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Students sing Ben Folds a cappella

First came the Ben Folds Five, which was really a trio, and now we have the Ben Folds Multitudes delivering the piano man’s quirkiest album yet.

“University A Cappella!” makes glee club suddenly seem hip. Longtime campus favorite Folds combed through 250 video performances of his songs submitted by college a cappella groups, then traveled around the country to record his favorites.

It sounds as though everyone involved had a lot of fun. The creative arrangements showcase Folds’ sense of humor and gift for melody in ways a rock album can’t. In lieu of instruments, singers keep the beat with such phrases as “ba-da-ba-da,” “noo-noo-noo-noo,” “dig-a-duh-bump,” “doo-bah-dah-doo,” “jim-jim-jim-jim” and – Folds’ favorite, no doubt – “dong-dong.”

Fourteen groups contribute, including a marvelous coed high school ensemble from Newton, Mass., and Folds overdubs his own vocals on two of the best efforts, “Boxing” and “Effington.” There’s doo-wop, jazz, choral music and even frat rock that’s R-rated. Kids will be kids.


Ben Folds

“Ben Folds Presents: University A Cappella!” (Epic)

Genre: rock

Grade: A

Citizen Online Archive, 2006-2009

This archive contains all the stories that appeared on the Tucson Citizen's website from mid-2006 to June 1, 2009.

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For all of the stories that were archived by the Tucson Citizen newspaper's library in a digital archive between 1993 and 2009, go to Morgue Part 2

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