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  1. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by numbers123 View Post
    what makes this guys different than the Motown groups of the '60s and '70s?

    this yale group sucks big time.
    I hated the Yalie Poofs too. It was all kinds of wrong. song choice, the lead singer's voice, those white gloves. yikes.

    The senior citizens, the guys from Tennessee, and the final guy group, Commited, were very good.

  2. #22
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    Missed all but I think the last 2 groups. Thought the girl who sang "If I Was a Boy" was in a little bit of trouble in the low notes, Committed was good but I am not interested in hearing each week how hard it is for them to do secular songs (meaning, I hope the show drops that angle - which they won't, of course).

    Whenever the camera pans to the judges I have to remind myself that that isn't Kim Kardashian sitting in the middle.

    I love Ben Folds. How the hell did he get wrapped up in this?

    That group that got booted? SUCKED. At least on their goodbye song - they had so many keys going on I wanted to call them Alicia.
    Q: Why can't I read the competition threads?
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  3. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by genevieve View Post
    I love Ben Folds. How the hell did he get wrapped up in this?
    He apparently loves a capella singing groups: http://www.amazon.com/Ben-Folds-Pres...1708633&sr=8-1

    I used to like listening to my college's a capella singing groups. I wonder if Ben Folds was in one. I think Sara Bareilles and Adam Levine were.

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    I actually enjoyed the Yale poofs as they were really entertaining. Thought 2nd half groups on the whole were much better than the groups in the 1st half.

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    The Whiffenpoofs sound far better live than they do on TV. They tend to give a very nuanced performance which is not as discernable via TV

  6. #26

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    Quote Originally Posted by Glide2 View Post
    I hated the Yalie Poofs too. It was all kinds of wrong. song choice, the lead singer's voice, those white gloves. yikes.

    The white gloves and tails are very traditional and there is a high degree of irony in many things Yale, not the least, the Whiffenpoofs. Try a typical Yale football game at home if you want to get a sense of what I mean.

  7. #27
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    LOL, I just watched the clip of the Whiffenpoofs. The guy during the introduction who talked about continuing the tradition of the uniform is actually a good friend of mine. I had no idea that they were on this program until I got a facebook invitation to come and celebrate their appearance this evening.

    For anyone not used to Yale a capella, I could see how the performance as well as their demeanor would be very off-putting. The whole "we invented a capella" and "I feel inordinately powerful in my tux," as well as the golfing clips, probably did not win them any sympathies off the bat, but those things would just be met with laughter here. I agree that sense of tradition and irony are huge parts to their performance. Mika is a flamboyant singer, and The Whiffenpoofs, in their pressed formal tuxes and gloves, look like they would be anything but. One of the major points is how it looks like they would be breaking character, but by the end of the song, they calmly readjust their ties. There are also moments where they look deadly serious, which is again part of the irony.

    I saw that performance a few years ago actually when the lead singer, Brennan, was with The Spizzwinks (a junior acapella group), and it completely brought the house down. By far, my favorite performance that night! However, I think it also had to do with the audience knowing Brennan's personality a little bit (in addition to singing, he's one of the best actors on campus), and this song is really kind of perfect for him.

  8. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by sk9tingfan View Post
    The Whiffenpoofs sound far better live than they do on TV. They tend to give a very nuanced performance which is not as discernable via TV
    I think that's true of a lot of these a capella groups. A lot of a capella groups also use humor in different ways, but their humor is geared to their usual audience and so they might not realize that other people won't quite get it. (The Princeton a capella singers on TAR appealed to some people, but definitely were not appealing to others, so some of it is just a matter of taste, but in a competition like this vocal one, the groups are going to have to deliberately broaden their appeal.) All of the groups need to be aware of the broader audience, whether it's a traditional Ivy a capella group or a group that is used to doing gospel instead of pop.

  9. #29
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    I really liked the Poofs - they, and the old guys, were the best IMO.

    I didn't like the high school ones (her voice was really shaky for half of it), the Beyonce ones (she had a hard time with the low notes), and the 'all about God' group.

    Anyone else think that Ben Folds looks a bit like Dana Carvey?

  10. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by cailuj365 View Post
    LOL, I just watched the clip of the Whiffenpoofs. The guy during the introduction who talked about continuing the tradition of the uniform is actually a good friend of mine. I had no idea that they were on this program until I got a facebook invitation to come and celebrate their appearance this evening.

    For anyone not used to Yale a capella, I could see how the performance as well as their demeanor would be very off-putting. The whole "we invented a capella" and "I feel inordinately powerful in my tux," as well as the golfing clips, probably did not win them any sympathies off the bat, but those things would just be met with laughter here. I agree that sense of tradition and irony are huge parts to their performance. Mika is a flamboyant singer, and The Whiffenpoofs, in their pressed formal tuxes and gloves, look like they would be anything but. One of the major points is how it looks like they would be breaking character, but by the end of the song, they calmly readjust their ties. There are also moments where they look deadly serious, which is again part of the irony.

    I saw that performance a few years ago actually when the lead singer, Brennan, was with The Spizzwinks (a junior acapella group), and it completely brought the house down. By far, my favorite performance that night! However, I think it also had to do with the audience knowing Brennan's personality a little bit (in addition to singing, he's one of the best actors on campus), and this song is really kind of perfect for him.
    Maybe the sound better live, however in my opinion each of them was trying to outdo the other in volume and none of the song was understandable. Occasionally I would catch one or two words - like Grace Kelly, but that was it. And very snotty in their demeanor, as if they are gracing you with their presence as they are clearly better than any of their competition.

  11. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by numbers123 View Post
    Maybe the sound better live, however in my opinion each of them was trying to outdo the other in volume and none of the song was understandable. Occasionally I would catch one or two words - like Grace Kelly, but that was it. And very snotty in their demeanor, as if they are gracing you with their presence as they are clearly better than any of their competition.
    So when Brennan sang, "Do I attract you, do I repulse you with my queasy smile," I guess he repulsed you. "Why don't you like me, why don't you like me..."

    "Grace Kelly" is a tough one to start with. It's quite wordy and goes up really high, so if you're not familiar with it, it can be hard to understand (although I think Brennan did a good job). Actually, I don't think the song is very well-known to most of America, probably only to that group of college kids who'd rather listen to British pop singer Mika than something more popular like Beyonce, and that itself is where they run into issues of appeal. The Whiffenpoofs are really very good, but their forte is doing traditional pieces, such as "Oh Shenandoah," but no one is going to vote for that on this type of show. Their style to singing and performing is more choral, old-school, "hit you with a wall of sound" rather than something more poppy like the Glee kids, so that's probably also not as appealing.

    I have no idea who that conductor guy was who talked at the very beginning about how they invented a capella, but yeah, he seemed like a total ass. There are definitely some kids like that here, and it's so hard not to roll your eyes. A little haughtiness comes with being a part of a old, traditional institution like The Whiffs though. There are like 20 underclassmen a capella groups with members who prepare themselves for 3 years and dream of getting into the elite Whiffs, so when you get in (much like high school prep students trying to get into an Ivy League), you can definitely feel a little superior and entitled. The guys I know in the group though are really humble and nice, and I hope they do well next time too.

  12. #32

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    As someone who did plenty of acapella singing, I enjoyed the Whiffenpoofs very much.

    About them:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Whiffenpoofs
    http://www.whiffenpoofs.com/about/

    Several of the groups are quite good.

  13. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by sk9tingfan View Post
    The white gloves and tails are very traditional and there is a high degree of irony in many things Yale, not the least, the Whiffenpoofs. Try a typical Yale football game at home if you want to get a sense of what I mean.
    Ah yes, The Yale Precision Marching Band. Very funny. Their presentations are organised chaos. And this is the type of humour that prevails at Yale. My big brother went there, class of ’70.

    Quote Originally Posted by cailuj365 View Post
    ...
    For anyone not used to Yale a capella, I could see how the performance as well as their demeanor would be very off-putting. The whole "we invented a capella" and "I feel inordinately powerful in my tux," as well as the golfing clips, probably did not win them any sympathies off the bat, but those things would just be met with laughter here. I agree that sense of tradition and irony are huge parts to their performance. Mika is a flamboyant singer, and The Whiffenpoofs, in their pressed formal tuxes and gloves, look like they would be anything but. One of the major points is how it looks like they would be breaking character, but by the end of the song, they calmly readjust their ties. There are also moments where they look deadly serious, which is again part of the irony.
    See above. Irony and whimsy are a forte.
    BOOLAH!!
    "Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity”– MLK

  14. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by cailuj365 View Post
    I have no idea who that conductor guy was who talked at the very beginning about how they invented a capella, but yeah, he seemed like a total ass.
    Yeah, that definitely seemed to be what one of the judges was responding to negatively. Um, yeah, a capella singing began in 1909. I also don't think it helped that Nick mentioned George W. Bush. That is not going to appeal to a lot of people -- from both ends of the political spectrum. There's a reason why Sarah Palin rails against "blue-blood Ivy Leaguers." She knows it resonates with a healthy segment of the American population and the editors of the show clearly chose to try to create the image of a sense of arrogance or entitlement. I would bet that there were plenty of innocuous or appealing statements that the editors could have used, but chose not to use. I think they just have to be smarter from now on and not give the editors ammunition. And they need to choose songs and arrangements and performance styles that will appeal to a broader audience.

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    Quote Originally Posted by cailuj365 View Post
    So when Brennan sang, "Do I attract you, do I repulse you with my queasy smile," I guess he repulsed you.
    I wouldn't know what he would do to me as I couldn't understand the words with everyone trying to out do each other with the singing.

    but then I guess I am just too much of an idiot to not recognize stah quality

  16. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by Allskate View Post
    Yeah, that definitely seemed to be what one of the judges was responding to negatively. Um, yeah, a capella singing began in 1909. I also don't think it helped that Nick mentioned George W. Bush. That is not going to appeal to a lot of people -- from both ends of the political spectrum. There's a reason why Sarah Palin rails against "blue-blood Ivy Leaguers." She knows it resonates with a healthy segment of the American population and the editors of the show clearly chose to try to create the image of a sense of arrogance or entitlement. I would bet that there were plenty of innocuous or appealing statements that the editors could have used, but chose not to use. I think they just have to be smarter from now on and not give the editors ammunition. And they need to choose songs and arrangements and performance styles that will appeal to a broader audience.
    For sure. They totally got the "living-in-the-Ivy-Tower, not-connected-to-real-Americans" introduction. However, The Whiffs are a group that pride themselves on tradition and superiority, so you can't change them completely. They're not going to be doing any major dancing/choreography like the other groups do, so they need to depend on things like humor to get them to connect with the crowd. The song selection....it's kind of odd that they chose to do the show actually. Their normal repertoire is in the Cole Porter songbook, not pop music. I've seen several of the current Whiffenpoofs though do stuff by Michael Jackson, Lady Gaga/Madonna, Jason Mraz, etc., so they could do those. It's too bad Sam Tsui (of Youtube fame) isn't in the Whiffenpoofs this year. They could have totally used his help.

    The George Bush comment though, ouch! Most hated alumnus ever, I swear. Next to John C. Calhoun.

    I saw a few clips from the other groups. I actually thought the lead singer to Men of Note was great. Too bad that the background kids looked scared sh*tless. Wasn't that big of a fan of Committed (Maroon 5), but On the Rocks (Gaga) was really good, especially with all of that choreography. I love that the singers weren't classically good-looking, because that adds to the humor. The Pitch Slapped group could have used a lesson from that. I heard they deliberately changed the male singer from the chubby guy who normally does it to this Justin Timberlake lookalike for the show. Guess it backfired.
    Last edited by cailuj365; 12-08-2010 at 03:59 AM.

  17. #37
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    I just really like some of the group names. Pitch-Slapped! LOL!

  18. #38

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    Quote Originally Posted by DarrellH View Post
    I just really like some of the group names. Pitch-Slapped! LOL!
    I liked that too! I actually really liked that group.

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    They were good, but not the quality I would expect from Berklee folks.
    "Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity”– MLK

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    Pretty good from On the Rocks. Unexpected song choice. They do choreo really well.

    Great job from Street Corner Symphony. Made me not hate that song for a few minutes.

    Eleventh Hour with some shaky lead vocals IMO. Didn't think their arrangement on this was as good as what the did with the Bieber.
    Last edited by LuckyCharm; 12-09-2010 at 01:33 AM.

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