Life In A Musical At The Kiwanis Club

I was sitting with a bunch of people grinning when they suddenly and randomly burst into song, singing about smiling.

Because I had smiled.

It was one of the most surreal, and deeply, intensely cool, things I’ve experienced all year.

The Noon Kiwanis group here in Worthington invited Ryan McGaughey (editor of the Daily Globe), Pam Erwin (web sales coordinator of the Daily Globe) and me to a meeting to show them the new website and talk about some of the new features. I had gotten there a little bit early and since I love music, I paged through the group’s song book looking for familiar songs.

When the meeting actually got started, they kicked it off with song. First a song about the Kiwanis group itself, then "You’re a Grand Old Flag" in honor of Memorial Day. They had no accompaniment, but they sang the harmony pieces anyway, which is already impressive to me.

And then, when one song, "My Wild Irish Rose," didn’t quite get off the ground, they dissolved into laughter and quite happily started over again–and that try immediately materialized into a lush rendition which included several harmony parts, again totally without accompaniment.

I was terribly impressed and still grinning when the song leader, Jim Kinsman, saw that I was grinning, said I had a nice smile, and immediately, spontaneously, launched into a song about smiling.

It was like living in a musical production, or like being in a musical without having to worry about your lines or blocking.

And they sounded great. I could not believe how good they sounded! But don’t take my word for it.

Here’s audio clips of all the songs they sang.

Notice how everyone is still a bit giggly at the beginning of "Wild Irish Rose," and notice how quickly it goes to three or four-part harmony. That doesn’t happen in every group of singers, let me tell you.

And here’s Ryan’s account of the meeting.