So I LOVES me some Gospel music. In all of the year I used to go to the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival, the Gospel tent was the go-to tent. Don't feel like seeing any of the bands currently playing at the other stages? Go to the Gospel tent. You'll never, ever regret it.
And here's a little Lou secret for you: I'm not 100% sure that I ever visited the Gospel tent without crying. Yep. I may seem like a godless heathen, but I've got a soft heart for folks soulfully singing His praises. Shhhhh... don't tell anyone.
Gospel. I love Gospel music. So yeah: about the National Quartet Convention-- "Gospel Music's LARGEST Annual Event"
Some silly things I thought...
Myth #1: So in years past, I've thought the National Quartet Convention was a convention for Barbershop Quartets. I thought that was kinda cute... quaint. Kind of like our collective love of the jug band here in Louisville.
Truth #1: The NQC is NOT Barbershop Quartets.
Myth #2: When I paid more attention to the signage earlier this summer, I noticed the word "Gospel." And I got psyched. Psyched, I tell you. I don't care how much preachiness I'd have to endure, if this was going to be a convention of GOSPEL quartets, I was going. You betcha I was.
Truth #2: It's not GOSPEL gospel. Not New Orleans gospel. Not red-suit wearing, tambourine-banging, dancing like your feets are on fire gospel. At all. Like, whoa.
So, when I got psyched, I started to pay more attention... and I couldn't quite understand why everyone in the ads was so... white. Like not all blue-eyed soulful white like Rick Astley or Hall & Oates. Like Branson white. Like Sarah Palin white. Like Miracle Whip White.
And then I saw that they'd invited Sarah Palin to come and speak. And I knew these were couldn't be my peeps. At all.
Myth #3: Nothing interesting happens at the National Quartet Convention.
Truth #3: From the Wikipedia page about the NQC, under "Noteworthy Incidents at the National Quartet Convention." 1965: James Blackwood sneezed into the bass microphone just before JD Sumner and the Stamps took the stage. When JD sang "Blessed Assurance", the audience laughed. I shit you not, people. There are FOUR Noteworthy Incidents listed. THAT is one of them.
Myth #4: "Quartet" means a singing group of four.
Truth #4: No. It doesn't.