The Vocal Company Blog

AJ Marino

Recent Posts

#FamFeature: Berklee's Pitch Slapped 

Posted by AJ Marino on Apr 4, 2018 11:05:00 AM

From The Sing Off to the ICCA Finals Stage, Pitch Slapped has been a household name in a cappella for over a decade.  People have always loved them for their classic black and white elegance and ability to turn basically any pop hit into a legendary, jazz-infused bop. 

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Topics: Fam Feature, CARA

Jacob Tourjeman: Expecting the Unexpected 

Posted by AJ Marino on Apr 3, 2018 4:23:00 PM

When Jacob Tourjeman takes on a project, he studies, practices, and puts his whole heart into it until it comes out better than you could have ever imagined. Well, he's humble, so he wouldn't tell you that, but if you've heard his work you'll understand what I mean. 

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Topics: Fam Feature, CARA, arranging

#FamFeature: The BU Dear Abbeys

Posted by AJ Marino on Apr 3, 2018 11:50:00 AM

Every few weeks on Commonwealth Avenue in Boston, you'll spot a boy or two with a dashing red tie featuring an odd pattern - a series of tiny Abraham Lincolns. These unique pieces of formal wear are a long-standing tradition passed down through generations of the men of the Boston University Dear Abbeys. 

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Topics: Fam Feature, CARA

Jon Smith: From Self-Taught to Swingle

Posted by AJ Marino on Mar 9, 2018 10:18:34 AM
Jon Smith has many titles. Educator. Singer. Arranger. Director. Friend. Leader. No matter where he goes, he is the resident over-achiever. What makes him so successful isn't just his talent, though he has that in spades; what makes Jon Smith a superhero is his boundless passion for what he does.
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Topics: Fam Feature, Humans of A Cappella, arranging

5 Books Everyone in A Cappella Should Read in 2018

Posted by AJ Marino on Dec 29, 2017 3:07:00 PM

With the holiday season wrapping up, it's time to start looking towards the New Year. Many of us start to looking towards way to get healthy and start living life to the fullest - and what better way way to do that then by challenging your mind with a great book? We're adding "Read More" to our list of New Year's Resolutions....join us! Get cracking on these books, and you may even get a special deal with the links below. 

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Topics: a cappella, a cappella books

5 A Cappella Audition Myths Debunked

Posted by AJ Marino on Sep 7, 2017 5:45:53 PM

No matter what kind of group you are, every group goes through the grueling yet exciting process of auditions. While it may happen every year, finding new members is no easy fit. Finding new members that are the perfect fit?  That's even harder. 

As an alum of 3 a cappella groups (and counting), I've been through my fair share of auditions - some great, some not so great. In my conversations with groups, I realized many of the same audition problems and questions kept coming up - so I wanted to investigate. What are the pros doing that helps them find the best new members every year?  I asked the current and former directors of groups of all levels and sizes to see what they do to prevent common audition mistakes.

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Topics: Rehearsal Strategies

How to Run a Branding Meeting with Your Group

Posted by AJ Marino on Aug 30, 2017 10:00:00 AM

It's the heat of August - you're probably enjoying the final days at the pool, huddling inside air conditioning, or finishing up your most recent jaunt around the world. In the back of your mind, though, is the constant reminder - Fall is coming, and with it, the start of another school year.

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Topics: Marketing, Projects

Aca-Wrap Up: ICCA and ICHSA Week #3

Posted by AJ Marino on Feb 15, 2017 3:58:02 PM

This past weekend, Varsity Vocals put on a whopping fourteen events but don't stress - we'll help catch you up on everything that went down! Skim to your favorite region or get the full update, we've got everything you need to stay in the loop as we head into peak a cappella competition season.

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Topics: Competition, ICCA, ICHSA

Aca-Wrap Up: ICCA and ICHSA Week #2

Posted by AJ Marino on Feb 2, 2017 7:26:50 PM

We're back for the second installment of The Vocal Company's Facts Only Varisty Vocals Aca Wrap Up. This past weekend saw 7 new events across ICCA and ICHSA, and we're here to give you the inside scoop on what went down. 

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Topics: Competition, ICCA, ICHSA

Aca-Wrap Up: ICCA and ICHSA

Posted by AJ Marino on Jan 23, 2017 6:55:28 PM

The 2017 Varsity Vocals season is in full swing, but we know it can be hard to keep track of all the awesomeness going on in every region. Whether you're making an ICCA bracket or competing for the first time in ICHSA, we want to help you stay in the loop! Every Monday, we're going to give you a facts-only wrap up of the weekend's events so you can follow along as the groups make the journey to New York City!

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Topics: Competition, ICCA, ICHSA