It’s always interesting to ask a choir member to name their top ten favourite singers or actors. It is inevitable that the list varies from person to person. Yet choosing his favourite choir song is easy for choir member Gareth Jones.
“It has to be ‘Y Ddau Wladgarwr,” (The Two Patriots) by Joseph Parry. Baritone Gareth, explains with pride and passion. “It’s a song about patriotism and I’m a patriotic Welshman.”
Gareth comes from a small hamlet called Graig-Adwy-Wynt. That gives you just about all the evidence you need.
The song is a Colin Jones arrangement, and is full of fervour and passion. It describes Wales’s aspirations for a true freedom. Currently it’s the concert opener for the choir.
Gareth Jones and Meibion Twm o’r Nant
In most choirs there’s a wealth of musical talent and experience. Denbigh & District Male Voice Choir is no exception. Gareth was an original member of ‘Meibion Twm o’r Nant,’ the Denbigh based Cerdd Dant Party for 22 years.
The party started by the formidable and talented Leah Owen. She remained the musical conductor for a decade.
Cerdd Dant is a Welsh musical tradition. It involves singing a counter melody over a given melody, usually played on the harp.
Ryan Davies states that voice and harp should be “finishing roughly at the same time.”
Meibion Twm o’r Nant successfully competed in Eisteddfodau and the Gŵyl Cerdd Dant on many occasions.
Another member of Meibion Twm o’r Nant, Gwyn Williams, has recently joined the choir. They sang together as ‘Gareth and Gwyn’ for 26 years. They were successful at many Eisteddfodau.
Gareth Jones Favourite
Gareth has no hesitation in naming tenor David Lloyd as his favourite singer.
Lloyd achieved phenomenal success in various Eisteddfodau. As a tenor soloist he failed to achieve first prize on only three occasions out of two hundred. That is so unbelievable that it’s worth reading again!
He was a renowned opera star by the time he was in his twenties. He gained all his success despite the loss of both parents when Lloyd was only a teenager.
Some observers, for this reason, describe David Lloyd as ‘the singer with a tear in his voice.’
Gareth Jones and the Choir
Gareth has been a choir member for eight years. Besides the singing, he enjoys the camaraderie. Not to mention the interval cups of tea over a friendly chat on choir practice nights.
The concert environment is always a joy to the experienced Gareth. He particularly enjoys singing at St John’s Church, Llandudno. The reasons are because of ‘the brilliant acoustics and the appreciative audiences.’
By trade Gareth is a blacksmith, specialising in wrought iron work. He runs his family business, ‘Celtic Dreams’, in Denbigh.
One of his designs is a handcrafted wrought iron bed. It’s a ‘combination of romantic charm and strength and will last for generations.’
Some may say it just so happens to be the perfect description of the Denbigh & District Male Voice Choir.