Tag Archives: Ten

2015 Sing-Off Tour with Guest Groups

Hey, AcaFans! Sing-Off Tour is up and running, and we can personally confirm that this is a show not to be missed!

singofftour2015

Because we love you, we’ve compiled a list of all the special guests we have been able to confirm for each of the dates.  We’ll be updating as we get more info, or let us know what we missed.

Get your regular and VIP tickets at www.singofftour.com, and we’ll see you out on the Tour!

DATE VENUE LOCATION SPECIAL GUESTS
Feb 17 Turning Stone Casino Verona, NY Overboard
Feb 18 Veteran’s Memorial Auditorium Providence, RI Ball in the House
Feb 19 Best Buy Theater New York, NY Traces
Feb 20 Count Basie Theater Red Bank, NJ Princeton Footnotes
Feb 21 Calvin Theatre Northampton, MA Pitch Slapped
Feb 22 American Music Theater Lancaster, PA Princeton Footnotes
Feb 23 UB Center for the Arts Amherst, NY UR Yellowjackets
Feb 24 Town Ballroom Buffalo, NY
Feb 25 NYCB Theatre at Westbury Westbury, NY Blue Jupiter
Feb 26 Proctors Schenectady, NY UR Yellowjackets
Feb 27 Mohegan Sun Uncasville, CT
Feb 28 The Grand Opera House Wilmington, DE Melodores
Mar 1 Kewwick Theatre Glenside, PA Melodores
Mar 2 The Wilbur Boston. MA Melodores
Mar 3 Community Arts Center Williamsport, PA Melodores
Mar 4 Sands Bethlehem Event Center Bethlehem, PA Melodores
Blue Jupiter
Mar 5 Memorial Auditorium Raleigh, NC Melodores
Mar 6 Chrysler Hall Norfolk, VA Melodores
Mar 7 Warner Theatre Washington, D.C. Melodores
Traces of Blue
Mar 8 North Charleston Performing Arts Center North Charleston, SC Melodores
Mar 9 Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre Atlanta, GA Melodores
Mar 10 King Center for the Performing Arts Melbourne, FL
Mar 11 The Mahaffey St. Petersburg, FL The Edge Effect
Mar 12 Coral Springs Center for the Arts Coral Springs, FL
Mar 14 Saenger Theatre Mobile, AL
Mar 15 Ryman Auditorium Nashville, TN Melodores
Timothy’s Gift
Mar 16 Tennessee Theatre Knoxville, TN Melodores
Mar 17 Von Braun Civic Center Auditorium Huntsville, AL Committed
Mar 18 Royal Oak Music Theatre Royal Oak, MI
Mar 19 DeVos Music Hall Grand Rapids, MI
Mar 20 Bogart’s Cincinatti, OH
Mar 21 Hobart Arena Troy, OH Eleventh Hour
Mar 22 House of Blues Chicago, IL Gentleman’s Rule
Mar 24 Playhouse Square – Connor Palace Cleveland, OH Forte
Mar 25 Palace Theatre Louisville, KY Melodores
Forefront Quartet
Mar 26 Murat Theater Indianapolis, IN
Mar 27 Crystal Grand Music Theatre Wisconsin Dells, WI
Mar 28 Riverside Theatre Milwaukee, WI
Mar 29 Mill City Nights Minneapolis, MN
Mar 31 Peoria Civic Center Peoria, IL
Apr 1 Adler Theatre Davenport, IA
Apr 2 Peabody Opera House St. Louis, MO
Apr 3 Midland Theatre Kansas City, Mo
Apr 4 Ogden Theatre Denver, CO MOTIVE
Apr 6 Moore Theatre Seattle, WA The Coats
Apr 7 Aladdin Theater Portland, OR On the Rocks
Apr 8 The Warfield San Francisco, CA SanFran6
Apr 9 Wells Fargo Center for the Arts Santa Rosa, CA SanFran6
Apr 10 Silver Legacy Resort Casino Reno, NV Evoc
Apr 12 Club Nokia Los Angeles, CA The Filharmonic
Apr 13 House of Blues San Diego, CA The Filharmonic
Apr 14 Fox Performing Arts Center Riverside, CA The Filharmonic
m-pact
Apr 15 Yavapai College Performance Hall Prescott, AZ
Apr 17 The Golden Nugget Las Vegas, NV
Apr 19 The Moody Theater Austin, TX  Clearly Vocal
Apr 20 The Majestic Theater Dallas, TX TEN
Apr 21 Bayou Music Center Houston, TX TEN


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AcaDirt: #SingOff Episode 3 (The Proposal)

By Jeremy Michael Lewis, acoUstiKat

Half the groups, but twice the tears!

Before I get started, I’d like to congratulate all four-and-a-half million of you who were able to figure out the answer to the the burning question:

“Wait, when is The Sing-Off on again?”

In an attempt to answer numerous questions regarding why the format was changed for episodes 3 and 4, I did a little mind reading and came up with the following:

  1. It makes the competition a little stiffer. Think about it: half of the groups on the episode had to battle, which makes for good entertainment.
  2. Two-hour episodes are long… This is ‘Murica, ain’t nobody got time for that three nights a week.
  3. Mark Burnett said so.

To the music:

If you didn’t notice, the show opened with the first ballad of the season, Peter Gabriel’s “In Your Eyes.”  I had never heard it to be perfectly honest, and I still can’t stand the original to this day, so kudos to us for making that bearable.

I personally remember this as the first time that we as performers came together as an individual ensemble, not just different groups singing on stage together.  Now I won’t say that I didn’t enjoy doing the whole flock of different soloists from each group stepping out to show just how many riffs can embellish a melody!  I just needed a little vanilla in my life. (Albeit,  we still riffed a bit too.)

The theme for the episode was ingeniously labeled #1 Hits.  Now, I’m not saying I don’t like singing popular songs, but I try and stray from the most popular songs of all time when I select music.  Why you ask?  Because chances are, if it was a #1 song on the charts, it’s hard to make it any better than it was in the first place.

Take our pals Pentatonix for instance. The majority of songs they choose to cover are close to being on “top of the chart” but not quite there. Maybe you haven’t noticed, but I’m pretty sure most of their YouTube videos hit a million views before they finish fully uploading, so it’s safe to say they’re doing something right.

I’ll give you an extremely brief description on my personal feelings of each group’s number, and then we’ll move on to things I actually have real concrete information about.

TEN:  You’re insane, I don’t know how you do it, just keep doing it.

Street Corner Renaissance:  You have more class and swagger than I knew was possible. The ‘Kats learned a ton from you and Cee-Lo could even take some notes.

Filharmonic:  VJ is still perfect.

All right, our turn:

Last seen, we were up for a cappella execution, and none of us really wanted to go back to college on time, so we figured we might start putting in a little extra effort this time around. This episode was obviously approached a little differently by the ‘Kats. We went back to our roots and decided to show what we do best: choral music.

For the ladies who are in love with Ross Hill’s voice, he’s had the same girlfriend for about half his life, so I wouldn’t get your hopes up.  However, window-shopping is still legal in Kentucky, so don’t be completely discouraged.

For those of you who might have gone to the bathroom or fell sleep or didn’t watch the episode completely, you might not have noticed that part about Mike getting down on one knee in front of America.

As precious and emotional as that particular moment was, there was some serious planning that had to go into that very special moment and a lot of back story you might not have caught, so here goes my personal recapitulation.

Mike Owens wanted to ask his girlfriend, Maggie Blair (or Margaret Augusta Blair because that’s how a gentleman says it) to marry him for months prior to this moment. When he found out we had made the show however, he got the idea that maybe he should wait for just the right moment.

Side note:  Maggie and Mike met while she was in charge of the female a cappella group at UK Paws and Listen.  (Yeah, I know, we’re really good with the puns in Kentucky.)

When the group decided we were going ahead with “Amazed,” the first ballad/love song an individual group had performed this season, Mike brought up the idea to the group, and I don’t think I have to tell you just how excited to we were to have a bachelor party help out!

But here’s the thing: this is television.  You don’t just get to insert proposals because it’s a cute idea.  Mike didn’t officially have clearance to pop the question until two days before the recording.  I haven’t crossed the “I’m going to ask my girlfriend to marry me” bridge in my life yet, but I’m assuming it’s not exactly a casual decision.  And moreover, I’m sure the “this may or may not even happen” thing didn’t help.

Not to mention the following obstacles:

  1. He didn’t have the ring in L.A.
  2. He didn’t have any actual confirmation she could even make it to L.A. for the show.
  3. The ‘Kats fumbled through 5 completely different arrangements and almost had to change the song because fitting a ballad into a minute and 40 seconds, is not easy.

That being said, we figured it out. (You’re welcome, big fella.)

So while normal rehearsal days were in full force, I went with Mike to the nearest Tiffany & Co. in Santa Monica (yes, Mike is actually perfect), where he bought the ring he had already picked out months before.

THE RING

I’d love to say the sole reason I went with him was to support him in one of the biggest moments of his life, but honestly, I was really sick of rehearsing, needed a haircut, and hadn’t been to the beach yet… so I killed a few birds with this stone. (See what I did there?)

Santa Monica
Mike and I at Santa Monica Beach

Fast forward:

Mike approached me in one of the rehearsals before the performance and asked me if I wouldn’t mind learning the bass line for the last section, just in case he got caught up in the moment and couldn’t sing the last few notes. (Crying and singing bass is actually impossible — try it sometime.)

The day of performance we could all tell he was nervous, and if you know Mike at all… you would be nervous for him, too.  Fully grown red-headed basses aren’t exactly known for an abundance of swagger.

However, right after we finished our warm-up routine of running around acting like complete idiots backstage, he came up to me and looked me dead in the eye and said, “Hey man, don’t worry about singing my part at the end.  I’ve got this.”  And he was right.

As far as I’m concerned the song and proposal were emotionally beautiful, and there
isn’t a single thing I would change.

Since the entire show is prerecorded, and we couldn’t talk about any details, Mike and Maggie have since been hiding the engagement from all of their friends until the episode aired.  So, you can imagine, Thursday was quite the surprise for many people.

If you haven’t already found your way to iTunes to buy the music from the show, please do so now! Needless to say, after Sony, NBC, publishers and iTunes take their cut and hand us the last 24 cents or so to split 12 ways, we’re all well on our way to paying off that college debt.  Seriously though… we appreciate the support, and we wouldn’t be here without you all, so thanks for buying.

As always, it’s a pleasure to let you all in what goes on behind every performance. I’ll be sitting in the box on Monday, but I promise you DO NOT want to miss this throw down.

Love Y’all

– Jeremy
www.twitter.com/JeremyMichael22
www.instagram.com/JeremyMichael22

Check out my other blogs in this series:
AcaDirt: The Truth (or at least my version) of How “The Sing-Off” Works
AcaDirt: #SingOff Episode 1
AcaDirt: #SingOff Episode 2

AcaDirt: #SingOff Episode 1

By Jeremy Michael Lewis, acoUstiKat

*SPOILER ALERT*

Tell you something good? I’ve got “bass in my butt” and took a personal acoUstiShower after that episode. 

First on the docket, can we talk about the talent on this season?

Not to brag on my season (no wait, completely bragging), but if the Princeton Footnotes were the lowest mark on our totem pole, we’ve got quite the season to look forward to.  Adam Hyndman and Josh Lavine carried a talented crew to an impressive appearance that is undoubtedly helping the Footnotes stay booked for the foreseeable future over on the East Coast.

Since we’re on the topic of talent, and I’m writing the blog, here are a few opinions on what I loved watching last night.  Starting at the top: Vocal Rush.

You know what was wrong with Vocal Rush last night?  NOTHING.

Does everyone understand the average age in that group is like 17 years old or something…? I’m trying to remember what I was doing at 17, and the only things I can recall would assuredly give my mother heart palpitations, so just use your imagination.

Jordan Holly is going to be a star, so if you haven’t become her fan by now, do it before she’s too famous to pretend like she cares if you follow her. I don’t remember the comments about them from the judges, because I didn’t care, something about rushing… I stopped listening when Kyana Fanene (VP) served face for the world.  I knew they weren’t going anywhere.

Shout out to all the moms who raised this group of young stars:  YOU DID WELL.

Let’s chat briefly about this whole phenomenon accurately titled “Bass in My Butt.”

Be as it may, I used to sing low bass before I had a double tonsil/adenoidectomy a few years ago and my range shot up a fifth overnight. (Also the worst 2 weeks of my life; I’ll choose death if they grow back.)

Tim Foust.

If anyone out there is wondering, Tim is not a bass. Tim is also not a baritone or a tenor. Tim is a gift from God himself to bless the world with his own category. Let it be known: Mr. Foust can drop bombs that will blow any cannon out of the water, and he looks great doing it too. The only thing more sizable than Tim’s talent is the humility in his response to Jewel’s inquiry.

Speaking of things that God has sent from above this season: TEN.

The Kats’ best friends from the show by far were these 10 soulful musicians. Let me point out something that personally wasn’t articulated quite enough on the show last night: That was their first performance together folks. WHET?! Do y’all understand how hard a cappella is? You should, it sucks. Honestly I’ve hung out with these swangers for quite sometime now and Ben Folds nailed it, if I could sing like that, you would NEVER shut me up (Stop, I heard that.).  Chelsea “Peaches” West and Deonis Cook have put together something that will undoubtedly go down in history as a musical breakthrough.

So now that I’ve chatted about a few of the the first nine opening acts, (I’m only serious people) The acoUstiKats:

If anyone is planning on waking me up from this dream I’m currently living, don’t.

If you didn’t catch their names, Ron Wilbur (@itsaRONsworth) and Ross Hill (@rosschill) put their stamp on what is the beginning of the newest legacy in Sing-Off history. No collegiate crew has taken the gold home before on this stage, but I promise you, we didn’t come to Los Angeles for second place. If you haven’t had the chance to catch up on your Kentucky history by now, we’re good at hanging banners, why stop with basketball?

On a more humble and realistic note, however, that minute and a half helped form a bond with eleven other guys that I will never forget. If we had gone home last night, we would have been completely satisfied and fulfilled because we went on the stage and did exactly what the acoUstiKats have always been known for: Bringing the party to you.

A few quick shout-outs to some people who, if you get a chance in the next day to YouTube and enjoy their background careers: Honey Larochelle, VJ Rosales, and Craig (Range) Cacciola. I would talk about their individual groups, but no one likes to read novels and — I promise you — they’ll get their moments on Wednesday night!

Thanks for reading and, as always, let me know if you have any particular questions, and I will make sure and include them in the next addition after Episode 2!

Oh… and I’m on lead next episode — want a preview? 😉

Love Y’all

– Jeremy
www.twitter.com/JeremyMichael22
www.instagram.com/JeremyMichael22

Check out my other blogs in this series:
AcaDirt: The Truth (or at least my version) of How “The Sing-Off” Works
AcaDirt: #SingOff Episode 2
AcaDirt: #SingOff Episode 3 (The Proposal)

Connect with “The Sing-Off” Competitors for Season 4

Is everyone as excited as we are about the upcoming Season 4 of The Sing-Off or what?! For those of you who don’t know, The Sing-Off is a reality show competition for a cappella singing groups, and it’s kind of been in limbo since Pentatonix won Season 3 in 2011.  But this December, it’s BAAACCKK!

If you’re not excited enough yet, take a look at this photo of The Sing-Off Season 4 judges with Season 3 winners, Pentatonix (Twitter links included): (L to R) Shawn Stockman, Mitch Grassi, Jewel, Avi Kaplan, Ben Folds, Kirstin Maldonado, Kevin Olusola, Nick Lachey, and Scott Hoying.

The Sing-Off Season 4 judges with Season 3 winners, Pentatonix: (L to R): Shawn Stockman, Mitch Grassi, Jewel, Avi Kaplan, Ben Folds, Kirstie Maldonado, Kevin Olusola, Nick Lachey, and Scott Hoying

Now that NBC has officially made their announcement (whew!), we are happy to share our compilation of group information and contacts so you can get to know the groups in advance.

If you don’t want to individually follow all the Twitter accounts, you can just subscribe to our AcaSingOff Twitter list that does it for you.

Please keep in mind that errors in this post are entirely our own doing, and we are more than happy to make corrections, changes, or additions if you notify us!

And with that, here we go (in alphabetical order)….

1.  ACOUSTIKATS (UNIVERSITY OF KENTUCKY)
12 members. All-male collegiate a cappella. Southern charm. What more needs to be said?

Members: Jordan Lindsey, Nick Johnson, Evan Pulliam, Jeremy Lewis, Ron Wilbur, Ross Hill, Peter Gibbons, Charlie McManus, Banks Mattingly, Patrick Banks, Mason Stewart, Mike Owens (bass)
Website: www.acoustikats.com
Twitter: @acoUstiKats
Facebook: www.facebook.com/acoustikats
YouTube: UK acoUstiKats on YouTube
Instagram: www.instagram.com/acoustikats

If you don’t have an #acoUstiKrush after watching The acoUstiKats singing “Wake Me Up,” then we don’t know what —


For your Krushing pleasure (L to R): front row: Ross, Nick, Banks, Mike; back row: Charlie, Ron, Evan, Jordan, Peter, Mason, Jeremy, Patrick

2.  CALLE SOL
Six Latin singers from San Juan, Puerto Rico: two gentlemen and four ladies. Word is the ladies can also dance!

Members: Craig Cacciola, Windy Diaz, Melanie Dieppa, Amaris Flores, Abi Hernandez, Vanessa Marco
Twitter: @salle_solpr
Facebook: www.facebook.com/callesolsos4

Check out the Calle Sol Facebook page to see some recently posted videos, like this one.

3.  ELEMENT
A college-educated group of musically trained, professional women who like to perform a cappella around NYC as a hobby.

Members: Emily Borromeo, Emily Goglia, Manjula Raman, Liz Asti, Kate Schwarz, Katelyn Miles, Caitlyn Pollock, Carly Kincannon, Jo Vinson (Bass), Rachel Chalhoub (VP)
Twitter: @ElementVocals
Facebook: www.facebook.com/Elementvocals
Instagram:
www.instagram.com/ElementVocals

We totally swiped this photo off the Element Facebook page (with permission) —

Element

4.  THE FILHARMONIC
Filipino “Vocal Boy Band” based in Los Angeles.

Members: Joe Ilagan, Julian Cruz (bass), Niko Del Rey (VP), Barry Fortgang, Trace Gaynor, VJ Rosales
Twitter: @TheFilharmonic
Facebook: www.facebook.com/TheFilharmonic
YouTube: www.youtube.com/TheFilharmonic
Instagram: www.instagram.com/TheFilharmonic

Check out The Filharmonic performing a preview of Justin Timberlake’s “Pusher Love Girl” —

5.  FOOTNOTES (PRINCETON)
Another Ivy League tradition, the Footnotes tout themselves as the providers of “fresh, all-male a cappella” to Princeton University since 1959.

Members (*EDITED* to specific Sing-Off line-up):
First Tenors: Clayton Greenberg, Ryan Fauber
Second Tenors: Casey Kolb, Josh Lavine, Adam Hyndman
Third Tenors: Jonathan Schwartz, Brian Bernard
Baritones: Will Plunkett, Jacob Schatz, Samson Schatz (VP)
Basses: Ben Barron, Daniel Gastfriend, Nathan Quinn
Website: www.princetonfootnotes.com
Twitter: @PtnFootnotes
Facebook: www.facebook.com/footnotes
YouTube: www.youtube.com/princetonfootnotes

Enjoy the Princeton Footnotes performing Justin Timberlake’s “Mirrors” —

6.  HOME FREE
Home Free was formed in 2000 by brothers Chris and Adam Rupp. Billed as the world’s first country a cappella group, Home Free also comes to The Sing-Off as the only full-time, professional group in the competition.

Members: Austin Brown (power-tenor), Rob Lundquist (tenor), Chris Rupp (baritone), Tim Foust (super-bass), Adam Rupp (VP)
Website: www.homefreevocalband.com
Twitter: @homefreeguys
Facebook: www.facebook.com/homefreevocalband
YouTube: www.youtube.com/homefreevocalband
Instagram: www.instagram.com/homefreevocalband

(*Edited*) Since Home Free‘s Sing-Off audition has gone private, here’s their latest video instead:

7.  STREET CORNER RENAISSANCE
A doo-wop quintet with a repertoire of classic songs we all know the words to.

Members: Kwame Alexander, Charles (Sonny) Banks, Maurice Kitchen, Torre Brannon Reese, Anthony (Tony) Snead
Website: http://www.streetcornerrenaissance.com
Twitter: @stcornerdoowop
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/streetcornerrenaissance
YouTube: www.youtube.com/StreetcornerDooWop1

The Street Corner Renaissance EPK is kind of fun to use to get to know them better —

8.  TEN
10 professional singers in the music business from Dallas who got together for the show.  Why the name Ten (besides the obvious)?  According to the group, “The number 10 means completion and perfection of God’s divine order.”  Having seen them perform, we say: “Awesome gospel vibe.”

Members: Deonis Cook, Peaches West, DeeDee Yancey-Mackey, John Jontez Montes, Teaira Dunn, Elgin Johnson, Sydnii Raymore, Lenisa Raymore, Emoni, Victor Evans
(Editor’s note: Candy West and Dante Davis have since replaced Emoni and Victor)
Website: www.officiallyten.net and www.officiallyten.com
Twitter: @OfficiallyTen

TEN

9.  VOCAL RUSH
We’ve been fans of Vocal Rush pretty much since they started in 2011. Based out of the Oakland School for the Arts (California), these high school students (!) have been the ICHSA (International Championship of High School A Cappella) champs the past two years they’ve been in existence. Go buy their debut EP, The Beginning, and do it now.

Members: Sydney Jacobs Allen, Kyana Fanene (VP), Isaac Herron, Jordan Holly, De’Zhanice Kirtdoll, Eivind Limon, McKenna Lindell-Wright, Jada Banks Mace, Kiana Parker, Carmina Pulliam, Emma Stumpf, Sarah Vela
Twitter: @OsaVocalRush
Facebook: www.facebook.com/osavocalrush
YouTube: www.youtube.com/osavocalrush

Here’s Vocal Rush‘s ICHSA Finals 2013 set —

10.  VOICE PLAY
“Original. Imaginative. Ridiculous. Origimagidiculous.” Why rewrite when their decription is so… descriptive? The group is based in Orlando, FL.

Members: Earl Elkins, Jr., Layne Stein, Eli Jacobson, Tony Wakim, Geoff Castellucci, Honey Larochelle
Website: www.thevoiceplay.com
Twitter: @thevoiceplay
Facebook: www.facebook.com/VoicePlay
YouTube: www.youtube.com/user/theVOICEPLAYdotcom
Instagram: www.instagram.com/voiceplay

And here’s Voice Play featuring Honey Larochelle with “Get Lucky” opb Daft Punk and Pharrell —

And there you have it. This season’s ten competing groups.

Now that you’ve met the players, who will YOU be cheering for this season? Let us know in the comments or via Twitter or our Facebook page.

The Sing-Off: Season 4 premieres Monday, December 9 on NBC.

Christine

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