For those who have been following along, our 2nd lead singer, Amy, gave her notice to us a couple of months back, so we've been searching for her replacement for the last few weeks.
Craigslist has been good to us in the past, so we decided to go that route. And we got plenty of responses---girls in all shapes, sizes and flavors. Girls from 18 to 55. Girls who have never played in a band before to those who have been singing professionally all their lives. Girls who were great singers to those who couldn't carry a tune in a bucket. I felt like Randy Jackson at an American Idol cattle call audition trying to decide who send on to Hollywood. I haven't really gone through an audition process like this since looking for drummers back in my 80s hair-band days.
We narrowed it down to 3 for the final audition: a 21 year old girl who's been singing in bars in her dad's classic rock band for the last 5 years; a 28 year old girl with a degree in music education but has never sung with a live band before outside of things she did in church; and a 47 year old who had sung with many bands similar to ours "back in the day" and was ready to get back into playing music again.
Really tough decision because all three had qualities we were looking for. The 47 year old would probably have been the best fit since we're all around that same age, she looks great, and her life is pretty settled. I wouldn't see her leaving the band anytime soon. The other two are still so young that obviously singing with this band isn't their ultimate music career goal. We'd just be another notch on their resume and experience ladder. But we all decided that from the "business" perspective, we need to go with youth. Even if it means we go into it understanding we'll likely be doing this same process again in a year or two.
So it was down to the first two girls. The 21 year old was actually more experienced and an amazing rock singer. She just stood there belting out big rock tunes with one hand in her pocket like she was drinking a glass of water. The bad news was she just stood there belting out big rock tunes with one hand in her pocket like she was drinking a glass of water. We worried her stage prescence might be lacking and besides, we've already got a big-rock-belter with Tiffany.
So we went with the least experienced vocalist with more R&B/hip-hop leanings. Who is also an experienced dancer. It felt a little weird not pulling the trigger for the best raw vocal talent, but I think that this girl will be the better overall fit. We're excited about new directions and full band rehearsals begin next week. Plus all the extra yada yada of shooting new photos and making a new video. Time to get to work!
In the meantime, I guess I can share with you all the "audition" video she sent me. Her singing acapella in her kitchen. (By far not the strangest "audition" audio or video I was subjected to, believe me....)