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That was the question we kept asking ourselves when we first considered releasing Square Dance Music in karaoke format. Having been a caller for almost 30 years, I wasn’t sure that there would be any great advantage to having the words of a singing call on the screen and synchronized to the music, since most callers change figures at will and often modify their singing calls anyway. Boy was I wrong!
Shortly after we started producing karaoke based rounds, my 12yr old son Shawn began to express an interest in calling. Shawn asked me if I could put some singing calls into Karaoke format for him to try at a dance. Not wanting him to loose interest I quickly concurred. His first attempt to perform a singing call live was nothing short of remarkable and I began to suspect that his success was, at least in part, the result of the format.
We began to release all of our singing calls with the karaoke videos embedded on the CD just like the rounds, and I decided to use the format myself at all of my dances. It wasn't long before the value of the Karaoke based singing calls became apparent. I no longer found myself forgetting lyrics or trying to remember what figure I was on. I also noticed that I was less likely to have a false start or be off time with the music. I still used alternate figures at will, but it was nice to have the original figure right there on the screen if I wanted to use it. We also found that while on stage with other callers at conventions, we could just glance across the stage and read the easy to see lyrics on the screen. Finally, the format allowed for us to use more dynamic lyrics than ever before in the singing calls we produced.
Eventually, we began to hear from other callers who had discovered the format , telling us how helpful it was to them, especially new callers who were just starting out. New callers have enough to deal with without having to stand there nervously shaking a cue sheet. Now, calling programs like Square View, handle Karaoke Mp3+g files with speed control options, and the format is more accessible than ever.
On this site,you will find instructions on how to access the files on your Gold Rush CD’s and get started using this dynamic new format.