In Celebration of the Human Voice - The Essential Musical Instrument

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In the fall of 1962, a handful of Tufts men gathered to sing in the basement of West Hall. They named themselves "Jumbo's Disciples: The Beelzebubs" and prepared an original version of Winter Wonderland for Tufts' annual Winter Sing. By the end of the 1963-64 academic year, the Bubs had recorded their first album, performed with the Boston Pops, and traveled as far as New York City. Throughout the late sixties and early seventies, the Bubs' popularity grew on Tufts' campus and on college campuses throughout New England.

In 1973, the Bubs celebrated their tenth reunion at Cambridge's Sheraton Commander Hotel. Unfortunately, the mid-'70's brought harder times. Larger issues such as the Vietnam War, the Watergate Scandal, and the oil crisis resulted in less enthusiasm and opportunity for extra-curricular campus activities. Fortunately, a small but dedicated group of undergraduate singers, with the help of the Beelzebubs Alumni Association, managed to keep the group alive and strong by singing, traveling, and recording. Because the group survived these times, the Bubs remain Tufts' longest running student organization. During the '70's, the Bubs also began adding popular music to their usual repertoire of barbershop, doo-wop, gospel, and jazz.

The 1980's brought prosperous times for the Bubs. Each year, the gigging schedule grew larger while tour destinations became increasingly farther from Tufts. By the end of the '80's, the group's most distant destinations included Florida, California, Colorado, and England. Also, on-campus enthusiasm for the group increased, resulting in stronger audition pools and more complex musical arrangements.

In the early 1990's, the Bubs made several developments that not only changed the group's own style but also permanently affected the characteristics of collegiate and contemporary a cappella. The 1991 album Foster St. almost completely abandoned the traditional arranging styles of glee club, doo-wop, and barbershop music and introduced a new brand of arranging which aimed to capture the driving nature of contemporary popular music.

Throughout the 1990's and into the new millennium, the Bubs have continued to develop this new style while also performing some music of the group's past. To date, the Bubs have recorded 27 studio and 3 live albums and have won several awards for performing and recording. They also boast an active alumni association whose Bubs Foundation raises funds for music in Boston's public schools. The Bubs have traveled to nearly every corner of the United States and have toured Europe on several occasions. They have performed at colleges, corporate gigs, public and private elementary schools, middle schools, high schools, bar mitzvahs, wedding showers, restaurants, hospitals, churches, Fenway Park, the Bank North Garden, Disneyworld, Disneyland, Eurodisney, the United States embassies in France and England, on Late Night with David Letterman and back home in Goddard Chapel at the top of the hill in Medford, MA.


Displaying 1-5 of 5 items.

Beelzebubs : Play The Game : 1 CD : 

Beelzebubs : Play The Game

Review: Every two years, the 14 or 15 young Collegiate men who are Tufts University's Beelzebubs get together to record a statement of who they have become, singing together in one of the most exciting Collegiate groups we have heard! 12 wonderfully-arranged a cappella covers, some favorites: Rufus Wainwright's "Go or Go Ahead," the Who's "Who Are You," Mute Math's "Typical," the Format's very funny "Dog Problems," Eddie Murphy's "Party All The Time," a poignant take on Dylan's "Don't Think Twice, It's All Right," Beck's "Debra," Billy Idol's "Rebel Yell," and Pink Floyd's classic "Goodbye, Cruel World." The solid vocal percussion, faux synthesizer and horns on a cut like "Rebel Yell" had us wondering how such a full, accompanied sound is possible with only voices. One of the most entertaining Collegiate recordings of the year!

Songlist: Typical, Vehicle, Go or Go Ahead, Who Are You, Dog Problems, Party All The Time, Don't Think Twice, It's Alright, Debra, Rebel Yell, Cologne, All the Love in the World, Goodbye Cruel World

1779c | 1 CD | $14.95 | A Cappella Collegiate A Cappella

Beelzebubs : Pandemonium : 1 CD : 

Listen to
Smiley Faces

Beelzebubs : Pandemonium

Review: When the 15-man strong Tufts University a cappella group Beelzebubs was formed in 1962, Beelzebub was a character from Milton's "Paradise Lost" who lived in Pandaemonium, who caught the attention of a Tufts senior. The group became one of Tufts' oldest traditions. " Pandaemonium" was recorded by the 2007 configuration of the Bubs, and it features 13 varied and well-chosen covers of pop hits. The Beatles' "Magical Mystery Tour," U2's "City of Blinding Lights," Deadeye Dick's "New Age Girl," The Feeling's "Love It When You Call," Thicke's "When I Get You Alone," Aerosmith's classic "Livin' On The Edge," Peter Gabriel's "Digging In The Dirt," Gnarls Barkley's "Smiley Faces" and Guster's "Ruby Falls" all feature wonderful arrangements, tight vocal harmonies and backup vocals, and powerful, soaring leads. Good stuff from one of our favorite veteran Collegiate ensembles!

Songlist: Magical Mystery Tour, City of Blinding Lights, Mama, I'm Coming Home, New Age Girl, Linger, Love It When You Call, When I Get You Alone, Livin' On The Edge, A Bad Dream, Digging In The Dirt, Smiley Faces, Ruby Falls, Come Sail Away

1777c | 1 CD | $14.95 | A Cappella Collegiate A Cappella

Beelzebubs : Code Red : 1 CD : 

Beelzebubs : Code Red

Review: The 15 talented Beelzebub men are presented on the cover of "Code Red" as various strange and colorful superheroes, and the theme is carried into what appears to be a heavily accompanied cover of Styx' "Mr. Roboto," with strings, cymbals, synthesizers, snare drums and everything. Then you notice the line in the campy foldout liner notes: "Every sound on this recording was created solely by our fifteen mouths." So we immediately went from "shut off the damn synthesizers" mode to "how the hell did they make that sound?" mode. One caveat--the voices seem to be "technically augmented," that is, sung into machines that alter them significantly, like a "wah-wah" pedal that attaches to an electric guitar. Earth, Wind & Fire's "Shining Star" is followed by Sinead O'Connor's "Nothing Compares 2 U" and Bush's "Machinehead." Nelly's "Hot in Herre" is followed by an incongruous cover of Sinatra's "The Way You Look Tonight." Ozzy Osbourne's "Crazy Train," Phil Collins' "Take Me Home," Reel Big Fish's "Sell Out," Smashing Pumpkins' "Disarm" and finishing with the BeeGees' "You Should be Dancing." "Code" is an envelope-pushing CD, taking a cappella to a point where it's almost indistinguishable from accompanied music. Throughout the vocals and harmonies are rich and powerful, and the vocal percussion more full and convincing than any contemporary group we've heard. This is very exciting stuff, and also scary. What comes to mind is when Phil Spector released his first "Wall of Sound" single, the Ronettes' "Be My Baby," and every other R&B song suddenly sounded very thin. Anyone interested in the future of a cappella needs to hear "Code Red!"

Songlist: Mr. Roboto (Styx), Shining Star (Earth, Wind & Fire), Nothing Compares 2 U (Sinead O'Connor), Machinehead (Bush), Hott in Herre (Nelly), The Way You Look Tonight (Frank Sinatra), Crazy Train (Ozzy Ozbourne), Take Me Home (Phil Collins), Sell Out (Reel Big Fish), Disarm (Smashing Pumpkins), You Should Be Dancing (Bee Gees)

1734c | 1 CD | $14.98 | A Cappella Collegiate A Cappella

Beelzebubs : Infinity : 1 CD : 

Beelzebubs : Infinity

Review: One of the most professional collegiate groups, the Beelzebubs can always be relied upon for entertaining versions of classic pop and the latest MTV favorites too. Their fourteen voice ensemble produces a full and satisfying sound, whether down with an urban hip hop arrangement of LL Cool J's "Loungin'" or its opposite, the clean-cut "She's Always A Woman To Me." The processed tone of Hendrix' "Fire" is a romp, as is Big Bad Voodoo Daddy's "You and Me and A Bottle Makes Three Tonight," which has the rhythm section working overtime. The recording's penultimate track, alumnus Deke Sharon's arrangement of "Signed Sealed Delivered," is followed by the post-Romantic composer Grieg's "Brothers, Sing On!", a fraternity fight song if there ever was one, sung with proud gusto.

Songlist: that's the wa ( i like it)/ get down tonight, it ain't over 'til it's over, stay (wasting time), all i want is you, loungin', She's Always A Woman, all night long, fire, no diggity, washing of the water, you and me & the bottle makes 3 tonight (baby), why should i cry for you, Signed, Sealed, Delivered I'm Yours, brothers, sing on!

1704c | 1 CD | $14.98 | A Cappella Collegiate A Cappella

Beelzebubs : Next : 1 CD : 

Beelzebubs : Next

Review: In a long tradition of remarkable albums by Tufts University's Beelzebubs, this is simply the "Next." The fourteen singers take us on an inclusive tour of the contemporary a cappella music world from the sweetness of Guster's "Either Way" and 'oldie' James Taylor's "You Can Close Your Eyes" to a rasty version of Beastie Boy's "So What'cha Want." Along the way you'll find songs from Destiny's Child, Gypsy Kings, Sting, Pink Floyd, Counting Crows, and Radiohead. This contemporary potpourri is presented with vocal percussionist, grace note embellishments normally found in professional groups and marvelously complex arrangements. Some of the inspiration must be attributed to producer Deke Sharon a former Beelzebub ('91)

Songlist: The Impression That I Get, Either Way, Disco Inferno, Fake Plastic Trees, Hangin' Around, Major Tom / Space Oddity, Bills, Bills, Bills, Overjoyed, Love in an Elevator, Ghost Story, Bamboleo, So What'cha Want, You Can Close Your Eyes, The Trial

1719c | 1 CD | $14.98 | A Cappella Collegiate A Cappella

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