The lady’s hat makers were slower than other groups to organize. This is because they spent much time seeking the ideal one to sing counterpoint melody far above the usual melody line.
Typically, their luck in finding this person was miserable. One self-appointed songster named Albert Ross tried to join the group. “My voice will blend perfectly with the other members of the group,” he promised, but the audition was a disaster.
Putting the very best light upon it, the voice could best be described as a screech. In fact, it was so bad (how bad was it?), that the birds in nearby branches tried to fly away, but one bird croaked in the attempt.
The singer was rejected immediately, but the malady lingered on in the now well-known maxim, “It was a descant milliner, and he poppeth one off tree!”