It's the Chipmunks!

It's the Chipmunks! March 29, 2011

Yesterday while trawling Youtube, I came across a video I had forgotten about, and it made me laugh all over again. It’s from the 1992 team-up of Gold City and the Kingsmen, captured on live video and named King’s Gold. (The videos were OOP for a long time but have recently been re-released on DVD.)
So naturally they had to include a bit of dueling on “Looking For a City.” Neither Brian Free nor Gary Shepherd attempts to go as high as Johnny Cook (thank God!) but things still get pretty ear-piercing towards the end. It’s pretty funny to watch Ivan Parker rubbing each of them down while the other one has his “turn.” Brian puts on some great facial expressions as he watches Gary disdainfully and prepares to “up” him. And I have to admit…I have never been the world’s biggest Free fan, but listening to Gary always reminds me that it could be a lot worse. As somebody in the comments put it, “I think he sounds like he sucked helium, but hey, he made Brian look awesome sooo…”

And when they both come together at the end… well, look out! It’s the Chipmunks! 😀

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  • quartet-man

    This is funny because I have said for years that certain tenors sounded liked “Chipmunks who sucked helium”. Now, I will try to reply later, but your post reminded me of something I found the other day:
    If that doesn’t work, you can find it here too:

  • quartet-man

    Okay, as far as Free and Shepherd. I liked Free a lot on the original “Robe of White”, but later on there were many songs I didn’t care for his voice. However, there are still ones I do. He isn’t on my top list of tenors by any means though, although he seems like a great guy. Shepherd was by his own admission put in a position of being chosen by a group whose style (loud and proud) wasn’t the type of voice he had. He did develop some and I love “the Judgment” song that he did with them and I also loved his and Free’s playing around and Shepherd’s really going for the high notes. Admittedly, the sound isn’t that pleasing to the ear though, but I am told that he did much better work in groups he was better suited for. I am not sure if Perfect Heart was one of them or not, but I do know he sang with them for a while.

  • Interesting! Thanks for the history tidbits. I agree that Free does seem like a great guy, very classy and professional. I can definitely appreciate and respect that, even if his voice isn’t my cup of tea so much.

  • quartet-man

    Hey, YGG please email me at the email provided here. Thanks, Q

  • Check your inbox.

  • pastorjohn

    Not being a fan of either Gary Shepherd or Biran Free I nevertheless watched the video clip and found it quite amusing. Only problem is, I’ve had the song — shrill notes and all — going through my head ever since!

  • I’ll Be Stage Right

    Free sounds better the older he gets. I mean he can still get up there, but it doesn’t sound as “whiny” as it used to. Shepherd, well he’s a classic Kingsmen tenor. Love the Kingsmen, always have, but they look for that type of tenor… I never got into Shepherd, but listen to him sing “He’s All I Need” on the live album “Singing in the Sun”. Probably my favorite Shepherd moment.

  • I would actually agree on Free—I much prefer the work he’s done with BFA than his old stuff with Gold City. Something about his voice is mellower and more low-key now. I really enjoy listening to him on something like “Goodness and Mercy” or “Never Walk Alone.”
    I’ll look for that Shepherd and see what I think… 🙂