Tag Archives: The Exchange

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!


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!

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
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




Meet “The Sing-Off” Season 5’s The Exchange!

Hey, AcaFans! That’s right, we are here to keep your aca-fix going until The Sing-Off airs, so here is another competitor interview!

L to R: Alfredo Austin, Aaron Sperber, Christopher Diaz, Richard Steighner, Jamal Moore
L to R: Alfredo Austin, Aaron Sperber, Christopher Diaz, Richard Steighner, Jamal Moore

Allow us to introduce… The Exchange!

BIG THANKS to Christopher Diaz (CD) for taking the time to answer a few questions for us AcaFans… from Hong Kong!

AcaFanBase: Who are The Exchange, and how did the group get started?

CD: The Exchange is a five guy vocal band from all over the US. We started out of a desire to do more than just hustle as a band to “make it.”

Aaron and I met on The Sing-Off Season 3 and connected instantly over some beers and philosophical discussion about the connective and transformative power of music. We decided to start a group that would use music to open up the world to us and to others. Aaron was in the YellowJackets with Jamal, and we met Richard while he was with Urban Method, and we all became fast friends. We hit up Fredo to join our squad and The Exchange was born.

AcaFanBase: Introduce yourselves and let us know how you each got started in music.

CD: I’m Christopher Diaz, and I am from Newport News, VA. I didn’t sing formally as a child, I just loved singing along with the radio. In high school I stumbled into choir and musicals, and then a passion formed that sent me to Florida State University, where I graduated with a degree in Vocal Performance and Russian Literature.

Aaron Sperber is from Rochester, NY and started at an early age as a classical musician. He’s an accomplished cellist, pianist, and singer and graduated from the Eastman School of Music with degrees in Vocal Performance and International Relations.

Jamal Moore is from Augusta, GA and grew up singing and playing drums. He also graduated from Eastman with a voice degree and an aspiration to be an opera singer.

Alfredo Austin is from Newark, DE and found his voice at an early age singing in church choir. He went to the University of Delaware where he graduated with a Music Business degree.

Richard Steighner is from Denver, CO and discovered his proclivity for beatboxing while making sounds in grade school to impress girls. He graduated from University of Colorado-Boulder where he studied Psychology and Architecture.


AcaFanBase: What are each of you doing now, as part of or separate from The Exchange ?

CD: The Exchange is our full-time job/career/passion/life! We spend about 2/3 of the year on tour in the US and abroad, but when we’re home, we all dabble in other things (arranging, songwriting, producing, cooking, web design). In The Exchange, Aaron is our founder, group leader and high tenor. Alfredo is one of our arrangers, lead vocalist and tenor 2. Jamal also arranges and is our baritone and style guru. Richard is our webmaster/designer and beatboxer/bass, and I am our de facto music director and bass. I also organize most of our educational programs.

AcaFanBase: Who would you say is your current fanbase for The Exchange?

CD: Our fan base is as diverse as we are, and we wouldn’t have it any other way. Our first fans were fans of our individual pursuits- Aaron and Jamal brought lovers of the YellowJackets , Richard brought Urban Method fans (and fans from several of the other groups he’s performed with) and Fredo did the same with his fans from Overboard and Hyannis Sound. Now, however, we have fans from all over the world.

We spend a great deal of time in Asia, Australia and Europe, so we have a broad base of new fans in those places. Hong Kong is a favorite spot of ours, and a place where we find a great deal of support, though we have also had a blast singing for the audiences in Taiwan and Singapore. This spring, we toured Europe as the opening act for the Backstreet Boys, so we got the chance to sing for thousands of people all across the continent, which was an incredible experience. We spend a lot of time in Germany performing, so many of our most loyal fans are there.

AcaFanBase: How do you select your songs? Who does the arranging?

CD: I’d like to say this this is an intense and developed process…but it isn’t. We just sing songs that we like, that we can’t stop humming, that we heard and thought someone would sound great on. Someone likes it and arranges it (or asks someone else to arrange it), we give it a sing, and if it works, we perform it. In general, Fredo, Jamal and I do the most arranging, but all 5 of us have arranged songs for the group and still do when something speaks to us.

AcaFanBase: What did it feel like when you found out The Exchange had been cast in The Sing-Off this year?

CD: Needless to say, it was really exciting to hear that we were going to get to perform on The Sing-OffI have followed, promoted, and (as of Season 3) even worked for the show, so I know what an amazing venue it can be to have your music seen and heard. We do most of our performing and touring out of the country, and while it is our dream to see the world and exchange cultures and ideas through music, our families haven’t even ever seen us perform!

We are, and were, so thrilled to share our music and passion and love with a broader American audience, and I know for one that my grandmother is absolutely freaking out- she is so excited to finally see what it is that I do that keeps me away from home for so much of the year!

AcaFanBase: What would you like to say to all of the AcaFans out there?

CD: We feel really honored to get to show America what The Exchange is all about, but because of the nature of television, it’s a very condensed version of what we’re about. We perform often, and definitely have some boy-band qualities, but we also believe strongly that music *is* the universal language, and to that end, our mission is much bigger than just singing.

In almost every place we go, we concern ourselves not only with putting on a show, but also with engaging communities through service projects and musical outreach, inspiring young people to persevere in school and arts education through workshops and classes, and we have even pushed ourselves beyond singing only a cappella, including original music and music with instruments in our concerts.

At our core, though, The Exchange is about exploring and promoting and sharing the power that music has to connect us all, across cultures, languages and oceans. And to us, there is no better instrument, apparatus, or gift more able to highlight and enhance our sameness- and uniqueness- than the human voice.


Thanks again to Chris for giving us some background info on his group! Here’s the contact info in case you missed it in our Sing-Off Season 5 intro post.

Members: Alfredo AustinChristopher Diaz (Bass), Jamal Moore, Aaron Sperber, Richard Steighner (VP)
Website: www.exchangevocal.com
Twitter: @exchangevocal
Facebook: www.facebook.com/exchangevocal
YouTube: www.youtube.com/exchangevocal
Instagram: www.instagram.com/exchangevocal

Remember, the hashtag is #SingOff with no “the” in front. Get it trending when The Sing-Off: Season 5 airs IN 2 DAYS, Wednesday, December 17, 9/8c on NBC.


Introducing “The Sing-Off” Season 5 Competitors

Despite being pretty disappointed that Season 5 of The Sing-Off is a single, 2-hour special, we are super excited for the groups that made it in!

For those of you who don’t know, The Sing-Off is a reality show competition for a cappella singing groups. Probably its most famous winners to-date are Pentatonix from Season 3 in 2011, but last year’s Season 4 winners Home Free seem to be holding their own with their a cappella and country fans. Whatever gets a cappella out to the masses, it’s all good to us.

With the format change comes a change in the judging line-up (Twitter links included).  Shawn Stockman and Jewel return, but our favorite, nerdtastic  Ben Folds, will be replaced with Fall Out Boy frontman Patrick Stump.

As always, we are happy to share our compilation of group information and contacts so you can get to know the groups in advance.

The Sing-Off Season 5 Competitors

If you don’t want to individually follow all the Twitter accounts, you can just subscribe to our AcaSingOff Season 5 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)….

A cappella + electronic music? We’re totally in! This will be new for strictly Sing-Off fans, so keep an open mind for looping and effects, still all made with only the human voice.

Members: Nimal Eames-Scott, Paul Homes (Bass), Jacob Reske, DJ Stanfill, Jackson Thea
Twitter: @thisisAsquared
Facebook: www.facebook.com/thisisasquared
YouTube: www.youtube.com/user/thisisasquared
Instagram: www.instagram.com/thisisasquared

Watch them do their stuff live here:

Seems like there is always one group on The Sing-Off with alums from a previous season, and this one is it.  You’ll recognize Jamal and Aaron from the University of Rochester Yellowjackets (Season 3) and Richard from Urban Method (Season 3), plus Chris worked as a TSO vocal producer, and Fredo recorded studio tracks for TSO theme music.

Members: Alfredo AustinChristopher Diaz (Bass), Jamal Moore, Aaron Sperber, Richard Steighner (VP)
Website: www.exchangevocal.com
Twitter: @exchangevocal
Facebook: www.facebook.com/exchangevocal
YouTube: www.youtube.com/exchangevocal
Instagram: www.instagram.com/exchangevocal

The Exchange have a couple of albums, bunches of  videos, and they tour extensively, often overseas, with a very loyal following. Here is the video for their original song “Kerosene,” which really shows off their individual personalities.

3. MELODORES (Vanderbilt University)
All-male, collegiate a cappella – it wasn’t a matter of if, but who. And this year we’re not disappointed because we already stalk follow the Melodores.

Members:  Jonathan Amaro-Barron, Hollis Cuffie, Cameron David, Austin Lyons, Jamal Marcelin, James McHugh, Dan McNeil, Ted Moock, Augie Phillips, Nikhil Ramaprasad, Justin Riele, William Woodard 
Facebook: www.facebook.com/vanderbiltmelodores
YouTube: www.youtube.com/user/VanderbiltMelodores
Instagram: www.instagram.com/vanderbiltmelodores

And here are the Melodores with “Talk Dirty” (opb Jason Derulo):

In case it wasn’t obvious, these folks hail from the great San Francisco (“The City,” as they say).

Members: Cherilyn Acorda, Danny Cavero, Del Lazaro (Bass), Jaron Liclican, Kevin Redrico, Jess Walsh
Twitter: @sf6official
Facebook: www.facebook.com/sanfran6
YouTube: www.youtube.com/sanfran6

Newly posted vocal trailer right here:

We are personally just meeting the women of Timothy’s Gift, but what a meaningful mission they have – bringing #HOPE to prisons.

Members:  Brianne Angarole, Emily Angarole, Melissa Greene (Hope Curator and Leader of TG), Abby Lane Hinton, Anna Register, Lauren Wedertz
Website: http://www.timothysgift.com/
Twitter: @timothysgift
Facebook: www.facebook.com/timothysgift

For a video that explains the Timothy’s Gift Hope Tour, click here.

Having seen these ladies perform live prior to the taping of this special, we say WHOA the LADYBASS. Full sound with a delicious gospel  vibe, this is good stuff.

Members:  Keesha Gumbs, Tamika Gumbs, Gbianka Kotee, Selame Scarlett, Cindy Valerus
Website: www.traces5.com
Twitter: @traces5
Facebook: www.facebook.com/traces5

Just go ahead and go straight to download their single “Mas Que Nada” on iTunes or Loudr right now. Here they are singing it live at Sing Strong Chicago 2013 (h/t our own Tara Marie Ahn for the video):

And there you have it. This season’s six 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.

Remember, the hashtag is #SingOff with no “the” in front. Get it trending when The Sing-Off: Season 5 airs on Wednesday, December 17 on NBC.