Pentatonix Brings Pop Music To New Heights

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Pentatonix seen at Warner Bros. world premiere screening of The Wizard of Oz in IMAX 3D. (Eric Charbonneau/AP)
Pentatonix seen at Warner Bros. world premiere screening of The Wizard of Oz in IMAX 3D. (Eric Charbonneau/AP)

We were joined in-studio by five musicians, and zero instruments — no drums, no guitars, no keyboards — just five voices that, together, form the internationally acclaimed a cappella supergroup, Pentatonix.

They were winners of NBC's "The Sing-Off" back in 2011, and they've since toured all over the world and performed everywhere from The Tonight Show to Ellen to Sesame Street. Today, they make their Radio Boston debut.


Scott Hoying, lead vocalist. He tweets at @scotthoying.

Kirstin Maldonado, lead vocalist. She tweets at @kirstin_taylor.

Mitch Grassi, lead vocalist. He tweets at @mitchgrassi.

Avi Kaplan, vocal bass. He tweets at @Avi_Kaplan.

Kevin Olusola, beatboxer. He tweets at @KOlusola.


On not knowing each other before singing together:
Scott Hoying: "We actually lived in four different states and so the only day that we could rehearse was the day before, so that's actually when we met Kevin and that's when some people met Avi. It was kind of a crazy thing. The trio was the original group, it was just the three of us and we grew up together, we'd sung together for a long time. But when we added Avi and Kevin it was kind of just a fate thing. We didn't know if it was going to be good or if it would sound right, but when we all sang together for the first time it was just an organic, special moment. We didn't even have to rehearse that much, it just worked. And we're very thankful for that."

On what it's like to make arrangements for an all-vocal band:
Mitch Grassi: "It's a collaborative thing, pretty much. I mean, we just sit in a circle and throw out ideas and just work with different ideas until we have a solid foundation for a song. It can be pretty challenging sometimes. We definitely have road blocks and creative differences."

On transitioning to original music:
Scott Hoying: "It's hard for an a capella group to transition to original music. But we love writing and we really want to be original artists. We're slowly but surely getting there. We've been writing a lot lately and we're going to do an original for you today that we're excited about."

On a capella becoming more popular:
Scott Hoying: "I just think a lot of people really enjoy this music. They're just never really exposed to it in the right way and I think that a cappella is definitely becoming the forefront of music in a lot of ways because people are looking for something organic and vocal that brings it back to the roots of choral music."


This segment aired on April 4, 2014.


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