Saturday, April 19, 2008

UAB's Singing Quarterback Goes to CD

Whenever we need a break from tales of corrupt judges and lawyers, we tend to focus on news about music. Usually, we turn our attention to something connected to Taylor Hicks, Birmingham's most recent American Idol and the "official musician of Legal Schnauzer."

A few weeks back, we did a post about Sam Hunt, who was a senior quarterback last season for UAB (University of Alabama at Birmingham) and also happens to be a pretty darned good singer. We noted that several of his teammates had encouraged Hunt to try out for American Idol, following in the footsteps of Hicks, Ruben Studdard, and Bo Bice. Now that his college football career is over, Hunt just might give it a try. The auditions for 2009 Idol would be the earliest he could give it a shot.

Our post included a rather shaky video of Hunt's performance with the UAB Gospel Choir, performing a tribute song, "Nothing Goes Unnoticed," honoring the victims of the Virginia Tech massacre. Now we learn that Hunt's performance will be part of the UAB Gospel Choir's newest CD and accompanying DVD, "Gospel 101: Go Dominate."

The choir will unveil the new CD and DVD at its spring concert at 7 p.m. on Monday at the Alys Stephens Center on the UAB campus. Should be a fun event.

We've heaped plenty of criticism on The Birmingham News for its one-sided political coverage in Alabama. But the paper does some good stuff, too, and today's piece on the UAB Gospel Choir, by staff writer Greg Garrison, is one example.

Garrison notes that the rise of UAB's gospel choir has coincided with an explosion in the academic study of gospel music nationally. In fact, after UAB started its gospel choir, 17 other universities started gospel choirs modeled on the UAB program.

"Imitation is the greatest form of flattery," says Kevin Turner, director of the choir. "That says you're doing something right."

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