March 20, 2012

Oh, Mercy,Mercy Me: My Interview With Mercy River


Let's be honest, no matter how tall I sit, or how wide I open up my airway, or how deep I breathe and push from my stomach...I still can't sing well. 

BELIEVE me I have tried! Just yesterday I sang my way through all 37 of Whitney Houston's greatest hits, and while I belt it with the best of them...I think my singing can only be described as..."Meh..." and sometimes "Ouch".

So, I had a lot of fun asking Mercy River to answer the following questions. And believe me when I tell you that I have no jealousy {maybe a little...okay a lot}.

Enjoy the interview with these amazing Singer's and Performer's and then make sure to enter the giveaway so that you too can enjoy their new album "Higher". This album has gotten me through my pile of dishes every morning for the last 14 days in a row. (Yes I put off loading till the morning...so gag if you want to.)

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The lovely Erin asked us some questions about performing...so we thought it would be fun to do this post “interview style!”  As far as who is who: Brooke’s the blonde, Whitney’s brunette, and Soni is Auburn. 




How do you overcome nervousness?


Brooke: I still get nervous for almost every performance we do. I think a lot of it comes with experience. But a big turning point for me was when I started to realize that my performance wasn't about me. It was about the audience. As soon as I turned my focus on them, and forgot myself, it became a little easier.
Whitney: I’ve always struggled with stage fright. But 5 years ago a good friend shared a scripture that has REALLY helped me (paraphrased, of course). 2 Ne 33:4-- "And I know that the Lord God will consecrate my [performance] for the gain of [His] people.  And the words which I have [sung] in weakness will be made strong unto them; for [they] persuadeth them to do good...and [they] speaketh of Jesus, and persuadeth them to believe in him.” I think of this every time I sing, and realize that even if it isn’t perfect, if my heart is in the right place and the Holy Ghost is with me, the right message and feelings will be communicated. 
Soni: I don't think I have overcome nervousness, and probably never will. That’s one I just have to pray for help and rely on the Lord to help me think about my audience and what they need instead of being self conscious on stage

How do you gain confidence as a performer?


Brooke: Ha! I've never felt so inadequate! I think it boils down to three things-experience, getting back up after each failure, and again, focusing on the audience. 
Whitney: To be honest, I gain confidence through Brooke and Soni. We joke that someone always has to be the “Big Sister.” If two of us are nervous, the third has to step in and be brave for all of us. When I feel humiliated or anxious or afraid, one of them will step in and lift me up. 
Soni: Practice hard!

How do you get ready for a performance? 


Brooke: Rehearsals and PRAYER
Whitney: We put a lot of time, thought, heart, and prayer into EACH performance.
Soni: Pray a lot and practice hard

How do you practice?


Brooke: We rehearse as a group 1-2 times a week when a performance is coming up. I also sing quite a bit in the car...much to the dismay of my kids.
Whitney: We all live 90 min apart, so we have to meet in the middle to rehearse. Most of the time we have our kids with us, so we bring snacks and toys and videos...and we nurse, change diapers, bounce babies, and kiss owies WHILE we practice. Some rehearsals are more effective than others (!) but we trust that the Lord will step in--take all we can give--and make it enough.
Soni: In my car, that is where all of my personal practicing gets done, because my kids are buckled in and can't get into too much trouble.

How do you choose wardrobe?  

Brooke: Ummm...trial and error. We always tell people this is the hardest part of Mercy River. Again, experience has helped us with this. I get a kick out of our first performance "costumes.” We also get a lot of help from Kristi at Karma Boutique on Main (in Pleasant Grove, UT). She’s a lifesaver!!
Whitney: I have zero fashion sense, so Brooke and Soni figure it out and I just nod. (To be honest, many of the things I wear on stage are borrowed from Brooke’s closet.) We usually start with one piece and go from there. But it is always a challenge because our bodies are always changing--we have to work around pregnancy and baby weight and all that.
Soni: I just let Brooke do that

What is a favorite performance experience? 


Brooke: For me, it was Layton's Time Out For Women (in Feb 2012). We had just finished recording our 3rd album, and had to jump right into rehearsing for TOFW. It was exhausting and I thought there was no way we could pull it off. Plus, I'm from Layton, so the thought of failing in front of hundreds of people I KNEW was so scary. We prayed and fasted our little hearts out. ("Heavenly Father, I don't think I can live with another humiliating performance!") When it came time to perform, I felt the spirit blessing us. Being on stage felt so comfortable, we remembered our speaking parts and our songs sounded on. It was such a humbling experience. 
Whitney: There are so many....There was the girls camp in Utah when we got a flat tire (all of us pregnant at the time). There was the performance in Orlando when Soni lost her voice--and got an amazing blessing from Michael Wilcox. There was the Stake Youth Conference in Canada where we made lifelong friends. There was the benefit concert in Idaho for a brave young mother with breast cancer. I could go on....!
Soni: TOFW Boise 2010 I was 9 months prego due any day. I just remember it being such a fun day, I couldn't sing the greatest but it was a good performance. Then we got on the plane that night to go home, as soon as I got home I went to bed exhausted, 6 hours later I woke up in labor! A couple hours later went to the hospital and my baby was born.....perfect timing :) 

Thanks for the fun, Erin!
Love, Mercy River




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12 comments:

1hotmama said...

Um, yes please! Oh how I love to sing, but don't have the "chutzpah" (gall, nerve, effrontery, incredible guts,such as no other word and no other language can do justice to) ... WOULD LOVE to have a new CD to sing along with! YAY!

Someone In Mind said...

(gall, nerve, effrontery, incredible guts,such as no other word and no other language can do justice to)SOOO FUNNY MICHELLE!!!!

Heather @ Raising Memories Blog said...

It was so fun to read this interview!

Heather @ Raising Memories Blog said...

I left a comment & follow Mercy River on facebook but for some reason rafflecopter won't let me enter with those two options :/

MJCastleton said...

Loved the scripture she used regarding being nervous.
Erin did you know with Time of Day you save $ running your dishwasher at night? Oops, I am loading mine up right now...at noon. Do it when you can I say!
I need this CD to make dishes more fun however!

richelle said...

Fun interview! Would love to have their CD!!!!! Especially if it's something that can get me doing dishes or laundry.....heavens know I need the help!

Freja said...

What a fun read. Thanks!

kathy said...

Love your music its so uplifting, I enjoyed reading your thoughts on singing, at time out for women is when I heard you first sing, I have been waiting for this CD forever, thanks and keep singing, love you guys, you are my favorite!

kathy said...

Love your music its so uplifting, I enjoyed reading your thoughts on singing, at time out for women is when I heard you first sing, I have been waiting for this CD forever, thanks and keep singing, love you guys, you are my favorite!

kathy said...

Love your music its so uplifting, I enjoyed reading your thoughts on singing, at time out for women is when I heard you first sing, I have been waiting for this CD forever, thanks and keep singing, love you guys, you are my favorite!

Shari said...

Love their beautiful music. Would love to have the new CD.

Shelly said...

Thanks Erin-love it! I could use some new music!