Video of the Day: La La La 101

At the end of one of their songs, “I Can’t Keep From Singing,” the Ruppe Sisters do a brief but fairly complex bit of counterpoint. After getting frequent emails from people who had purchased the soundtrack and wanted to know how to sing the parts, they posted this video tutorial:

Something like this would make an unusual but great addition to live concerts, much like Bill Gaither will sometimes break down and explain a convention song (e.g., “Heaven’s Joy Awaits.”)


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25 Letters to the Editor

Southern Gospel Journal welcomes letters to the editor. We will post the most thoughtful and insightful submissions. Ground rules: Don't attack or belittle groups or fellow posters, or advance heresies rejected by orthodox Christianity. Do keep comments positive, constructive, and on topic.
  1. I Like It !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  2. Those girls are amazing!

  3. that’s why southern gospel will always have a home somewhere in this world.

    • FNR – are you saying that because they’re singing the complex counterpoint, or because they’re taking the time to explain it to fans?

      • Well both really. Not many genres have the interaction like southern gospel. But originally I was talking about the complexities of the harmony. I’m not making the claim that other musical styles don’t do this. But this is one of those types of things that separate this genre from others. There will always be an audience for that.

      • I agree.

        This genre’s most defining characteristic is our blatantly Biblical / doctrinal lyrics. But musically, it’s vocal harmonies that set this genre apart more than any other.

  4. Fun stuff, thanks for posting!

  5. I was familiar with the Ruppes / Sisters (I love Under His Wings)and know of Lordsong working with Lowry. But I am here to tell you, I have a new respect for them. Of course they are pretty, and they seem sweet and fun, but they are really talented too. Not all groups could even sing the counterpoint (although there are more in SG than maybe anywhere else), but they also do it great A Cappella and individually too. They sound great doing it with just their voices. It is cool that they took the time to do this.

    I would probably call the lower part alto and the middle second soprano (at least in a female trio). I guess you could call the lower tenor (since essentially were they two women and a man it would be soprano, alto and tenor), but I think of a “tenor” in female groups as singing above the lead.

    • Well, they regularly stop by the studios in the building where I work as session vocalists (album background vocals, soundtrack series background vocals etc.) – so I knew they were good. Jeff Collins doesn’t call someone in unless they’re on a caliber approaching Lauren Talley-level talent.

      • You work as session vocalists? πŸ˜‰

      • No – were you intentionally pausing at the wrong spot in the sentence? πŸ˜€

        (the building where I work * as session vocalists …)

      • I knew what you meant, but I think it would be better worded as this: :p

        “Well, they regularly stop by the studios in the building where I work to work as session vocalists (album background vocals, soundtrack series background vocals etc.) – so I knew they were good. Jeff Collins doesn’t call someone in unless they’re on a caliber approaching Lauren Talley-level talent.”

        Even that is a little awkward, but when I tried to change their stopping to work as session vocalists, putting in your building elsewhere didn’t really work either. πŸ˜€ Maybe this would be better:

        “Well, they regularly stop by the studios in the building at my place of employment to work as session vocalists (album background vocals, soundtrack series background vocals etc.) – so I knew they were good. Jeff Collins doesn’t call someone in unless they’re on a caliber approaching Lauren Talley-level talent.”

        I think my work here is done for the moment. I need to get some things done here at home. πŸ˜€

      • OK. πŸ™‚

        And that, of course, is the meaning I intended. πŸ™‚

      • Policing the grammar police is tough, isn’t it? πŸ˜›

      • Somebody hazta dew it. πŸ™‚

      • Both of my grammers had past away by the time I wuz bearly startid in skool.

      • Eye shood ad that that wuz befour meye spilling and grammer emprooved iminslee.

      • Well, I’d certainly hate to see what it was then. πŸ˜›

      • :p

  6. Awesome! One of my favorite groups! Thanks for sharing.

    • Not a problem! Say, y’all have a video channel, too… πŸ™‚

  7. I echo the statement that somebody already made. This is what makes Southern Gospel so great! This group is one huge talent and I have followed them through the Ruppes, LordSong and now Sisters.

  8. It’s amazing how simple polyphony can amaze people. What they did dates back to the Classical era.

    • I understand what you’re trying to say, but given that this is 2011, I don’t think “simple” is the best adjective to describe this all-too-lost art. πŸ™‚

      • I agree, this is a somewhat lost art. Especially in this small realm of music. But as far as complexity, depends on who hears it. To the average gospel attender, this is amazing, something new for them. But to a seasoned composer, this is elequent, probably something they hear frequently. I’m no composer, but they did execute it well.