Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Last Night A Cappella Saved My Life

Or so says Brian Eno! A cappella is a key ingredient to a long life. Really! This NPR piece from the celebrated British musician is required listening for a cappella fans. Check it out here.

A Cappella: Stranger Than Fiction

Back in September, James Franco hosted Saturday Night Live, and joked about his enrollment at Columbia University. His co-star in the sketch, Jason Sudeikis, made a joke about the proliferation of a cappella groups at Columbia.

I blogged about it then. (Read that item here.) But the gist of it was this: Sudeikis joked about singing in a group called the Funk Tones, which he described as Columbia's "most popular non-tryout, non-Lesbian a cappella group."

Well, in a case of life being stranger than fiction, there is an all-Lesbian a cappella group. (Photo here, with Cyndy Lauper...duh.) They're called The Lesbian Overtones. (Amazing name.) They're based in Brooklyn and are playing some gigs in New York soon. Check out their myspace page here.

Also, a clip:

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Hullabahoos. In Hi-Def.

Last April, the Hullabahoos put on a big 20th anniversary concert. It was called "Big Spring Sing Thing XX." Now, in what I believe is a first for a collegiate group, the Hullabahoos are selling a full-length concert DVD of that night, recorded in HD. (Order on-line now.)

Here's a sample of the concert from YouTube. While it's not in HD, you get the idea.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

A Cappella Face

A strange thing happens when people watch a cappella groups perform. I call it "a cappella face." Basically, it's that look people sitting in the front row wear, that confused expression that says, "WTF am I looking at?" Even when they like the music, some can't help but make that face. You know that face? You know what I'm talking about?

This dovetails with another thing I like: Videos of a cappella groups performing for celebrities. There's a funny story in Pitch Perfect about a famous Hollywood Christmas party where the Baker's Dozen from Yale perform every year. Marisa Tomei, Hillary Swank, Jim Carrey—they've all been there, they've all seen the BDs. What I really want to know is this: Do the celebrities make that a cappella face? Or do they grove along? Do they mouth the words?

Here's a video of the Harvard Din & Tonics performing for Andy Garcia. Sadly, Garcia's back is to the camera for much of it. But this provides some insight.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

The SNC Publicity Trains Chugs Along

A story from Allentown's Morning Call. Click here to read.

And the promo video:

Friday, November 14, 2008

That's Me Signing Books.

Yup, that's me. I went to Yale last night to read from Pitch Perfect. And a reporter from the Yale Daily News grilled me! I'm not kidding. GRILLED. The other side of my face (which you can't see) has char marks.

Anywho, the reading was a success. A big thanks to Yale's SOBs (the a cappella group, not the reporter) for singing three tunes. And doing some damn credible bird noises.

That story here.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

File Under Inevitable.

The all-female UNC Loreleis covered Katy Perry's "I Kissed a Girl" last week. The song choice was inevitable. But you've gotta give it up to the Loreleis for nailing it. This version is at least 10% less annoying than the original!

Yale. Tomorrow Night. Me. You?

Folks, I'm doing a reading tomorrow night at the Yale Barnes & Noble. If you're in the area (or want to road trip!) the event starts at 6pm, and features a special performance by Yale's Society of Orpheus and Bacchus, affectionately known as the SOBs.

Here are the SOBs in an excellent video from YouTube. What I love about a cappella videos like this is the lack of explanation. Like, We're going to sing a pretty song. And not explain why one dude has no shirt on and another is in pajamas—with feet.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Ron Jeremy!

So, Ted Trembinski of the Binghamton Crosbys e-mailed in an excellent story. Apparently the other night the university hosted "The Great Porn Debate"—an academic discussion of flesh.

The Crosbys, who sing a cover of the song "Internet Porn" (originally recorded by DaVinci's Notebook), figured this was a good chance to perform that song for their biggest audience to date. They approached a friend working the event who wound up "sneaking" them in, Trembinski says, where they serenaded some 2,000 people with vocals on porn.

The best part: They got to meet the legend himself, Ron Jeremy. Click on the photo to see it, um, larger.

Fun With A Cappella

I've seen many a cappella groups pay tribute to Star Wars. I've just never seen someone do it a cappella all by themselves.

P.S. If this is an old video—and by extension, I look old for posting it late in the game—my apologies.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Tens of People Turn Out For Reading!

I did a reading last night at the UPENN Barnes & Noble. The Daily Pennsylvanian reported on it today. That story here.

A quick thank you to the Penn-Six for performing—and sticking around for the reading. The Balls of the Year Award goes to the all-female Quaker Notes, who sang two songs and promptly disappeared. The youth of America, ladies and gentleman!

Here's a Penn-Six clip for ya:

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Straight No Chaser Hits the Billboard Chart...And the road

First-week sales are in for Straight No Chaser's Holiday Spirits. Verdict? 7,040 albums sold. #76 on the Top 200 Billboard chart. Nice work, gentleman.

They also announced some tour dates:

Dec. 03, 2008 - Chicago, IL
Dec. 04, 2008 - Chicago, IL
Dec. 10, 2008 - Toronto, ON
Dec. 11, 2008 - New York, NY
Dec. 17, 2008 - Los Angeles, CA
Dec. 18, 2008 - Los Angeles, CA
Dec. 20, 2008 - Indianapolis, IN

Tickets here.

To read about SNC's record deal, click here.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Monday, November 3, 2008