History

The Colby 8 has been in existence, more or less officially, since 1947. The following is an excerpt from the early "History of the Colby Eight" 1947-51. We don't know exactly WHAT we are today, but we'll leave it to you to discover that! Here is the earliest known history of the Eight: 
          
Out of the turmoil of World War II, many new elements found their way to the Colby Campus; some discordant, some harmonious -- all however, struggling to break through to the new "peacetime" pace.

It was this kind of atmosphere that prevailed during October of 1947 when an event occurred which was to have a profound effect on the musical life at Colby. Many of the events affecting world history have occurred with little fanfare and no apparent significance at the time of their occurrence, yet their significance was to become enormous. Such was the birth of the "Colby Eight."

Credit for the conception and the midwifery of this brainchild goes to two "singing fools" -- Ed Waller '49 and Dick Leonard '50 -- who underwent the labor pains of giving birth to the group and who nursed it through the early days of its infancy. At that first rehearsal, the original group (Dick Leonard '50, Ed Waller '49, Phil Lawrence '50, Connie White '49, Bob Armitage '50, George Bowers '50, Tom Samuelson '49, Hal Wormuth '50 and Bump Bean '51) gathered around a tiny old piano that had been left to gather dust on the second floor of Roberts Union, sixteen eyes were glued to the only copy of the old Yale Song Book owned by the group (total investment, 95 cents), eight mouths opened and the simple old spiritual "Talk About Jerusalem Morning" burst forth. What we heard, we liked, and with this first major encouragement, the Eight was on its way.

Among the early songs
 which were included in the group's repertoire were such old barbershop 
favorites as Aura Lee, One Two Three Four, Shall I Wasting In Despair, 
Mavourneen, Carolina Moon, Cocaine Bill and Morphine Sue, Graceful and 
Easy, Old Ark's-a-Movering, and George Jones. We even attempted to add 
a slightly more modern flavor to our programs by including a stock arrangement 
of "Mood Indigo" which was high-jacked during a post-concert elbow-bending 
contest held in the Pine Tree Tavern. As legend would have it, that 
same arrangement is still being sung by present-day Colby Eight groups.

[Modern Note: Mood Indigo is, and always has been, the Colby Eight "theme" song. A slightly different version of the arrangement's procurement exists- we believe that we snagged it from Bowdoin in some less than moral manner. There is no tangible proof either way (Thank God!)]

The history continues much in the same way. While somewhat outdated now, especially the size of the group, we continue the Colby Eight's tradition of commitment to performance and music. We look forward to many more years, united in harmony!


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