Last fall, I contacted a friend from high school who attended Duke University, (hi, Elaine!), to ask if she ever attended SoJam A Cappella Festival (which is held on the Duke campus). Although she replied she hadn’t, she did mention she was an original member of Duke Rhythm & Blue, an a cappella group on campus.
I had heard of Rhythm & Blue, but I hadn’t actually listened to them until a few weeks back via my “The Sing Off” Pandora station. What struck me was that I really liked every song that came on from their album House on Fire, so of course I headed to Spotify to check out the whole thing.
Verdict: I LOVE THE WHOLE ALBUM
With a little more exploring, I discovered these recent Fun Facts about RnB:
- Founded in Fall 1992
- Have opened for Rockapella and for Transit
- 2010 Winner, SoJam Collegiate A Cappella Competition
- 2011 single “Run” is featured on the compilation Voices Only 2011 College A Cappella (Volume 2)
- Nominated for 4 CARA Awards, including “Best Mixed Collegiate Album” for House of Fire (2010)
Here’s the song, “Closer,” that has been nominated for 2 CARA awards, one for “Best Hip Hop / R&B Song” among collegiate and professional a cappella groups, and one for “Best Mixed Collegiate Song.”
My favorites on House of Fire are “Closer” and “Alone,” but the whole album is just solid, as they say. It’s ALL good. I was amused to find a cover of Prince’s “Let’s Go Crazy” on the 2007 album Punch a Higher Floor, but sometimes I think you have to have lived through the 80s to really get that music right.
A little additional group trivia: Dave Karger of Entertainment Weekly was also a founding member. Connections everywhere, if we only knew.
So, how did you like this edition of First Listen Friday? Thanks for stopping by, and be sure to leave me a comment!