On December 16, 2011, Rockapella, an American a cappella musical group, will be featured on the CatholicTV Network’s nationally broadcasted live talk show; This is the Day. The five-man vocal group will present their new CD, “A Rockapella Holiday,” backed up by just their microphones, and perform some swinging songs of the season.
Rockapella’s name is derived from the words “rock” and “a cappella”. They sing original vocal music and a cappella covers of pop and rock songs. The band originally found their biggest success in Japan, while in North America, they are best known for their participation in the PBS Kids game show, Where in the World Is Carmen Sandiego?, as the show’s vocal house band and resident comedy troupe, as well as the singers of the show’s theme song. The band has released 17 albums, both in North America and overseas and 3 compilation albums in Japan.
The little miracle that keeps the crowds coming back year after year and constantly draws new fans is Rockapella’s astonishing full-band sound. A sound that seems to be impossible coming from just five guys with microphones, no instruments, no tracks, no mirrors – and their hands never leave their wrists.
“We’re making every bit as much music as the whole ‘Glee’ chorus – but with only five guys,” says Rockapella’s human beat-box Jeff Thacher.
“We make it rock and make it interesting,” explains Scott Leonard, the group’s chief songwriter, arranger and architect of their evolving dynamic sound. USA Today summed up the lasting appeal, “The best musical instrument of all is the human voice – if you’ve seen Rockapella you know that’s the truth.”
The current Rockapella line-up features Scott Leonard (since 1991, High Tenor), Jeff Thacher (1993, Vocal Percussionist), George Baldi III (2002, Bass), John K. Brown (2004, Tenor) and Steven Dorian (2010, Tenor). This line-up marks a regeneration of Rockapella whose talents cover a broad entertainment spectrum and are keenly focused on musical excellence.
“People have a hard time believing it’s just us making all of that music. It’s still those same elements that make modern band music: percussion, bass, melody and harmonies,” says Scott.
The group has also stretched out occasionally of late into the instrumental world, accepting an invitation to perform with the Boston Pops Orchestra.
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