Roughly three weeks ago, Wes Burke wrote about Group Change Philosophy 101. In his post, he outlined two paths a group can take when deciding who to hire as the next singer: singer-centric and music-centric. Burke made the point that he felt Ernie Haase hiring Devin McGlamery was a music-centered move, meaning that he was hired as the best fit for the group dynamics rather than being the most talented singer available.
I agreed with Wes then, and I agree with him now even more after watching an interview Ernie Haase and the other Signature Sound guys did with Ken Grady of Gospel Music Today during the National Quartet Convention. For those of you who haven’t seen it, here is the interview footage:
A lot of different topics are covered in the interview, but I really enjoyed when Ernie was explaining what he was looking for when he was putting the group together.
- Have a walk with the Lord.
- They want to be in SG music, and not trying to get to another kind of music
- Treating people kindly off-stage.
- Ability to sing.
As Ernie says in the interview, “that’s hard to find.” But it certainly gives us insight into how he operates his group. Ernie gets a lot of criticism for straying away from SG music, so I find it interesting that a love for this music is one of his own main criteria when assembling the members of the group.