The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University

The Vanderbilt Hustler

The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University.
Since 1888
The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University

The Vanderbilt Hustler

The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University.
The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University

The Vanderbilt Hustler

The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University.

Melodores continue to capture attention during quarantine

Although most student organizations halted meetings after the COVID-19 dispersal, male a cappella group The Melodores is staying virtually active and connected.
The Melodores are mastering technology and having their voices heard despite the limits of quarantine. Photo courtesy @vanderbiltmelodores

With students scattered across the U.S. and around the globe, most on-campus student organizations have halted activities for the rest of the semester. However, the renowned all-male a cappella group the Melodores has refused to let up, gaining unprecedented traction during this trying time. With features on Good Morning America, Joe Biden’s Twitter Campaign ad, NBC National News, ABC and Nashville News4, the Melodores have been anything but quiet.

The Melodores’ yearly performances have been a Vanderbilt a cappella staple since 2009, but they’ve had to cancel their upcoming tour due to COVID-19. 

“In January, our Spring Tour through Shanghai and Beijing was cancelled after a needle-moving, arduous 4-5 month planning process,” Melodores Music Director senior Matt Zhang wrote in an email to The Hustler. “With a single email from Vanderbilt, the 20 or so performances we had lined up for the remainder of the semester all went POOF.”

The Melodores also had an album release planned for the summer, which has been postponed indefinitely. Despite COVID-19 throwing a wrench in their immediate plans, the Melodores are trying to stay positive during quarantine and have found support and comfort in each other. 

“As soon as everyone had settled in back home, we almost immediately got on calls and began brainstorming ways we could still create music as a group,” first-year Jacob Friedmann wrote in an email. “Being able to stay active and connected with the guys, however virtual that may be, has truly been a blessing.” 

However, actually figuring out a way to coordinate practice sessions has been challenging. Differing wi-fi speeds, time zones and sound delays have prevented the Melodores from singing and practicing live. In order to pull off their recent covers of Justin Timberlake and Lizzo hits, the Melodores had to get creative. Through some skilled-yet-impromptu video editing of individual iPhone recordings, they were able to piece together their viral videos. 

Although they put together their online covers mainly for their own enjoyment and to keep their musical brotherhood strong, the attention the Melodores have been generating has led to an opportunity to be featured on Adobe Students

This project by Adobe was recently launched in order to highlight kindness and positivity during quarantine, and the Melodores will be featured on April 27 for their efforts to stay united. 

“It has been extremely humbling and uplifting to know that our story has brought some joy to the lives of others during a tough situation,” Zhang said. 

You can watch the Melodores latest collaborations together on their growing Youtube channel under their most recent playlist, “Generation XI.”

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About the Contributor
Rachel Wei
Rachel Wei, Former Voices Editor
Rachel Wei ('22) is from Rockville, Maryland. She triple majored in human and organizational development, biology and English literature. In addition to writing and editing for The Hustler, Rachel is the Director of Communications for VSG and a member of the professional business fraternity AKPsi. In her free time, Rachel enjoys reading sci-fi dystopian novels, watching Broadway musicals and traveling.
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