Yes, we have a slightly unusual name, but that really comes from how we originated. This group had its inception in the year 2002 at the urging of our director emeritus, Bill Harper. Bill had been the director of the Inland Cities Chapter, but really wanted to start a chorus with the better singers of that chapter and of the local area that shared his vision of singing and competing at a higher level. The chorus was an immediate success and scored a third place, overall, at the very next Far Western District Contest. Unfortunately, within two years Bill’s health and employment status required that he resign as director and move to where he could improve his heath and financial situation.
Fortunately, the chorus had an experienced church choir director as one of its leads, Kevin Price. Kevin worked hard with the chorus, and also at expanding his capabilities as a director and had the chorus score many “Top Tens” at following district contests. He also was ably assisted by a very talented baritone, Mike Smith, as assistant director in Kevin’s absence while Kevin was undergoing recovery from a serious health condition of his own. In December of 2008, Kevin made the decision to resign as director for 2009 with the realization that, “he felt that he had taken us as far as his skills would allow.”
Pragmatically, we immediately began a search for a new director, but with the philosophy we would not settle for anyone with less than the highest of qualifications. In the spring of 2009, we were most fortunate to forge an agreement with John Brockman, a young fireball of a baritone to become our director immediately following the International Convention in July. We understood that even though John did not have previous experience as a director, he was, if anything, overly qualified as a musician, with a BA in music and training for certification as a music judge for the Barbershop Harmony Society.
The rest is now history, a history that is being rewritten almost weekly. From a low in membership of 18 members in 2008 to our current 33 (and growing) men on the risers, we now have an excitement ringing through the chorus we had not seen or heard since those inaugural days in 2002. Come visit us and experience that unmistakable excitement for yourself!
Carl Buntin is a graduate of San Diego State University with a Bachelors of Arts in Music Education. He is an assistant director with Pacific Coast Harmony, the La Jolla Chapter of the Barbershop Harmony Society. He has had many volunteer directing positions at 7 schools in the San Diego Unified School District in the Youth In Harmony Program and the California Music Project. Carl is an Eagle Scout and a three time recipient of the Louis Armstrong Jazz Award.