National Barbershop Quartet Day is observed annually on April 11. Barbershop quartets have a way making the heart flutter. Very often they transport us back to a simpler time or at the least make it stand still.
Barbershop quartets are a style of a cappella or unaccompanied vocal music. Their music features songs with understandable lyrics and easily singable melodies.
Between 1900 and 1919 barbershop music found its popularity. In the 1920s, it began to fade into obscurity. However, the barbershop quartet saw a revival when the Society for the Preservation and Encouragement of Barber Shop Quartet Singing in America was founded. This tongue twister of a men’s organization grew quickly as did other similar organizations promoting barbershop music as an artform. Today, just under 25,000 men in the United States and Canada are members of the SPEBSQSA.
The Society for the Preservation and Encouragement of Barber Shop Quartet Singing in America is April 11, 1938, in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Founded by Rupert I. Hall and Owen Clifton Cash, prospective members were not even required to be able to sing. According to an article in a June 13, 1938, issue of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Cash was quoted as saying, “All we ask is just that said prospective member THINK he can sing.”