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Invitation to virtual choir singing “And Are We Yet Alive”

You are invited to participate in a virtual singing of “And Are We Yet Alive” for the 2021 Virginia Annual Conference, June 18-19. Music Director Gerald Ricks has shared the following instructions to participate. Questions should be directed to him at music@vaumc.org

Instructions (jpg) and sound track (mp3) from the vendor for recordings

Download or open the Mp3 file with the music and sheet music.

Put on headphones and sing or play along with the video to practice. Sing whatever part you feel comfortable singing, and note the times that we are all in unison on the hymns.

Record yourself (or your family and friends together!) singing/playing along with the video; the easiest is to use your phone or tablet’s video camera or voice recording app (like Voice Memos on iPhone or iPad). Make sure you’re listening on headphones while recording so that we only hear YOU and not the MP3 sound. 🙂 You do NOT need to make a professional-quality recording.

Audio Instructions:

  1. Record in a quiet room and away from all extraneous noises (e.g., running ceiling fan, animal noises, refrigerator humming, etc.).
  2. Use a separate device to listen to the guide track preferably with bluetooth earbuds or headphones to avoid cable drapings. Use earbuds or headphones in only ONE ear to listen to the guide track.
  3. The guide track will have a two-measure count off in the tempo and meter of the song. At the downbeat of the second measure of count off, please CLAP TWICE IN FRAME. Clap on and in rhythm.

Video Instructions:

  1. Record your video in LANDSCAPE and at eye level.
  2. Make sure your phone can record with at least: Dimensions 720 p (1280×720 pixels). Larger dimensions (1080p, 4k) are welcome and preferred. Frame rate: 30fps is preferred but 24fps is acceptable.
  3. Stand at least 2 feet from your phone when recording and use a tripod, shelf, or object at eye level.
  4. Remove your phone’s case (if applicable). This is for audio purposes.
  5. Good lighting (sunlight through a window, lamps, etc).
  6. Sing your heart out!

Send/upload Instructions:

Send your video or audio recording to Gerald Lee Ricks at music@vaumc.org. Please use the subject: “And Are We Yet Alive.” If the file is too big to attach, use a file sharing service like Google Drive, Dropbox, or Firefox Send.

Please be advised that only videos that follow the aforementioned instructions will be used in the final production.

Gerald Lee Ricks will serve as the Worship Leader for the 2021 Virginia Annual Conference from June 18-19.

Ricks is a Florida native and was raised in Georgia. With a career that has spanned from conductor, to worship designer, and to educator, Ricks holds an Associate of Science in Education from Macon State College, Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance from Georgia Southwestern State University, and a Master of Music in Choral Conducting from Mercer University. 

In addition to leading music at various United Methodist connectional events and conferences, Ricks served on the staffs of various metro Atlanta United Methodist congregations, including Ousley (Lithonia, GA), Wesley Chapel (McDonough, GA), Glenn Memorial (Atlanta, GA), and Central (Atlanta, GA).  He most recently served as the minister of worship and arts at Brown Baptist Church, one the largest churches in the Mississippi area with a congregation of 12,000 members. 

For the upcoming Annual Conference session, Ricks is seeking musicians in the conference for opportunities to assist both virtually and in person. Specifically needed are:

  • Acoustic Guitarist
  • Electric Guitarist
  • Alto
  • Bass
  • Soprano, and
  • Pipe organist

Please share your interest and availability for these positions by emailing music@vaumc.org.

More about Gerald Lee Ricks

Gerald Lee Rick’s distinctive style, skill and charisma has paved the way for him to become a notable conductor and music director in the Southeastern region.  He has collaborated with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra serving as the assistant director and accompanist of the Gospel Choir producing both The Atlanta Gospel Christmas Concert Series and S. Truett Cathy (Founder of Chick-fil-A)  90th birthday celebration at the Woodruff Arts Center.  Gerald also served as the director of the Imani Voices at Candler School of Theology at Emory University.  Most recently, Gerald vocally collaborated with the Heritage Signature Chorale and the National Symphony Orchestra in the production of “Get Out.”

Ricks and his family currently reside in Southern Maryland where he operates The Gospel Chick Food Truck and the Holy Hell Kitchen. When he is not cooking or creating music, he enjoys reading, fishing, grilling and spending time with his family. Ricks is married to Dr. Crystal M. Ricks and they have three beautiful and gifted children: Hudson Daniel, Hannah Storm, and Ahmod Xavier.