According to tradition, the formation of a great doo wop group is started by the attempted serenade of a love interest, which is certainly the case with this group. Formed in 1993, the Dop Wop Shop was created when one of its founding members gathered a few of his musical friends together to sing for a certain special someone. Staying true to classic college style by performing the serenade in a dorm, these friends drew in ladies from nearby rooms who gathered in the hallway to listen to the melodic male voices. Ever since then, the Dop Wop Shop has been making hearts swoon. From old doo wop songs and barbershop quartets to soul and Motown to classic rock and contemporary, this group sings it all.These sweet and charming gentlemen show their thoughtfulness by creating and performing music that not only is enjoyed by themselves, but also their audience.
Established in 2013, Fermata Nowhere is UMass Lowell’s premiere all-female a cappella group. Exuding with female empowerment, this group sings upbeat pop songs and soul sounding tunes, making these songstresses known across campus for both their gritty sound and girl power vibe. Fermata Nowhere proves that you don’t need to be a music major to be in an a cappella group. Instead, this group uniquely and primarily consists of science majors. Regardless of major though, each Fermata Nowhere member prides herself on helping talented women grow as not only musicians, but people.
What’s the story behind this group’s name? Good Question. Bad pun. Anyways, there is indeed a story behind this group’s name. In 1985, the group was created by a cohort of students rejected from other singing groups on campus. On a radio show, the group was asked their name and one member responded, “Good Question.” The name has stuck ever since! From shower singers to a female tenor to a beat-boxer who claims he can create any sound, Good Question has it all when it comes to different and unique voices. This group prides itself on making their own arrangements, arrangements that ambitiously and inspiringly everyone has a say in.
From Gordon College in Wenham, Massachusetts, this college choir is made up of a dedicated group of singers led by an equally dedicated choral director, Jamie Hillman. This group can sing it all, with an extensive repertoire including classical literature, mixed choir and major choral-orchestral works, pop, gospel, and world music to name just a few genres. Their busy performance schedule has taken them all over the world from concert halls in New England to performances in European countries such as Austria, Germany, Hungary, Italy, and the Czech Republic. Despite their abundant travel, the group is committed to their community, often singing in hospitals and prison systems. Their formal concerts are highly participatory. They teach the audience parts of songs and invite them to perform with the choir at the end of each concert. Crowd participation? Pick me! This group is truly passionate about sharing their gift of music with others.
Ten years after its inception, the Manic Optimists transitioned from a sketch comedy troupe to an a cappella group, clad with over-the-top choreography and the true staple of any traditional all-male collegiate a cappella group, an array of eccentric blazers. Throwing jokes and sketches into their sets, the guys are able to miraculously make their audience have a good time every time they perform. Although they all have strong musical backgrounds, everyone in the group has a different major, adding an interesting layer of diversity to the group. Practicing for about 1 ½ hours four times a week, the Man Ops have been able to transform into one of the best a cappella groups on campus.
Get ready to be excited! Noteworthy is back. This time with a few more members and a different tune. An aspect of Noteworthy that wasn’t mentioned in the prior season is their inspiring passion for charity. For instance, members of the group wore prom attire during their spring concert while raising money and awareness for the non-profit, A Prom to Remember, an organization that hosts all-expense paid proms for teens affected by cancer. Not only does Noteworthy have a love for the larger global community, but they also have a lot of love within its network of singers. The first a cappella group at Emerson, Noteworthy consistently draws alumni back to its concerts. Alumni routinely hop onto the stage when current members sing “Lullaby” by Billy Joel, a permanent song on the group’s set list. It’s safe to say that this group lives up to its name; Noteworthy is truly noteworthy.
For the past 38 years, members of Redhot & Blue have arranged each of the songs they have sung. These jazzy folks like to arrange contemporary hits like the Beatles’ “Blackbird” and Britney Spears’s “Toxic” into pieces as intricate as a song of classic jazz music. Their repertoire also features a number of original songs, such as “Return to Me”, an epic single of a band founded by their second musical director. Rehearsing three times a week, these singers focus on the essence and purity of the human voice, as opposed to focusing on mimicking instruments with their voices. Not only is this group full of singers, but also full of travellers. Every year, the group goes on two domestic and one international tour. In fact, they just came back from Japan last summer!
Simple Harmonic prides itself on its dedication to brotherhood. This group of male singers lives by the phrase “Brothers in Song”, a motto that truly transcends the dynamics of a standard singing group. A subset of the Men’s Glee Club at Worcester Polytechnic Institute, these musical fellas enjoying singing classic barbershop tunes, as well as pop and oldies. Founded over 20 years ago, this group has remained strong through tight harmonies and even tighter friendships. Cue the “awwws”. These young men have not only shared their talent with their own city of Worcester. In addition, they have travelled to the faraway land of upstate New York and visited colleges such as Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.