« McFerrin includes young audience in jazz experience | Main | A cappella wins a GRAMMY »

February 15, 2005

Vocal group's lineup may change, but music remains the same

Daily Sun (FL):

With the vocal group Three Hits and a Miss, the hits may change, but the miss remains the same. One of the hits, Dennis Curley, is quite new - he joined the group in December. "It's been great," Curley said. "I love singing with these guys. I like the way the voices blend together. Very smooth." The three hits - Curley, David Anderson, and Drew Jansen - and the miss - Jody Briskey - created perfect harmony during two performances both Thursday and Friday night at Savannah Center. "The sound is wonderful with this group," Briskey said. "Creamy, rich vocals. A great group of people to work with."

The quartet from Minneapolis covered a variety of tunes from the 1940s through the 1960s, putting their stamp on such classics as "Glow Little Glow Worm," "Sentimental Journey," "Nowhere Man," "California Dreamin'," "Mambo Italiano," and an a cappella version of "This Land Is Your Land." The four also took solo turns on stage, with Anderson performing "If I Can't Love Her" from the Broadway hit "Beauty and the Beast," and Curley taking the Righteous Brothers' "Unchained Melody." Jansen, one of the newer hits, had the audience laughing with a country song he wrote called "Five Years or 50,000 Lies." He took various car model names and terminology to explain a man's love for a woman. "So before we have a head-on collision, let's reach an Accord," Jansen sang. "I'll love you for five years or 50,000 lies, whichever comes first."

While Curley has officially been with the group for a couple of months, he wasn't completely foreign to the group. In fact, he wasn't nervous during his first performance in December. "We've known each other forever," Curley said. "I was perfectly at home." He had always been considered an alternate should one of the other singers not be able to make it, but his schedule never quite meshed until now. Curley's introduction to music came through his mother, who was a singer, and his family had a piano in their home. His main gig now is with a wedding band in Minneapolis. As for his favorite tune from the concert, he picked "Goody, Goody" because "I like the title. Seriously."

Rob Dorn came up with the concept of this Three Hits and a Miss in Chicago, but it disbanded. Not willing to admit defeat, Dorn tried again in Minneapolis, and he found three vocalists in 1995. "Everyone has had a love for this [sound]," Briskey said. While some songs get put away for a rest, Briskey said that "Sun Valley" has managed to stay in the set list from the group's inception. "That song has our sound in it," Briskey said, "bright, clear harmony. We never get tired of that one." Briskey, who has been in the musical theater world for 25 years, enjoys it when she is able to make the audience feel the same way she feels about a song she is performing. "I can't do music I can't relate to, that I can't feel in my gut," Briskey said. "It's easy to get lost in a song".

Posted by acapnews at February 15, 2005 12:45 AM