I luv to sing, always have. My family growing up had four girls all close in age. Mom would often - embarrassingly - get us to sing together whenever company came over and it was great that the Beatles were a group of 4 for my sisters and I LOL! (I was George BTW.) And I participated in church and school choirs - such good times. But sadly for many areas over time choir singing seemed to wane, yes, there were some, but not like when I was a kid. Thankfully there's been a surge in the activity over the last few years and Choir! Choir! Choir! has been a big part of it.
Choir! Choir! Choir! began in Feb. 2011 when Daveed Goldman and Nobu Adilman (aka 'DaBu') started a weekly drop-in at a local tavern, Clinton's, in Toronto. They gave anyone who wanted to join in a lyric sheet of a pre-chosen song, taught them how to sing it, and then a video was created - everyone had a good time and most importantly when the evening was over went home feeling great!! What started out as a once-a-week event has grown amazingly. Gatherings are still held at the tavern and still anyone can attend, but interest has increased so much that now Daveed and DaBu are travelling all over North America bringing others together to sing.
A nice example of the power of singing together - my next door neighbours, a split family, have been 'performing' with Choir! Choir! Choir! for quite some time now..How great that they've found something to do together that they all like and can do as a family as the kids have been growing up!!
Check out Choir!Choir!Choir! on youtube for their videos. There are so many now and I enjoy them all, but one of my favs is 'Hallelujah" - enjoy and by all means sing-along! Two back to back with Rufus Wainwright leading a group of 1500 in the second one.
tells us why singing with others is so good for us.
"Daniel Levitin, psychology professor at McGill University and author of This is Your Brain on Music, says group singing isn't just good for the soul - it's good for the body.
By analyzing the changes in people's brain activity when they sing together, he's come to the conclusion that feelings of belonging and mood elevation are biologically ingrained to surface with communal singing...
Levitin points to a wealth of neurological research that suggests our brains release oxytocin when we sing with others.
"That's a chemical that's involved in social bonding and it's believed to give rise to the feelings of togetherness and friendship that comes from singing together," he said...
Levitin also says the act of listening when singing in groups causes participants' brain responses to synchronize with one another.
"If your brain waves themselves are synchronized, that would sure be a way to make you feel closer to others wouldn't it?"...
Singing in choirs doesn't just connect us with others, it also has the powerful capacity to elevate our mood...
As Levitin explains, the healing potential of singing is due in part to deep breathing. As an aerobic activity, singing increases the amount of oxygenated blood rushing to the brain...
Research suggests choir singing changes our neurochemistry as well. When singing to music you enjoy with other people, the brain sees an uptick in two powerful neurotransmitters called serotonin and dopamine.
Dopamine activates the brain's pleasure centre, while serotonin is commonly deployed to ward off depression.
"Serotonin is kind of famous because there's a whole class of drugs that by some estimates 20 per cent of Canadians are taking — we call them SSRIs or anti-depressants — and the second 'S' in that word is serotonin," said Levitin..."
Singing is good for us, body and soul!! You don't have to be a great singer to get the benefits. Soooooooooooooooo, please sing. Sing a song. Sing out loud. Sing out strong!!!