At the beginning of today’s Palo Alto singing, there were no women. Terry can sing alto (in range!), so he held down the alto bench; Arnold sang tenor; Will and Phil held down the tenor bench; and Neal and I sang bass.
I have heard that old recording of the Denson Quartet, an all-male Sacred Harp ensemble. But I have never experienced being part of an all-male singing. It was a little disconcerting at first, with the alto part often sounding higher than all the other parts, but I found myself liking the sound.
Two women came later and sang treble, and of course it was nice to have them there. An all-male Sacred Harp singing is fun as a novelty, but I do prefer having both men’s and women’s voices for a fuller sound.
But Terry had to hold down the alto bench all by himself for the whole two hours.