BE OF GOOD CHEER – STRAIGHT NO CHASER IS BACK!
ACCLAIMED A CAPPELLA GROUP RETURNS WITH
ALL-NEW HOLIDAY-THEMED COLLECTION;
MAJOR U.S. CONCERT TOUR PRESENTED BY SOUTHWEST AIRLINES NOW UNDERWAY;
MULTIPLE TV APPEARANCES SLATED, INCLUDING PBS SPECIAL, LIVE IN NEW YORK: HOLIDAY EDITION;
“CHRISTMAS CHEERS” ARRIVES TODAY
“CHRISTMAS CHEERS,” the eagerly anticipated new album from ATCO/Atlantic recording group Straight No Chaser, has arrived at all stores and DSPs today. The collection features a selection of holiday-themed classics, reworked in the acclaimed a cappella group’s inventive and original style. The compilation is led by the brand-new single ‘The Christmas Can-Can’ and also features a studio version of the YouTube hit ‘The 12 Days of Christmas.’
Straight No Chaser is currently heralding the album’s release with a major U.S. tour (see attached itinerary). The dates – presented by Southwest Airlines – will continue through a December 23rd tour finale at Raleigh, North Carolina’s Progress Energy Performing Arts Center. As part of the partnership with Southwest Airlines, Straight No Chaser will treat fellow Southwest customers to surprise performances at airports across the country.
“CHRISTMAS CHEERS” follows Straight No Chaser’s smash debut, “HOLIDAY SPIRITS,” which reached #1 at both iTunes and Amazon.com upon its release last year. Songs from both collections and more are featured in the 10-member group’s upcoming PBS special, Live In New York: Holiday Edition. The concert – filmed this past August at NYC’s famed Angel Orensanz Foundation – will air throughout PBS’ annual December Pledge Drive (check local listings). A video for ‘The Christmas Can-Can’ from the PBS special can now be seen on the re-launched www.sncmusic.comhttp://www.sncmusic.com/> . The newly updated site also features exclusive photos, audio, videos, blogs, Twitter, tour dates and much more.
Straight No Chaser – who recently supported Barry Manilow’s sold out Hollywood Bowl solo concert – will be appearing on QVC on November 25th, with multiple appearances all through the day. What’s more, the group is scheduled to appear on the Christmas Day edition of NBC’s The Today Show, performing holiday favorites throughout the broadcast.
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“CHRISTMAS CHEERS” highlights Straight No Chaser’s trademark vocal sound and unique musical approach, while also incorporating much of the energy and enthusiasm of their celebrated live show. Recorded in SNC’s home base of Bloomington, Indiana, the album ranges from the hilarious “Christmas Can-Can” (with lyrics by the group’s Walter Chase) to a beautifully soulful take on “O Holy Night.” The 15-track collection also includes such holiday classics as “I’ll Be Home For Christmas,” “Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer,” “Jingle Bells,” and many more. The SNC original, “Who Spiked The Egg Nog?,” was written by member Ryan Ahlwardt and Straight No Chaser’s producer, Deke Sharon.
“The last album was a little more traditional,” says the group’s founder, Dan Ponce, “a little more what you might expect from an a cappella Christmas album. With the new album, we took a few more risks, and there’s definitely a comedic element that weaves through the album. We wanted to capture that aspect of our stage performance in our recordings.”
Founded at Indiana University in the fall of 1996, Straight No Chaser’s goal was to expand the boundaries of the traditional college a cappella group. From the start, they viewed themselves more like a local band that just happened to use their voices as their instruments. As original member Randy Stine comments, “We take the music very seriously; we just don’t take ourselves too seriously.” In the process, they are reinventing the idea of a cappella on the modern pop landscape.
In 1999, the graduating members of Straight No Chaser chose their replacements, ensuring that the new tradition they had created would continue on with successive generations of IU undergrads. Then, in 2006, the unexpected happened – Indiana University decided to host a reunion concert for the original members. In honor of the event, Randy Stine posted footage from one of their 1998 concerts online.
To the group’s surprise, Straight No Chaser’s version of “The 12 Days of Christmas” – interpolating Toto’s “Africa” – became the hottest viral video of the holiday season, eventually receiving more than 10 million views online. Among those millions of viewers was Atlantic Records Chairman/CEO Craig Kallman, who tracked the group down and promptly signed them to the label.
The birth of Straight No Chaser’s second life is a story of talent, drive, and some very good luck. But their goal remains the same as it was back in their college days. As Stine says, “We want the audience to not miss the instruments, be surprised by what we’re doing, and in the end, appreciate the songs in a whole new way.”
Taking off from the runaway success of “The 12 Days Of Christmas,” “HOLIDAY SPIRITS” saw Straight No Chaser re-energizing holiday classics such as “The Christmas Song,” “Silent Night,” and “Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)” with their captivating and powerful vocal arrangements. Fueled by appearances on ABC World News Tonight, CNN Headline News, and NBC’s The Today Show, among others, the album spent 14 days in the #1 slot on Amazon, and 5 days at the top spot overall on iTunes. The group’s now famous version of “The 12 Days of Christmas” peaked in the top 10 on the Christmas radio chart and reached the top 15 at Hot AC. On their first-ever headline tour in December 2008, Straight No Chaser sold out shows across the country.
For up-to-the-minute news and information, visit www.sncmusic.com, and www.myspace.com/sncmusic.
STRAIGHT NO CHASER
ON TOUR 2009
3 Pittsburgh, PA Club Café
5 Ridgefield, CT Ridgefield Playhouse
7 Milwaukee, WI Potawatomi Casino
8 Minneapolis, MN Fine Line Music Café
11 Toronto, ON, Canada Queen Elizabeth Theatre
12 Belleville, ON, Canada The Empire Theatre
13 Montreal, QC, Canada Cabaret Juste Pour Rire
14 Schenectady, NY Proctor’s Theatre
15 Buffalo, NY Center for the Arts - University at Buffalo
18 Atlanta, GA Center Stage
19 Birmingham, AL WorkPlay Theatre
20 Charleston, SC Charleston Music Hall
22 Bel Air, MD Hartford Community College
27 Seattle, WA Benaroya Hall (Nordstrom Recital Hall)
28 San Francisco, CA Palace of Fine Arts Theatre
29 Los Angeles, CA Wiltern Theatre
1 Canton, OH Palace Theatre
3 Louisville, KY Brown Theatre
4 Piqua, OH Edison Community College
5 Indianapolis, IN The Murat Centre
6 Royal Oak, MI Royal Oak Music Theatre
7 Iowa City, IA University of Iowa, Hancher Auditorium
8 Iowa City, IA University of Iowa, Hancher Auditorium
9 Arkansas City, KS Cowley College
10 Bartlesville, OK Bartlesville Community Center
11 Junction City, KS C.L. Hoover Opera House
12 Lawrence, KS University of Kansas, Lied Center
13 Chicago, IL Park West
15 St. Louis, MO Harrah’s VooDoo Lounge
17 New York, NY Nokia Theatre Times Square
18 Glenside, PA Keswick Theatre
19 Boston, MA Berklee Performance Theatre
21 Alexandria, VA Birchmere
22 Alexandria, VA Birchmere
23 Raleigh, NC Progress Energy Performing Arts Center