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By Terri Wells
Men's a cappella singing group "Sounds Like Chicken" is celebrating their eighth year by recruiting new members. So if you're a man whose idea of a fun Friday night involves singing with some friends, you just might want to check out these Winter Garden-based performers.

According to group leader Chad McClellan, the group grew out of the Garden Community Choir. Back in December 2007, the idea of a standard four-person men's barbershop quartet.

"I didn't want us to do just barbershop," McClellan explained. Yes, the group performs barbershop and traditional men's choral music, but they also do spirituals and contemporary songs.

"Sometimes I hear something on the radio I like and we'll try it," he added.

The group started rehearsing in January 2008, under the name "Blue Collar Harmony." Four became five, and five grew to their current group of 10. Once they grew past five, though, the original name didn't seem to fit anymore.

"We pondered for weeks as to what a good name would be," McClellan revealed. Eventually, a conversation about eating alligator led to the statement that alligator tastes like chicken.

"Someone suggested 'Tastes Like Chicken' should be our name, and another guy exclaimed 'No, SOUNDS Like Chicken,' and the name was born," he elaborated.

It's a particularly fitting name, according to McClellan. "Later on, we came to the realization that as a group, we might be different ages, races, and nationalities (these different 'flavors'), but when we came together to sing, we were all the same (as, of course, everything tastes like chicken)," he concluded.

Comprised of adult men mostly in their 20s and 30s, the oldest member of "Sounds Like Chicken" is currently in his late 60s. Most live in the Winter Garden area, as they hold rehearsals every Friday night at 6:30 at the First United Methodist Church of Winter Garden.

"We do have a couple of members in the Disney and Universal areas," McClellan observed, adding that they're simply looking for adult men who are tenors, baritones, or basses and who love to sing.

"We often perform when the Garden Community Choir performs, but we're not actually part of the choir, and we've done a number of shows on our own," McClellan stated. In addition to churches in Winter Garden, the group has performed at retirement homes, the Orlando Regional Medical Center hospital, and the Winter Garden Music Festival.

Indeed, they've developed a following. "We call ourselves 'Chickeneers,' and our fans call themselves 'Chickenheads' as a play on 'Parrotheads,'" McClellan revealed, alluding to the name that Jimmy Buffet fans adopted for themselves.

The group has two upcoming performances. The first one, on February 27 at 4pm, will be at the first Baptist Church of Winter Garden, with the proceeds to benefit Matthew's Hope. The second one will be held at 4pm on May 21 at First United Methodist Church of Orlando.

Sounds Like Chicken's rehearsal venue, First United Methodist Church of Winter Garden, is located at 125 North Lakeview Avenue in Winter Garden. Those interested in learning more about the group, or auditioning, should contact Chad McClellan at tenorthechad@yahoo.com.


Men's a cappella group "Sounds Like Chicken"
seeking new "Chickeneers" to celebrate 8th year
sounds like chicken
"Sounds Like Chicken" is celebrating their eighth year by recruiting new members. The group started in 2008 and the men's a cappella group now has 10 voices. (Courtesy photo)

 

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