Monday, June 30, 2008

Phish. Fried!

I'm not a big Phish fan. (Though my old group, Cayuga's Waiters, once performed "Bouncin' Round the Room.") Anywho, apparently Phish used to close concerts with an a cappella rendition of "Freebird." I doubted this claim. But there's a legit recording of it on 2002's Live Phish Volume 16.

Click here and scroll down for 30 seconds of awesomely terrible a cappella from a very famous band!

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Unintended Side Effect of 'Pitch Perfect.'

Album sales. Yup, the Tufts Beelzebubs sold $2,000 worth of albums in the wake of the NPR spot on "Pitch Perfect." (Listen to that here.) And Divisi is reporting a similar spike in sales for their album, "Undivided," featuring Usher's "Yeah." Glad to hear people are supporting the music!

Best (And Worst) A Cappella Album Covers.

The dominance of iTunes may have an unintended consequence: the album cover may be a dying art. Which is why I was so pleased to find this cover from Hyannis Sound's 2007 album, "Shirt! Tie! Khaki!" It's a play on the old school folk album covers, and it's brilliantly designed.

I remember back in my day, the members of Cornell's Cayuga's Waiters met in the basement of Ruloff's--our local Ithaca watering hole--to discuss the cover art for our latest album. The artwork was, of course, due at the printer the next morning. After a few drinks, the group decided to rename our forthcoming album and to shoot a new cover. No one remembers why, but it must have seemed like a good idea at the time. Because the next morning, a bunch of guys took a bow tie, threw it into the snow, and photographed it. That album became "Clothing Optional." (Get it!)

No one will ever praise that one (visible here) for its art direction. Nice work, Hyannis Sound. Keep it coming.

'American Idol' Auditions Announced.

Yup, it's that time again. From Blake Lewis to Luke Menard--a cappella alums are often represented on "Idol." Today, Fox announced the audition dates for Idol '09, which I've pasted here:

San Francisco, CA: Thursday, July 17, Cow Palace
Louisville, KY: Monday, July 21, Freedom Hall
Phoenix, AZ: Friday, July 25, Arena
Salt Lake City, UT: Tuesday, July 29, EnergySolutions Arena
San Juan, Puerto Rico: Saturday, Aug. 2, Coliseo de Puerto Rico
Kansas City, MO: Friday, Aug. 8 , Sprint Center
Jacksonville, FL: Wednesday, Aug. 13, Veterans Memorial Arena
East Rutherford, NJ: Tuesday, Aug. 19, IZOD Center at the Meadowlands Sports Complex

Good luck, folks. And if you don't make it, take comfort in the fact that Andrew Savini of the Tufts Beelzebubs (who is featured in Pitch Perfect) auditioned last year to no avail. And he's supremely, impossibly talented. Reminder here:

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Anne Hathaway's A Cappella Past: Revealed!

I'm sure the "Get Smart" people are thrilled that Anne Hathaway and Conan O'Brien spent a full three minutes talking about her old a cappella group on NBC two nights ago. Video here:

Friday, June 20, 2008

Anne Hathaway Talks A Cappella.

So, on last night's episode of "Late Night with Conan O'Brien," Anne Hathaway talked about her days singing with Vassar's Measure 4 Measure. That clip isn't up on the web yet (I'll post in when I find it). In the meantime, here's Anne singing some Queen in Ella Enchanted. It's got instruments and all, but you'll get the idea.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

'USA Today' Weighs In On 'Pitch Perfect.'

Verdict? "Rapkin keeps the tone breezily entertaining — off-color at points but seldom off-key."

In USA Today parlance, "off-color" means funny. We'll take it! Read the full review here.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Red Carpet Interviews At An A Cappella Show?

So, the UVA alumni magazine covered Pitch Perfect today. Forget the interview with me. The genius of here is the video of the Hullabahoos included here. This is a must-click webisode.

Recap: Back in May we told you about the Hullabahoos's Big Spring Sing Thing 20th anniversary show. (That story is here.) It was a huge event held at the Paramount Theater in downtown Charlottesville. We knew the show was big. Sell-out crowd, etc. But we didn't know there was a RED CARPET. Yes, there were red carpet interviews at an a cappella concert. This might be a first.

For proof, click here.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Divisi: The San Francisco Treat!

So, we were in San Francisco this weekend for a reading at Book Passage, a great independent bookstore. The House Jacks performed—always a good time. But it was the ladies of Divisi who made the event so successful. Actually, it wasn't just Divisi. It was an all-star team of Divisi members past and present, including the incomparable Lisa Forkish, who was the group's music director back in 2005 when Divisi competed in the finals of the ICCAs.

The ladies from Oregon drove nine (count 'em nine) hours to be at the reading. And they did not disappoint, reprising Usher's "Yeah," the highlight of their 2005 competition set. (That story of heartbreak and triumph is chronicled in PItch Perfect.) They even sang for the waitstaff at the California Pizza Kitchen later that night.

Here's a vintage Divisi video of "Yeah." Plus, a link to the new Divisi album, "Roots," a must-have recording available now.

Friday, June 13, 2008

The Birth of an A Cappella Superfan.

Folks, are you listening to the A Cappella U podcast? Link here. If you are, you are likely curious about the man behind the microphone, the mysterious—and funny and charming—host Joey C.

I spent some time with Joey while reporting for Pitch Perfect. Much of his story wound up on the cutting room floor, as they say. But I'm restoring that material below—Pitch Perfect: The Director's Cut!—for the thousands (literally) of fans who listen to A Cappella U every week.

The story of this beloved a cappella superfan begins here...

JOEY CAMPAGNA, 30, is a sales manager (don’t say traveling salesman!) for Idexx Laboratories, a company based in Maine which services medical equipment for veterinary hospitals. And he looks the part: tall-ish, with an easy smile and a hearty laugh. His hair could charitably be described as thinning. And yes, his shirts are at least one size too big. But somehow it works for him, and he’s particularly good at putting strangers at ease—a plus if you're a salesman.

In two years, Joey Campagna (pronounced just like it reads) put 120,000 miles on his Diesel Jetta, crisscrossing I-90, servicing animal hospitals along the Buffalo-Rochester-Syracuse axis. He’s since been promoted—adding Pennsylvania, New York, New Jersey, and West Virginia to his route—and is now driving a white Volkswagen GTI. If the new car is anything like the old one, it smells like some unholy mash-up of fast food meals past, the stench of Dunkin Donuts breakfasts and Wendy’s drive-thru working itself into the leather. The food has not been kind to Joey’s body, he’s the first to admit. Another thing he’ll admit: He’s happy in his job, but he didn’t grow up wanting to sell veterinarian equipment. If he could do anything he’d probably sing.

A brief sampling of artists from Joey’s sleek black iPhone: The U.C. Berkeley Octets, Brigham Young University’s Vocal Point, the complete Best of College A Cappella series. There are also rare live tracks including “Major Tom” off the 1991 Tufts Beelzebubs Winter Invitational album. (Joey has declared that disc's track “Saturday Night’s All Right for Fighting” as the best set-opener of all time.) Then there are his so-called smart playlists, which go through the iPod and flag the 100 most recent a cappella additions. He has another playlist for greatest hits (any song he’s awarded a five-star rating to). Joey estimates that he has some 600 a cappella albums at home. It’s tough to pick a favorite, but if he had to, he’d probably say Gilding, also from the Beelzebubs (essential downloads: “Family Snapshot” and “Human Nature”). Sadly, he lost Gilding shortly after graduating from high school in 1996. His current favorite is probably the most recent Hyannis Sound album, Route 6, or maybe it’s a 2005 album from UPENN’s Off the Beat called Float. Joey once likened this decision to Sophie’s choice.

There’s a reason for this extensive collection. Joey Campagna—salesman, husband, father of two—has an alter ego. His fans know him as Joey C., founder and genial host of the popular A Cappella U podcast, a three-times-monthly show dedicated to, well, he says it best. This is how each show begins: “Hellllooooo everybody! And welcome to A Cappella U—the only podcast dedicated to bringing you the very best of collegiate a cappella music on an every-other-week or so basis. From the east coast to the west coast, from the best coast to the left coast, we play music from the University of Maine Steiners, the USC Sirens, and everyone in between.” He doesn’t just play a cappella music. He also alerts listeners to those precious moments when the genre’s tentacles extend into the real world, like that Honda Civic ad featuring a 60-voice choir replicating the sound of a car engine.

At one time Joey had some six thousand A Cappella U subscribers, an impressive number by any measure. He has listeners as far as the University of Cape Town in South Africa. One student there recently e-mailed Joey a few a cappella tracks of his own, songs recorded in his native tongue, xhosa. Joey C. points out that South Africans are natural vocal percussionists, what with the clicking sounds that are part of xhosa’s DNA. Joey C. was so emboldened by the success of his show, by the dedication of listeners—you know, the ones who would drop him e-mails at all hours of the night to complain if the latest A Cappella U podcast was a day late—that he incorporated his business. Joey Campagna is the CEO of the A Cappella Broadcasting Corporation, LLC. Incorporating would protect his family from any kind of a cappella liability. Plus, it would allow him to buy equipment with pre-tax dollars!

Of course, every CEO has his secrets–some more shameful than others. The dirty little secret about Joey Campagna, something even his most loyal fans don’t know: Joey never sang in a collegiate a cappella group. Not that he didn’t try.


Joey Campagna was born outside San Diego in 1978. His mother was a nurse at a local hospital, his father was a Naval officer stationed nearby. Later, when his father got out of the Navy and the family moved East, dad became a project manager at a nuclear plant. As a kid, Joey would joke that his dad was Homer Simpson. His parents split when he was 10 years old, and he and his kid sister and brother went to live with their mom. A temporary reconciliation led to a fourth sibling, baby Ryan. The kids spent summers with their Dad down on the Jersey Shore.

The whole a cappella thing started in high school. Joey was friends with a kid named Chris Buckley whose older brother, Pascal Buckley, was a Beelzebub at Tufts. The boys idolized Pascal, who would come home on school breaks and share stories of life as a Bub, from tours abroad to sell-out crowds on campus. In Joey’s eyes, the Bubs were absolute rock stars.

Joey never lacked for much, though money was often tight around the house. When it came time to go to college, he looked at his bank account, looked at his grades, and settled on nearby Niagara College where he majored in musical theater. But after three semesters he transferred to Marquette University, a Jesuit school in Milwaukee. He studied speech pathology and enlisted with ROTC. It wasn’t a patriotic decision. But he figured giving four years up to the Service was a small sacrifice for a debt-free graduation day. There was one downside to Marquette, though. “No a cappella groups,” Joey says. Before settling on Marquette, Joey had actually toyed with the idea of transferring to Tufts, for no reason other than the fact that he wanted to audition for the Beelzebubs. But $30,000 a year in tuition money was just too much to risk. Afterall, what if he went through all that and then didn’t get into the Bubs? So, he tucked that dream away and settled on Marquette.

After graduating in May of 2000, Second Lieutenant Joseph Campagna, a newly minted officer in the 57th Transportation Battalion, headed west to the base in Tacoma, Washington for his commission. Joey was in charge of 14 trucks, which carried ammunition for the 2nd Infantry. In his downtime, he would record his own a cappella arrangements on his desktop computer with a program called Acid 2.0. He was so broke at the time that he didn’t want to cough up $30 dollars to buy a pair of headphones. And so he took a speaker and a belt and strapped the speaker next to his ear. He married his girlfriend from Marquette, Sarah, in August of 2002 and she joined him in Tacoma. They’d met on her first day of school as a freshman. “Women are like ducks,” Joey says. “She imprinted on me. That’s the only reason she loves me.” (This is funny, but not exactly true. Spend a minute with the Campagnas, and it’s clear how much they love each other.) It was all quiet on the Western Front. Until, that is, September 11th and the invasion of Iraq.

A few months later Joey’s wife got pregnant with their first child. The timing couldn’t have been worse. Joey would go to work with his heart in his stomach, every day expecting his deployment orders. Ultimately, bizarrely, it was the Turkish government that kept Joey C. safe at home when (unexpectedly) they refused U.S. soldiers clearance to pass through—a story that wound up on the front page of the New York Times.

Joey was promoted to 1st Lieutenant and then Captain, but he would never be sent overseas. Mission Accomplished. Joey’s first son, Jonas, was born on June 29th, 2003. The couple had a tough time settling on a name, until Joey came across Jonas in a book of names. A long-time Lord of the Rings fan, Joey liked the name because it sounded a bit like his own. (In LOTR, the kings of the New Menorians are named after their fathers—as in Aragorn son of Arathorn, and so on.) His wife liked the name because of the Weezer song, “My Name is Jonas.” Thus, Jonas son of Joseph was christened. Joey was discharged in May of 2004, and the family moved to Rochester, New York, a sleepy industrial park upstate, and Joey began selling vet equipment.

Still, his mind returned to a cappella.

Joey contemplated entering a graduate program at the University of Rochester in the fall of 2005. When people asked why, he said it was because he wanted an MBA, which was true, but certainly not the whole story. Really, Joey was staring down a barrel. His shot at a cappella glory was slipping away. That first week he auditioned for the University of Rochester’s all-male group, the Midnight Ramblers.

He didn’t get in.

And then he decided not to enroll.

Still, try as he may, Joey could not shake the a cappella bug. He wanted to be part of the community. Actually, he says, he was destined to be part of it. To exorcise his demons, he dreamed up the A Cappella U podcast. Armed with just his MacBook Pro and a collection of collegiate a cappella albums, he recorded the first podcast sometime around midnight on September 6th, 2005, and uploaded it to Libsyn (a service that links to iTunes). He was selling vet equipment, but continued to record the podcast whenever he found time, which was often late in the evenings. He’d sit in his home office, absentmindedly stroking his goatee while selecting music from his hard drive. He was vigilant about not playing a song twice. Joey would solicit music from listeners. Then, like a true snob, he’d make fun of those self-same listeners for submitting their group’s version of Toto’s “Africa,” one of the most over-done songs in collegiate a cappella canon. He would talk about a cappella groups from Ohio State the way the staff at Rolling Stone talks about bands like Jet—describing them as “solid mid-level bands.”

Joey came up with a slogan for the show. A Cappella U: Somebody finally did this.

Joey would conduct phone interviews with a cappella legends like Deke Sharon from the Tufts Beelzebubs, brandishing his archive of obscure a cappella knowledge. Example: Joey C would talk about individual collegiate a cappella singers from years past, the way Dan Patrick would talk about sports legends. He talked about a Bub named Danny Lichtenfeld and his arrangement of “I Am the Walrus.” Keep in mind that Danny Lichtenfeld graduated in 1993—more than a decade ago, from a school Joey didn’t attend. It was like someone in the midwest suddenly taking an interest in your kid’s little league team, and studying his stats. To extend the metaphor, Joey started describing himself as the “Bob Costas” of college a cappella. If he wasn’t so darn enthusiastic and genuine, the whole thing might have come across as creepy.

But Joey’s enthusiasm was contagious. On air he talked about newer collegiate a cappella groups and their “eagerly awaited debut CDs.” Because the show was called A Cappella U—A Cappella University—he began referring to his listeners as his students. He put the show’s super fans, the ones who’d e-mail early and often, on the “Dean’s list.” He signed off each episode by saying, “Class dismissed.” He watched his listeners grow from a few hundred to 6,000. He started selling A Cappella U t-shirts on

As time went on, Joey would reveal bits of his personal life to listeners, but he was always surprised when they’d e-mail him questions like, What does your wife look like? Can you post pictures of Jonas on your website? Joey obliged, at times, though he made sure to keep some things a secret. He would occasionally talk about his high school a cappella group, Cue B. Pooges (don’t ask). But he didn’t talk much about college, choosing instead to let listeners assume he’d been a collegiate a cappella rock star. The whole thing was like Don DeLillo’s White Noise, where the protagonist is the head of the Hitler Studies department at a prestigious university but doesn’t speak German, letting his students assume he’s just being humble.

Joey had another secret. He would often talk about his production assistant, a mysterious guy named Ry Machine. He’d mention arguments that he and Ry Machine would have about a cappella music, and what sorts of tracks they felt were appropriate for A Cappella U. Joey liked the mystery of it all.

Ry Machine is actually Ryan Campagna, Joey’s kid brother. His mom gave Ryan the nickname years ago and the family never let it go. Ry Machine is a student at Cannisius College in Buffalo. Not surprisingly, he’s trying to start an cappella group there.
There is one member of Joey’s immediately family who doesn’t like a cappella music. Actually, she downright loathes it. That would be Joey’s wife. It’s not just the music she hates. More than the repetitive dim-dim-bop syllables her husband mindlessly mumbles about the house, she hates how a cappella devours so much of her husband’s time. Also, did she mention the timing? The couple had a second son, Teddy, in August 2006. She guesses she’s heard exactly two episodes of the show. “I love Joey’s voice,” she says, “but I hear it all day. I don’t need to listen to him on the radio.”

Still, it could be worse, she says. A Cappella U is better than Joey’s last hobby—a geeked-out card game called Magic: The Gathering, a Dungeons and Dragons-esque pastime with an inexplicable cult following. (Google it.)

To his surprise, word of A Cappella U spread through the well-trafficked forums of the website the Recorded A Cappella Review Board (RARB for the diehards). And as the show started to catch on, Joey C got creative. He began to think of the show less like a playlist of his favorite tracks, and more like a legit radio show. He hooked up with the ICCAs, and brokered a deal to set up a booth in the lobby, recording his show live from different rounds of the 2006 competition, traveling to Ithaca and Syracuse. At the ‘Cuse, he got his first taste of a cappella fame when a cute sophomore came up to the booth, pointed a finger, and said, You’re him!

“I called my wife,” Joey says. “I tried to explain to her that I was famous.”

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

The best a cappella pun yet.

Here's the UVA Sil'hooettes starring in their spoof of MTV's True Life. The Sils episode? True Life: I'm an Aca'holic. Acaholism!

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

The Huffington Post on a cappella.

Word is spreading. Adam Baer (the writer behind the very smart Glass Shallot) blogs about Pitch Perfect on the Huffington Post today. And in the face of cries that a cappella is for geeks, Adam praises the art form not just for the music, but for what it means to those who participate.

Baer writes: "If we are to learn anything from collegiate a capella it's not that singing is a lower form of musicmaking -- and no, my mother, the pianist and choral teacher, doesn't believe this old, incorrect impression of her confused kid. It's that it's the most direct way the every-musician can get closer to sounds he or she can't stop hearing in his or her head. Would it be better if Rhianna covers were less prevalent than Benjamin Britten concerts? Sure. But maybe they're equal. Maybe that's good. And maybe it's great that there's a group of young people who don't intend to go into pro music careers out there, simultaneously trying to outdo each other with the most kick-ass version of the cheesiest song you've ever heard. Making music, when it's best, brings people together. It's collaborative. And if it inspires healthy -- and at times funnily unhealthy -- competition, well, all the better. What, we can have it in the political arena, but not on the community concert stage?"

See, we told you: smart! Read the full post here.

Monday, June 9, 2008

ICCAs: Live on TV!

Sort of. Check out this excellent piece that aired tonight on Current TV, and focused on Divisi's quest for collegiate a cappella glory and Pitch Perfect. Spread the word! This is what the book is about! Heart, humor and runny mascara!

Ben Folds: High Five!

Collegiate a cappella groups cover Ben Folds about as often as they do John Mayer. Which is to say, early and often! Guess what? The indie rock God has noticed. And he's pleased. Here, in an interview with the Pitch Perfect blog, he addresses the a cappella-ification of his catalog.

When did you become aware that so many collegiate groups were covering your music?
Years ago on the road, people would hand us CDs with a cappella versions. But I didn’t know that the culture existed or that it had ballooned—until I saw loads and loads of a cappella groups on YouTube. That was about a year ago. My bassist sent me the first link, I think.

Were you flattered? Confused?
First of all I was impressed. And then I was moved. Some are better than others. But some of the interpretations are just so—I don’t know—just so genuine. We’re so inundated with music made by certified platinum-selling rock stars, which is fine, that’s cool too. But there’s really something to be said for smart music. Some of the a cappella interpretations of my songs—on a lot of levels, they're better than the way I did them. They're better than the originals.

I think so. They couldn't come first. Or maybe they could. I don't know. But it highlights something pure about the songs. These groups have to be inventive. They have to figure out a way to arrange these songs and these harmonies. In an age where music education is just going to down the shitter, on college campuses maybe you expect karaoke or a wet-shirt contest night. You don’t expect kids to get together, breakdown the arrangements, rearrange, reinterpret and then practice.

Or record them in professional studios. The Beelzebubs recorded Code Red at Long View Farms—where the Rolling Stones rehearsed for the Tattoo You tour.
As music is eroding popular music, the record industry is in depression, and what’s being spoon-fed isn’t necessarily working. It’s interesting that people have to make music. They don’t just accept that music is dead. They make it themselves.

Why do you think your music works so well a cappella? College groups also do a lot of Guster, too. Any comparisons?
I think the music is built well. My music has worked really well with symphony orchestras. Guster and my music are pretty dorky. It’s also put together. It’s got some integrity. It seems to work a cappella. It might be hard to put a lot of bands to that. Sufjan Stevens’s music would work well.

Is there one a cappella version you remember that really moved you?
There were a few versions of “Brick.” And one of “Still Fighting.” And then there was this one—and it’s not up anymore.—of a little high school kid singing the song “Gone.” This little red head kid with braces on. And he was singing the shit out of it.

Here's Hyannis Sound singing Ben Folds's "Not the Same." Link via Bojangles. Thanks!

Saturday, June 7, 2008

A Cappella Causes NPR Controversy!

NPR's Weekend Edition featured a story about Pitch Perfect last week, and even included some sound clips of the Tufts Beelzebubs. Well, apparently the music confused listeners, who wrote in to NPR insisting that what they heard on the radio couldn't possibly have been a cappella. Well, it was, as Scott Simon confirms in an update to the story, which aired this morning. Aca drama!

Give the original Weekend Edition piece a listen here. The follow-up is posted here.

Friday, June 6, 2008

John Mayer: A Cappella.

Ever notice how collegiate a cappella groups seem to gravitate towards certain artists? In the 90s, every all-male group had a Barenaked Ladies tune in their repertoire, and every all-female group could be counted on to bust out the Indigo Girls. Then it was Coldplay. But even with those bands, a cappella groups were mostly all covering the same tracks. (Coldplay's "Fix You." Barenaked Ladies's "Brian Wilson." Indigo Girls's "Galileo.") But lately I've noticed that John Mayer's music is all over the collegiate scene. And it's not just the obvious tunes. It's EVERY tune.

Herein, the John Mayer oeuvre: a cappella.

"Say" (performed by the Harvard Veritones)

"No Such Thing" (Roxbury Latin Latonics)

"Your Body is a Wonderland" (Williams College Octet)

"Daughters" (Florida State University's All-Night Yahtzee)

"Love Song for No One" (Williams College Ephlats)

"Waiting on the World to Change" (University of Maryland's Kol Sasson)

"Slow Dancing in a Burning Room" (Stanford's Mixed Company)

"I Don't Trust Myself With Loving You" (Carleton College's Exit 69)

The 'New York Post' loves 'Pitch Perfect.'

We got our first major commercial review last weekend. And it was a rave. William Georgiades of the 'New York Post' writes: "Finally, a journalist with the courage to investigate the cutthroat world of collegiate a cappella." Ha! He continues: "Rapkin has the perfectly bemused and giddy tone to tell these stories with the reverence they deserve... Comic actress Elizabeth Banks recently acquired the rights to 'Pitch Perfect' and it's easy to see why Hollywood would respond to the sheer, giddy joy that Rapkin captures in this sub-culture."

Read the full review here. WARNING: This review contains spoilers. So read at your own risk!

Thursday, June 5, 2008

I didn't take this video.

But I'm glad someone did.

Last week I was lucky enough to be invited to the Tufts Beelzebubs's 45th anniversary celebration in Boston. Of the 250 total Bub alums dating back to the founding in 1962, close to 150 were on hand for the festivities, flying in from as far as Asia.

Here's a clip of the Bubs—past and present—singing their signature tune, "Brothers in Song." The room was shaking. This is what it's all about.

'U.S. News and World Report.' Not just for college rankings!

The weekly magazine weighs in on "Pitch Perfect." Read the story (and my jokes about a cappella Rihanna covers) by clicking here. (This story will also appear in the print edition, on stands Monday.)

Patrick Lundquist, late of the UVA Hullabahoos and a recent addition to Hyannis Sound, gets a shout out in the piece. (As if his ego wasn't big enough!) Here's a clip of Patrick singing, so you can see what I'm talking about.

And here's some Rihanna for you, just so you know I'm not exaggerating. First, an all-male version from the Tufts Beelzebubs...

...and then an all-female version from Berkeley's California Golden Overtones.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Gawker. Without instruments.

The fine folks at Gawker were kind enough to give "Pitch Perfect" a shout out today. Read their take on a cappella here.

Set your TiVos.

Folks, a cappella is coming to your living room. On Monday June 9th, Current TV (you know, Al Gore's network!), will air a segment on "Pitch Perfect" and Divisi. A producer from Current shot on location with Divisi at the 2008 regional semifinals of the ICCAs in San Rafael, California, and the segment features footage from the competition.

Set your TiVos for:

Monday, June 9th
Current TV
11pm Eastern
8pm Pacific

Where to find Current:
+ Comcast Nationwide 107
+ Dish Network 196
+ Time Warner Nationwide – check your local listings
+ AT&T Universe 189

+ Sky 193
+ Virgin Media 155

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Me in public.

I'll be reading from "Pitch Perfect" tomorrow in Brooklyn. The event will also feature a performance from 2008 ICCA finalists the NYU N'Harmonics.

Details below. Spread the word.

"Pitch Perfect" reading (featuring a performance by the N'Harmonics)
June 4, 2008
Book Court
163 Court Street

Divisi in the 'Daily Emerald.'

Divisi (and Pitch Perfect) get the Daily Emerald treatment today. Click here to read the story, which includes Divisi's first official response to the book (as well as a marriage proposal, I think).

Photo courtesy of Kate Clark.

Monday, June 2, 2008

Soundcheck. A Cappella.

The excellent John Schaefer was kind enough to have me on his show, WNYC's Soundcheck, today to talk "Pitch Perfect." The 25-minute segment includes clips from the Hullabahoos, Divisi, the Beelzebubs and yes, even me and my old group, Cayuga's Waiters. Check it out here!

Or here:

A cappella: 'Onion' style.

A must-listen from today's Onion News Radio. Click here!

The new Divisi album.

Folks, the new Divisi album is out on June 7th. It's called "Roots." I had an early listen and it's fantastic. Favorite track: "Two Points for Honesty." Just when you thought you'd never want to hear another Guster a cappella cover, Divisi comes through with a winner.

Listen to clips from the album here.

And check out a live performance of "Two Points" here: