I love to sing – John Wakeland (Bass)
16th September 2020
John is the current Chairman of the Mansfield & District Male Voice Choir and a powerful bass singer.
Born and bred in Skegby in the year 1951, his father was a miner and his mother a housewife (a term not often used these days). John has three sisters, two of which are older and one his twin.
As a teenager in the mid to late sixties his musical taste was influenced greatly by the groups of the day; The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, The Hollies, The Searchers to name but a few, but he always loved a ballad as the song lyrics told a story.
This was the time when he discovered the joy of singing, only for his own benefit, but he soon realised that he could not reach the high notes, so karaoke was not going to happen for John.
As time marched on, he married Lesley and their own family developed, (three beautiful kids), so music took somewhat of a less important role in his life. Ambitions and aspirations took centre stage and although song was always there, it was never that important. John was a self-employed builder/joiner for most of his working life which involved hard work, long hours and time for little else.
“So long as you can pitch your voice correctly there will be a place within the choir for anyone to sing.”
Forward now to 2009 when John bumped into an old colleague and good friend who was in the choir at the time and persuaded him to join. It was something that took his fancy but had never considered or knew anything about. The fact there were four sections within a choir was unknown to him, i.e. all types of voice are accommodated. So long as you can pitch your voice correctly there will be a place within the choir for anyone to sing. His ability to sing the lower notes placed John within the bass section and he settled in straight away. After a few weeks, confidence grew, as did his enjoyment and over the years he has taken on more responsibility by becoming a committee member and eventually chairman.
John explained, “The choir has without a doubt enriched my life. It gives me a purpose daily as I must learn new songs, and it takes me to destinations far and wide which I would not normally visit. Add to that the thrill of performing to a live audience and the appreciation they give, the camaraderie of your choir mates, and the amazing social life, I wonder “what would I do without my music” “
As a footnote John would like to say, “if you, like me, enjoy singing come and give us a try. I can assure you; you will be made welcome and who knows it may change your life for the better.”