Straight No Chaser is taking it back to the good ol’ days with the release of their new single and accompanying lyric video for “Motownphilly/This Is How We Do It,” premiering exclusively on Billboard today (Oct. 16).
The a cappella group mashes together the hit ’90s songs from Boyz II Men and Montell Jordan, respectively, with their own unique vocal flare. Meanwhile, the medley’s lyric video pays tribute to the group’s roots when they first formed Straight No Chaser in 1996 while attending Indiana University, and features a scrapbook of newspaper clippings, sheet music and old photos from the group’s formative years in college.
Straight No Chaser also adds a personal touch to the new song, referencing the group’s origins with a rap from member Jerome Collins: “Started back in Indiana, Hoosierland/Called it Straight No Chaser, a cappella, no band.”
“We wanted to start our album with a track that brought us back to the start of our group — the mid 90s and R&B,” member Walter Chase tells Billboard. “Back then, you would find us singing on the campus of Indiana University anywhere we could find a crowd. Our audiences know us for our mashups, and we couldn’t think of two songs that better symbolized the vibe, energy and swagger we first found back in school.”
“This Is How We Do It” was a staple in the group’s college repertoire, and “Motownphilly” captures Straight No Chaser’s path to success. “The lyrics from the Boyz II Men song fit our experience,” adds member Randy Stine in a release. “We dreamed about this and now we are doing it.”
“Motownphilly/This Is How We Do It” is the first single off of Straight No Chaser’s upcoming album One Shot!, to be released on Nov. 2, along with the kickoff of a national headlining tour.
Get a first look at the “Motownphilly/This Is How We Do It” lyric video below.