Friday, 14 February 2014

Fancy Things Friday: Pentatonix

Welcome to Fancy Things Friday, where I talk about things on a Friday that I think are fancy!!

So this week, I'm heading back to the world of Youtube. This will probably mean that, as the main bulk of my readers are Internet Junkies, you will all already know about what I'm going to talk about, however, my love for who I'm going to talk about has multiplied this week, due to me overexposing myself to them... and of course, by 'overexposing' I obviously mean that I have OD'ed on watching their videos, rather than sending them explicit photos of myself or anything... just in case you were confused. 

So, as the title suggests, today I will be talking about the amazingness that is Pentatonix.

I was first exposed to Pentatonix about this time last year, when The-Family I was living with at the time showed me a video they did on the Evolution of Music. This video can be found at the bottom of the post. I was blown away by what they did. For those who don't know, they are an acapella group, consisting of five people, Kirstie, Scott, Mitch, Avi and Kevin, who have managed to find a way to do things to their voices that, quite simply, makes my brain explode. They are also so creative with their arrangements of songs, to the point where I have regularly shouted at their videos with phrases like "How are you even doing that?" or "I want to live inside your body and be you!"

Anywho, after seeing this video, I became a tad over-obsessed with them. I found myself going into work and insisting that Work-Buddy-James watch their entire collection of youtube videos whilst I sat by him and highlighted to him all the ways in which they are awesome... needless to say, after about the second video, Work-Buddy-James suggested that he just go away and watch them himself, explaining that he might enjoy the whole experience a lot more if he was able to actually hear what they were singing without the constant commentary... Each to their own, I guess. 

Equally, when preparing for a night out with One-And-Only-Daniela, I would replace her usual RnB playlist with that of their album, and get offended when she didn't immediately want to hear each song at least five times (although she was impressed with them, she made me turn the album off after it started to play for the second time, for reasons I will never understand). 

Whilst on a holiday car ride with The-Parents over the summer, I took over the music and introduced Marmie and Father to Pentatonix and the awesomeness that they were. Marmie was overly indifferent to the whole experience, although Father at least feigned interest. In particular, when I played their arrangement of Carol of The Bells, despite Christmas being a whole 5 months away.

As you may have realised by now, I'm one of those people who, when finding something I passionately love, will not rest until my entire social circle is also in love with them. This usually works, but in times where my passion takes over and I forget to at least reign it in a little, it can then have the opposite effect on the people around me. They have been known to get freaked out by my excitement and therefore get put off by the thing I am ramming down their throat. If I'm honest, I had thought I'd done this with The-Parents. 

Then, a month prior to Christmas, Father posted their version of Little Drummer Boy (see below) onto Facebook and I almost cried with happiness. This may seem weird, or it may seem completely understandable, dependent on how hard you fandom people (can that be used as a verb? Well, it can now). My reasons for being so happy however, is that there is nothing more amazing to me than when I manage to convert a person to a thing I love. I get this massive sense of happiness, knowing that their lives have now been enriched that little bit more and I have one more person to get all excited with, when said thing comes up in topic. It happened the day I got One-And-Only-Daniela into Doctor Who (although she has fallen behind with that now, I need to rectify that) and it will equally be amazing, once I have managed to get her to watch all of Sherlock... Which I plan to start tonight, when I see her. I've even strategised how I will get her hooked. I'm thinking of leading with the video of the kiss. Anywho, I digress. 

Back to Father. He had posted this video onto Facebook, gushing about how amazing Pentatonix were in this rendition, and I immediately commented, telling him how happy I was that he had actually taken my advice on music. Needless to say, this is a topic that we haven't always seen eye to eye on, given that he is Salvation Army through and through, and so has a tendency towards the Brass Band genre...

It wasn't until Christmas however, that we sat around having Christmas dinner and I thought it would be awesome to play Pentatonix's Christmas album. Father looked at me in surprise and said "Oh! So you've heard of them too?"

I gaped at him for a ridiculously long amount of time. Was he being serious? He knew I'd heard of them. I had sodding introduced him to them. When I tried to explain this to him however, he claimed to not have any memory of this. According to him, he had found Pentatonix all on his own, and with no help from me. I don't know why this upset me so much, but I felt outraged. It wasn't often that I was able to influence Father in the way of music and have him accept and enjoy my tastes. I had, for the past month, built this imaginary solidarity between the two of us, whereby our love for Pentatonix had bonded our relationship as Father and Daughter to a new degree, and it was us against the world. It felt as if this was all falling away from me now. 

This then seemed to be worsened when Younger-Brother-Daniel asked for more information about them, not having heard of them before, and I went into a speech about how they became popular by creating youtube videos. 

Father cleared his throat and said, rather smugly, "Actually, I think you'll find that they became famous thanks to winning a singing competition called 'The Sing-off'. If I'm honest, this rang vague alarm bells in my memory and I was certain I had also heard that from somewhere. However, I had hit stubborn mode and in my desperate plea to still come across as the person who knew the most about this group, I told him that this wasn't the thing that made them famous. It was youtube. 

A little tip when arguing a point with my Father, should you ever bizarrely find yourself in this situation, in the future. Since the world of iphones was created, he has stocked his phone with a whole range of apps that allow him to prove how right he is in every argument. What's more, he is not afraid to use these apps at any point he can. Which is what he did on Christmas day. 

Once finding the proof of their participation in The Sing-off, he turned to me with an overly smug smile and said, "I do believe that this proves I'm right." I, of course, tried to justify my own argument by saying that they are famous now because of youtube, and it was predominantly their youtube followers who are their main fanbase. The argument sizzled out eventually, largely due to the constant "I'm right, and you lose" smile Father kept on his face, despite my attempts to justify myself. 

After Christmas, I continued to follow their music, and love them massively. I have even spent a day of my life breaking down Carol of the Bells into their relative vocal parts and learnt all of Kirstie's parts, with the view that all I needed to do was find four guys who then wanted to sing the other parts, and then I would be the happiest person alive... If anyone's interested, let me know. 

This week however, it seems like I have re-caught the bug. I have spent hours relistening to their songs on repeat and was up until 2am this morning listening to every song they did from The Sing-Off. I have become a woman possessed, and these are the reasons why: 

Basically, their talent is out of this world. They are always completely on point with every one of their arrangements, and constantly create new and interesting arrangements of songs that cause me to usually end up preferring their version. I am blown away by their musical prowess. Being a gal who studied Music right through school with my voice as my main instrument, I can fully appreciate the level of understanding and skill that goes into creating what they do. It's something that I could never do, nor most other people. And they just continue to do it, over and over, with new arrangements and new ideas. Quite simply, I am in awe of them. 

Now that I've talked non stop; how about I show you what I mean. Below are a collection of my favourite videos, starting with the three I've mentioned above; Evolution of Music, Carol of the Bells and Little Drummer Boy: 

I've overloaded you with them. Pick whichever you want to listen to... might I suggest all of them? And there are loads more, if you follow this link to their youtube page. 

Also, I couldn't talk about Pentatonix on youtube without also making reference to Scott and Mitch's Super Fruit page, where they vlog and stuff. One more channel I've recently added to the 'Distract myself from ever doing anything worthwhile with my life' follower list on youtube that I have. Check that out here

That's it for today. Happy Valentines Day and you are very welcome for the awesome music tip. 

Peace out my lovelies. 

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