8th Annual

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The Harmony Sweepstakes A Cappella Festival is the premier American showcase for vocal harmony music. The annual national competition draws from hundreds of vocal groups from around the country with regional competitions in eight cities. The winning group from each festival is flown to perform in front of celebrity judges and a sold out house of enthusiastic a cappella fans at the National Finals.

1992 National Finals Champions

Acme Vocals

Acme Vocals performs a wide variety of musical styles - bluegrass, gospel, folk, pop, heavy metal, and rap - and combine a comedic flair with incredibly rich sounding vocals. Their performances have produced critical acclaim and a national following. Their credits include performing on "CBS this Morning" and on Garrison Keller's American Radio Company. They have also displayed their talents at such nation events as the NBA Playoffs and MLB's All-Star Game and have opened for such national opened for stars as David Brenner and Jay Leno. Acme Vocals recently was nominated the top entertainment act in the nation by colleges belonging to the National Association for Campus Activities, the largest college entertainment booking organization in the country. They have harmonized together for more than five years and have traveled extensively throughout the United States, performing at more than 200 concerts yearly.

1992 Results
1st
Acme Vocals


1992 Participating Groups

House Jacks
The House Jacks of San Francisco are the original rock band without instruments. Using nothing more than their five voices (and mouths), they deliver everything from blistering funk to screaming rock to heart-melting ballads for their ever-growing legions of fans.

These pioneering musicians have performed over 1,000 shows and have shared the stage with some of the biggest names in music, having performed for live crowds of 100,000+, with appearances on at least 3 continents each year.

They can be heard on movie soundtracks and their jingles for everything from radio stations to theme parks have been heard (and seen) by millions around the world. The House Jacks of San Francisco are the original rock band without instruments. Using nothing more than their five voices (and mouths), they deliver everything from blistering funk to screaming rock to heart-melting ballads for their ever-growing legions of fans.

Members: Tristan Bishop, Andrew Chaikin, Marty Mahoney, Bert Okpokwasili, Robert Penn, Deke Sharon
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Lifestyles
The Lifestyles feature a modern, post-war sound. You pick the war. Lifestyles founder, Ned Claflin, was also the founder of the beloved bay area a cappella group, The Baltimores, who charmed local audiences in the 1980's.

Members: Ned Claflin, Patty Barkis, Nick Clark, John Pinkney
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Acme Vocals
Acme Vocals performs a wide variety of musical styles - bluegrass, gospel, folk, pop, heavy metal, and rap - and combine a comedic flair with incredibly rich sounding vocals. Their performances have produced critical acclaim and a national following. Their credits include performing on "CBS this Morning" and on Garrison Keller's American Radio Company. They have also displayed their talents at such nation events as the NBA Playoffs and MLB's All-Star Game and have opened for such national opened for stars as David Brenner and Jay Leno. Acme Vocals recently was nominated the top entertainment act in the nation by colleges belonging to the National Association for Campus Activities, the largest college entertainment booking organization in the country. They have harmonized together for more than five years and have traveled extensively throughout the United States, performing at more than 200 concerts yearly.

Members: Steve Anders, Tom Ciappa, Beth Frank, Kevin Poise, Faadl Shukry
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Alley Cats
By bringing their own contemporary style to tunes from the 1950s and 60s, The Alley Cats appeal to fans of all ages, breathing new life into everyone's favorite doo-wop classics. The four members of The Alley Cats are a perfect blend both vocally and personally. More than a decade after they began, Royce Reynolds, whose solid bass vocals create the Cats' musical foundation, and Mando Fonseca, the second tenor always ready with a pun or quick quip, have the ease of familiarity which make their camaraderie and vocal play radiate from the stage. Baritone Sean Devine, whose smooth vocals melt hearts the world over, and newest member Juan Del Castillo, re-creator of all of those soaring 50s first tenor lines, bring their freshness and talent to an already solid foundation of a cappella tradition. Together they are truly the Cat's meow!

Members: Armando Fonseca, Royce Reynolds, Sean Devine, Juan Del Castillo
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Rick And The Masters
Formed in the early 1960's by a group of young men from the South Philadelphia area. During the first few years of their existence they made numerous recordings of previously recorded material, as well as some of their own arrangements. During the mid-1960's the group broke up for various reasons including Military and family obligation. Then in 1988 they reformed.

Members: Chuck Holloway, Dennis Gillen, Bill Diamond, Frank Condo, Tom Di Pietro
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Doo-Wa-Zoo
Since their public debut in 1991, the intricate harmonies and fun-loving spirit of Doo-Wop-Zoo have been enjoying rave reviews wherever they go. In one show you may experience anything from a provocative love song to Rhythm& blues with a hint of gospel, or a buoyant arrangement Deep Purple's "Hush." Their repertoire is also spiced with original compositions that range from country blues to haunting up-tempo dance number. The group has appeared on "The Doo Wop Shop" with Don K. Reed on CBS in NYC, and they continue to support the efforts of the United in Group Harmony Association.

Members: Debbi Hollie, Lorelle Holway, Andrea Leigh, Gregory Paulnack, Michael Werkhizer
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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
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1992 Judges

Johnny Colla   

A Fixture on the Bay Area music scene for 20 years, guitarist-saxophonist Johnny Colla played with artist such as Sly and the Family Stone and Van Morrison before becoming a founding member of Huey Lewis and the News with whom he continues to poerform. They had a big radio hit with their a cappella version of Curtis Mayfield's "It's Alright". He is co-author of many of thee bands hits, including "Heart Of Rock & Roll," "If This Is It," and "Power Of Love." As the primary vocal arranger in the group, one of few top influenced by pop-rock groups of the '60s like the Beach Boys and The Beatles.

Yavette Holts   

President of Presence Productions, San Francisco's premiere, booking agency, started in the late 1980's with the idea of helping Bay Area musicians land quality performance opportunities. Regionally, as well as nationwide. Since then, Presence Productions has developed an extensive roster of some of the best known bay area recording artists, including the likes of Connie Champagne and World Entertainment War.

Allan Kleinschmidt   

Press and Marketing Director with the internationally renowned a cappella vocal ensemble Chanticleer. He has been working in the bay area entertainment community for the past 13 years holding positions with the San Francisco Ballet, Beach Blanket Bingo, the Magic Theatre and a host of commercial theatre productions, most notably Lanford Wilson's "Talley's Folly," Tom Lehrer's "Tomfoolery" and "Footlight Frenzy" by the Fleeting Moment Company. Mr. Kleinschmidt also has performed as a singer with the San Francisco Choral Society, the Bach Choir and the San Francisco Chorus. Before becoming involved with the arts community on a fulltime basis, Alan worked as an entertainment columnist and writer.

Matthew Kaufman   

Founder and president of Beserkley Records, groundbreaking independent record label and home of such artists as Jonathon Richmond and Greg Kihn. Mathew currently manages and produces soon to be famous artists as well as produces documentaries on the Russian Revolution for television.

Bonnie Simmons   

Bonnie has been programming her mix of singer/songwriter folk, rock, soul, country, and R&B on KPFA since the late 1980’s. One of the best loved personalities of Bay Area music radio, she was raised in New York, and then moved to San Francisco from Denver in 1968 and became a pioneer of free form radio.

During her eight years, from 1970 to 1978, at the legendary KSAN, she was program music director and disc jockey. After leaving KSAN, she worked at Warner Bros, promoting Prince as well as the first Dire Straits and Rickie Lee Jones albums, amongst others, and also worked at Hightone Records. She moved in and out of radio at KFOG, LIVE 105, KOFY-FM, KVRE, KDBK “Double 99” and KUSF.

As the Audio Director for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, she created the disc jockey audio exhibit and many of the exhibits involving sound at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Museum in Cleveland, Ohio.

Bonnie managed the band Cake for eight years, and represented Noe Venable and Etienne de Rocher for many years. For the past nine years she has spent a lot of her time working on the three day free music festival in Golden Gate Park, Hardly Strictly Bluegrass, and currently serves as the Executive Director for the Bill Graham Foundation.

Complete list of 1992 participants




Interested in Performing?

We are always seeking groups who would like to participate in our events.

Groups of any style are welcome, but you must have between 3 and 8 members. We have a rule book which explains many of the details of the event, which you can see by clicking here. All groups must audition in order to compete. Generally this is done by sending a current tape and photo, although live auditions are sometimes arranged. The purpose of the audition is to make sure the group is appropriate for the Festival and to help the Director determine the performance order. If a group has competed previously, the audition process may be waived.

How to enter

Please send music and photos to the regional director :


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