Straight No Chaser

A cappella music is a strange thing. It conjures images of either old-man barbershop quartets or, more likely, those overeager, overly animated dudes on your freshman dorm floor. Yes, these days, single-sex a cappella groups are largely confined to campus life, but every so often, a group breaks through to the pseudo-mainstream. Among the biggest of them are the California barbershop revivalists the OC Times, and the ten-member Indiana group Straight No Chaser.

The guys of Straight No Chaser, or SNC to the band's acolytes, are slightly past college age but still young and pretty enough to ensnare hordes of female fans. What also helps is the accessibility of their music, which is about half renditions of standards such as "Somewhere Over the Rainbow" and Christmas carols, and half reworkings of current pop hits. They're not sarcastic or parodic like many college groups, but definitely display a sense of humor. Just check their rendition of Flo Rida's "Low," complete with vocalized beat bleeps and bloops. It comes complete with somewhat cringe-worthy raps too, but if you don't find that more embarrassing than amusing, you're not this concert's target audience anyway.


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