It was a mixer that crossed state lines. An a cappella mixer, that is.
In addition to Emory’s Dooley Noted and Aural Pleasure, Georgia Tech’s all-male a cappella group Sympathetic Vibrations and two groups from University of North Carolina Chapel Hill — UNC Loreleis and UNC Tar Heel Voices — performed at the Fall A Cappella Jam last Thursday. The event was organized by Dooley Noted Musical Director and Goizueta Business School senior Colin Egan, who happens to be from Chapel Hill, North Carolina.
The stand-out visiting group was the UNC Loreleis, Chapel Hill’s all-female group. One of the women sang “Impossible” by Shontelle, and I was amazed at how such a strong voice could come from such a little girl. Hers was undoubtedly my favorite performance of the night. The arrangements of the Loreleis were uniquely developed so that the lead singer was augmented greatly by the rest of the group. In most college a cappella groups, background singers are lost to the soloist, but the Loreleis managed to feature the lead singer while showcasing the immense talent of the rest of the group.
Georgia Tech’s Sympathetic Vibrations, which goes by SympVibes were charming and endearing. Their most memorable song was an original, which I can only assume was called “Left Turn Only, Oh No!” Written by one of the SympVibes members, the hilarious song chronicled Atlanta traffic, full of potholes, numerous Peachtree streets and bumper-to-bumper traffic (“forward motion denied”).
Emory’s own Aural Pleasure followed, wearing an assortment of red-hot red-and-black outfits. College sophomore Nour El-Kebbi began AP’s set with “Got a Big Ego.” El-Kebbi’s animation and acting skills combined with her musical talent made her a thrill to watch. In addition, the group’s beautiful and soulful arrangement of “Can’t Make You Love Me” tugged at the heartstrings.
At one point during the show, Aural Pleasure teamed up with the UNC Tar Heel Voices. AP used one of the Tar Heel Voices’ arrangements for “(No) Happy Ending” and invited the Tar Heel Voices to perform with them. Soloist and College senior Michael Lewis owned the song enough to not be drowned out by the 30 voices singing behind him.
The Tar Heel Voices performed “Lean on Me” to finish out their performance. The group embodied the vocals and presence of a gospel choir so much that the audience began clapping without being prompted.
Overall, the size of the Tar Heel Voices compared to Emory groups was noticeable during their performance. The group dwarfs Dooley Noted and Aural Pleasure, and the extra voices added an element of vocal power to their songs.
Dooley Noted marked the final group to grace the stage, singing trademarks like “Imagine,” which began slowly before growing into a song impossible not to engage with.
And as if an attempt to summarize the event’s mood, Egan closed out the night with Michael Buble’s “Feeling Good,” bringing to the stage one last bout of flair and energy.
— Contact Christina White.