Considered to be a blend of African American and White musical styles that come together, barbershop music offers a unique and peppy feel. These types of songs are often sung, traditionally by four men, in four part harmony. But certainly women, and even entire choirs, can sing the harmonic style that comes along with barbershop music.
National Barbershop Music Appreciation Day is here to show some love on this classic style of music that is still relevant and fascinating today!
History of National Barbershop Music Appreciation Day
While the style of barbershop music is associated with the United States, it may actually have roots that can be traced back to England, with “barber’s music”. However, another origin story has this music originating in the US in the 19th century when barbershops functioned as a social gathering space, which a capella included music.
National Barbershop Music Day got its start in 2005 when it was founded by the Sweet Adelines in honor of their 60th anniversary. This music group was a gathering of women who were married to those who participated in barbershop music and who also loved to sing themselves. That first gathering took place on July 13, 1945 and the Sweet Adelines were born. Since that time, the small group has turned into an international organization that has been instrumental in the support of barbershop music, using education and exposure to build popularity.
The purpose behind National Barbershop Music Appreciation Day was not only to celebrate the anniversary of the Sweet Adelines, but also to increase awareness about and encourage appreciation of barbershop music and quartets.
How to Celebrate National Barbershop Music Appreciation Day
Get involved with National Barbershop Music Appreciation Day by joining in with some of these fun ideas:
Listen to Some Barbershop Music
The internet provides access to such a diverse array of music styles and barbershop music is no different! National Barbershop Music Appreciation Day can be celebrated by listening to (perhaps even for the first time) and enjoy some different groups and songs within this genre. Whether old school from the 1940s when it was at its peak, or more modern versions, today is the day to build or listen to an amazing playlist filled with unique harmonies and soulful tunes.
Check out some of these famous, old-fashioned tunes:
- Hello, Ma Baby by Tin Pan Alley (1899)
- Shine On, Harvest Moon from Ziegfeld Follies (1908)
- Sweet Adeline by Richard Husch Gerard and Harry Armstrong (1903)
Attend a Barbershop Music Concert
Summertime is just the right season to try to catch a barbershop quartet or other singing group performing live. At festivals and fairs, carnivals and concerts in the park, National Barbershop Music Appreciation Day can be celebrated by finding out which local performances are happening and planning some time to attend.
Join a Barbershop Quartet
Singers can get involved with an already existing barbershop quartet or choir. And those who don’t know of one can just grab three friends and start their own! Get a feel for the style of music, get creative and maybe even go on the road in honor of Barbershop Music Appreciation Day!