Great Honk has right phraseology

What a fun weekend in Albuquerque!



ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (Jan. 27) … Great Honk took the gold in today’s the Buffalo Bills-Era Quartet Contest in Kiva Auditorium.

The youngest quartet among the competitors, members of Great Honk are tenor Shane Scott, lead Eddie Holt, baritone Drew Ellis and bass Jay Hawkins. The quartet name is a reference to The Music Man, which opened on Broadway 50 years ago with the Buffalo Bills starring as the School Board Quartet. Great Honk captured medals, trophies and a check for $3000 as first prize.

Second place, and a check for $2000, went to SAGE. Members are tenor Dick Webber, lead Dave Mittelstadt, baritone Fred King and bass Tom Felgen.

Perfect Timing won third place and a check for $1000. Members are tenor Ed Boehm, lead Robert Thiel, baritone Robert Haase and bass Robert Lemkuil.

Finishing out of the money were Brazen Overture in fourth place and Central Statesmen in fifth. Members of Brazen Overture are tenor Gene Woolcott; lead Ralph Brooks, baritone Dick Kingdon and bass Ed Chapman. Central Statesmen members are tenor Pat Flynn, lead John Marshall, baritone Bill McLaurine and bass Bob Cearnal.

The contest was held held by the Barbershop Quartet Preservation Association (BQPA) in conjunction with the Barbershop Harmony Society’s annual midwinter convention this week in Albuquerque. Funds for the prizes came from the BQPA, an independent subsidiary of the Barbershop Harmony Society.

Judging for the contest hailed back to a five-category system used in 1948 that scored competitors on the arrangement, balance and blend, harmony accuracy, stage presence and costume, and voice expression. Today the Barbershop Harmony Society uses a three-category system, juding on singing, music and presentation.


7 thoughts on “Great Honk has right phraseology

  1. Thanks Mark – yes, we do Lida Rose. We did the Music Man over the summer in the Nashville area, and while this contest was merely called the “Buffalo Bills Quartet Contest”, the object was to sing in the old barbershop style (as opposed to the modern, much more musical and attractive barbershop style) using many of the songs of the old champion quartets of the Buffalo Bills era.

    Thanks, it was fun.

  2. Stan – “Great Honk” is from the slang term that Tommy Djilas (Jee-lus) used in the Music Man. As in… “I was just walkin’ her home, great honk!” or some such usage.

    We formed a quartet that was a competitor in the “Buffalo Bills” era quartet contest; an old barbershop quartet contest where the categories and judging criteria were used from the 1950’s. We picked a Music Man term because the Buffalo Bills were the quartet in the movie (and on Broadway) production of The Music Man.

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