ReVoiced

From left to right includes percussionist Justin Crichfield, baritone Mark Hasman, high tenor Nate Tao, tenor and founder Chris Rossie and bass Rolin Alexis. ReVoiced is performing in Oregon March 6.

ReVoiced, a five-man a capella group that has re-imagined — or “re-voiced” — popular songs with a Motown flair, is coming to Oregon Friday, March 6.

As part of a Spotlight Headliners Series spearheaded by Oregon High School Performing Arts Center director Nate Mendl, ReVoiced is taking the stage at 7:30 p.m. at the PAC, located on 456 N. Perry Pkwy.

ReVoiced is the second artist in the Spotlight Headliners Series, which will conclude Friday, May 1, with percussion comedy act Buckets N Boards. The series kicked off Oct. 12, 2019, with R&B and jazz vocalist Jane L. Powell.

Tickets are $20 for adults, $18 for seniors 65 and older and $10 for students 19 and under. To purchase tickets, visit oregonperformingartscenter.com.

The group, which formed in 2012, consists of group founder and tenor vocalist Chris Rossi, baritone vocalist Mark Hasman, bass vocalist Rolin Alexis, high tenor vocalist Nate Tao and percussionist Justin Crichfield.

Each member has their own repertoire of talent credentials — Tao competed on “American Idol,” Rossi on “The Sing-Off,” Alexis works for Disney World quartet the Dapper Dans and sings in its Voices of Liberty a capella group, Crichfield is an audio producer and Hasman is pursuing his master’s degree in public health.

Mendl told the Observer in September 2019 that audience members will be in for a treat with the ReVoiced brand of choreography reminiscent of Motown group The Temptations, but redone with a modern sound.

Alexis told the Observer in a Friday, Feb. 28, phone interview with the group, ReVoiced will showcase not only the “vocal cleanliness” most a capella groups strive for, but “visual cleanliness” — as the sound is paired with the extravagant Motown dance moves and colorful light displays. He said visitors are always in for a “full on” production of a capella covers of pop songs molded into the ReVoiced style.

For information, call PAC director Mendl at 835-4492 or email pac.director@oregonsd.net.

Coming together

Though the group didn’t officially form until 2012, Rossi said its roots trace back to Ithaca College, a private liberal arts school he attended in Ithaca, New York in the early 2000s.

One of the original ReVoiced members, Johnny Gieringer, came up with the band name while sitting on Rossi’s mother’s couch years back. Gieringer moved on to pursue other opportunities in 2016, he said.

“We wanted a name with the word ‘voice’ somehow in the name … the principle of taking songs that are popular and reinventing them … presenting them in a different way,” he remembered. “We threw a bunch of different names around.”

ReVoiced had another original member, Zakk Wooten, who moved on to take on other ventures two years earlier, Rossi said.

When Gieringer and Wooten left, Rossi turned to two old friends he met at Ithaca College — Hasman when Wooten left, and Tao when Gieringer did.

Alexis soon came into the picture when he and Rossi both subbed for the a capella group Rockapella, he said.

And Crichfield was suggested to ReVoiced by Ben Bram, founder of Pentatonix, Alexis said.

Making a difference

Not only is ReVoiced ushering its unique sound to Oregon, but the group’s love for community and making a difference.

The members concurred that the Spotlight Headliners Series allows them to be a part of something that brings people together.

Additionally, ReVoiced brings its enjoyment of music to schools through its Music in Schools Tour, established in 2014 by the group, Alexis said.

The group reaches out to music teachers who bring ReVoiced to schools across the nation for a show, with a portion of proceeds going back into the school’s music program. As part of the show, ReVoiced also conducts musical workshops with students.

Alexis said when school boards examine what to cut in their annual budget, music programs are often the first thing to go. The Music in Schools Tour aims to prevent that, while energizing students to engage in the art. He said the tour has garnered $70,000 so far.

Five years ago, ReVoiced partnered with Best Buddies, an organization that helps facilitate friendships with people who have developmental and intellectual disabilities. To spread awareness of the organization’s cause, ReVoiced shot a music video performing a cover of Meghan Trainor’s “I Luv Me.”

In 2018, the group was part of the American Music Abroad Program, Hasman said.

For that, ReVoiced spent a month travelling through Indonesia and Malaysia sharing their sound.

“The government takes a handful of groups each year to represent the United States and share their version of American music,” he said.

Email Emilie Heidemann at emilie.heidemann@wcinet.com or follow her on Twitter at @HeidemannEmilie.