Shauna Kaaria - Producer (www.shaunakaaria.com)
Music and dance have been a part of my life for as far back as I can remember. After many years with clogging and rounds, I picked up the calling microphone in 2007. My first studio experience was in 2010, singing harmony on Vic's recording of "I Dig Rock n Roll Music" for Fine Tune records. In mid-2014 I joined the Fine Tune Records team, arranging music, singing background vocals, and recording lead vocals as they launched their Female Vocal Range project. Spending so much time in the studio, arranging songs and watching them come to life gave me the producing bug. With encouragement from Vic, and other producers I respect, I took the plunge and Chic Recordings was born.
Vic Kaaria - Favorite Caller/Silent Partner/Staff Caller (www.vickaaria.com)
Vic has been calling since 1975 and has arranged and recorded dozens of singing calls with Shakedown, Fine Tune, Gold Wing, and Sharpshooter records. His support and expertise are invaluable as I embark on this Chic adventure. He has truly been my silent partner. (Yes, I know it is hard to imagine Vic as a "silent" anything.) Vic joined me on the vocal for Chic Recording's second duet, CHIC3005 - Devoted to You, and sang the lead vocal on our 15th release, CHIC1015 - For What It's Worth. More recently, he joined David Mee and Charlie Robertson for CHIC 1030 - She Enjoys Being a Girl. Don't be surprised if you hear him on future releases too. Vic and I have been married since 1999 and have six children (Brady Bunch style), and five grandchildren. We live in Redlands, CA, with three very spoiled dogs. Just in case you didn't know...he's my favorite caller!
Jim MacDonald "Jimmy Mac" - Engineer/Musician
Jimmy Mac of Jimmy Mac Productions in Ventura, CA, is the magic behind much of Chic's music. He has been in the music production business for more than twenty years and has vast experience with the needs of the square dance music community. In addition to his amazing musicianship, especially on guitar, he gives vocal lessons and knows how to bring the best out of you in the studio. Jimmy's well-trained (but also spoiled) dogs, Buddy and Midnight, frequently join our sessions. Probably because we bring treats.
You've heard his great vocal on CHIC1016 - Windy, and now that Steve has agreed to be Chic's first "Staff Caller," I quickly got him back into the studio to record CHIC1027 - Seein' My Father in Me. Steve's voice and calling talent speak for themselves, so when we decided it was time to have an official Chic "staff," Steve was the first call we made. (Okay, it wasn't a call...it was a text message, but it was still the first invitation sent.) In today's world of instant communication, I had to sweat it out for fifteen whole minutes before getting his affirmative reply. I can't believe he made me wait that long. That's okay, he's still my second-favorite caller! And now, he's a Chic Peep!
Steve's invitation to officially join the Chic team may have been the first one, but David's invitation was not far behind. David delivered an amazing vocal on CHIC1003 - Let's Get Away From it All, one of our early releases, and more recently on CHIC1026 - Thank You for Being a Friend, a vocal he shared with Charlie Robertson. His most recent contribution was the collaboration with Vic and Charlie for CHIC 1030 - She Enjoys Being a Girl. David is another amazing caller and singer and will be a great addition to the Chic team. Although, be warned! If you're making announcements and David leans over to "help" and tell you what to say, don't do it! I did, and it remains one of my most embarrassing moments. That's okay, he's still my second-favorite caller! And now, he's a Chic Peep!
The day before Deborah officially became a Staff Caller for Chic Recordings, I had the privilege of listening to her share the story of the beginnings of her calling career. (We were in a session at the annual CALLERLAB Convention.) While Deborah has had many recording opportunities with a variety of labels, she claimed she has never had a “home” with one. The decision to invite her to officially join Chic had already been made, and now I knew just what to say when I approached her. When I finally got the opportunity the next morning, I told Deborah that she had a home with Chic Recordings if she wanted one. Her response was an enthusiastic hug and a big “YES!” With three amazing Chic vocals under her belt already, CHIC2006 – (Your Love Has Lifted Me) Higher & Higher, CHIC2014 - Whatever Lola Wants, and CHIC 2030 - I Enjoy Being a Girl (recorded with Patty and myself), I’m anxious for the next three (and more). I just wish she still lived in Southern California! That’s okay, she's still my second-favorite caller! And now, she’s a Chic Peep!
So, let’s tell it like it is. When I invited Scott Smith to join Chic Recordings as a Staff Caller, I knew he was good. People who worked and danced with him prior to his retirement could not say enough good things, and some were quite literally squealing with excitement at his return to the microphone. Now that I have had the opportunity to personally work with him, (in the studio and on the stage), “good” just doesn’t quite cut it. In fact, the rest of us now simply refer to him as “Great Scott.” And we’re not kidding. With both CHIC 1029 – Rolling Along and CHIC 1035 – Santa’s Reindeer Ride, when he stepped into the vocal booth to record, he was ready! His recordings sound effortless, and that is clearly because so much effort went into his preparation. In fact, the rest of us just might have to step up our game to keep up with him. That’s okay, he's still my second-favorite caller! And now, he’s a Chic Peep!
Patty Greene - Staff Caller (www.pkgdesignworks.com)
Patty had already done three guest vocals for Chic Recordings, CHIC 2009 – Cleopatra, Queen of Denial, CHIC 2023 – Playground in My Mind, CHIC 2030 – I Enjoy Being a Girl, and having her as a Staff Caller was a bit of a dream I was afraid wouldn’t come true. Patty has been a recording artist for Royal Records for many years, and now with the complete blessing of Tony Oxendine and Jerry Story, she has officially joined the Chic Recordings staff! Nobody pinch me, because if this is a dream, I don’t want to wake up. Patty has been a major supporter of Chic from the beginning and over the past year has become one of my dearest friends. Although, she did reply to my Chic Staff invitation with an “I’ll have to think about it… ” That’s okay though, she quickly followed it up with a "Yippee! I'd be delighted," so she’s still my second-favorite caller! And now, she’s a Chic Peep!
Pat Carnathan - Engineer/Musician (www.patcarnathan.com)
Prior to the launch Chic Recordings, Pat Carnathan was kind enough to offer his assistance with music production. I gladly took him up on his offer, and he has assisted with the engineering on three of our releases. A pianist since the age of six, and the owner/producer of Shakedown Records, Pat is not only assisting with music for Chic, he is providing priceless counsel and advice along the way. Pat has a great ear for what works (and what does not), and shares Chic's passion for being true to the original song. I had the pleasure of spending a couple of years playing in the Shakedown Square Dance Band with Pat, and was thrilled when he agreed to record the vocal and engineer CHIC3025 - The Lion Sleeps Tonight. It was one of my favorites from the band's playlist, and Pat's falsetto is amazing. It's no wonder he is my second-favorite caller.
Michael Haworth - Web Consulting (www.michaelhaworth.org)
Mike is another invaluable cog in the Chic wheel. Because I wanted to have the ability to update the website myself, I needed more than just a webmaster. I needed someone who had the patience (and willingness) to spend the time to provide training throughout the web design process. We spent multiple evenings at "Chic-Fil-A" (okay, it's really Chick) hovering over the computer while his patient family entertained themselves in the play area or with their latest book acquisition. His guidance and support are greatly appreciated. It's no wonder he is my second-favorite caller.
If you've seen any of the YouTube previews for Chic's releases, then you've seen Soren's work. I used to think I had figured out how to make videos, and I suppose I had, but Soren entered the picture and the videos are a whole new game! He has software and skills that I simply don't possess, and he is graciously sharing them with Chic Recordings! He amped up our logo, he has created amazing teaser videos that include our logo and tag line (in four different logo colors, no less), and his work is amazing! You can see an example of his Chic work here. It's no wonder he is my second-favorite caller.
Rick Hampton - Mentor (www.rickhamptoncaller.com)
Last, but certainly not least, of the Chic Peeps is my mentor, Rick Hampton. During Vic's years with Fine Tune Records, I was frequently amazed with Rick's "ear" in the studio. Since joining Fine Tune for the Female Vocal Range project, I have spent countless hours in the studio watching and learning about the music production process. With Fine Tune/Gold Wing/Sharpshooter, Rick has given me the opportunity to cut my teeth arranging the music and working with Jimmy Mac on bringing the music to life. He could not have been more supportive when I told him of my desire to start my own adventure with Chic Recordings. His encouragement and support mean the world to me. It's no wonder he is my second-favorite caller.