In the 60s you had the Rolling Stones, in the 70s you had Motown, in the 80s you had Simple Minds and “Don’t you…forget about me”, in the 90s you had Nirvana. All, musically, defining periods in our time. You had the mass audience eating every lyric up they wrote. In 2013 that has been flipped on its head with a genre of music that combines rebellion with being a goody two shoes.
The genre of acapella is tasteful, easy on the ear but also a release for my generation and it’s making a comeback. It gives the singer the chance to dream about standing up on stage belting out the hits like a musical hero. “Pitch Perfect” the recent box office hit and American sitcom “Glee” are examples of this phenomenon.
As well as all of that, 2013 is the year of the hipster; I think we can all agree on that! And acappella is the anthem of the hipster. It’s the anthem of the masses of hipsters in their quest to be the hot thing so girls could check them out. It’s a slick sounding, in your face beat when it’s done properly and with the right crowd. Do it wrong and you get lost in the crowd.
The Trinitones are one such example, an Irish University singer society who has twisted the scene on its head with the Irish equivalent of Cambridge/Yale/Harvard now housing their very own modern day “Rolling Stones”. They rock to the beat of their instrumental voices on the streets of Dublin while using flash mobs to rebel against the system in their own way. It’s 2013’s way of being U2.
The infamous way that the Irish rockers stopped a city to make a video is copied in theory by a cappella groups like the tones. To put it simply, acappella will piss people off while at the same time they tap their feet to the beat. Not many musicians can do that anymore.
Modern day acappella can be found all over the internet and Hollywood has taken note with the release of “Pitch Perfect”. The rom-com is not what you think; it mixes classics while keeping true to the songs that are played. It won’t leave you thinking “THAT NUMPTY AMERICAN IDIOT RUINED MY FAVORITE SONG” that’s for sure. One of my favourite songs “Teenage Dirt bag” went viral on Monday in poor auld Ireland. The viral version was sung acappella by the aforementioned “Trinitones”. At first glance it was their way of sticking it to everyone but still managing to look cute and cuddly. How does one do that? If I start singing people hold their ears and cry; not a pretty sight!
Acappella does that though. It brings out laughter without it being clichéd and somewhat cheesy. Also with the impact of Glee and such superstars as Justin Timberlake it’s become cool to sing and dance because it’s urban and an outlet for people to express their outrage but still feel that they aren’t going to stand out to be judged. Acappella will be this generation’s rock and roll; it’s the only way you can survive in history, by making your mark on where you are in life.
I suppose that’s effectively why acappella is so popular. We all want to make our mark on something, be different!