Posts Tagged ‘Howard University’

Afro-Blue’s Sing-Off Encore

Tonight's finale of The Sing-Off, unlike the other episodes, is being broadcast live. And in Los Angeles for the occasion is none other than Afro-Blue, the absurdly talented folks from Howard University whom the judges eliminated on last week's show.
But they're not just VIP audience members. As with the entire Top 10, Afro-Blue has been [...]

The Sing-Off: Afro-Blue Eliminated

YOU'VE GOT
TO BE
KIDDING
ME.
That sentence takes up an entire page of this writer's notes for last night's episode of The Sing-Off. I wrote it just as the judges' decisions were announced: Urban Method and Pentatonix had been kicked upstairs to the finals, while Afro-Blue and Dartmouth Aires were asked to revisit the song they felt had been [...]

Afro-Blue’s in the Final Four

There is no Simon Cowell among the judges on The Sing-Off. Ben Folds is the toughest among them, but he always frames his criticisms as constructively as possible, while Sara Bareilles and Shawn Stockman are cheerleaders who give occasional gentle nudges of advice. Which means it's not always easy—particularly as the competition narrows and the [...]

Afro-Blue Makes The Sing-Off Top 5…But Just Barely

As beautifully as they performed it, Afro-Blue's take on Tom Petty's "American Girl" on last night's The Sing-Off was misguided from the start.
The group's intro video reminded us that the judges have called out the Howard group repeatedly for overcomplicating their arrangements. But from the moment they began their rock submission (for "Rock and Country [...]

The Sing-Off: Afro-Blue Stumbles, But Makes It Through

Afro-Blue heard a familiar criticism on last night's installment of The Sing-Off.
"Really ambitious arrangements," Shawn Stockman noted of their performance, a medley of three Janet Jackson hits for Superstar Week. "Sometimes you guys might overthink some parts of the arrangements, where it may not really need any of that stuff you're most known for."
Sara Bareilles [...]

The Sing-Off: Afro-Blue Sails Through

Afro-Blue set the bar impossibly high during their interview segment on The Sing-Off’s Hip-Hop Week last night. They were performing what was billed as The Fugees' "Killing Me Softly," but mentioned the song's connection to Howard alum/erstwhile D.C. resident Roberta Flack. "We have to pay tribute to Roberta," members said. "Of course we hope The Fugees [...]

Don’t Be Bored: Howard Homecoming, Jewish Literary Festival

If you’re a Howardite—or just an aficionado—you know the university’s homecoming week is truly a beacon, and the admission-free International Yardfest is the most economical way to celebrate. (Though acquiring a fresh outfit still costs money.) As usual, this year’s lineup is semi-secret, perhaps because organizers tend to book acts down to the wire—though Young [...]

The Sing-Off, Round 3: Afro-Blue Makes the Cut Again

Even if the Howard University ensemble hadn't made a point of saying so, Afro-Blue's performance last night of Whitney Houston's "I Wanna Dance With Somebody" was clearly the product of Sing-Off judge Ben Folds' critique two weeks ago. "Don't overthink the arrangement," he told them after an elaborate casting of "I Heard It Through the [...]

Afro Blue Advances Again on The Sing-Off

The Sing-Off is, like all musical reality shows, steadfastly and proudly middle-of-the-road. But juxtapose its concept with performers whose forte is elswhere, and the middle of the road becomes a challenge in spite of itself—something D.C.'s own Afro Blue discovered on last night's installment of the show, in which the Howard University ensemble passed round [...]

Afro Blue Passes Round 1 of The Sing-Off

Oh! Have we gone so long without mentioning that Afro Blue, Howard University's award-winning vocal jazz ensemble, is competing on season 3 of NBC's The Sing-Off? Why, yes we have. Perhaps it's because the show combines so many things that inspire deep skepticism: reality television; those damned a cappella ensembles that you can't walk four [...]

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