The Honorable Ben Folds, “Sing-Off” Judge?

Was I the only one weirded out by Ben Folds being a judge on the new a capella singing competition Sing-Off? Sitting next to a Pussycat Doll and a member of Boyz II Men who didn’t have a solo career, Folds is way out of place from a talent perspective.

He did have some constructive and interesting things to say each time he got a chance (when the Boyz II Men guy would let him speak without interrupting him), and most were actually musical suggestions or compliments about technique instead of the others’ “put some more feeling into it” or “you sounded just like ____ singing that.” Here’s one clip of Folds, the judge:

http://www.hulu.com/watch/115195/the-sing-off-judging-moment

The talent on the show is actually pretty good from a singing standpoint, though you can find thousands of a capella clips on YouTube that are as good or better than the groups featured on this particular competition. As a choral singer myself, I know it takes a tremendous amount of vocal talent and discipline to sing without any accompaniment, and for a group of 8-12 voices to do it so seamlessly takes a lot of practice and rehearsal, so I tip my wannabe vocalist hat to all of them for making it this far–If I had to pick one to win the whole thing, the Puerto Rican group NOTA would be my choice, however.

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