What is Shannon Express? Well the short answer is that we are an amateur club which strives to introduce males to the hobby of singing.
The longer answer is that whilst we may be amateurs, we seek to promote our hobby and to deliver each song, each performance, each audience experience to the very best of our abilities.
We sing four part a-capella close harmony songs usually in the barbershop style.
My name is Nick Morris and I have been a member of Shannon since 2009 and I would like to give you my personal take on what Shannon Express is and why I love being a part of it. I will do my best to be brief.
It is a hobby and it is a passion. As a chorus (yes we are a chorus not a choir - don't ask me why beacuse I don't know what the difference is) we put a huge amount of effort into learning our words, our notes, the timing, the interpretation and the performance of the songs we sing as well as the technical aspects of delivering a note.
We don't just want to sing a song you see - we want to sell it lock stock and barrel. Each song is a journey and we want our audience to feel that and be part of the story along with us.
Whilst as a club we have a diverse membership - from 12 to 80 years old, from all manner of backgrounds in our music we are as one. Standing shoulder to shoulder with fifty odd of your muckers and being part of the Shannon sound is nothing short of awesome. Do I get emotional? Yep, I do - some of the songs have meanings which ring true with my life. I've cried, I've laughed, I've made myself some life long friends and some fantastic memories.
Is it all roses and honey? No in all honesty it isn't always. The thing is - and may every member of the fairer sex forgive me for saying this - as blokes who are passionate about what we are doing, very occassionally we might have a bit of falling out. But as blokes we can have ourselves a pint (junior members are restricted to Haribo's and Fanta) settle the dust and move on. Being a member of Shannon is being a member of a family , a fraternity and take it from me, it is a good family to be part of.
We have a saying at Shannon - 'leave your baggage on the doorstep on the way in' . I love that saying. Sometimes I've not had the best of days and really don't feel like going to rehearsal. But I go, and within five minutes of being there the world and all its troubles have melted away and I've got my 2 square foot of riser space and I am in my bubble, with my mates and we are making music. Beautiful. That's how we like it and that's what we want our audiences to experience.
Whether you are reading this casually, are thinking of popping down to one of our rehearsals or you are thinking of hiring us please don't be shy, let's have a trip on Shannon Express together.