Vauxhall Screenshot: Chris Matyszczyk/CNET
Boyz II Men A Cappella Quest
What is a cappella singing? It's singing without instruments, using voices to provide the melody and the harmony. It originated in ancient times, but most of us are familiar with barbershop quartets and the street corner groups of the '50s and '60s with their unique do-wop sound. It has continued to grow in popularity and today transcends all music genres.
Legendary singing group BoyzIIMen, got their start imitating the smooth harmonies they listened to growing up in Philadelphia - but added their own modern spin.
As the Boyz became well-known outside of their hometown, they signed with Motown records and released their debut album in 1991, the hit "Cooleyhighharmony," with Michael Bivins of Bell Biv Devoe as their executive producer. "Cooleyhighharmony" demonstrated the BoyzIIMen trademark sound, which they referred to "hip-hop doo-wop." With a string of highly successful albums, they eventually became the highest selling R&B group of all time.
Now, 16 years later, in a nod to their own history, BoyzIIMen is releasing a new album in November: "Motown: A Journey Through Hitsville USA," produced by "American Idol" judge Randy Jackson.
And to encourage a new generation of street corner serenaders, they are teaming up with The Early Show for the BoyzIIMen A Cappella Quest. If you're part of an a cappella group, or know one that you admire, read the requirements and upload or send a videotape in to our Web site.
The last day to submit videos to The Early Show is November 19.
The Early Show, in consultation with representatives from the Boyz II Men record label, will narrow down the entries to the 5 Finalist Groups.
The current members of BoyzIIMen -- Shawn Stockman, Wanya Morris, and Nathan Morris -- will pick their favorite a cappella group. Their choice will be announced on The Early Show on December 17; the group will be invited to perform a holiday song on the show at a later date.
Stay tuned -- and stay in tune!
To find out more about a cappella music, try these Web sites: www.myspace.com/beatboxerentertainment
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