An Octave Above is a group of eight professional vocalists who blend years of experience and a love of a cappella harmony to every style of music they sing. From doo-wop to jazz, standards to pop, Bacharach to The Beatles, An Octave Above creates a new standard for excellence on the Chicago music scene.
Members: Jennifer Gingrich, Meredith McGuire, Amy Yassinger, Debra Wilder, Nick Falco, Chris Moan, Zach Benkowski, Kris Monn
An Octave Above: An Octave Above
The 4 men and 4 women of An Octave Above, (named 1st runner-up at the 2005 Harmony Sweeps Chicago Regional) are a group of professional vocalists, together for only 3 years, whose repertoire includes doo-wop, jazz, standards and madrigals. This is the group's impressive debut CD of 13 songs, beginning with a jazzy, light "Chile Con Carne," a sweet Ward Swingle-arranged "All the Things You Are," and a ringingly harmonic cover of James Taylor's "That Lonesome Road." Doo-Wop classics "Come Go With Me" and "In the Still of the Night" segue nicely into Billy Joel's anthem "And So It Goes," a bluenote "There Will Never Be Another You" grows upbeat and scattish, "Tico Tico" puts a margarita in our hand and pulls us onto the dance floor, and finally we have Ward Swingle's sparkling arrangement of "Country Dances." Excellent stuff from this fast-rising Chicago octet, who we will be expecting to see at the '06 Sweeps Finals!
An Octave Above: Come on and Take a Sleigh Ride!
"Sleigh Ride" is the second release from talented mixed-voice (4 men, 4 women) a cappella octet An Octave Above, who were 1st runner-up at the 2005 Chicago Harmony Sweeps Regionals. The group has been gaining fans with live performances at many Chicago venues, and this Christmas album shows off some of their cutting-edge arrangements and tight, jazzy harmonies. 12 songs, some of our favorites are the opening cut "Sleigh Ride," a moody, jazzy "What Child is This" (with a fine solo by Debra), a richly harmonized "Away in a Manger," a bluesy, funky "God Rest You Merry Gentlemen," "Mary Did You Know" (with Melinda's sweet lead), a surreal, '30s-retro "Toyland," a richly Italianesque "Gesu Bambino," a nicely-arranged "O Holy Night," a classic "Silent Night," and an upbeat "We Three Kings" with tight vocal percussion by Scott. Good fun stuff from Chicago sure to brighten your holidays!