While a cappella is typically a group endeavor amidst a niche, but large community, For Your Own Good focuses on what individuals can do for their own betterment in this realm.
It may take one, two, three, four or many more years, but for just about every a cappella singer there will come the time when she leaves her group. Whether it’s a result of graduation, moving, pursuing different interests, or a conflict of personalities there’s almost always a bittersweet feel to such transitions. So what can you do to leave the group without any regrets and make the most of the time you have left?
Record. The essence of a cappella groups is making music. Don’t leave the group without some sort of aural reminder of what you accomplished. One of the best case scenarios is a full-length CD featuring different periods in the group and different soloists. If you don’t have the time, money or resources to do that, digital cameras make it all the easier these days to at least capture a simple video of your last performance with the group. While you might not care so much now, consider where you’ll be five, ten, or twenty years in the future. Won’t you be interested in hearing one of the songs you drilled today again? Might you be interested in sharing that part of yourself with a spouse or your children or your grandchildren? You’ll need a recording.
Photos. For most of today’s college students, and even folks who are out of college, photos have become second nature, and Facebook serves as a handy place for storage and photo sharing. Nonetheless, if your group hasn’t hopped on that bandwagon yet, don’t forget to capture some images of the whole group together, and preferably some images of you all in action. You may be surprised with how quickly time will move after you’ve left the group—you’ll never be able to capture exactly the same images again after you leave.
Arrange something to leave a legacy. Arranging isn’t for everyone, but if you do have the interest and the ability, you ought to consider creating an arrangement to leave with the group after you’ve gone. It will serve as a way of connecting you to the group of the future, leave you a legacy, and, in a meaningful way, “pay it forward” for everything the group has offered you during your time with it.