we kicked the kickstarter!

FRIENDS, FANS, FAMILY, BACKERS, and COLLEAGUES,

We have reached our Kickstarter project goal of $10,000! Thank you for all of your generous donations and continued support. To everyone who shared, talked about, pledged toward or got excited about our recording project, thank you so much. We could not have done it without you.

All of this support is definitely inspiring us to continue to work hard toward making this album the best product it can be.

April was a month full of change for all of us as our tenor and bass, Nich Mueller and Jack Shales, walked across the stage at the Western Michigan University Arena and received their undergraduate diplomas in jazz studies! The girls couldn’t be more proud.

In the coming months we will not only be laying down the vocal tracks for the album but we will be performing in several venues including Kalamazoo Christian High School, Fifth Third Ball Park in Grand Rapids, and the beautiful, historic, Vaison-la-Romaine in France for the Choralies International Festival.

If you are a backer of our Kickstarter project, keep your eyes peeled for an email survey. We need to collect a smidge of personal info so that we can send you your rewards. You can expect to receive most rewards and of course, the album, when it is released this September.

We’re halfway funded! But we’re not there yet…

We can hardly believe the generosity of our friends, family, and fans in helping us to get over halfway towards our project goal of $10,000. Thank you, thank you, thank you to everyone who has made a commitment to support our album.

With only 19 days left on our Kickstarter funding project, we need all the help we can get! If we don’t make it to our monetary goal, we don’t get any of the pledges, and our project doesn’t get funded.

Please share our project with your friends and family, on Facebook, Twitter, and anywhere else to help us get the word out! The more pre-ordered albums we can sell, the closer we get to our dream of recording these songs and sharing them with everyone we can.

Did you miss that link to our Kickstarter page? Here it is!

Thank you again to everyone who has made a pledge for our project so far.

Album Sneak Peek…we need your help naming the record!

We need your help deciding what we should name our debut album…

At the link above, check out the video to see some secrets about what’s going on the record! Then, visit http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/FVWL36W to vote. If you’re the type who likes surprises and don’t want to know what we’re going to record, you can vote first and ignore the sneak peek video! We won’t tell on you.

If you haven’t already pre-ordered our album, you can do it here: http://kck.st/WZQ9tU

We’re just over halfway to our goal – and if we don’t make it, our album won’t get any funding from Kickstarter. Take a look at our video on the Kickstarter page and please pre-order our CD! Only 23 days left…

Pre-order our debut album today on Kickstarter!

Insert Jaws Theme here…

IT’S COMING! Finally, the gears are turning on our dream project: our debut album is official, and we have launched our Kickstarter. We couldn’t be more excited that things are really in motion. This project is essentially the capstone to our time spent at WMU – four long years of rehearsing and joking and rehearsing and oh-wait-you’re-not-joking-? and rehearsing and dreaming and hoping…that we would be able to create a professional album of our original charts. And now it’s happening!

There are two great ways to contribute:

  1. Pre-order our album! It’s only $5. Seriously. Skip a latté. Bag a lunch instead of running through Subway, or eat in one night this week. For $5, you can reap the benefits of thousands of hours of work that we’ve put in and have yet to go in the preparation for and recording of this album. For $5, you can hear a dozen brand new charts that our quartet has arranged and rehearsed. For $5, you can make a lot of people smile. For $5, you can help us reach our goal of recording this album. For $5, dreams are coming true. Isn’t that ridiculous? $5. You have $5.
  2. Tell someone about our album! You can share the Kickstarter page on Facebook, on Twitter, on your blog. You can send it in an email. You can even share this blog post. You can text someone about it, or call them. You can tell someone out loud. You can shout it in a crowded room, or tell a stranger you meet in a coffee shop. The only way we are going to get this project funded

Here’s that link again to our Kickstarter page: http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/165363247/four-corners-debut-album

For those of you who don’t know, Kickstarter is a fantastic online group that hosts ambitious and innovative minds, like us, who want to put together a creative project. For us, it’s our debut album.  However, there’s a catch. Our project will only be funded if we raise our TOTAL GOAL AMOUNT: $10,000. That’s what it’s going to take to produce this album with the level of artistic vision, excellence and commitment that this group has. Our budget includes paying for:

Studio Musicians
Recording Studio (tracking, mixing)
Studio Mastering
CD Manufacturing and Duplication
Design and Promotion
Mechanical Licensing
CD Release Concert (musicians, sound crew, and recording)

Kickstarter is just one of many groups who promotes the grassroots community which thrives on the concept of crowdsourcing, or seeking support from a large group or community. This movement is so important to the music industry because of the supportive, creative, and beautiful exchange that it develops between the artist and the audience. Check out a fantastic video of a presentation at a TED Conference by Amanda Palmer, an incredible American musician and performer, on “The Art of Asking.” She gets down to the nitty gritty about how important the artistic community is and how it has guided her through life as a musician:

http://www.ted.com/talks/amanda_palmer_the_art_of_asking.html

Anyway, if you missed it, our Kickstarter is officially up and running! Please take a look at our page and watch the video. Then, pre-order our album and share the video with a friend! We need all the help we can get to make this dream come to fruition, and we want to share our music with as many people as possible. Thank you.

Oh, wait, did you need the link to order our album? Here it is: http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/165363247/four-corners-debut-album

Our last Gold Company Miller Show…

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Four Corners coming full circle, singing NYV’s Bli-Blip at the 2013 GC Miller Show

We can hardly believe that it’s been almost four years since the four of us started making music together. In Fall of 2009 we became friends at the rehearsal-retreat of Gold Company II, and decided to get together to practice music for the ensemble together. After discovering an exciting blend between our voices, we decided to audition to perform as a specialty act in the 32nd Annual Gold Company Miller Show in 2011. Somehow, we got the gig, and ended up performing the New York Voices’ arrangement of Ellington’s “Bli-Blip” for a 3,500-seat auditorium.

Since then, we have been busy arranging, practicing, and gaining feedback and support from industry professionals such as Martez Rucker, Diana Spradling, internationally acclaimed vocalist Kurt Elling, Paquito D’Riviera, and the New York Voices. What started as carefree rehearsals driven by a passion for music quickly became the start of a journey to follow in the footsteps of the great vocal jazz groups of the past such as Lambert, Hendricks, and Ross, the Singers Unlimited, Manhattan Transfer, and especially New York Voices.

Three Februarys later, we were asked to perform a new arrangement of the same “Bli-Blip” in the same show for the same enormous auditorium. We had a blast, and it was surreal to get to show how far we had come to the audience at the 35th annual show – the show that, three years ago, led to our first real gig as a group, and encouraged us to write our own music.

We would not be where we are today without our dearest mentors: Dr. Zegree, the founder and longtime director of the Gold Company program, Mr. Wheaton, the brilliant and clever director of GCII, and Professor of jazz voice Duane Davis, who directed this year’s Gold Company and coached our quartet through the last three years.

Thanks to these incredible guys, and a myriad of beautiful and kind people in our little Kalamazoo and not-so-little network of vocal jazz fans and friends, we’re preparing to record our first self-released album. Stay tuned for album updates and be sure to check out our Kickstarter profile, which will be released THIS WEEK, to pre-order the album!

Secret Santa?

After a full weekend of Christmas caroling around Kalamazoo and Portage, we’re ready to take a break from holiday tunes…and just in time for our next big project! (drumroll, please…)

Four Corners first album is officially a GO. We’ve confirmed our sound engineer, our killing rhythm section and horns, and our first studio date. It may still be a distant glimmer, but there is light at the end of the tunnel. And a jazzy choir of angels singing. Ideally, anyway.

We’ll be doing a big chunk of the fundraising through a Kickstarter campaign, which will be joyfully launched in a couple months. So keep your eyes and ears peeled for news!

Happy Holidays from the Four Corners! Can’t wait to send some new music your way.

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South Haven 2010

South Haven 2010

Corners’ first photoshoot in summer 2010. South Haven, MI