Also , the use of videos helped tremendously. We took our time and did a humorous, upbeat and yet serious video for our campaign. You need to make sure that it is embedded into your Kickstarter page. They walk you through that and they make it part of the box at the top of the page. That’s important. You don’t want people to have to leave your Kickstarter page to go watch your video because most of them won’t come back. That’s not a statement on quality, that’s just the way the Internet is.

Also, about halfway through our campaign, my daughter suggested that we do some kind of music video. Up to that point we did not have anything showing our musical style. We got together and shot a video with just a few simple cameras and did a quick mix on it. We posted this on Facebook, YouTube, the Kickstarter page, and just about everywhere we could post it. We noticed a considerable up-tick in pledges after the video went live.

And last but not least, since there are 3 of us, we were able to tell people about it at church and get support there. Thats 3 different churches.

Other than that and copious amounts of prayer, that was pretty much the formula. Kickstarter allows you to tap into social media pretty easily. You have to take advantage of that and get people to share your Kickstarter page. It’s the same concept as the “street team” in concert publicity… just all online.

If you have a Kickstarter campaign coming up or are considering it, let me know. Sound off! For now, I leave you with the music video we recorded with cheap cameras and iPhones. Enjoy…