Barbershop Arranging News

SemiQuaver: n. Music. A sixteenth note. British.

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Twice each month a different Barbershop arranger will be featured, along with 3-4 of his/her recent works. One of them might be great for your chorus or quartet.

Tom Gentry

Tom Gentry fell in love with barbershop music when his high school choral director cast him in The Music Man quartet. Not long after, Tom made his first arrangement, Happy Birthday to You. Since then he has arranged hundreds of songs, many of which have been sung by champion quartets and choruses of both genders.

Tom was certified as an Arrangement judge in 1979 and a Music judge in 1993. He was Music Category Specialist from 1995-97. Tom worked for the Barbershop Harmony Society from 1985-92 and continues to serve on the Music Publishing Committee.

Tom's quartet, Friends of Old, competed at the 1982 Pittsburgh international, and he earned fourth-place medals with the Houston Tidelanders (1970) and San Diego Sun Harbor Chorus (1973). He has served for many years as an arranging instructor at Harmony University. Tom's extensive list of arrangements can be seen at his website:

Bare Necessities is a happy Disney song from The Jungle Book. Introduced to the barbershop world by current gold medalist Storm Front, this arrangement is quite lively and, especially in the interlude, unique. Learning tracks for this contestable tune are available for both men and women.

Kazoo Koncerto combines a simple story with classical music that is—what else?—played on kazoos! It is hard to imagine a more fun change of pace for singer and audience alike. Again, learning tracks are available for both genders.

Good Enough for Now is sung with tongue firmly in cheek. The lyrics tell most creatively how wonderful—well, sort of wonderful; actually, not too bad—you think the person you are dating is. This offbeat song is contestable for either gender. Learning tracks have been made for men and could be done for women.

Can't Buy Me Love is, of course, a classic Beatles song. Happily, it can be sung in contest in the BHS system, perhaps even in SAI. At any rate, it is most energetic and creative show tune, one for which women's learning tracks are available and men's should be out before too long.

For further information, you can email Tom at

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