Kaplan performing at The Ready Room in St. Louis on August 19, 2019
|Other names||Avriel & the Sequoias|
|Occupation||Singer, guitarist, songwriter|
|Labels||RCA, Madison Gate, Sequoia Summit Records, Fantasy Records|
Avriel Benjamin "Avi" Kaplan (born April 17, 1989) is an American singer and songwriter, best known as a past member of the a cappella group Pentatonix. He is known for his deep bass voice, and often acted as the vocal bass of Pentatonix. In May 2017, Kaplan announced that he was leaving Pentatonix following their upcoming tour.
In June 2017, Kaplan released his solo debut EP Sage and Stone, released under the name Avriel & the Sequoias and more oriented towards folk, in which he also plays guitar. In March 2019, he premiered a new song, "Change on the Rise," now resuming using the name Avi Kaplan. His second EP, I'll Get By, was released in February 2020.
Avriel Benjamin Kaplan was born in Visalia, California, where he was also raised. He has a brother, Joshua Kaplan, and a sister, Esther Koop, who is Pentatonix's tour manager as of April 2018. He is Jewish, which was the cause of repeated bullying as a child.
He loved folk music, and frequently went to the nearby Sequoia National Park, which became an inspiration for his music. He considers his earliest musical inspirations to be Simon & Garfunkel, John Denver, Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, and Bill Withers. Later inspirations include Iron & Wine, Bon Iver, Ben Harper, and José González.
He joined Pentatonix in 2011, when original members Kirstin Maldonado, Mitch Grassi and Scott Hoying were searching for a bass singer and a beatboxer. The group met the day before the auditions for the third season of The Sing-Off began. The group successfully auditioned for the show and eventually went on to win the title for 2011 (season three). Kaplan acted as the group's vocal bass, but frequently sang lead parts as well.
As a member of Pentatonix, Kaplan won three Grammy awards. On February 8, 2015, Pentatonix won a Grammy in the "Best Arrangement, Instrumental or A cappella" category for their song "Daft Punk," a medley of songs by Daft Punk. On February 15, 2016, Pentatonix won a Grammy in the same category, this time for their rendition of “Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy” from their That's Christmas to Me album. On February 12, 2017, Pentatonix won a Grammy in the "Best Country duo/group performance" category for their cover of "Jolene," which featured Dolly Parton.
On April 29, 2017, Kaplan premiered "Fields and Pier," his first song as a solo artist, under the name "Avriel & the Sequoias." In May 2017, Kaplan announced that he would be leaving Pentatonix to spend more time with friends and family. His debut EP, Sage and Stone, was released on June 9, 2017.
In October 2019, he announced a European tour, his first since leaving Pentatonix.
On November 5, 2019, he announced an upcoming EP, "I'll Get By", set to be released January 24, 2020, along with an accompanying tour. On January 21, 2020, the release was postponed to February 28 as a result of being signed to Fantasy Records.
- Sage and Stone (2017; released as Avriel & the Sequoias)
- I'll Get By (2020)
- "Change on the Rise" (2019)
- "Otherside" (2019)
- "The Summit" (2019)
- "Aberdeen" (2019)
- "Get Down" (2019)
- "I'll Get By" (2019)
- "It Knows Me" (2020)
- "Sweet Adeline Pt.2" (2020)
- "Born in California" (2020)
- Home Free – "Champagne Taste on a Beer Budget"
Avi Kaplan embarked on his first solo live shows with 'Nashville Residency' at The Basement in Nashville, TN. It was a series of 5 shows over the course of 3 weeks in April 2019. All 5 shows were sold out. He was accompanied by Daniel Ellsworth (piano/vocals), Jeremy Lister (guitar/vocals), Jonathan Lister (drums/vocals) and Kaleb Thomas Jones (bass guitar/vocals). The Lister brothers and Jones are also members of Street Corner Symphony.
In July 2019, Kaplan began the Otherside Tour which took him to California, Washington State, Oregon. The tour continued in August 2019 going to New York, Massachusetts, Illinois, Missouri, Oklahoma, and Texas. Daniel Ellsworth played an opening set at the Troubour, LA on July 10, 2019 and at the Aladdin Theater, OR on July 15, 2019.
In October 2019, tickets went on sale for Kaplan's I’ll Get By Tour in Europe and in November 2019, the tickets for North America went on sale. Tour dates have been announced for the Netherlands, Germany, Belgium, the UK, the USA and Canada. In January, 2020, it was publicized that the Indie-Folk duo Paper Wings would be joining Kaplan for the U.S. dates of the tour. During the I'll Get By Tour in Europe & North America Kaplan was accompanied on stage by Kaleb Thomas Jones (bass guitar/vocals) and Noah Denney (drums/vocals).
- "Bio". Avriel & the Sequoias' official website. Archived from the original on 2017-04-24. Retrieved April 30, 2017.
- "Grammy Awards Winners". Archived from the original on 2015-02-09. Retrieved February 8, 2015.
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- "Welcome to the a Capella Revolution". Forward. February 11, 2014. Archived from the original on 2017-08-08. Retrieved April 30, 2017.
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- Bentley, Jean (November 29, 2011). "'The Sing Off' winners Pentatonix on YouTube, Nick Lachey and recording an album". zap2it.com. Retrieved August 25, 2012.
- Gallo, Phil (November 29, 2011). "'The Sing-Off' Finale: Pentatonix Takes The Trophy". Billboard.com. Archived from the original on 2013-12-30. Retrieved August 25, 2012.
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- "Pentatonix Just Scored Their Second Grammy In a Row!". Archived from the original on 2017-08-08. Retrieved 2017-05-28.
- "Dolly Parton and Pentatonix win country duo/roup performance award for 'Jolene'". Archived from the original on 2017-07-05. Retrieved 2017-05-28.
- "Media". Avriel & the Sequoias' official website. Archived from the original on 2017-04-24. Retrieved April 30, 2017.
- Nyren, Erin (May 12, 2017). "Avi Kaplan Exits Pentatonix in Tearful Goodbye Video". Variety. Penske Media Corporation. Archived from the original on 2017-05-15. Retrieved May 13, 2017.
- on YouTube
- Kaplan, Avi (2019-11-05). "Today's the day! Beyond excited to share a new song, new TOUR, and an EP coming in January! Truly can't wait for you all to hear the new EP and play it for you live. Thank you all so much for all the love and support. It's fuel to my soul pic.twitter.com/hahrmNd3KI". @Avi_Kaplan. Retrieved 2020-02-25.
- Kaplan, Avi (2019-11-05). "I'll Get By EP out January 24. Pre-order bundles available now - http://smarturl.it/AKIGBpo pic.twitter.com/pJZgjZFIEN". @Avi_Kaplan. Retrieved 2020-02-25.
- Kaplan, Avi (2020-01-21). "A message from Avi.pic.twitter.com/dhH2uNIjcn". @Avi_Kaplan. Retrieved 2020-02-25.
- "Home Free Cover Johnny Cash's 'Ring of Fire' A Capella With Pentatonix's Avi Kaplan [VIDEO]". Pop Crush. July 24, 2014. Archived from the original on 2017-06-02. Retrieved April 30, 2017.
- "Avi Kaplan's "Nashville Residency" at The Basement in Nashville, TN". March 2, 2019. Archived from the original on July 14, 2019. Retrieved July 14, 2019.
- "Avi Kaplan's "Otherside Tour"". April 22, 2019. Archived from the original on May 7, 2019. Retrieved July 14, 2019.
- "Avi Kaplan at the Troubadour, LA". June 21, 2019. Archived from the original on July 14, 2019. Retrieved July 14, 2019.
- "Avi Kaplan's "European Tour"". October 4, 2019. Archived from the original on 2019-10-09. Retrieved October 4, 2019.
- "Avi Kaplan's "I'll Get By Tour"". November 5, 2019. Archived from the original on 2019-10-09. Retrieved November 5, 2019.
- Kaplan, Avi (2020-01-09). "So excited to announce @PaperWingsduo will be joining the I'll Get By Tour as support! Their music is truly beautiful. I can't wait for you all to hear them!pic.twitter.com/yri2WGHdxO". @Avi_Kaplan. Retrieved 2020-02-25.
- Wings, Paper (2020-01-11). "We are pleased to announce that we will be supporting @avi_kaplan on his upcoming U.S. tour! We hope to see you on the road. More details and dates coming soon Photograph by: sarahkathrynw @ Nashville, Tennessee https://www.instagram.com/p/B7MDjkjBfc0/ …". @Paperwingsduo. Retrieved 2020-02-25.