Saturday, April 26, 2008

I'm a Soccer Dad

Trey scored 5 goals in his game today. His team was trailing by one when he came into the game. He scored 2 goals in the first 30 seconds he was in. He was all over the field. I think I might have an athlete. He had everybody on their feet with a couple of his hustling plays. I'm a proud dad.

Kassady also scored 5 goals in her game. That's more than all last year's games combined. Go figure. While she's still not the most aggressive player on the field, she knows where and how to kick the ball. I'm a proud dad.


Did you know that the Statler Brothers, who started out singing Gospel music, were originally known as the Kingsmen? Interesting trivia tidbit I picked up today.

Friday, April 25, 2008

Cutlery Capers

Kassady informed the family at the supper table the other night that she could hang a spoon on her nose. I told her that I didn't believe her. So, she did it. And, it really hangs on there. She doesn't lean back to make it happen. Of course, I had to try it. Can't do it.

I'm thinking that if her chosen profession doesn't work out, she can always fall back on a circus career.

Full Voice

The one thing that was never discussed in voice lessons was the importance of diet. We worked on breathing exercises, phonation (ah, those dipthongs), proper posture, vibrato, vocal resonation, and I even learned a little Italian and German along the way. All important, to be sure. But, yet, not a word about diet.

I'm a picky eater (my wife, parents, and the Liberty guys shout "Amen!" in chorus) and as a result find it difficult to appreciate many healthy foods due to my persnickety taste buds. I've heard the old wives tale that your taste buds change every few years. While I'm sure they are, it has yet to affect my eating habits. Trust me, every year I try to eat salad again and end up gagging on the lettuce. I try to eat new foods, playing mental games with myself, trying to convince the brain that I really like it. Sometimes I force myself to acquire a taste for something, most times not.

I know that I often eat food that's probably not good for this finely toned body. I'm trying to do better, but it's hard. I have a strong affinity for spicy foods: Mexican, Cajun, hot wings. In the past, I've imbibed to my heart's content. It never really did anything to me (if you discount all the treks to the room down the hall). That is, until the last 2 years. I'm now noticing that if I eat pepperoni, it's going to hurt me later in the day (or night). Hot wings take more than a day for the recovery process. It's painful.

Last year was the toughest for me from a vocal standpoint. I started the year by getting a cold on my trip to Ohio and Indiana in December, 2006. Thank you, family! I never quite got over it. We started our traveling in January and it was non-stop singing until the end of March. There were times that I was barely squeaking out my notes. There were a few concerts that I went out to the bus after we were done singing just to avoid over-talking. Those of you who know me, know that this just killed me. I was in a never-ending funk. I went to the doctor at least four times during the first three months of 2007 and they prescribed every type of drug you could think of for voice problems, but it never made a lasting impact. In March or early April I went to see an ear, nose, and throat specialist. He stuck the little camera up into my nose, down my nasal passage, and took a look around. After about 3 minutes of looking at the images on his computer, he asked me if I had ever suffered from heartburn. My initial reply was "nnnguhhgaaoo" (the camera was still stuck up my nose). Once he pulled it out, I told him that occasionally I would have a mild case of discomfort, but nothing serious. He said that my nasal passages were very irritated and that it appeared that I had some strange allergens (or something like that) in my system. He prescribed Prilosec and some heavy-duty stuff for allergies.

It should have sunk in that heartburn could be causing my vocal issues, but it didn't. The next few months weren't much better. I would have a good night on Friday, decent night on Saturday, but by Sunday I was a vocal mess. Vocal fatigue was becoming an issue, due to my tendency to over sing as a means of compensation for my problems. While we were at National Quartet Convention last September, Daniel Riley announced from the stage that Steve Ladd, their tenor, was on complete voice rest (except for singing). I later found out that it was due to heartburn. It still didn't sink in. I was trying everything from combining Advil with Claritin D to whatever else I could think of. Nothing worked. My voice was getting worse. Royce began making comments about the need for me to see a voice teacher to start singing right and correct some of the bad habits I was beginning to develop (once again, caused by over singing). Every once in a while I hit some depression periods, but I went about as low as I've ever gone in November. I was seriously considering giving up singing. I was so frustrated!

In the middle of November, Legacy Five was in town and I went over to their concert. Frank Seamans (their tenor) and I have developed a pretty good friendship over the last couple of years and in my talking to him after the concert I mentioned the vocal struggles I had been having. Well, it immediately got his attention. Unbeknownst to me, Frank had gone through some significant vocal problems during his time with Legacy Five. I knew that he had struggled initially, but I wasn't aware how bad it really was. He suffered with the same depression that I was combating. It was during that time that he resigned from Legacy Five. Scott Fowler wouldn't accept his resignation, though, and told him that he was willing to do whatever it took to help him recover. Frank began to share with me some of the steps he had to take to get his voice back. Man, it was like a breath of fresh air. At the restaurant later that night he filled me in on several techniques I could use to regain the use of my voice. After we had walked out of the restaurant and were getting ready to leave, Frank hung back and said, "Listen, Keith, I know what you're going through and I know you're frustrated. But, don't quit. I just want you to know I'll be praying for you." He doesn't know it, but God put those words in his mouth for me that night. For the first time all year, I felt like God could help my conquer this giant.

In December, I started analyzing what I was doing that could possibly harm my voice. I quit taking all my medicine. It was actually drying my voice out too much and harming my vocal cords. I then quit eating spicy foods in the afternoon and evening and on the weekends (well, except for the hot wings I had over at Marc and Talisha's). I started taking one Prilosec tablet every evening. I initiated a consistent exercise regiment. Then, and I'm sure this was a major component, I had 2 weeks and half off, no singing.

This January it was totally different. I felt like my voice was back to normal. I can almost feel it getting stronger. I now actually enjoy Sunday mornings. I'm keeping up with my habits that I established in December. I'll admit that I could exercise more, but I'm working on it. I'm still trying to avoid eating too many spicy foods. Ham is now my pizza topping of choice. I rarely suffer from heartburn symptoms. Every once in a while I'll have a vocal night that's more difficult than usual, but those are few and far between. I'm enjoying singing again.

God is good. Thanks to good friends, prayer, and some common sense I'm able to give 100% each concert. If I ever teach voice again, diet is going to be on of those items that I throw in the mix with "Caro Mio Ben".

O be careful little mouth what you eat!

Thanks, Dave

Pastor Dave celebrated his 200th post the other day. I was hoping to forget this little incident.

Thursday, April 24, 2008


I am getting our back desert ready for a sprinkler system and eventually grass, so I've been clearing out all the weeds and rocks. Lori caught me at my most graceful.

Lori's primary contribution was taking embarrassing pictures of my rear end which she found to be hilarious. My wife has a twisted sense of humor.

Trey and Kassady helped pick up most of the rocks. I promised them ice cream from Dairy Queen. They were motivated. I have a feeling getting good help for under $4.00 isn't going to last long.

This is currently my favorite commercial.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

American Idol Results

America got it wrong. Carly should still be on the show. Good grief! Who's gonna be next? Archuleta?

Media Moment

Daniel Mount over at Southern Gospel Blog featured an interview with me on his site today. We had a chance to sit down and shoot the breeze for about an hour or so two weeks ago. Daniel was in Boise speaking at the annual Biblical Worldview Conference. I first met Daniel at NQC this past fall. I've enjoyed reading his commentary on Southern Gospel music for the past couple of years. We both seem to share an appreciation for the same Southern Gospel groups. Anyway, I was honored to be interviewed by Daniel.

Check it out and post a comment about how good-looking I am.

AI Predictions

Based on last evening's performances (not on how much I like them overall), here are my current American Idol rankings:
  1. David Archuleta
  2. David Cook
  3. Syesha Mercado
  4. Carly Smithson
  5. Brooke White
  6. Jason Castro
The only real surprise last evening was Syesha's rendition of Rock N' Roll Too Many. It was the first time that her vibrant personality has really shown through while singing. She gives great interviews but seems a bit detached on stage.

I love Brooke, but she sunk herself. You can't forget the lyrics at this stage of the competition. I'd say that either Brooke or Jason are going home tonight.

Several weeks ago I said that my two favorites were the two Davids. I stick by that. They are both head and shoulders above the rest of the competition. I find humor in the fact that Cook's CD was the number one seller on Amazon (ironically beating out the new release from last week's vocal coach Mariah Carey) until pulled by AI officials.

T-Ball Coach


Nampa (AP) -- The Nampa Parks and Recreation Department announced today that Keith Waggoner has been named coach of the Astros. Waggoner, whose previous experience includes coaching at HHYC and AYC, will bring a high level of expertise to the Astros as they contend for the crown in the highly competitive T-ball league. Waggoner won two championships at HHYC during his four years coaching there and one championship and a third-place finish at AYC in the AA division. He was voted coach of the year in both leagues. In a press conference this afternoon, Keith stated that "I'm thrilled to be given the opportunity of coaching in the small leagues. I look forward to meeting my players soon and beginning to build the nucleus of a championship team. Bringing to mind the examples set by my big-league mentors Billy Martin, Earl Weaver, and Lou Piniella, my relaxed, laid-back approach to coaching will instill a sense of self-worth in my players as well as a great affection for grape snow cones." Keith indicated that he will be stressing improvement in five main areas: hitting the ball, catching the ball, throwing the ball, running in the right direction, and creative team chants.

The Parks Department also reported that Waggoner will be bringing Marc Taylor on board as an assistant coach. Taylor, who has a long and storied history as a Nampa athlete, will oversee many of the hitting and catching drills as well as scheduling the team snacks. Taylor said, "I am honored to be chosen for this opportunity to give back to the community. I look forward to enhancing the hand-eye coordination of our players, promoting team spirit, and coming up with innovative nicknames for the umpiring staff."

If your child, grandchild, niece, nephew, or the annoying next-door kid is interested in signing up for T-ball (and you must register soon for a low price of $22), click here and then select in this order:

The state (ID)
Nampa Recreation Center
Register for Activities
Youth Sports
08 T-Ball (5-6YRS)
Be sure to select the "Astros #6" in the "Team" category

Keith Waggoner closed his press conference by saying that this experience for Astros players "will be like playing Ninteno Wii, riding a roller coaster, and eating as much ice cream as you want, all rolled into one."

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Gold City

I've been curious as to what Gold City's new lead singer Bruce Taliaferro sounds like. Aaron Swain over at Swain's Musings found a couple of video clips of Bruce in action. Check it out. He definitely has energy and soul. I'm looking forward to hearing him live. I'm going to miss Wilburn, that's for sure. But, hey, life goes on and so does Gold City. They're still one of the premiere groups on the road.

Monday, April 21, 2008

GBS Gag Reel

Kudos to Joel and Tim on a great video. Joel, I shamelessly stole this from your Facebook page. This is for all you GBS alumni out there.