If the phrase "male a cappella group" conjures up an image of students in blue blazers, ties, and khakis singing traditional college songs on ivied campuses... think again. Straight No Chaser (SNC) are neither strait-laced nor straight-faced, but neither are they vaudeville-style kitsch. As original member Randy Stine comments, "We take the music very seriously; we just don’t take ourselves too seriously." In the process, they are reinventing the idea of a cappella on the modern pop landscape.
Originally formed over a dozen years ago while students together at Indiana University, the group has reassembled and reemerged as a phenomenon – with a massive fanbase, over 20 million views on YouTube, numerous national TV appearances, and proven success with two holiday releases, 2008’s HOLIDAY SPIRITS and 2009’s CHRISTMAS CHEERS. In an era when so much pop music is the product of digital processing and vocal pro-tooling, Straight No Chaser is the real deal – the captivating sound of ten unadulterated human voices coming together to make extraordinary music that is moving people in a fundamental sense... and with a sense of humor.
Filled with sophisticated harmonies and uniquely stylized arrangements, WITH A TWIST, the third offering from a cappella group Straight No Chaser, is a different, well, twist on what SNC does best. The group members are thrilled to be displaying a different side of their unparalleled vocal mastery. "It's definitely my favorite collection of songs we've recorded so far," says Dan Ponce, who organized SNC during the fall of 1996 at Indiana University in Bloomington. "Not that I don't love the Christmas music, but this is nice for a change. It certainly was refreshing to record some non-holiday songs."
As WITH A TWIST comes out and opens up fertile new territory for the group, SNC's primary goal is to get back on the road and start singing the material -- some of which has been in their shows before -- to live audiences. "As we perform live, the songs take on a life of their own," Stine notes. "That's what's most exciting, to get this stuff out there live and then see what else we can come up with on the road. We get to see how people react and see what they like and then start to think about what else we can do on the future pop albums we're going to record."
Even after all the success, the members of Straight No Chaser still consider the group "kind of like a glorified college reunion," according to Ponce. "I know I had no intention of ever coming back to this in my professional life, and I think most of the guys felt the same way."
Ponce put the group together in the fall of 1996 at IU, basically as "10 guys who happened to be good friends who also liked to sing." Choosing the members carefully for personality as well as vocal talent -- Stine, Charlie Mechling, Jerome Collins, David Roberts and Walter Chase remain from the original lineup -- SNC set itself apart from other a cappella groups with its contemporary repertoire and dynamic approach, quickly headlining concerts both in Bloomington and on road dates. SNC recorded three independent albums, and John Mellencamp even invited the group to his home for a private performance.
When the founders began graduating in 1999 and went on to jobs mostly outside of music, they chose replacements and established SNC as an ongoing group on campus with future generations of ambitious IU undergrads. More than 50 members have passed through the group's ranks so far. Such was the impact SNC made at IU that the school hosted a 10th anniversary reunion show for the original lineup in 2006, and when Stine posted clips from a 1998 concert on YouTube, SNC's fan base grew exponentially. In 2007 alone, the group's version of "The 12 Days of Christmas" was viewed more than seven million times. Today that number has surpassed 11 million.
Tickets on sale June 11 at 10:00 AM at Ticketmaster.com, by phone 800-745-3000 or Ticketmaster locations.
Official Website: http://www.seattlecenter.com/events/event_detail.asp?ca_calnum=346844
Added by dougie_duh on November 23, 2010