Tonic Sol-fa (a cappella group)
Tonic Sol-fa is an all-male a cappella quartet from the Minneapolis-St. Paul region. With a largely pop-music-oriented repertoire, their CDs have sold over 1,000,000 copies, and the group has toured throughout the US and abroad.
In their twelve years together, Tonic Sol-fa has become a much in-demand vocal quartet. In addition to substantial CD sales of its own independent releases, the group has toured extensively, performing at festivals and private shows that eventually led to sold-out tours of theaters and small arenas.
Tonic Sol-fa began at St. John’s University in Collegeville, Minnesota, with baritone Mark McGowan and lead vocalist Shaun Johnson, while both were students in the mid-1990s. Shortly after forming the group, the two auditioned for a local entertainment agency which helped organize their performance and appearance schedule. Tenor Greg Bannwarth and bass Jared Dove joined soon after. The quartet received national attention with appearances on NBC’s Today Show and in Newsweek magazine. They have shared the stage with a number of well-known performers including Jay Leno, Jeff Foxworthy and Lonestar, among others, and in 2004 were part of Garrison Keillor’s 30th anniversary celebration of A Prairie Home Companion.
The group had to overcome the obstacle of resistance to a cappella acts by individuals in the music industry. Still, the group persevered, recording and manufacturing its own CDs and selling them to fans via the Internet, in the lobby of the theaters where they performed, and now through national distribution.
Tonic Sol-fa has received multiple Contemporary Acappella Recording Awards and NACA entertainer of the year nominations. Their music appears on a popular seasonal DVD, The 12 Dogs of Christmas.
Tonic Sol-fa released their first television holiday special in 2007, which aired over 1800 times in forty-seven states and Canada. The television special will be broadcast through 2010. In 2008 it began to be distributed worldwide, continuing to spread the group's unique sound.
Members since 2000
- Shaun Johnson - tenor (founding member)
- Mark McGowan - baritone (founding member)
- Greg Bannwarth - tenor
- Jared Dove - bass
- Cheston Lance - tenor (founding member)
- Tim Hoback - bass
- Greg Terhaar - tenor (founding member)
- Steve Smith - bass (founding member)
- Boston to Beijing Compact Disc (June 2005)
Self Produced Releases
- Twenty One Compact Disc (2012)
- March of The Kings Compact Disc (2011)
- Greatest Time of Year DVD (2010)
- Greatest Time of Year Compact Disc (2010)
- Just One of Those Days Compact Disc (2009)
- Christmas Companion Compact Disc (2008)
- On Top Of The World (Holiday) Compact Disc (2007)
- Christmas DVD (2006)
- By Request Compact Disc (2004)
- Red Vinyl Compact Disc (2003)
- Sugarue (Holiday) Compact Disc (2002)
- Style Compact Disc (2001)
- Carol (Holiday) Compact Disc (1997)
- Left Turns in Cross Traffic Compact Disc (1996)
- 4 hours and 12 days Compact Disc (1995)