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Straight No Chaser are an American a cappella musical group who formed at Indiana University in Bloomington, Indiana in 1996.
Straight No Chaser aren’t so titled for nothing; they’re an a cappella group, meaning that there’s no instrumentation to their music – just the sound of their voices. Originally, there were ten members in the group, students who met at Indiana University – Steve Morgan, Jerome Collins, Dave Roberts, Dan Ponce, Randy Stine, Walter Chase, Mike Itkoff, Patrick Hachey, Kevin Carroll and Charlie Mechling. They took their name from ‘Straight, No Chaser’, the Thelonious Monk record from 1967.
They made their debut at a 36 hour dance marathon – a baptism of fire, by anybody’s standards – and went on to attract national attention, performing at such venues as Wrigley Field in Chicago and Carnegie Hall in New York, the latter as part of a national tour of their own. In 1999, the original lineup graduated and were replaced, although they would go on to reform in 2006 – a little while afterwards, the collegiate group, still in existence, would change their name, although the alcohol theme was retained – they are now Another Round.
The original group continue to perform together today, and have recorded four records – the first two, 2008’s ‘Holiday Spirits’ and 2009’s ‘Christmas Cheers’ being festive efforts. Their frequent national tours in the U.S. serve as testament to their enduring popularity.