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Now in its fourth decade, the Harmony Sweepstakes A Cappella Festival has been the melting pot of top-notch a cappella talent from around the nation (and some from overseas!). The groups that have held the title of "Harmony Sweepstakes Champion" are diverse in their musical styles, backgrounds and rosters, and, more often than not, continue their legacies today with fruitful careers in the entertainment business. The following is a list of our esteemed champions.

2011

Throat

Throat is a collective of singer-musicians that perform original music. Hard-rocking beats, cerebral songwriting and a full, in-your-face band sound...that just happens to all be produced without instruments. Throat is a vocal band that sings 100% original music. Influenced by great rock groups of the past 50 years, as well as the pioneers of the contemporary a cappella vocal band movement, THROAT is dedicated to performing fresh, rocking music for the masses.

Members: Kate Spencer, Emily Bedal, Peter Driscoll,, Mister Tim, Matt Murphy

2010

Confidential

Something Old. Something New. Something Else. Great talents from the area's award-winning groups come together to pay homage to Denver's great a cappella history. Listen for funk and R&B influences from the old-school where Confidential brings original pieces, cutting-edge sounds, and modern style for a sweet sound that aims for the future of a cappella.

Members: Peter Driscoll, Marc Johnson, LaDamion Massey, Matt Murphy, Richard Steighner, Isaac Troiano

2009

MouthBeats

No words, just rhythms, sound effects, and vocal percussion. MouthBeats explores the sonic barriers between vocal and instrumental music. Fusing pop, rock, jazz, world, and military styles, MouthBeats is on a never ending hunt for new beats, new sounds, new grooves.

Members: Tim Jones, Matt Murphy, Chris Schenk, Richard Steighner

2008

Legacy

Legacy is a nationally known Christian vocal group that is based out of Lubbock, TX. Their sound has been compared to many world renowned groups such as Take 6, Acappella, Gaither Vocal Band and Rockapella. The group consists of John Paul Sheppard, Clint Dickerson, Josh Wheeler and Jake Lierman.

Legacy originally got their start in the fall of 2002 while in college together, but the group only lasted for about a year. After a summer tour in 2003 and recording a CD together, the guys felt that God was calling them to do other things with their lives and they decided to put the group on hold for a while.

Members: Jake Lierman, John Paul Sheppard, Clint Dickerson, Josh Wheeler, Nick Gaultney

2007

Face

Face is a nationally recognized all-vocal rock band from Boulder, Colorado, bringing a new edge and attitude to the human voice. Using just five voices and a vocal drummer, or "beat-boxer," Face creates a rock-music phenomenon that has to be seen to be believed. No other instruments or special effects - just six guys. Considered "among the top 10 singing groups in the country," (Norm Johnson, Las Vegas Leisure Guide) they regularly wow sold-out audiences throughout Colorado, including such classic venues as Boulder Theater and The Soiled Dove.

Face was recently named "Best Local Musician/Group" by Boulder Weekly's 2009 Best of Boulder Reader Survey. In addition, Face is a two-time winner of the National Audience Favorite Award at the Harmony Sweepstakes National Finals, as well as National Runner-Up in 2005 and 2007. Face was also runner-up for Favorite Pop/Rock Group in the 2007 Contemporary A Cappella Society's Community Awards. Face has been headlining in Las Vegas periodically since 2007 to rave reviews, paving the way for even more national attention.

Members: Mark Megibow, Forest Kelly, Ben Lunstad, Cody Qualls, Ryan Driver, Stephen Ross, Jayson Throckmorton

2006

Curious Gage

Working out of Fort Collins, Curious Gage has been a fixture in the contemporary a cappella scene for over three years. With performances throughout Colorado, including the Denver Coliseum, this award-winning a cappella ensemble flawlessly captures the energy and intensity of today‚s hottest Rock bands. Their unique blend of pop, jazz, Rock and soul unites in strikingly vibrant harmony, complemented by their extensive professional backgrounds. With commanding solos, powerful bass and driving vocal percussion, Curious Gage is one group you don‚t want to miss!

Members: Nic Widhalm, Zach Tait, Phil Thompson, Tom Miles, Carleen Widhalm

2005

Face

Face is a nationally recognized all-vocal rock band from Boulder, Colorado, bringing a new edge and attitude to the human voice. Using just five voices and a vocal drummer, or "beat-boxer," Face creates a rock-music phenomenon that has to be seen to be believed. No other instruments or special effects - just six guys. Considered "among the top 10 singing groups in the country," (Norm Johnson, Las Vegas Leisure Guide) they regularly wow sold-out audiences throughout Colorado, including such classic venues as Boulder Theater and The Soiled Dove.

Face was recently named "Best Local Musician/Group" by Boulder Weekly's 2009 Best of Boulder Reader Survey. In addition, Face is a two-time winner of the National Audience Favorite Award at the Harmony Sweepstakes National Finals, as well as National Runner-Up in 2005 and 2007. Face was also runner-up for Favorite Pop/Rock Group in the 2007 Contemporary A Cappella Society's Community Awards. Face has been headlining in Las Vegas periodically since 2007 to rave reviews, paving the way for even more national attention.

Members: Cody Qualls, Mark Megibow, Ben Lunstad, Forest Kelly, Jayson Throckmorton, Stephen Ross

2004

Inpulse

Based in Minneapolis/St. Paul, Minnesota, InPulse is a rocking vocal band whose five members are all classically trained vocalists. They entertain all kinds of audiences with an energetic concert performance that includes famous vocal percussionist Paul Donnelly. The ensemble has won the National Harmony Sweepstakes Denver competition. InPulse also endeavors to advance the art of a cappella through original music, and the education of young singers. The group has worked with nearly 3,000 students in the past year with its educational outreach clinic to teach and promote the art of vocal music through hands-on experience.

Members: Michael Espinoza, Gabe Koxlien, Matt McDonald, Paul Donnelly

2003

Groove Society

Groove Society, formed by Bianca Herbert & Joe Herbert, is an award winning vocal jazz sextet that is among the top rising stars on the world a cappella scene. In 2006, the group was named "Vocal Group of the Year" by the JPF International Music Awards, as well as being honored for "Best A Cappella Album", and "Best A Cappella Song". And in 2007, Groove Society received the prestigious "IAJE Award for Outstanding Service to Jazz Education" at the International Association for Jazz Education convention in New York City.

With the release of their critically acclaimed debut CD, Groove Society is receiving airplay on major-market jazz and NPR stations from coast to coast and around the world. They have appeared at international jazz festivals across the Mainland U.S., Hawaii, and Canada, sharing the billing with, and/or opening for top artists including Bonnie Raitt, Herbie Hancock, Bobby McFerrin, The Neville Brothers, Eddie Palmieri, Paquito D'Rivera, Freddy Cole, Patty Austin, The Rippingtons, Bobby Hutcherson, Jimmy Heath, The Dirty Dozen Brass Band, Dr. John, The Bad Plus, Paul Taylor, Nelson Rangell, Soulive, Styx, and many more!

Members: Bianca Herbert, Jeremy Ruff, Cameron Chinatti, Joe Herbert, Damion Massey, Dave Sheehan

2002

Eclipse

Eclipse is a vocal group of six creating explosive sound, driving rhythms, and lush harmonies using only one instrument: the human mouth.

The six members of Eclipse originally met while performing in a public relations /ambassador-oriented group that was part of the department of Programs and Entertainment at Utah State University. They began by arranging their own vocal covers of popular songs and performing them on campus and in the Logan area. Increasing public interest and performance opportunities led to the recording of their first album, "Once," which was released in April 2001.

Members: Paul Hansen, Kevin Jones, Dan Kartchner, Kirk Mecham, Patrick Rose, Shayne Taylor

2001

T Minus 5

As a nationally-acclaimed and award-winning a cappella group, T Minus 5 is known for delivering a high-energy musical performance that combines pop, classic rock, a bit of country, and even elements of comedy

The group has been together since 2000 and traveled throughout the country performing for Universities, Arts Councils, city events, and corporate conventions. Simulating all instrument sounds with just their voices, T Minus 5 is a high-energy a cappella group providing fun for the whole family.

T Minus 5 claimed first prize at the Denver Harmony Sweepstakes in 2001. Having only been a group for a year, they advanced to the national competition, and have been on a performing rampage ever since. Their energy and humor win them new fans wherever they go.

Members: Kent Hyer, Jason Salmond, Joe Cheney, Jeff Petersen, Jared Allen

2000

All Star Vocal Band

In 1995 the All-Star Vocal Band began rebuilding their vocal ensemble around the talents of the two exceptional voices of Jackie Farrell and Rita Dean. With the addition of seasoned a cappellans, tenor, Jimi Alexander and, baritone, Tony Huerta and the continuing participation of, bass, Norm Silver, the All-Star Vocal Band has moved forward to bring a new style and a fresh perspective to the group's sound. Powerhouse percussionist, Zach Freeman, adds the drive and the beat to make the new All-Stars really rock.

Members: Norman Silver, Tony Huerta, Jimi Alexander, Zack Freeman, Jacklyn Farrela, Rita Dean

1999

Octane

They first formed in 1994 as an octet with piano accompaniment while students in the School of Music at Northern Illinois University. They released their first CD, "High Performance" in this format and became strictly a cappella in 1996. Their local performance experience includes 2 summer retreats for the American Choral Directors Association, 4 performances of the National Anthem and half time shows for the Chicago Bears, second place in the 1997 Midwest Regional Harmony Sweepstakes, summer festivals throughout the midwest, guest entertainers for the Miss Iowa pageant, and many concerts and workshops at schools throughout the area. They performed as representatives of Softline, Inc. at the Sapphire '98 trade show in Los Angeles and were the resident a cappella ensemble from January to July 1998 aboard Celebrity Cruise Lines in the Caribbean and Alaska. Their second CD, "Grand Slam" was recorded while on board. They can also be heard on a Baker and Taylor Entertainment Services christmas compilation CD along with artists Kenny Rodgers, Michael Bolton, James Galway, and Vanessa Williams. They will return to Celebrity Cruises in May of 1999.

Members: Sean O’Connor, Eathan O’Connor , Jason Bayale , Kevin Schoenbach , Tyler Ball

1998

Cool Shooz

From Colorado comes Cool Shooz. Cool Shooz is a Rock n’ Roll A Cappella! This group has been wowing Colorado audiences musically one moment, then making them laugh out loud the next, since 1990. They appeared here previously in 1996, and have since entertained thousands of people all over Colorado. Their unique sound is a blend of many years of individual experience shining opera, vocal jazz., musical theater, and rhythm and blues. You will notice two new faces and voices: Jeff King, the velvet-toed tenor, has performed here previously with The Diners. Also new is vocal percussionist Tom Connor - a fine tenor singer in his own right - adding his tasty percussion to finish the COOL SHOOZ sound. Hear their now-famous Bohemian Rhapsody tonight at the Afterglow, but for now, just sit back and enjoy...THE SHOOZ BROTHERS!?!

Members: , , , ,

1997

Graffiti Tribe

Graffiti Tribe was founded in 1990 by Dan Perkins and has had an interesting decade. They took home the awards of Regional Champions in 1995 and again in 1997 for the Denver Regional Harmony Sweepstakes A Cappella Festival. Since touring most of the country as one of America's most popular college acts, The Tribe has signed an exclusive record deal with Jakarta Records and will soon be touring and distributing their CDs on an international level. The Tribe is working on a new CD project which will somewhat stray from their a cappella roots. Fear not a cappella fans! This group won't leave their first love all together. Be on the lookout for the Tribe to be doing bigger and better things than ever before in the new millennium!

Members: Richard Jordan, Dan Perkins, Tim Rosendo, Marc Young

1996

Cool Shooz

Cool Shooz took runner-up at last year's Harmony Sweepstakes. Perennial Sweepstakes fans have seen this group fine-tune their style over the years. Always striving for high energy, tightly harmonic, and raucous Rock & Roll style, these five singers hope that this is their Sweepstakes year. They have performed often over the last year, including the huge Fort Collins 4th of July Celebration, the Greeley Arts Festival, the Glenwood Springs Strawberry Festival, and any number of Corporate functions, parties, weddings, and the occasional "concert under a tent in a raging thunderstorm" that makes a cappella so much fun. So sit back, hold on to your seats, and enjoy the Rock experience that is Cool Shooz.

Members: , , , ,

1995

Graffiti Tribe

Graffiti Tribe was founded in 1990 by Dan Perkins and has had an interesting decade. They took home the awards of Regional Champions in 1995 and again in 1997 for the Denver Regional Harmony Sweepstakes A Cappella Festival. Since touring most of the country as one of America's most popular college acts, The Tribe has signed an exclusive record deal with Jakarta Records and will soon be touring and distributing their CDs on an international level. The Tribe is working on a new CD project which will somewhat stray from their a cappella roots. Fear not a cappella fans! This group won't leave their first love all together. Be on the lookout for the Tribe to be doing bigger and better things than ever before in the new millennium!

Members: Zack Freeman, Man Martinez, Tim Rosendo, Ray Paris, Dan Perkins, Derrick Pope

1994

The Diners

Formed five and a half years ago, The Diners have become one of the busiest groups in Denver and the region, playing at a variety of local nightclubs, private and corporate functions. In recent years they were featured on CBS This Morning, opened for Ray Charles, represented Denver at the 1991 Harmony Sweepstakes Finals and released their CD-- Open All Night. After this year's competition, The Diners will return to the studio for release #2.

Members: Doug Wisness, Paul Collier, Jeff King, Tom Price, Chris Rhodes

1993

17th Avenue All-Stars

The 17th Avenue Allstars are celebrating 20 years as one of Denver, Colorado's top musical acts singing contemporary a cappella. The Allstars have performed across the United States and opened for National Acts such as: BB King, The Temptations, Mel Torme, and Robert Cray. Named the official anthems singers of the Denver Broncos they've experienced a wide range of a cappella performance opportunities including shows for US Presidents and Governers, corporate events and product launches, outdoor festivals and concerts and large charitable fundraisers. Book the Allstars today for your concert or special event and experience the a cappella magic that is The 17th Avenue Allstars.

From the Doo-Wop favorites from the 50's to Contemporary A Cappella; straight ahead rock tunes or a cappella vocal jazz, the 17th Avenue Allstars will put on a show for any audience!

Members: Norm Silver, Jeff Harris, Robert Anderson, LaTanya Hall, Robert Johnson

1992

Poor Boys

The Poor Boys are entering their 5th year of existence in Colorado, or anywhere else for that matter. They have been through many changes including the addition of two fresh new sounds in a tenor and a bass four months ago. Mark, Shawn and Glenn are the oldest members of the group.

Members: Mark Epperson, Glenn Rice, Shawn Ko Iterman, Aaron Hoffman, Kevin Duren

1991

The Diners

Formed 2 ½ years ago by placing a classified ad in a local newspaper, The Diners have carved a niche for themselves in the Denver music scene. Featuring five strong voices, they perform everything from classic rock and original music to some of the best Doo-Wop of the past 30 years. Besides their busy stage schedule, they have also written and recorded jingles for restaurants and radio stations, and have been featured numerous times on Denver television stations. The Diners regularly perform at a variety of local nightclubs as well as for public and private events.

Members: David Avrin, Bob Lutz, Chris Rhodes, Jeff King, Paul Collier

1990

17th Avenue All-Stars

The 17th Avenue Allstars are celebrating 20 years as one of Denver, Colorado's top musical acts singing contemporary a cappella. The Allstars have performed across the United States and opened for National Acts such as: BB King, The Temptations, Mel Torme, and Robert Cray. Named the official anthems singers of the Denver Broncos they've experienced a wide range of a cappella performance opportunities including shows for US Presidents and Governers, corporate events and product launches, outdoor festivals and concerts and large charitable fundraisers. Book the Allstars today for your concert or special event and experience the a cappella magic that is The 17th Avenue Allstars.

From the Doo-Wop favorites from the 50's to Contemporary A Cappella; straight ahead rock tunes or a cappella vocal jazz, the 17th Avenue Allstars will put on a show for any audience!

Members: Robert Anderson, Jeff Harris, Jake Schroeder, Norm Silver

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