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December 10, 2014

Pioneer of a cappella music, Stan Krause to be honored


Nestled between a fish market and a Dunkin Donuts on Bergen Avenue is a true historical gem of Jersey City. The place is called Stan's Square Records and it is owned by a man named Stan Krause.

The walls of his store are covered with vinyl records from artists like Lionel Richie, Joe Tex, The Beatles, Nas, and Lorde. His customers all greet him by name and shake his hand. After 36 years in the same location, Krause is a neighborhood fixture.

He was also one of the biggest catalysts of the acapella movement of the sixties and seventies, and will be honored for his success December 12th inside the Council Chambers at City Hall.

"I never looked at it as success," said Krause, 76, of his career in the music industry. "Every record I ever put out was a love, every band I worked with was a love."

It was that self-assurance that led him to a group of Jersey City acapella singers named The Persuasions. Krause arranged a live show for The Persuasions at the State Theater in Journal Square in 1968, for which he would record a live album.

"It was a rainy Tuesday night around final exams time and we still drew a crowd of over 2,000 people," Krause remembers.

Through a friend, the record found its way into the hands of Frank Zappa, who brought the Persuasions under the wing of Reprise Records, which was founded by Frank Sinatra in 1960.

From then on, The Persuasions and Krause's fame grew exponentially. Stan toured all over Europe with the band, even meeting Eva, the woman he would marry, at a show in England.

He would go on to work with many famous acapella groups, including 14 Carat Soul, with whom he appeared on Saturday Night Live with in 1983.

"We made acapella music the sound of Jersey City," said Krause. "From Boston to Baltimore, everybody was listening to it."

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Posted by acapnews at December 10, 2014 12:00 AM