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Vox One

Vox One

Mixed Vocal Jazz Quintet from Boston, MA.

Vox One is an award-winning a cappella jazz quintet that combines elements of blues, funk, gospel, and folk into their own brand of vocal music, which is "most adventurous and distinctive." - San Francisco Examiner. The group, formed in 1988, has since developed a unique style considered to be the cutting edge of a cappella. "This jazz quintet puts all kinds of throat sounds to such funky good use that listeners break into applause and - better - feel like dancing." - Boston Magazine.

Vox One has performed internationally, and has opened for Ray Charles, Chicago, the Persuasions, the Bobs, the Woody Herman Orchestra, and the Count Basie Orchestra. The group earns wide acclaim for their performances and CDs. Their awards include "Best A cappella Group, Jazz" - Boston Magazine. Vox One's eponymous debut CD was named "Best Album" and awarded "Best Song" by the Contemporary A Cappella Society of America (CASA): "Creative arrangements and soulful spark... fabulous lead vocalists, and exquisite blend, a great vocal percussion sound, and lots of class." Their second US release "Out There," won "Album of the Year," "Best Jazz Song," and "Best R&B song" by CASA. " defining an album for vocal jazz as Singers Unlimited "A Capella" and Take 6's debut's that good." - Primarily A Cappella. With their 1998 album "Chameleon," Vox One was named "Artist of the Year," and once again it earned "Best Jazz Album" and "Best Jazz Song."

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1994 - Harmony Sweepstakes National Finals 2nd Place Winners
1994 - Boston Harmony Sweepstakes Champions

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Songbooks, Arrangements and/or Media

Displaying 1-8 of 8 items.

Yumiko Matsuoka : Collection : Mixed 5-8 Parts : Sheet Music Collection

Yumiko Matsuoka : Collection

An arrangement of the classic folk song "Black Is The Color" that reflects the deep dark color of "my true love's hair." Opens with a tenor solo, then develops into a warm, full-textured chorus. "The Lord's Prayer" is a solemn and heartfelt a cappella rendition of the well-known tune. Rich close harmony is employed throughout, which soars to a climax with "for Thine is the kingdom." . An old English folk "Scarborough Fair" song made popular by Simon and Garfunkel arranged with a larger ensemble in mind. Tenor sings the melody, surrounded by soprano/bass pedal point and alto/baritone ostinato lines. It then shifts into different moods, keys and harmonic settings, sensitively corresponding to the lyrics. "My Old Kentucky Home, Good Night" is one of the Stephen Foster evergreens, this arrangement starts with male unison, then develops into a rich close harmony with some twists here and there. Followed by a short baritone solo, it builds up to a beautiful climax with a key change, and a calm, pensive ending. An excellent showcase for a strong small group. "The Water Is Wide" is a ballad to be savored by both singers and audiences. It showcases male and female soloists over a beautiful, haunting background lines, builds up to the tutti section where each part has a moment to shine, then comes to a quiet close with a reprise of the male solo. "Simple Gifts" is an arrangement written for Vox One's album Pure Imagination, this Shaker song is transformed into an ode to the open skies of Africa. Combining a Swahili phrase for "dance and sing" and vowels not commonly used in choral singing, a bed of background lines are laid to carry the melody in 9/8. Its uplifting message comes through strongly as joyous rhythm and harmony is weaved together by each part.

Songlist: Black Is the Color, The Lord's Prayer, My Old Kentucky Home, Good Night, Scarborough Fair, The Water Is Wide, Simple Gifts

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Voicing: Mixed 5-8 Parts | Performed by Vox One | 2220b | Sheet Music Collection | $15.95 | A Cappella

Yumiko Matsuoka : Collection Vol. 3 : SATB : Sheet Music Collection

Yumiko Matsuoka : Collection Vol. 3

Commissioned by the Boston Jazz Voices, "This Can't Be Love" swings throughout, with room for singers to improvise. Sopranos (and mezzos) are featured with the melody, while basses lay down the walking line. After the improv section the conversation between the parts lead to an energetic climax. Recommended for a bigger ensemble that would like to showcase their tight rhythmic and harmonic chops. "Loving You" is another great arrangment written for Vox One, this 70's hit by Minnie Riperton is a feature for a strong soprano as well as for bass with a good funk feel. The inner voices create a bed of sound reminiscent of a sun-drenced field of flowers. There is a short section in the middle for a tenor solo; and it ends with a slightly slower tempo letting every part shine with their own lines. Recorded on Vox One's Say You Love Me. An American classic "My Grandfather's Clock" sung all over the world is now a spirited jazz waltz! Commissioned by a Japanese arranger, written for Vox One, it features tenor and soprano solos, incorporating the sounds that old clocks make (tick, tock, ding, dong) in the background. The section where grandfather departs from this world is more somber, but it eventually resumes its initial tempo to a heartfelt finish. Suitable for choir as well as well-rehearsed small ensemble. "Summer Breeze," commissioned by Dare to Breath from the Twin Cities, the Seals and Croft hit is given a medium funk groove, above which the tenor or alto solo lays the melody. The original counterlines are used to enhance the mood. The crisp execution of the 16th note rhythm will be a great showcase for everyone in the ensemble.

Songlist: Summer Breeze, Loving You, Air On The G String, My Grandfather's Clock, You Don't Know What Love Is

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Voicing: SATB | Performed by Vox One | 9707b | Sheet Music Collection | $17.95 | A Cappella

Yumiko Matsuoka : Collection Volume 2 : Mixed 5-8 Parts : Sheet Music Collection

Yumiko Matsuoka : Collection Volume 2

The Lennon-McCartney classic "Eleanor Rigby" retains some of the flavor of the original Beatles' arrangement intact by giving the background vocals a string-like texture in the opening section. It then goes through a couple of key changes and gives different parts an opportunity to sing the melody, while the background supports with strong harmony and interesting counterlines. Arranged for a cappella quintet Vox One, the classic "Danny Boy" song showcases a soprano solo. In the middle section, the alto and tenor parts weave a line reminiscent of a brook in a green field of Ireland. Lush, complex harmony and a dramatic build-up reward both the singes and the audience. Recorded on Vox One's, Chameleon. The national anthem is treated here with solemn but inspirational sound. The rich harmony, without going too far away from the original, builds to a climax with contrapuntal lines that make it interesting for the singers. Written for the New York-based group the Western Wind, Yumiko's arrangement of 'Where Is Love?' opens with a mezzo/alto feature backed by flowing lines reminiscent of a small string ensemble. After the interlude, the melody is passed onto different parts with a surprise ending that involves a couple of tonality changes. Written for a cappella quintet Vox One's comeback album of the same title, 'Pure Imagination' features a soprano solo with the background vocals that re-creates the dreamy world of Willy Wonk'a Chocolate Factory. Come and explore the harmony and texture that builds up to a fantastic climax. It will make you want to watch and savor the movie once again.

Songlist: Danny Boy, The Star-Spangled Banner, Eleanor Rigby, Where Is Love?, Pure Imagination

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Voicing: Mixed 5-8 Parts | Performed by Vox One | 2221b | Sheet Music Collection | $15.95 | A Cappella

Vox One : Chameleon : 1 CD

Vox One : Chameleon    onsale

This may well be the last album of jazz virtuosos, Vox One." These musicians created the most polished jazz (on the rock and blues edge of the spectrum) by anyone so far. Meticulous arrangements sung by superb performers make you forget any prior arrangement that was the benchmark to your mind's ear for how a particular song was supposed to sound. From the opening wail of the vocal electric guitar and definitive drum beat on "Chameleon" to the complex chord structures on "Round Midnight," you will be lost in a panoply of possibilities for the human voice. John Coltrane, Miles Davis, Harold Arlen, Herbie Hancock, Theolonius Monk and more are treated with nothing short of the genius they deserve. The title cut from one of our best selling CD's ever, "Chameleon," is a cool and refreshing cocktail of vocal jazz. Having emerged from the highly regarded Berklee School of Music, their sound reflects the talent and training that enables them to articulate sophisticated musical concepts with ease. This amazingly rich sonic tapestry is heard in the bent notes of the "guitar" and the slur of the "bass" on this track-amazing!

Songlist: Chameleon, Naima (My Dreams), Moonglow, All Blues, Danny Boy, On Green Dolphin Street, You Don't Know What Love Is, Over the Rainbow, Teen Town, 'Round Midnight

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9240c | 1 CD | $14.95 ON SALE $6.95 | A Cappella

Vox One : Out There : 1 CD

Vox One : Out There

In announcing the CARA winners for 1996, the Contemporary A Cappella Newsletter used the following statement to announce the Album Of The Year. "In a year of extremely strong nominees for best album, Vox One's little-publicized "Out There" takes first place because it has everything. Exceptional songwriting, glowing arrangements, magnificent solo performances and top rate production all combine to make this the sleeper album of 1995. Somehow Vox One manages to combine elements of pop, rock, blues and jazz without compromising the exacting demands of any of the styles. The resulting blend is infectious and definitive, proving "Out There" to be one of the best contemporary albums ever." We couldn't have said it better ourselves.

Songlist: Searching For You, Whisper When I Speak, The Eyes Of A Jungle, Gone By, Save Me, The Sky Is Crying, Say You'll Always Be, That Which You Love, Morning, Out There

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9229c | 1 CD | $14.98 | A Cappella

Vox One : Pure Imagination : 1 CD : 9245

Vox One : Pure Imagination    onsale

What immediately strikes one upon listening to Vox One's new "Pure Imagination" CD is how good they are not in a flashy, notice we are brilliant singers kind of way, but in a deeply felt, technically beyond question, born to sing way that shows us all of us lesser talents how its done. After seven years, one of a cappella's most accomplished (and recognized) vocal jazz groups returns to the CD player with a satisfying collection of originals, covers and improvs. Yes, Vox One has matured and is exploring new styles, including Indian ragas and world music tinged vocal jams. For those loyal listeners who loved "Chameleon," "Out There" and "Say You Love Me" and have been waiting for an encore, there are the standards such as "Pure Imagination" (written by Leslie Bricusse and Anthony Newley), and the traditional "Aura Lee," but there are plenty of new songs composed by the group, as well as the six improvised tracks that offer plenty of room for the the five members (Yumiko Matsuoka, Paul Pampinella, Paul Stiller, Jodi Jenkins Ainsworth and Tom Baskett) to stake out new vocal territory. These Berklee College of Music faculty members exemplify what it is to harmonize, blend and intonate with sublime perfection, and we thank them!

Songlist: Pure Imagination, Kind of a 3Paul Stiller, Improv 1, Simple Gifts, Improv 2, Try, Take Me Out To The Ballgame, Improv 3, Woodstock, Leave It To Me, Improv 4, Aura Lee, Improv 5, I Wish, You Know

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9245c | 1 CD | $14.95 ON SALE $6.95 | A Cappella

Vox One : Say You Love Me : 1 CD

Vox One : Say You Love Me    onsale

This Japanese release features seven songs not before released in the U.S.. For fans of Vox One, we are already preaching to the choir, but for the uninitiated, this contemporary jazz quintet has all of the technique of the Real Group, with a compelling edge of intensity and emotion. Therefore, a traditional such as "Shenandoah," using brilliant dynamics, phrasing and an admirable combination of tension and release, is transcendent, whereas classic pop - Carol King's "It's Too Late" - is given a heartbreaking harmonic complexity and richness. The arpeggiated chord accompaniment in the verse, so simple, yet effective, shows why a talented arranger can elevate the ordinary to greatness. When Vox One swings into the standard, "Autumn Leaves," they prove that they do no less than weave straw into gold.

Songlist: My Cherie Amour, Time After Time, Say You Love Me, Shenandoah, Whisper When I Speak, It's Too Late, Autumn Leaves, Lovin' You, Out There, White Christmas

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9235c | 1 CD | $14.95 ON SALE $6.95 | A Cappella

Vox One : Vox One : 1 CD

Vox One : Vox One

As you might suspect from the self-titling, this is the first recording released in what has come to be recognized as the must-have trilogy of albums by Vox One. Lets go though it. "Edelweiss" is such a difficult harmonization that it became a signature performance tune for the group. "My Romance" almost sounds like a pop/jazz standard only better. "Why Blue" was written by member Yumiko Matsuoka and features a bass and percussive underpinning to a complex wordless scat that's nothing short of great. "The Water Is Wide" is just plain beautiful. "Respect"... well, move over Aretha (sacrilege!). There isn't room in this review! Suffice it to say that the three originals are a portent of things to come, the covers original.

Songlist: Edelweiss, My Romance, Why Blue?, The Water Is Wide, Respect, Ol' Man River, Move On, My Old Kentucky Home, Good Night!, Could You Believe, Missin' You, Amazing Grace

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9230c | 1 CD | $14.98 | A Cappella

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