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Afro-Blue‘s special appearance on The Sing-Off last night went off without a hitch, with the Howard University group providing a marvelous setting for Smokey Robinson to perform his big hit “You Really Got a Hold On Me.” (FYI, Dallas-based quintet Pentatonix took the top prize.) And it turned out to be a special appearance indeed. Reports had suggested that all of the Top 10 acts on the show would perform, and they did—-as segues into the commercial breaks. But Afro-Blue’s showcase was something different, as their teacher and director Connaitre Miller explains.
“After last week’s elimination the public took to the press, e-mailing, Facebooking, and Tweeting their displeasure ferociously,” Miller says, in a mass e-mail that she sent yesterday. “There were 31 PAGES of comments responding to Ben Folds’ blog as he explained the reasons for their decision – most of which were quite irritated with the judges and the producers of the show. So – the following day, NBC contacted Afro Blue and asked them to sing a special song with Smokey Robinson on the finale episode.”
In other words, Afro-Blue fans, you did this. And that’s not all you did.
“In addition, Afro Blue has been asked to sing a song with the group ‘Committed,’ which were last season’s winners,” Miller adds. “So, I did the Afro Blue portion of their arrangement for next week (‘Ooo Child’ – a classic) and sent it off to AB last night. Soooo – we get two more weeks of performances on NBC prime time and some pretty special moments. That’s show biz.”
As such, Afro-Blue is on a longer stay in Los Angeles than previously believed. The bad news: Your humble correspondent’s probably going to have to wait a while longer for his post-show interview with group members. The good news: Afro-Blue gets another big shot on network TV, performing in next week’s Sing-Off Christmas episode. And while, yes, the money and recording contract could have been theirs had they not been eliminated, consider this: Record executives, the kind who are no doubt drafting Pentatonix’s deal even as we speak, are inclined to look favorably on a group that attracted such a large fan base that producers showcased them—-twice—-after they were technically off the show.
In other words, keep it up, Afro-Blue fans, and you might just get your favorite singers their big prize after all.